Muscle problems have become one of the complications of using Lipitor, health reports say, and rhabdomyolysis is even possible. Rhabdomyolysis is a severe form of myopathy and may lead to renal failure and death if left untreated, according to an article published in Medsafe. The breakdown of muscles fibers may be a rare complication but still needs to be monitored closely. Lipitor and other statins have the ability to cause this problem but simvastatin and cerivastatin has higher reports of rhabdomyolysis, according to a study published in the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI). The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) continues to monitor the cases of myopathy and encourages patients to report any information related to the use of these medications.
Myopathy is a group of disorders of the muscles due to the dysfunction of muscle fibers. There is a possibility that some of the people taking statins may experience muscle weakness, stiffness and cramps. Muscle pain may also be experienced all throughout different parts of the body. These cholesterol-lowering drugs have been found to have a lipophilic property in which they are able to cross the blood-brain barrier. Researchers believe that this is one of the possible reasons why statins cause muscle problems. Several health experts believe that it is prudent to monitor the creatine kinase levels before and during treatment.
The risk of developing this problem varies with for each person. Raising the dosage of Lipitor also increases the risk of rhabdomyolysis. There is also a greater risk of experiencing this muscle problem if the patient takes statins with CYP3A4 inhibitors, cyclosporine and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) protease inhibitors. Grapefruit and its juice are also contraindicated with all statins because it affects the breakdown of the medication. Bergamottin is a chemical in grapefruit that interact with the chemicals that are responsible in breaking down the drugs which may lead to the accumulation of statins in the body.
One may still be able to eat or drink the fruit but in small amounts and not during the same time when the drug is taken. Patients may need to ask their health care providers of these contraindications. If muscle breakdown occurs due to these factors, then myoglobin will be released into the bloodstream. Myoglobin will be excreted through the kidneys, although it may cause kidney damage. There are several patients who have filed a case against the maker of Lipitor because of claims of muscle weakness and they are aided by a Lipitor lawyer.
The author of this article writes to inform the public on the side effects of statins. The Lipitor Lawsuit Center at lipitorlawyer.us provides more information on the cases filed by patients.
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