Without a Prescription
Lopid, also known as Gemfibrozil, is a drug which is usually prescribed along with a diet to people who have very high levels of serum triglycerides (triglycerides are fatty substances from the blood) and who are at a risk of developing pancreatitis (this is the inflammation of the pancreas). Lopid may also be prescribed in order to reduce the risk of developing coronary heart disease in people who have not responded to the other therapy options: weight loss, exercises, and diet and to other triglyceride lowering drugs.
Lopid is prescribed by doctors or personal health care providers only in the cases in which the diet, exercises and weight loss programs have failed to keep the cholesterol levels under control. Lopid is not a substitute for exercise and diet, but a supplement. In order for the patients to see the benefits during and after the treatment, they should follow adjacent non-medication therapy options - exercising and keeping a diet. These three things will help the patients lower their cholesterol levels and prevent the development of heart disease.
The most important risk factors which usually lead to high levels of fats in the organism are excessive body weight and alcohol intake; this is why your personal health care provider will help you loose weight and also stop drinking before prescribing you Lopid. Also your personal healthcare provider will ask you to undergo periodic cholesterol blood level tests in your first year of treatment with Lopid, because of the blood diseases which can develop. Also, your doctor will want to keep your liver functions constantly monitored, as unwanted liver disorders can develop.
The patients who are already under treatment for diseases which can contribute to the high levels of cholesterol in the blood such as: diabetes, nephrotic syndrome, dysproteinemia, obstructive liver disease or an overactive thyroid are advised to consult a doctor before beginning the treatment with Lopid. Lopid should start to reduce the levels of cholesterol from the first three months of treatment; in case this does not happen, the treatment should be stopped.
Patients should ask their personal healthcare providers to tell them exactly how they should use the doses of Lopid. It is not recommended to deviate from the doctor's instructions. If the patients are interested in finding more about Lopid, they should consult the medicine's label. Lopid should be taken 30 minutes before the morning and evening meal, as the doctor prescribed it. The medicine should be kept at room temperature in order not to deteriorate it.
Your personal health care provider will prescribe you the proper dose of Lopid that you should take in on a regular basis. Do not deviate from the dosage that you have been given by your personal physician without his or her consent. The recommended dosage for an adult is of 1,200 mg (this dose should be divided in two equal doses). The drug's effectiveness has not been proved in children; elderly people should use Lopid with great caution.
It is well known the fact that any medicine taken in excess may have serious consequences. In the case in which a patient suspects that he has taken an overdose, he must consult his personal healthcare provider as quickly as possible. In the case of a Lopid overdose the patient may experience the following symptoms: abdominal cramps, nausea, muscle pain, diarrhea and vomiting.
In the cases in which the patients forget to take their dose of Lopid there is no problem, they can take it as soon as they remember; if it is time for the next dose, the patients should skip the missed one and continue with the schedule as prescribed by their doctor or personal health care provider. Individuals are not recommended to take a double dose of Lopid.
The most common side effects which a patient can experience during the treatment with Lopid are the following: dizziness, drowsiness, numbness, tingling of the hands and feet, unusual taste, upset stomach, abdominal pain and even blurred vision. The patients in whom these side effects persist or get worse should announce their personal health care provider as soon as possible. Such individuals should also announce their doctor if they are experiencing the following: decreased sexual desire, decreased sexual ability, depression, signs of infection (such as sore throat, fever), easy bruising, easy bleeding, arrhythmias or unusual fatigue. Lopid may also cause muscle damage, which rarely leads to serious or fatal conditions such rhabdomyolysis. In the cases in which the patients experience muscle pain, tenderness or weakness accompanied by fever and unusual tiredness and also unusual quantities of urine, they should stop taking Lopid.
If the patients develop a serious allergic reaction to Lopid, they may experience the following symptoms: rash, swelling, severe dizziness, itching, and breathing problems. These are not all the side effects that patients can have during the treatment with Lopid, in the cases in which the patients experience other symptoms than those listed above they should contact their doctor.
The patients are recommended not to use other cholesterol lowering drugs while they are under treatment with Lopid, in order to avoid the development of severe muscle wasting. The drugs which are included in this category are: Atorvastatin (Lipitor), Fluvastatin (Lescol), Lovastatin (Mevacor), Pravastatin (Pravachol), Simvastatin (Zocor), and so on.
Patients should also avoid taking Lopid along with blood thinning drugs such as Coumadin; if a therapy with a blood thinning remedy is crucial for the patient's health, its dose could be reduced in order to avoid an abnormal bleeding. Patients should also not take Lopid if they are already taking drugs for diabetes (such as Prandin).
Other Brand Names
In some countries Lopid may also be known as: