Drug Lipitor Monograph
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Lipitor (atorvastatin) Uses
This medication is used for patients with high cholesterol. Taken together with a low-fat diet, This medicine can lower LDL cholesterol, commonly referred to as the "bad" cholesterol, triglycerides, and total cholesterol, while increasing the HDL, or "good" cholesterol.
How Lipitor (atorvastatin) Works
This medication and the other "statin" drugs block an enzyme (HMG-CoA reductase) in the liver that is used by your body to make cholesterol. This results in lower levels of cholesterol and reduced risk of hardening of the arteries.
How To Take Lipitor (atorvastatin)
Take this medicine by mouth as directed by your doctor. The tablet may be crushed or split. This medication is better if taken on an empty stomach and before bedtime, since cholesterol is made in your body at a faster rate between midnight and 5AM. Generally getting the full-effect of this drug takes between 2 to 4 weeks, as long as you continue taking the medication on a daily frequency as prescribed.
Possible Lipitor Side Effects
This drug is generally well-tolerated and side effects are usually mild. Muscle pain (myalgia), constipation, gas, indigestion, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain may occur with Lipitor (atorvastatin) use.
You should notify your doctor if you experience any unexplained muscle pain, tenderness or weakness.
Lipitor (atorvastatin) Warnings and Precautions
Your doctor should conduct routine blood tests to check your liver function before and during treatment with this medication.
Lipitor (atorvastatin) Drug Interactions
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking other cholesterol-lowering drugs (such as gemfibrozil), certain antibiotics (such as erythromycin) and antifungal medications such as fluconazole, itraconazole or ketoconazole.
If you miss a dose, take your next dose as soon as you remember. If it is time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular schedule. Do not take double doses.
Keep your medication in the container it came in, tightly closed. Keep out of reach of children. Store at room temperature, away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw out medication that is outdated or no longer needed.
This medication should not be used during pregnancy. If you suspect that you may be pregnant, talk to your doctor. It is not known whether this medicine is excreted in the breast milk. It is advised not to breast-feed while taking this medication.
Lipitor Dietary Supplement Recommendations
Anyone taking any "statin" type drug should supplement CoEnzyme Q10 (CoQ10). CoQ10 is essential for healthy heart function. Your body normally makes CoQ10. One of the raw materials for CoQ10 production is cholesterol. To support your healthy heart function, you must supplement CoQ10.
Anyone with heart disease should also supplement Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), Vitamin B12 (cyanocobalamin), and Folic Acid or Folate. These nutrients suppress high Homocysteine levels. Elevated Homocysteine is consider by some experts to be more dangerous to heart health than cholesterol. Elevated Homocysteine levels essentially "rough up" the surface of blood vessels, making it easier for plaques to stick.
A good B Complex is usually enough to lower Homocysteine levels to a safe concentration. Consider Folic Acid supplemention for the same reason.
Another supplement worth considering is Policosanol. This natural supplement is made from sugar cane stems and will often positively affect (ie, lower) cholesterol levels. Some studies reported a 14 percent reduction.
Garlic is another supplement shown to help promote healthy cholesterol and blood pressure levels. Adding garlic and policosanol to your diet might even save money on your prescription drug bill.
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