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Rosuvastatin (Oral)

roe-soo-va-STAT-in

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Sep 26, 2019.

Commonly used brand name(s)

In the U.S.

  • Crestor
  • Ezallor

Available Dosage Forms:

  • Tablet
  • Capsule

Therapeutic Class: Antihyperlipidemic

Pharmacologic Class: HMG-COA Reductase Inhibitor

Uses for rosuvastatin

Rosuvastatin is used together with a proper diet to lower bad cholesterol (LDL) and triglycerides (fats) in the blood, and to increase your good cholesterol (HDL). It is also used to treat adults who cannot control their cholesterol levels by diet and exercise alone. Rosuvastatin may help prevent or slow down medical problems, like atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), that are caused by fats clogging the blood vessels. It may also be used to prevent certain types of heart and blood vessel problems in patients with risk factors for heart problems.

Rosuvastatin belongs to a group of medicines called HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors, or statins. It works by blocking an enzyme that is needed by the body to make cholesterol, so this reduces the amount of cholesterol in the blood.

Rosuvastatin is available only with your doctor's prescription.

Before using rosuvastatin

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For rosuvastatin, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to rosuvastatin or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Pediatric

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated pediatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of rosuvastatin tablet in children 7 years of age and older. However, safety and efficacy have not been established in children younger than 7 years of age.

Appropriate studies have not been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of rosuvastatin capsule in the pediatric population. Safety and efficacy have not been established.

Geriatric

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of rosuvastatin in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related muscle problems, which may require caution in patients receiving rosuvastatin.

Breastfeeding

Studies in women breastfeeding have demonstrated harmful infant effects. An alternative to this medication should be prescribed or you should stop breastfeeding while using rosuvastatin.

Interactions with medicines

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are taking rosuvastatin, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.

Using rosuvastatin with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Amprenavir
  • Atazanavir
  • Bezafibrate
  • Ciprofibrate
  • Cobicistat
  • Cyclosporine
  • Daptomycin
  • Darolutamide
  • Darunavir
  • Dasabuvir
  • Elbasvir
  • Eluxadoline
  • Eslicarbazepine Acetate
  • Fenofibrate
  • Fenofibric Acid
  • Fosamprenavir
  • Gemfibrozil
  • Grazoprevir
  • Indinavir
  • Lasmiditan
  • Ledipasvir
  • Leflunomide
  • Lopinavir
  • Niacin
  • Ombitasvir
  • Paritaprevir
  • Ritonavir
  • Rolapitant
  • Saquinavir
  • Simeprevir
  • Teriflunomide
  • Tolvaptan
  • Velpatasvir
  • Voxilaprevir

Using rosuvastatin with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Acenocoumarol
  • Amiodarone
  • Dicumarol
  • Eltrombopag
  • Fluconazole
  • Glecaprevir
  • Itraconazole
  • Oat Bran
  • Pectin
  • Phenprocoumon
  • Pibrentasvir
  • Tipranavir
  • Warfarin

Interactions with food/tobacco/alcohol

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other medical problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of rosuvastatin. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Alcohol abuse, or history of or
  • Liver disease, history of—Use with caution. May cause side effects to become worse.
  • Asian descent—May need a lower dose of rosuvastatin.
  • Convulsions (seizures), not well-controlled or
  • Dehydration or
  • Electrolyte deficiency or disorder, severe or
  • Endocrine disorder, severe or
  • Hypotension (low blood pressure) or
  • Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid), inadequately treated or
  • Kidney disease, severe or
  • Major surgery or trauma, recent or
  • Metabolic enzyme deficiency or disorder, severe or
  • Sepsis (severe infection)—Patients with these conditions may be at risk for muscle or kidney problems.
  • Diabetes—Use with caution. May make this condition worse.
  • Liver disease, active or
  • Liver enzymes, elevated—Should not be used in patients with these conditions.

Proper use of rosuvastatin

Use rosuvastatin only as directed by your doctor. Do not use more of it, do not use it more often, or do not use it for a longer time than your doctor ordered. Also, rosuvastatin works best if there is a constant amount in the blood. To help keep this amount constant, do not miss any doses and take the medicine at the same time each day.

In addition to rosuvastatin, your doctor may change your diet to one that is low in fat, sugar, and cholesterol. Carefully follow your doctor's orders about any special diet.

Rosuvastatin comes with a patient information leaflet. Read and follow the instructions carefully. Ask your doctor if you have any questions.

You may take rosuvastatin with or without food.

Swallow the tablet whole. Do not break, crush, or chew it.

To use the capsule:

  • Swallow the capsule whole. Do not crush or chew it. If you have trouble swallowing, you may open it and mix the contents with 1 teaspoon of applesauce. Take this mixture right away. Do not save the mixture for later use. Throw away any unused mixture.
  • You may also take the capsule using a nasogastric tube. To use:
    • Open the capsule and empty the contents into a 60-milliliter (mL) catheter syringe. Add 40 mL of water. Do not use any other liquid.
    • Replace the plunger and shake the syringe for 15 seconds. The granules may start dissolving.
    • Attach the syringe to a nasogastric tube and deliver the contents into the stomach.
    • Flush the tube with an additional 20 mL of water to get all of the medicine.
    • Throw away any unused mixture.

If you need to take an antacid that contains aluminum and magnesium (eg, Maalox®), take the antacid at least 2 hours after using rosuvastatin.

Do not drink large amounts of alcohol while using rosuvastatin. This could cause side effects on the liver.

