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Mevacor (Generic)

Mevacor (Lovastatin) is an HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor, also known as a statin. It works by reducing the production of certain fatty substances in the body, including cholesterol.

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Uses

Lovastatin (LOE-va-STAT-in) is used to lower high cholesterol (along with an appropriate diet) in certain patients. It is used in certain patients to reduce the risk of heart attack and chest pain caused by angina. It is also used to slow blood vessel blockage and to reduce the need for medical procedures to open blocked heart blood vessels.

How to take

Take Lovastatin by mouth with food. Continue to take Lovastatin even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses. Do NOT take more than the recommended dose without checking with your doctor.

Side effects

The most common side effect is constipation. Check with your doctor if any of these most common side effects persist or become bothersome. Seek medical attention right away if any of these severe side effects occur: Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); chest pain, dark urine, muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness (with or without fever or fatigue); pale stools, red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin; severe stomach pain, yellowing of the skin or eyes. This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions or need medical advice about side effects, contact your doctor or health care provider.

Precaution

Eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice may increase the amount of Lovastatin in your blood, which may increase your risk for serious side effects. The risk may be greater with large amounts of grapefruit or grapefruit juice. Avoid large amounts of grapefruit or grapefruit juice (eg, more than one quart daily). Talk with your doctor or pharmacist if you have questions about including grapefruit or grapefruit juice in your diet while you are taking Lovastatin. Do NOT use Lovastatin if: you are allergic to any ingredient in Lovastatin; you have liver problems or unexplained abnormal liver function tests; Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you. Before using Lovastatin: Some medical conditions may interact with Lovastatin. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you: If you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement; If you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances; If you have low blood pressure, a serious infection, kidney problems, diabetes, or a history of seizures; If you are very ill, have certain muscle problems (eg, pain, weakness), or have metabolism, hormonal, or electrolyte problems; If you drink alcohol or have a history of liver problems or alcohol abuse; If you have a certain type of high cholesterol (homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia); If you have had an organ transplant or have recently had major surgery or a serious injury. Lovastatin may cause dizziness or blurred vision. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use Lovastatin with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it. Drinking alcohol daily or in large amounts may increase the risk of liver problems with Lovastatin. Check with your doctor before drinking alcohol while you are taking Lovastatin. Tell your doctor or dentist that you take Lovastatin before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care, or surgery. Women who may become pregnant should use effective birth control (such as condoms) while taking Lovastatin. Report any unexplained muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness to your doctor right away, especially if you also have a fever or general body discomfort. Lab tests, including blood cholesterol levels, liver function tests, and creatine phosphokinase (CPK) blood levels, may be performed while you use Lovastatin. These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Use Lovastatin with caution in the elderly; they may be more sensitive to its effects, especially serious muscle problems. Do not use Lovastatin if you are pregnant. It may cause harm to the fetus. Avoid becoming pregnant while you are taking it. If you think you may be pregnant, contact your doctor right away. It is not known if Lovastatin is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while you are taking Lovastatin.

Drug interactions

Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following: Amiodarone, certain azole antifungals (eg, itraconazole, ketoconazole), danazol, diltiazem, fibrates (eg, gemfibrozil, clofibrate), fluconazole, HIV protease inhibitors (eg, ritonavir), imatinib, immunosuppressants (eg, cyclosporine), macrolide antibiotics (eg, clarithromycin, erythromycin), mibefradil, nefazodone, niacin, non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (eg, delavirdine), streptogramins (eg, dalfopristin), telithromycin, vasopressin receptor antagonists (eg, conivaptan), verapamil, or voriconazole because they may increase the risk of muscle or kidney problems; Bosentan, carbamazepine, rifampin, or St. John's wort because they may decrease Lovastatin's effectiveness; Anticoagulants (eg, warfarin), cimetidine, digoxin, hormonal birth control (eg, birth control pills), macrolide immunosuppressants (eg, tacrolimus), or spironolactone because the risk of their side effects may be increased by Lovastatin. This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if Lovastatin may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

Missed dose

If you miss a dose of Lovastatin, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.

Storage

Store Lovastatin at room temperature, between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Lovastatin out of the reach of children and away from pets.