Worst Pills, Best Pills

An expert, independent second opinion on more than 1,800 prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, and supplements

simvastatin (FLOLIPID, VYTORIN, ZOCOR)


E-ALERTS

Search results below include E-Alerts where your selected drug is a primary subject of discussion.


DISEASE AND DRUG FAMILY INFORMATION

Search results below include Disease and Drug Family Information where your selected drug is a primary subject of discussion.

Elevated Cholesterol Levels
The evidence for treatment, especially with cholesterol-lowering drugs, is much weaker for people who have not yet had the cardiovascular disease described above, known as primary prevention. This is especially so for those people who do not have more than one of the following risk factors: hypertension, diabetes, smoking, obesity, or a close family history of premature heart attacks or strokes.

DRUG AND DIETARY SUPPLEMENT PROFILES

A comprehensive review of the safety and effectiveness of this drug. If the drug is not a Do Not Use product, information on adverse effects, drug interactions and how to use the medication are included.
Search results below include Drug and Dietary Supplement Profiles where your selected drug is a primary subject of discussion.


WORST PILLS, BEST PILLS NEWSLETTER ARTICLES

Search results below include Worst Pills, Best Pills Newsletter Articles where your selected drug is a primary subject of discussion.

Important Drug Interactions for the Abnormal Heart Rhythm Drug Amiodarone
July 2021
Patients taking the commonly prescribed abnormal heart rhythm drug amiodarone should be aware that it has clinically important interactions with many other prescription medications.
Important Drug Interactions for the Antibiotic Erythromycin
June 2021
Patients taking the commonly prescribed antibiotic erythromycin should be aware that it has clinically important interactions with many other prescription medications.
Important Drug Interactions for the Seizure Drug Carbamazepine
March 2021
Patients taking the commonly prescribed epilepsy drug carbamazepine (CARBATROL, EPITOL, EQUETRO, TEGRETOL, TERIL) should be aware that it has clinically important interactions with numerous other prescription and over-the-counter medications.
Important Drug Interactions for the Calcium Channel Blocker Diltiazem
December 2020
Patients taking the widely prescribed calcium channel blocker diltiazem (CARDIZEM, CARTIA XT, TAZTIA XT, TIAZAC) should be aware that it has clinically important interactions with many other prescription medications.
Important Drug Interactions for the Anticoagulant Warfarin
August 2020
Patients taking the commonly used blood thinner warfarin (COUMADIN, JANTOVEN) should be aware that it has clinically important interactions with numerous other prescription and over-the-counter medications, as well as some dietary supplements.
Important Drug Interactions for the Antibiotic Azithromycin
July 2020
Patients taking the commonly prescribed antibiotic azithromycin (ZITHROMAX) should be aware that it has clinically important dangerous interactions with many other prescription medications.
Important Drug Interactions for Cholesterol-Lowering Drug Simvastatin
June 2020
Patients taking the commonly prescribed cholesterol-lowering drug simvastatin (FLOLIPID, VYTORIN, ZOCOR) should be aware that it has clinically important interactions with many other prescription medications.
Important Drug Interactions for the Antibiotic Clarithromycin
April 2020
Patients taking the commonly prescribed antibiotic clarithromycin (BIAXIN XL) should be aware that it has clinically important interactions with many other prescription medications.
Important Drug Interactions for the Calcium Channel Blocker Verapamil
March 2020
Patients taking the widely prescribed calcium channel blocker verapamil — which is used to treat high blood pressure, coronary artery disease and certain abnormal heart rhythms — should be aware that it has clinically important interactions with many other prescription medications.
Important Drug Interactions for the Seizure Drug Phenytoin
September 2019
Patients taking the commonly prescribed epilepsy drug phenytoin (DILANTIN, PHENYTEK), one of the oldest epilepsy drugs, should be aware that it has clinically impor¬tant interactions with many other prescription and over-the-counter medications. Some of these interactions can lead to phenytoin toxicity, and others can lead to ineffective seizure control.
Numerous Drugs Have Dangerous Interactions with Alcohol
August 2019
Most U.S. adults drink alcohol at least occasionally. Many also take prescription or over-the-counter drugs that have the potential to inter¬act adversely with alcohol. Avoid serious harm by knowing which drugs should not be taken in combination with alcohol.
Taking These Medications With Grapefruit Can Be Dangerous!
June 2019
Read about the many prescription drugs that can interact in dangerous ways with grapefruit or grapefruit products.
Colchicine Interactions with Other Drugs Can Be Life-Threatening
May 2019
Read about the many prescription medications that can interact in dangerous ways with colchicine, a commonly used drug for treatment of acute gout attacks.
Medications that Cause Taste Disorders
April 2019
Drugs are the most frequent cause of taste disturbances. In this article, we identify more than 60 commonly used prescription medications that have been linked to problems with taste.
