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Jul 13, 2023



Taking Lovastatin For The First Time? Here’s How to Get The Best Results

  • Lovastatin is a low- to moderate-intensity statin
  • Doses: 10 mg, 20 mg, 40 mg, 80 mg
  • Lovastatin should not be used if you are pregnant or nursing
  • Avoid high-fat, high cholesterol food, grapefruit / grapefruit juice, and alcohol while taking lovastatin

What is Lovastatin?

Lovastatin (Altoprev) is a prescription medication for treating high cholesterol. Lovastatin reduces your body’s cholesterol production by blocking the liver enzyme (HMG-CoA reductase) that’s needed to make cholesterol. This is why statins are called HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors.

How does Lovastatin work?

Lovastatin functions by reducing the amount of cholesterol that may accumulate on your artery walls and obstruct blood flow to your heart, brain, and other organs in your body. This is done by delaying your body's synthesis of cholesterol.

Your heart, brain, and other organs of your body receive less oxygen as a result of the buildup of cholesterol and fats along your artery walls, which is a medical condition known as atherosclerosis.

Using lovastatin to lower your blood's cholesterol and fat levels may help you avoid developing heart disease, angina (chest discomfort), strokes, as well as heart attacks.

How to take it

Altoprev is available as an extended-release tablet, is taken by mouth at bedtime, and can be taken with or without food.

  • Moderate-intensity: 40 mg daily
    —Can reduce LDL by approximately 30%–49%
  • Low-intensity: 20 mg daily
    —Can reduce LDL by no more than 30%

Lovastatin's recommended dosage range is 10-80 mg/day in 1 or 2 split doses, and the highest dose recommended is 80 mg/day.

Your medical history, response to therapy, age, and any additional drugs you may be taking will all factor into the dosage.

Keep this medication out of the reach of children and firmly sealed in the original container. Keep it at normal temperature, away from sources of extreme heat and moisture, including your bathroom.

What are the side effects?

Common side effects

  • Myopathy (skeletal muscle disorder causing muscle weakness, stiffness and spasms)
  • Myalgias (muscle pain)
  • Arthralgia (joint pain)
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Headache
  • Lack of energy
  • Cold-like symptoms, including sore throat, stuffy nose, and/or sneezing
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea
  • Heartburn
  • Abdominal pain (particularly in the upper right region of your abdomen)
  • Indigestion
  • Constipation

Do not abruptly discontinue taking this medication if you believe you are encountering any negative side effects. Consult your doctor to determine whether a dose adjustment or switching to a different drug could be beneficial in your case.

Serious side effects

  • Difficulty raising your arms and/or difficulty rising or standing
  • Muscle aches in your hips, shoulders, neck, and back
  • Hepatic (liver) issues, such as upper abdominal pain, weakness, fatigue, decreased appetite, dark urine, and jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes)
  • Kidney issues include little to no urination, swelling of the ankles or feet, fatigue, or shortness of breath.

If you’re experiencing any of the serious side effects listed above, immediately call your doctor and stop taking this medication.

Read more about statin side effects.

Can I take Lovastatin if I’m pregnant?

If you are pregnant or intend to become pregnant, inform your physician. Pregnancy is not recommended when using lovastatin. Consult your physician about birth control options you can take while undergoing therapy.

If you become pregnant while taking lovastatin, notify your physician immediately and stop taking lovastatin due to the potential fetus harm from lovastatin.

Can Lovastatin interact with anything?

Your physician must be aware of any additional medications you are taking because some of them might significantly raise your chance of developing serious muscle issues.

Given that lovastatin does not affect the enzyme CYP3A4, it is not anticipated that it will have an impact on the plasma concentrations of other medications that CYP3A4 metabolizes/breaks down.

However, strong CYP3A4 inhibitors may increase the risk of myopathy by lowering the elimination of lovastatin, including the following:

  • Itraconazole
  • Ketoconazole
  • Clarithromycin
  • Erythromycin
  • Gemfibrozil
  • Niacin, including Niaspan or Niacor
  • Grapefruit and grapefruit juice

You should keep a written record of every medication you take, including any over-the-counter (OTC) drugs, prescription medications, and dietary supplements like vitamins and minerals. This list should be brought with you whenever you see your physician or are admitted to the hospital. You should always have this information with you in case of an emergency.

What should I avoid while taking Lovastatin?

Avoid consuming meals rich in cholesterol or fat. Avoid large consumption of alcohol while taking this medication due to the increased risk of adverse effects.

Grapefruit and lovastatin may interact and produce undesirable side effects. Avoid using grapefruit-related items.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Lovastatin should be taken at roughly the same time every day so you don’t forget to take it.

If you do forget to take a dose, take it as soon as you remember unless it's almost time for your next dose. In this case, skip the forgotten dose and take the next one at the usual time. Do not take 2 doses together to make up for a missed dose.

How does Lovastatin compare to other statins?

Both lovastatin and atorvastatin are potent and effective statin medications. Lovastatin is categorized as a low to moderate-intensity statin, whereas atorvastatin is categorized as a moderate to a high-intensity statin, depending on the dosage recommended.

Generally, lovastatin is thought to be less effective than atorvastatin for reducing LDL cholesterol. In contrast to lovastatin, atorvastatin may be more likely to cause myopathy at larger dosages.

Speak With Your Doctor

Lovastatin is relatively considered a safe and effective medication when taken appropriately (as prescribed by your doctor). Talk to your doctor today about using Lovastatin and send your prescription to Marley Drug. Save up to 95% compared to your local pharmacy by using Marley Drug.

Marley Drug provides free nationwide shipping, allowing you to receive your medication at no additional cost straight to your door.

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