Atorvastatin

A member of the class of medicines called statins. It is used to lower levels of total cholesterol, “bad” cholesterol (LDL cholesterol), and fatty substances called triglycerides in the blood.

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What is Atorvastatin?

Atorvastatin oral tablet is a prescription medication used to improve cholesterol levels in people with varying types of cholesterol problems. Atorvastatin also decreases the risk of heart attack and stroke. It is used together with diet, weight loss, and exercise.

Atorvastatin helps in preventing the buildup of cholesterol in your arteries. Clogged arteries can block the blood flow to your heart and brain. This medication may be used as part of combination therapy, meaning that you have to take Atorvastatin with other medications, such as bile acid resins and other cholesterol-lowering medications.

How does Atorvastatin work?

Atorvastatin belongs to the group of drugs called HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors, or simply referred to as statins. These drugs are used most of the time to treat similar conditions.

Atorvastatin works by lowering your low-density lipoprotein or LDL, also referred to as the bad cholesterol and raising your good cholesterol – the high-density lipoprotein or HDL. Atorvastatin improves your body’s ability to get rid of your LDL cholesterol through your liver.

What are the benefits of using Atorvastatin?

The benefits of using Atorvastatin include the lowering of your low-density lipoprotein, popularly known as the bad cholesterol. In addition to lowering the bad cholesterol. Atorvastatin raises the level of your high density lipoprotein or good cholesterol. The overall benefit of using Atorvastatin is the improvement of your body’s ability to get rid of your bad cholesterol through your liver.

How do I use Atorvastatin?

Atorvastatin comes as a tablet, which should be taken by mouth. It is usually taken once a day with or without a meal. Take your Atorvastatin tablet at about the same time each day in order to help you remember to take the scheduled dose.

Take Atorvastatin as directed by your doctor. He may start you on the lowest dose of Atorvastatin and gradually increase the dose as you get used to the medication. The increase of the dose should not be done more than once every 2 or 4 weeks.

Continue taking Atorvastatin even if you feel well. Do not stop taking it without consulting your doctor.

If you miss your dose of Atorvastatin, take it as soon as you remember. Skip the dose when you remember it very close to your next regular dose.

Atorvastatin dosage

Atorvastatin comes as a tablet, which should be taken by mouth. It is usually taken once a day with or without a meal. Take your Atorvastatin tablet at about the same time each day in order to help you remember to take the scheduled dose.

Take Atorvastatin as directed by your doctor. He may start you on the lowest dose of Atorvastatin and gradually increase the dose as you get used to the medication. The increase of the dose should not be done more than once every 2 or 4 weeks.

Continue taking Atorvastatin even if you feel well. Do not stop taking it without consulting your doctor.

If you miss your dose of Atorvastatin, take it as soon as you remember. Skip the dose when you remember it very close to your next regular dose.

Side effects & precautions

Medicines and their possible side effects affect individual user differently. Not everyone who uses Atorvastatin will experience the possible side effects.

The minor side effects of Atorvastatin include the following:

  • Diarrhoea
  • Constipation
  • Gas
  • Fatigue
  • Heartburn
  • A headache

The commonly reported side effects of Atorvastatin include the following:

  • Joint pain
  • Common cold
  • Pain in the extremities
  • Urinary tract infection

Atorvastatin may cause liver and muscle damage. The serious liver damage caused by statins is rare. Liver tests should be performed at the beginning of the treatment and as needed later.

Inflammation of the muscles due to the use of statins may lead to a serious breakdown of muscle cells called rhabdomyolysis. It causes the release of muscle protein into the blood, which may cause kidney failure and even death. When used alone, the use of statins can cause rhabdomyolysis in less than one percent of the patients. Rhabdomyolysis can be prevented from getting serious by contacting their doctor immediately if they develop unexplained muscle pain, weakness, or muscle tenderness.

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