New Study Links Statins to a Rare Autoimmune Muscle Disorder
January 2019
In this article, we review new research showing that statins are associated with a potentially disabling autoimmune muscle disorder known as idiopathic inflammatory myositis, a rare disorder that is distinct from the much more common type of muscle injury seen with statins.
Drugs That Cause Sun-Related Skin Reactions
July 2016
Summer is a terrific time for healthy outdoor activities, such as walking, hiking, biking and swim¬ming. But for an unlucky few, certain medications can lead to adverse skin reactions following exposure to the sun. Find out whether you are at risk and how to protect yourself.
New Cholesterol Treatment Guidelines Recommend Statins for More Patients
November 2014
One year ago, the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association released controversial new guidelines on treating high cholesterol. Get Public Citizen’s Health Research Group’s independent take on these new guidelines.
Statins for Primary Prevention: Risks Without Benefits
June 2013
For people who have had heart attacks, strokes and other cardiovascular diseases, statins can prevent further damage. But for primary prevention — in people without such disease — a number of articles raise serious questions about whether the risks of statins outweigh the benefits.
Updates: Pain, High Cholesterol and ADHD Drugs
June 2013
These updates provide new information that has become available since we published our last articles regarding these three categories of drugs.
Statins Frequently Cause Fatigue, Reduce Energy Levels
November 2012
Find out about the latest evidence that statins such as LIPITOR, LESCOL, ALTOPREV, MEVACOR, LIVALO, PRAVACHOL, CRESTOR and ZOCOR can cause fatigue and reduced energy levels, especially in women. The authors concluded that "These effects, germane to quality of life, merit consideration when prescribing or contemplating use of statins, particularly in groups without expected net morbidity/mortality benefit."
New Study on the Effectiveness of Statin Use in Women
October 2012
A recent study challenges the assumption that men and women with pre-existing cardiovascular disease benefit equally from the use of statins to prevent subsequent death or strokes.
Update on Grapefruit Juice-Drug Interactions
July 2012
This article updates and expands our earlier list of drugs that can have harmful interactions with grapefruit juice. The list now includes 82 different drugs.
Fenofibric Acid (TRILIPIX) May Not Lower Heart Attack/Stroke Risk
February 2012
Over 15.2 million prescriptions were filled in 2010 for the brand-name or generic versions of two essentially identical drugs (fenofibrate [TRICOR] and fenofibric acid [TRILIPIX]) that clearly do not add any benefits to taking statin drugs alone but add to the risks.
Cholesterol-Lowering Combination of Extended-Release Niacin (NIASPAN) Plus Simvastatin (ZOCOR) Misses the Mark
August 2011
NIASPAN (extended-dose niacin) alone may still be useful, but in a study published in 2011, it did not add any benefit when taken along with the statin simvastatin.
Fatal Drug Interactions With Simvastatin (ZOCOR)
December 2010
Find out how simvastatin (ZOCOR) can interact with another widely used drug to greatly increase the chance of life-threatening muscle damage that can lead to kidney damage.
Pitavastatin (LIVALO): 8th Cholesterol-Lowering Statin Marketed in the U.S.
December 2010
Find out why you should not use the newest entry into the crowded statin market.
Muscle Damage from Interactions Between Statins and Other Commonly Prescribed Drugs
July 2009
The article lists 38 prescription drugs that can harmfully interact with statin drugs. The article also advises that No matter what statin you are taking and regardless of any interacting drugs, you should notify your prescriber immediately if you develop muscle pain, weakness or a darkening of your urine. .
Colchicine Interactions with Other Drugs Can Be Life-Threatening
December 2008
This article lists 27 drugs that can have life-threatening interactions with the widely-used gout drug, colchicine, resulting in dangerously elevated levels of colchicine. Too much colchicine in the body leads to toxicity such as fever, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain and muscle pains. Even worse, it can impair the bone marrow’s ability to make red and white blood cells, causing severe anemia and dangerously low numbers of white blood cells. When the number of white blood cells is reduced, your body may have difficulty fighting infections. Most people who have died from colchicine toxicity have had bone marrow toxicity or had preexisting kidney problems. Every patient on colchicine — whether on other drugs or not — should be alert for evidence of colchicine toxicity as described above.
Muscle Injury From Use of Simvastatin (ZOCOR) with Amiodarone (CORDARONE)
November 2008
Despite the dangers of this combination--risk of severe muscle injury, rhabdomyolysis, which can lead to kidney failure or death--many clinicians continue to prescribe them together and cases of life-threatening adverse reactions from continue to be reported to the FDA. Patients taking simvastatin at a dose greater than 20 milligrams a day in combination with amiodarone should let their physician know that this combination puts them at high risk of muscle injury. There are other statins that do not appear to interact with amiodarone that are discussed.
