Without a Prescription
All these efforts to keep your cholesterol levels normal are important because together they may lower your risk of heart disease.
For people at high risk of heart disease, current guidelines call for considering drug therapy when LDL levels reach 130.
For people at lower risk, the cut-off is 160.
For those at little or no risk, it's 190.
In people with high cholesterol and heart disease, Zocor reduces the risk of heart attack, stroke and "mini-stroke" (transient ischemic attack) and can stave off the need for bypass surgery or angioplasty to clear clogged arteries.
It's important to remember that Zocor is a supplement to--not a substitute for--those other measures.
To get the full benefit of the medication, you need to stick to the diet and exercise program prescribed by your doctor.
Your doctor may prescribe Zocor in addition to a cholesterol-lowering diet if your blood cholesterol level is too high, and if you have been unable to lower it by diet alone.
Zocor is a cholesterol-lowering drug.
Zocor is usually prescribed only if diet, exercise, and weight-loss fail to bring your cholesterol level under control.
Zocor side effects that you should report to your health care professional or doctor as soon as possible:
More common side effects may include:
- Abdominal pain;
Less common side effects may include:
- Upset stomach;
- Upper respiratory infection;
- Muscle weakness with rash;
Zocor is contraindicated if you have any of the following conditions:
- If you have a fever or feel sick;
- If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant;
- If you are scheduled for major surgery;
- If you have active liver disease;
- If you have ever had an allergic reaction to it or are sensitive to it;
- If your liver enzyme levels rise too high;
Do not take Zocor with any of the following drugs:
- Verapamil (calan);
- Protease inhibitors (used in the treatment of hiv), including agenerase, crixivan, fortovase, invirase, norvir, and viracept;
- Nicotinic acid or niacin (niaspan);
- Nefazodone (serzone);
- Ketoconazole (nizoral);
- Itraconazole (sporanox);
- Gemfibrozil (lopid);
- Fenofibrate (tricor);
- Erythromycin (pce and others);
- Cyclosporine (sandimmune, neoral);
- Clofibrate (atromid-s);
- Clarithromycin (biaxin);
- Amiodarone (cordarone);
CHILDREN 10 TO 17 YEARS OLD
The recommended starting dose is 10 milligrams once a day in the evening.
Girls must have been menstruating for at least 1 year before starting therapy with Zocor.
The dosage may be increased every 4 weeks, as determined by the doctor, up to a maximum of 40 milligrams a day.
The safety and effectiveness of Zocor in children under 10 years old or in doses greater than 40 milligrams a day have not been studied.
The usual starting dose is 20 milligrams once a day in the evening.
The dosage can be adjusted every 4 weeks. Some people with severe, hereditary high cholesterol may be prescribed as much as 80 milligrams a day, taken in doses of 20, 20, and 40 milligrams, along with other treatments.
If your cholesterol is especially high, the doctor may start with a dose of 40 milligrams.
When combined with cyclosporine, niacin, Atromid-S, Lopid, or Tricor, the dosage of Zocor should not exceed 10 milligrams a day.
Those who have severe kidney disease should use Zocor with caution. The recommended starting dose is 5 milligrams per day.
When combined with Calan or Cordarone, the dosage of Zocor should not exceed 20 milligrams a day.
If you suspect an overdose of Zocor, seek medical attention immediately.
Although no specific information about Zocor overdose is available, any medication taken in excess can have serious consequences.