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Drug interactions between niacin / simvastatin and simvastatin

Results for the following 2 drugs:
niacin/simvastatin
simvastatin

Interactions between your drugs

Major

niacin simvastatin

Applies to: niacin / simvastatin and simvastatin

The following interaction applies only if you are taking high dosages of niacin for the treatment of high cholesterol. It does not apply if you are taking niacin at dosages commonly used in nutritional supplements.

Using simvastatin together with niacin may increase the risk of a rare but serious condition called rhabdomyolysis that involves the breakdown of skeletal muscle tissue. In some cases, rhabdomyolysis can cause kidney damage and even death. The risk is greatest if you are elderly or have preexisting kidney disease. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. Your doctor may already be aware of the risks, but has determined that this is the best course of treatment for you and has taken appropriate precautions and is monitoring you closely for any potential complications. Let your doctor know immediately if you have unexplained muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness during treatment with simvastatin or similar medications, especially if these symptoms are accompanied by fever or dark colored urine. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

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Drug and food interactions

Major

simvastatin food

Applies to: niacin / simvastatin and simvastatin

Grapefruit juice can significantly increase the blood levels of simvastatin. This can increase the risk of side effects such as liver damage and a rare but serious condition called rhabdomyolysis that involves the breakdown of skeletal muscle tissue. In some cases, rhabdomyolysis can cause kidney damage and even death. You should avoid the consumption of grapefruit or grapefruit juice during treatment with simvastatin. Let your doctor know immediately if you have unexplained muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness during treatment, especially if these symptoms are accompanied by fever or dark colored urine. You should also seek immediate medical attention if you develop fever, chills, joint pain or swelling, unusual bleeding or bruising, skin rash, itching, loss of appetite, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, dark colored urine, and/or yellowing of the skin or eyes, as these may be signs and symptoms of liver damage. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

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Therapeutic duplication warnings

Therapeutic duplication is the use of more than one medicine from the same drug category or therapeutic class to treat the same condition. This can be intentional in cases where drugs with similar actions are used together for demonstrated therapeutic benefit. It can also be unintentional in cases where a patient has been treated by more than one doctor, or had prescriptions filled at more than one pharmacy, and can have potentially adverse consequences.

Duplication

HMG Co-A reductase inhibitors

Therapeutic duplication

The recommended maximum number of medicines in the 'HMG Co-A reductase inhibitors' category to be taken concurrently is usually one. Your list includes two medicines belonging to the 'HMG Co-A reductase inhibitors' category:

  • niacin/simvastatin
  • simvastatin

Note: The benefits of taking this combination of medicines may outweigh any risks associated with therapeutic duplication. This information does not take the place of talking to your doctor. Always check with your healthcare provider to determine if any adjustments to your medications are needed.

Drug Interaction Classification

The classifications below are a guideline only. The relevance of a particular drug interaction to a specific patient is difficult to determine using this tool alone given the large number of variables that may apply.
Major Highly clinically significant. Avoid combinations; the risk of the interaction outweighs the benefit.
Moderate Moderately clinically significant. Usually avoid combinations; use it only under special circumstances.
Minor Minimally clinically significant. Minimize risk; assess risk and consider an alternative drug, take steps to circumvent the interaction risk and/or institute a monitoring plan.
Unknown No information available.

Do not stop taking any medications without consulting your healthcare provider.

Further information

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

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