Generic Name: ezetimibe (e-ZET-i-mibe)
Brand Name: Zetia
Ezetimibe is used for:
Treating high blood cholesterol along with a low-fat, low-cholesterol diet. It may be used alone or with other medicines. It is also used to treat high blood sitosterol and campesterol along with diet therapy.
Ezetimibe is an antihyperlipidemic agent. It works by reducing the amount of cholesterol or other sterols that your body absorbs from your diet.
Do NOT use ezetimibe if:
- you are allergic to any ingredient in ezetimibe
- you have moderate to severe liver problems
Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.
Before using ezetimibe:
Some medical conditions may interact with ezetimibe. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:
- if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
- if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
- if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
- if you have a history of liver problems or unexplained muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness
- if you have kidney problems or thyroid problems
- if you are taking other cholesterol-lowering medicines
Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with ezetimibe. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:
- Fibrates (eg, fenofibrate, gemfibrozil) because the risk of gallstones may be increased
- Cholestyramine because it may decrease ezetimibe's effectiveness
- Anticoagulants (eg, warfarin) or cyclosporine because the risk of their side effects may be increased by ezetimibe
This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if ezetimibe may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.
How to use ezetimibe:
Use ezetimibe as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
- An extra patient leaflet is available with ezetimibe. Talk to your pharmacist if you have questions about this information.
- Take ezetimibe by mouth with or without food.
- Taking ezetimibe at the same time each day will help you remember to take it.
- If you also take a bile acid sequestrant (eg, cholestyramine, colesevelam, colestipol), do not take it within 4 hours before or 2 hours after taking ezetimibe. Check with your doctor if you have questions.
- Continue to use ezetimibe even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses.
- If you miss a dose of ezetimibe, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.
Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use ezetimibe.
Important safety information:
- Ezetimibe may cause dizziness. This effect may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use ezetimibe with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
- For best results, ezetimibe should be used along with exercise, a low-cholesterol and low-fat diet, and a weight loss program if you are overweight. Follow the diet and exercise program given to you by your health care provider.
- Do NOT take more than the recommended dose without checking with your doctor.
- If you experience unexplained muscle pain, weakness, or tenderness, contact your doctor.
- Lab tests, including liver function and cholesterol levels, may be performed while you use ezetimibe. These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
- Ezetimibe should not be used in CHILDREN younger than 10 years old; safety and effectiveness in these children have not been confirmed.
- PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using ezetimibe while you are pregnant. It is not known if ezetimibe is found in breast milk. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you use ezetimibe, check with your doctor. Discuss any possible risks to your baby.
Possible side effects of ezetimibe:
All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:
Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:
Diarrhea; dizziness; headache; joint pain; sinus inflammation; tiredness.
Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing or swallowing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue; unusual hoarseness); chest pain; dark urine; depression; fever, chills, or persistent sore throat; numbness or tingling of the skin; severe or persistent joint pain; severe stomach or back pain with nausea and vomiting; unexplained muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness; yellowing of the eyes or skin.
This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately.Proper storage of ezetimibe:
Store ezetimibe at 77 degrees F (25 degrees C). Brief storage at temperatures between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C) is permitted. Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep ezetimibe out of the reach of children and away from pets.
- If you have any questions about ezetimibe, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- Ezetimibe is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
- If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
- Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.
This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take ezetimibe or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about ezetimibe. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to ezetimibe. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using ezetimibe.
Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.