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Precautions and Warnings of Simvastatin

Specific Precautions and Warnings of Simvastatin

Some precautions and warnings to be aware of prior to taking simvastatin include the following:
 

 

  • Studies have suggested that Chinese people may be at a higher risk for problems when simvastatin is combined with niacin (see Niacin and Zocor for more information).

  

  • If you are an alcoholic or drink alcohol frequently, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to starting simvastatin. Alcohol can affect the way the liver works, indirectly affecting simvastatin.
     
  • Statins have been known to cause an increase in liver enzymes. Therefore, it is recommended that you have a blood test that looks at your liver function before starting simvastatin. These tests may also be recommended if the dosage is changed.
Previously it had been recommended that people taking statins have routine periodic liver function tests while taking the medication, but this recommendation has been removed, since such monitoring does not help much to detect or prevent such problems. Liver function tests should still be performed if there is any suspicion of liver damage. 
  • Rhabdomyolysis (the severe breakdown of muscles) and other serious muscle problems have rarely been reported with simvastatin and other statins. However, you are at greater risk of developing muscle problems (such as rhabdomyolysis) while taking this drug if you:
 
Make sure to contact your healthcare provider immediately if you experience any muscle pain, weakness, or tenderness, especially if you also have a fever or feel ill (see Zocor and Muscle Pain).
  • Simvastatin is a pregnancy Category X medicine, which means it could potentially cause harm to your unborn child. The safety of the drug in pregnant women has not been established. If you are pregnant, talk with your healthcare provider immediately (see Zocor and Pregnancy).
     
  • It is not known whether simvastatin passes through breast milk. Therefore, you should ask your healthcare provider whether to stop nursing or discontinue simvastatin use.
     
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