Atorvastatin is in a class of medications called HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors (statins). Atorvastatin works in the liver to lower cholesterol. When used with dietary changes, it can lower the "bad" LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, and also raise the "good" HDL cholesterol. By lowering cholesterol, it can also lower your risk of heart disease. This includes preventing strokes and heart attacks.
For most people, atorvastatin has little or no side effects. Changes in digestion and muscle pain some reported problems.
There is a rare side effect of the medication causing muscle problems called rhabdomyolysis or myopathy. Let your doctor know right away if you develop any muscle problems of any kind such as pain, tenderness, weakness.
Since this medication changes how your liver works, it can cause liver problems. Your physician will normally do blood tests to help prevent any issues. Let them know right away if you notice any yellowing eyes or skin, dark urine, or any abdominal pain.
As with any medication, allergic reactions can occur. This would normally happen when first starting the medicine. Seek immediate medical attention if you have rash, swelling, or trouble breathing.
When taking gemfibrozil together with atorvastatin it can increase the risk of a rare problem called rhabdomyolysis. Together they can increase your risk for this rare condition that involves the breakdown of skeletal muscles. It also increases your risk for liver injury too.
Your doctor may require close supervision if it is necessary to use both medications together.
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