You may want to take care when taking certain medicines while taking statins. Talk to your doctor about all the medicines you take. Some medicines may change the way statins work. Sometimes, your doctor may lower the dose of your statin, take you off one statin and switch you to a different statin, or lower the dose of the other medicine.
Here are some medicines that we know don’t always mix well with statins:
- Certain antibiotics and antifungals including clarithromycin, erythromycin, and ketoconazole. There are usually other antibiotics you can take instead. If not, you may need to lower the statin dose or switch the statin you are on.
- Gemfibrozil is a fibrate used to treat high cholesterol. It may increase the risk of statin side effects if taken with certain statins.
- Calcium channel blockers (CCBs) like diltiazem are used to treat high blood pressure. Some may not mix well with some statins. Amlodipine, another CCB, can often be given safely with statins. Your doctor can help you decide which blood pressure medicine works best with which statins.
- Colchicine is a treatment for gout. Some statins should not be taken with colchicine.
- Indinavir, ritonavir, paritaprevir, and telaprevir treat HIV and hepatitis C virus infections. If you take them with a statin, the usual dosage of these medicines may need to be changed.
- Cyclosporine is given to patients after an organ transplant, so the organ isn’t rejected. The level of cyclosporine in the body may get too high when it is taken with statins.
Specific statins may affect the way some drugs work. These medicines include digoxin, warfarin, glyburide, and phenytoin. Sometimes, you can still take these with the statin. But your doctor may need to do extra testing to keep you safe.
This is not a complete list. But if you are on medicines that are not listed here it would be unlikely that your medicine would interact with statin medications.
Stay safe – tell your doctor what you take!