The primary outcome, the mean (+/-SE) change in the carotid-artery intima-media thickness, was 0.0058+/-0.0037 mm in the simvastatin-only group and 0.0111+/-0.0038 mm in the simvastatin-plus-ezetimibe (combined-therapy) group (P=0.29). Secondary outcomes (consisting of other variables regarding the intima-media thickness of the carotid and femoral arteries) did not differ significantly between the two groups. At the end of the study, the mean (+/-SD) LDL cholesterol level was 192.7+/-60.3 mg per deciliter (4.98+/-1.56 mmol per liter) in the simvastatin group and 141.3+/-52.6 mg per deciliter (3.65+/-1.36 mmol per liter) in the combined-therapy group (a between-group difference of 16.5%, P<0.01). The differences between the two groups in reductions in levels of triglycerides and C-reactive protein were 6.6% and 25.7%, respectively, with greater reductions in the combined-therapy group (P<0.01 for both comparisons). Side-effect and safety profiles were similar in the two groups. In conclusion, patients with familial hypercholesterolemia, combined therapy with ezetimibe and simvastatin did not result in a significant difference in changes in intima-media thickness, as compared with simvastatin alone, despite decreases in levels of LDL cholesterol and C-reactive protein.