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Table of Contents > Drugs >  Atorvastatin
Brand Names
Therapeutic Categories
Reasons not to take this medicine
What is this medicine used for?
How does it work?
How is it best taken?
What do I do if I miss a dose?
What are the precautions when taking this medicine?
What are the common side effects of this medicine?
What should I monitor?
Reasons to call healthcare provider immediately
How should I store this medicine?
General statements

(a TORE va sta tin)

Brand Names

Therapeutic Categories
Antilipemic Agent (HMG-CoA Reductase Inhibitor)

Reasons not to take this medicine

  • If you have an allergy to atorvastatin or any other part of the medicine.
  • If you have active liver disease or unexplained increases in liver tests.
  • If you are pregnant.

What is this medicine used for?

  • This medicine is used to lower lipids (cholesterol and others) in the body. It works hand-in-hand with a low fat diet.
  • It may also be used to increase the good, protective type of cholesterol called HDL.

How does it work?

  • Atorvastatin reduces cholesterol production in the body.

How is it best taken?

  • Take with or without food. Take with food if this medicine causes an upset stomach.
  • Take at a similar time every day.
  • Follow diet plan. Ask to see a nutritionist about diet.
  • Do not take colestipol or cholestyramine within 4 hours of this medicine.
  • Avoid grapefruit and grapefruit juice.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

  • Take a missed dose as soon as possible.
  • If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed one. Return to your regular schedule.
  • Do not take a double dose or extra doses.

What are the precautions when taking this medicine?

  • Check medicines with healthcare provider. This medicine may not mix well with other medicines especially with certain antibiotics, protease inhibitors used in AIDS, and other cholesterol-lowering medicines.
  • Use caution if you have liver disease. Talk with healthcare provider.
  • You can get sunburned more easily. Avoid lots of sun. Use sunscreen; wear protective clothing and eyewear.
  • Tell healthcare provider if you are allergic to any medicine. Make sure to tell about the allergy and how it affected you. This includes telling about rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, throat; or any other symptoms involved.
  • Do not use in pregnancy and do not get pregnant. Use birth control that you can trust while taking this medicine.
  • Do not use if you are breast-feeding.

What are the common side effects of this medicine?

  • Headache. Mild pain medicine may help.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Belly pain and cramps.

What should I monitor?

  • Follow diet plan and exercise program as recommended by healthcare provider.
  • Check blood tests (liver function). Talk with healthcare provider.

Reasons to call healthcare provider immediately

  • Signs of a life-threatening reaction. These include wheezing; tightness in the chest; fever; itching; bad cough; blue skin color; fits; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Unexplained muscle pain, back pain, tenderness, or weakness.
  • Yellowing of eyes or skin, easy bruising or bleeding.

How should I store this medicine?

  • Store in a tight container at room temperature.

General statements

  • Do not share your medicine with others and do not take anyone else's medicine.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Keep a list of all your medicines (prescription, herbal/supplements, vitamins, over-the-counter) with you. Give this list to healthcare provider (doctor, nurse, pharmacist, physician assistant).
  • Talk with healthcare provider before starting any new medicine, including over-the-counter or natural products (herbs, vitamins).

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