Lovastatin (By mouth)

Introduction

Lovastatin (loe-va-STAT-in)

Lowers cholesterol levels to prevent heart attack or other problems. Used as part of a diet and exercise program to lower cholesterol.

Brand Name(s)

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

Altoprev, Mevacor

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to lovastatin, or to similar medicines such as atorvastatin (Lipitor®), cerivastatin (Baycol®), fluvastatin (Lescol®), pravastatin (Pravachol®), or simvastatin (Zocor®). You should not use this medicine if you are pregnant or breast feeding, if you have liver disease.

How to Use This Medicine

Tablet, Long Acting Tablet

  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Your dose may need to be changed several times in order to find out what works best for you. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
  • Take the medicine in the evening, unless your doctor tells you otherwise. You may take this medicine with or without food.
  • Swallow the extended-release tablet whole. Do not crush, break, or chew it.
  • Carefully follow your doctor's instructions about diet and exercise.

If a dose is missed:

  • If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to use the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • There are many other drugs that can interact with lovastatin. Make sure your doctor knows about all other medicines you are using.
  • Tell your doctor if you are also using amiodarone (Cordarone®), cyclosporine (Neoral®, Sandimmune®), gemfibrozil (Lopid®), nefazodone (Serzone®), niacin, or verapamil (Calan®, Covera®, Isoptin®). Make sure your doctor knows if you are using medicine to treat fungal infections, such as fluconazole, itraconazole, ketoconazole, Diflucan®, Nizoral®, or Sporanox®. Your doctor should also know if you are using erythromycin (E-Mycin®, E.E.S.®, Ery-Tab®), clarithromycin (Biaxin®), or blood thinners such as warfarin (Coumadin®). Tell your doctor if you use medicines to treat HIV/AIDS, such as Agenerase®, Crixivan®, Invirase®, Norvir®, Sustiva®, or Viracept®.
  • Do not drink alcohol while you are using this medicine.
  • Do not eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice while you are using this medicine.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Using this medicine while you are pregnant can harm your unborn baby. Use an effective form of birth control to keep from getting pregnant. If you think you have become pregnant while using the medicine, tell your doctor right away.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you have diabetes, kidney disease, or liver disease.
  • Your doctor will need to check your blood or urine at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.
  • Tell your doctor if you drink alcohol regularly.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing.
  • Chest pain.
  • Dark-colored urine or pale stools.
  • Decrease in how much or how often you urinate.
  • Fever, chills, cough, sore throat, and body aches.
  • Muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness.
  • Nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, pain in your upper stomach.
  • Stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite.
  • Yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes.

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Constipation or diarrhea.
  • Headache.
  • Mild muscle or joint pain.
  • Mild nausea, stomach pain, gas, indigestion.
  • Trouble sleeping.

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Review Date: 2011-02-04 Reviewed By: Keywords: ,
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