FDA and Drug Makers Should Have Warned Public Earlier About Zetia, Vytorin
March 2008
Find out why Worst Pills warned against the use of VYTORIN more than three years ago. Also, learn about new evidence showing that despite the fact that this drug lowers cholesterol, there is no evidence that it prevents heart attacks or strokes (though massive misleading advertising would have you believe otherwise).
Is Less More? New Study Challenges Conventional Thought on Desirable Cholesterol Levels, Links Very Low Cholesterol to Cancer
February 2008
We review a recent study suggesting that very low cholesterol levels may be linked to an increased risk of cancer. The related issue discussed in the article is whether the current U.S. thinking that "lower is better," especially for those who have not yet had a heart attack or stroke or angina, is correct. There is also a discussion about the difference between primary and secondary prevention.
The Cholesterol-Lowering Statin Drugs and Memory Loss
December 2005
In the October 2005 issue of the Canadian Adverse Reaction Newsletter, 19 case reports of memory loss or impairment associated with the use of a cholesterol-lowering statin drug were analyzed. If you are taking a statin drug and you notice memory problems, talk to your doctor about stopping the drug or reducing the dose.
Rosuvastatin (CRESTOR) - The Most Dangerous Cholesterol-Lowering Statin Drug
July 2005
Further evidence that Crestor causes uniquely high rates of muscle and kidney damage
Cholesterol-Lowering Statin Drugs and the Dietary Supplement Coenzyme Q10
June 2005
You should not use coenzyme Q10 in an attempt to prevent or treat the adverse reactions associated with the use of the cholesterol lowering statin drugs.
The Cholesterol Lowering Statin Drugs — Not All Have Proven Health Benefits
March 2005
If you must use a statin drug to control your cholesterol, you should use one that has an FDA health benefit claim in its professional product labeling. (chart with these statins listed in the article)
Grapefruit Juice and Prescription Drugs: Some Dangerous Interactions
February 2004
The January 5th issue of the Medical Letter, a widely respected source of independent information about pharmaceuticals and dietary supplements, has a review of the increasingly researched problem of the interaction between grapefruit juice and many prescription and over-the-counter drugs. Like most interactions between chemicals in the body, this one involves the impairment, by grapefruit juice, of the body’s ability to metabolize many drugs, leading to higher than expected — and sometimes dangerous — levels of these drugs.This article lists the drugs.
Drug Induced Psychiatric Symptoms
October 2002
This is the first of a two part series on drug induced psychiatric symptoms that is based on the July 8, 2002 issue of The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics. Regular readers of Worst Pills, Best Pills News will recognize The Medical Letter as a reference source written for physicians and pharmacists that we often use because of its reputation as an objective and independent source of drug information. The article lists the drugs and their psychiatric adverse effects.
Grapefruit Juice and Drug Interactions
June 2002
Grapefruit juice can interact with a number of therapeutically important drugs that could lead to the possibility of toxicity. These drugs are listed in the article.
FDA Safety Office Recommends Warning About Liver Failure With The Cholesterol Lowering “Statin” Drugs
January 2001
The Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Office of Postmarketing Drug Risk Assessment (OPDRA) recommended in a memorandum dated May 1, 2000, that liver failure be included as an adverse reaction in the professional product labeling, or “package insert” for the family of cholesterol-lowering drugs known as “statins.” The statins now being marketed in the U.S. are .....

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION FROM PUBLIC CITIZEN

Search results below include Additional Information from Public Citizen where your selected drug is a primary subject of discussion.

Statin-associated rhabdomyolysis (HRG Publication #1733)
Letter to the editor that appeared in the April 2005 issue of Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug Safety. Submitted by Amer Ardati MD, Paul Stolley MD, Deanne E. Knapp PhD, Sidney M. Wolfe MD and Peter Lurie MD, MPH*
Petition to the FDA to issue strong warnings about the potential for certain cholesterol-lowering drugs to cause potentially life-threatening muscle damage. (HRG Publication #1588)
On the basis of these data, Public Citizen, representing 135,000 consumers nationwide, hereby petitions the FDA to add a black box warning and additional consistent bolded warnings about this serious problem to the label of all statins marketed in the United States.
Testimony before the Food and Drug Administration's Endocrinologic/Metabolic and Non-Prescription Advisory Committee on prescription to over-the-counter switch. (HRG Publication #1528)
Even if the patient self-selection worked and arrived at a group of patients who met the defined eligibility criteria, these very criteria are seriously flawed. There is no evidence that the majority of those who are "eligible" for the drug will have any clinical benefit from taking 10 mg daily of Mevacor.