ATORVASTATIN – ORAL
Brand Name(s): Lipitor
Atorvastatin is used along with a proper diet to help lower “bad” cholesterol and fats (e.g., LDL, triglycerides) and raise “good” cholesterol (HDL) in the blood. It belongs to a group of drugs known as “statins”. It works by reducing the amount of cholesterol made by the liver. In general, atorvastatin is prescribed after non-drug treatments have not been fully successful at lowering cholesterol (e.g., diet change, increase in exercise, weight loss if overweight). Lowering “bad” cholesterol and triglycerides and raising “good” cholesterol decreases the risk of heart disease and helps prevent strokes and heart attacks.
How to use Lipitor OralTake this medication by mouth with or without food, usually once daily or as directed by your doctor.
Dosage is based on your medical condition, response to treatment, and use of certain interacting medicines. Many of the drugs listed in the Drug Interactions section may increase the chances of muscle problems when used with atorvastatin. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details.
Avoid eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice while being treated with this medication unless your doctor instructs you otherwise. Grapefruit juice can increase the amount of certain medications in your bloodstream. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details.
If you also take certain other drugs to lower your cholesterol (bile acid-binding resins such as cholestyramine or colestipol), take atorvastatin at least 1 hour before or at least 2 hours after taking these medications.
Take this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. Remember to take it at the same time each day. It may take up to 4 weeks before you get the full benefit of this drug.
It is important to continue taking this medication even if you feel well. Most people with high cholesterol or triglycerides do not feel sick.
Lipitor Oral Side Effects
Diarrhea or stomach/abdominal pain may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
This drug may infrequently cause muscle problems (which can rarely lead to a very serious condition called rhabdomyolysis). Tell your doctor immediately if you develop any of these symptoms: muscle pain/tenderness/weakness (especially with fever or unusual tiredness), change in the amount of urine.
Tell your doctor immediately if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: yellowing eyes/skin, dark urine, severe stomach/abdominal pain, persistent nausea/vomiting.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.