Dosing

The dose of rosuvastatin will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of rosuvastatin. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For oral dosage form (capsules):
    • For homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia:
      • Adults—At first, 20 milligrams (mg) once a day. Your doctor may adjust your dose as needed. However, the dose is usually not more than 40 mg.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
    • For hypertriglyceridemia or primary dysbetalipoproteinemia (Type III hyperlipoproteinemia):
      • Adults—At first, 10 to 20 milligrams (mg) once a day. Your doctor may adjust your dose as needed. However, the dose is usually not more than 40 mg.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
  • For oral dosage form (tablets):
    • For atherosclerosis:
      • Adults—5 to 40 milligrams (mg) once a day.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
    • For heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia:
      • Adults—5 to 40 milligrams (mg) once a day.
      • Children 10 to 17 years of age—5 to 20 mg per day.
      • Children 8 to 9 years of age—5 to 10 mg per day.
      • Children younger than 8 years of age—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
    • For homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia:
      • Adults—At first, 20 milligrams (mg) once a day. Your doctor may adjust your dose as needed.
      • Children 7 to 17 years of age—20 mg once a day.
      • Children younger than 7 years of age—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

Missed dose

If you miss a dose of rosuvastatin, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

However, do not take 2 doses of rosuvastatin within 12 hours of each other.

Storage

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.

Precautions while using rosuvastatin

It is very important that your doctor check your progress at regular visits. This will allow your doctor to see if the medicine is working properly to lower your cholesterol and triglyceride levels and to decide if you should continue to take it. Blood and urine tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects.

Using rosuvastatin while you are pregnant can harm your unborn baby. Use an effective form of birth control to keep from getting pregnant. If you think you have become pregnant while using the medicine, tell your doctor right away.

Make sure any doctor or dentist who treats you knows that you are using rosuvastatin. You may need to stop using rosuvastatin if you have a major surgery, major injury, or if you develop other serious health problems.

Call your doctor right away if you have unexplained muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness, even after stopping the medicine. These could be symptoms of serious muscle problems such as myopathy or immune-mediated necrotizing myopathy (IMNM).

Call your doctor right away if you have dark urine, fever, muscle cramps or spasms, muscle pain or stiffness, or unusual tiredness or weakness. These could be symptoms of a serious muscle problem called rhabdomyolysis, which can cause kidney problems.

Check with your doctor right away if you have pain or tenderness in the upper stomach, pale stools, dark urine, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, or yellow eyes or skin. These could be symptoms of a serious liver problem.

Do not stop or change your dose without checking first with your doctor, even if you are feeling well.

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.

Rosuvastatin side effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

More common

  • Difficulty in moving
  • joint pain or swelling
  • muscle pain, cramps, spasms, or stiffness

Less common

  • Blurred vision
  • chest pain or discomfort
  • chest tightness or heaviness
  • difficult, burning, or painful urination
  • dry mouth
  • fast, irregular, pounding, or racing heartbeat or pulse
  • flushed, dry skin
  • fruit-like breath odor
  • increased hunger
  • increased thirst
  • increased urination
  • loss of consciousness
  • muscle tension or tightness
  • nausea
  • slow heartbeat
  • stomachache
  • sweating
  • troubled breathing
  • unexplained weight loss
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • vomiting

Rare

  • Dark urine
  • fever

Incidence not known

  • Black, tarry stools
  • bleeding gums
  • bloating
  • bloody urine
  • chills
  • clay-colored stools
  • constipation
  • cough
  • general feeling of tiredness or weakness
  • headache
  • hives, itching, skin rash
  • hoarseness
  • indigestion
  • irritation
  • joint swelling
  • large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or genitals
  • light-colored stools
  • loss of appetite
  • muscular tenderness, wasting, or weakness
  • pains in the stomach, side, or abdomen, possibly radiating to the back
  • pinpoint red spots on the skin
  • redness of the skin
  • stomach pain, continuing swelling of the eyelids, face, lips, hands, or feet
  • tightness in the chest
  • trouble swallowing
  • unpleasant breath odor
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
  • upper right abdominal pain
  • vomiting of blood
  • yellow eyes or skin

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common

  • Body aches or pain
  • congestion
  • dry or sore throat
  • runny nose
  • tender, swollen glands in the neck
  • voice changes

Less common

  • Accidental injury
  • accumulation of pus, swollen, red, or tender area of infection near a tooth
  • arm, back, or jaw pain
  • belching
  • bladder pain
  • burning feeling in the chest or stomach
  • burning, crawling, itching, numbness, prickling, "pins and needles", or tingling feelings
  • diarrhea
  • discouragement
  • dizziness
  • excess air or gas in the stomach or bowels
  • excessive muscle tone
  • fear
  • feeling faint
  • feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
  • feeling of warmth or heat
  • feeling sad or empty
  • flushing or redness of the skin, especially on the face and neck
  • general feeling of discomfort or illness
  • heartburn
  • lack of appetite
  • lack or loss of strength
  • lightheadedness
  • loss of interest or pleasure
  • neck pain
  • nerve pain
  • nervousness
  • pain or swelling in the arms or legs without any injury
  • pain or tenderness around the eyes and cheekbones
  • passing gas
  • pounding in the ears
  • sensation of spinning
  • shivering
  • sneezing
  • stomach discomfort, tenderness, or upset
  • stuffy nose
  • trouble concentrating
  • trouble sleeping

Incidence not known

  • Confusion
  • forgetfulness
  • memory loss
  • nightmares
  • swelling of the breasts or breast soreness in both females and males
  • unsteadiness or awkwardness
  • weakness in the arms, hands, legs, or feet

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.