Generic Name: simvastatin (SIM va sta tin)
Brand Names: Zocor
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Zocor (simvastatin) belongs to a group of drugs called HMG CoA reductase inhibitors, or "statins". Simvastatin reduces levels of "bad" cholesterol (low-density lipoprotein, or LDL) and triglycerides in the blood, while increasing levels of "good" cholesterol (high-density lipoprotein, or HDL).
Zocor is used to lower cholesterol and triglycerides (types of fat) in the blood.
Zocor is also used to lower the risk of stroke, heart attack, and other heart complications in people with diabetes, coronary heart disease, or other risk factors
Simvastatin is used in adults and children who are at least 10 years old.
In rare cases, Zocor can cause a condition that results in the breakdown of skeletal muscle tissue, leading to kidney failure. Call your doctor right away if you have unexplained muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness especially if you also have fever, unusual tiredness, and dark colored urine.
Never take Zocor in larger amounts, or for longer than recommended by your doctor. Follow your doctor's dosing instructions very carefully. Taking too much of this medication may cause serious or life-threatening side effects.
Many other drugs can interact with simvastatin. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Give a list of all your medicines to any healthcare provider who treats you.
Before taking Zocor, tell your doctor if you have ever had liver or kidney disease, diabetes, or a thyroid disorder, if you are of Chinese descent, or if you drink more than 2 alcoholic beverages daily.
Zocor can harm an unborn baby or cause birth defects. Do not use if you are pregnant.
Grapefruit and grapefruit juice may interact with Zocor and lead to potentially dangerous effects. Do not consume grapefruit products while taking this medication.
You should not take Zocor if you are allergic to simvastatin, if you have liver disease, or if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.
In rare cases, Zocor can cause a condition that results in the breakdown of skeletal muscle tissue, leading to kidney failure. This condition may be more likely to occur in older adults and in people who have kidney disease or poorly controlled hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid). You may also be more likely to develop this condition if you are of Chinese descent and you take high-dose Zocor while also taking medication that contains niacin (Advicor, Niaspan, Niacor, Simcor, Slo-Niacin, and others).
Some medicines can cause unwanted or dangerous effects when used with Zocor. Your doctor may need to change your treatment plan if you use any of the following drugs:
the antibiotics clarithromycin, erythromycin, and telithromycin;
the antifungal medications itraconazole, ketoconazole, and posaconazole;
the hepatitis C medications boceprevir and telaprevir; or
the HIV/AIDS medications atazanavir, darunavir, fosamprenavir, indinavir, nelfinavir, ritonavir, saquinavir, and tipranavir.
Before you start taking Zocor, tell your doctor if you are already using any of these other medicines:
To make sure Zocor is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:
history of liver disease;
history of kidney disease;
a thyroid disorder; or
if you drink more than 2 alcoholic beverages daily.
FDA pregnancy category X. This medication can harm an unborn baby or cause birth defects. Do not take Zocor if you are pregnant. Stop taking this medication and tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant. Use effective birth control to avoid pregnancy while you are taking Zocor.
See also: Pregnancy and breastfeeding warnings (in more detail)
Simvastatin may pass into breast milk and could harm a nursing baby. Do not breast-feed while you are taking Zocor.
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