- atorvastatin - is a prescription drug in one of the
newest classes of cholesterol-lowering medications, called statins. These drugs have been used widely for the last 5 years.
For people with high cholesterol, atorvastatin, in combination with a low-fat diet, can reduce your LDL "bad" cholesterol and
Cholesterol is a soft, waxy substance found among the lipids (fats) in the bloodstream and in all your body's cells. It is normal
to have cholesterol, in fact, cholesterol is an important part of a healthy body because it is used to form cell membranes;
hormones and other needed tissues. However, too high a level of cholesterol in the blood is a major risk for coronary heart disease.
Atorvastatin is a safe prescription medication that can naturally reduce the levels of cholesterol.
This medicine blocks a key enzyme, HMG-CoA reductase, which is responsible for the formation of cholesterol.
Atorvastatin was approved by the FDA in December of 1996.
SIDE EFFECTS: Atorvastatin is generally well-tolerated, and side
effects are rare. Minor side effects include constipation, diarrhea,
fatigue, gas, heartburn, and headache. Atorvastatin should be used with
caution in patients with alcohol or other liver diseases. Persistently
abnormal liver tests during treatment are rare but may require
discontinuation of the medication. Rare cases of muscle inflammation (myositis)
and breakdown have been reported with other drugs in this class (HMGCoA
reductase antagonists), and it is assumed that this side effect also may
occur with atorvastatin. Muscle breakdown causes the release of muscle
protein (myoglobin) into the blood and accumulation of the protein in
the kidney tubules, resulting in kidney failure.