Generic Name: lovastatin and niacin (LOE va sta tin and NYE a sin)
Brand Name: Advicor
What is Advicor (lovastatin and niacin)?
Lovastatin is in a group of drugs called HMG CoA reductase inhibitors, or "statins." Lovastatin reduces levels of "bad" cholesterol (low-density lipoprotein, or LDL) and triglycerides in the blood, while increasing levels of "good" cholesterol (high-density lipoprotein, or HDL).
Niacin, also called nicotinic acid, is a B vitamin (vitamin B3). It occurs naturally in plants and animals, and is also added to many foods as a vitamin supplement. Niacin is also present in many multivitamins and nutritional supplements.
Lovastatin and niacin is a combination medicine used together to lower cholesterol and triglycerides (types of fat) in the blood.
Lovastatin and niacin is also used to lower the risk of stroke, heart attack, and other heart complications in people with coronary heart disease, or other risk factors.
Lovastatin and niacin may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
What is the most important information I should know about Advicor (lovastatin and niacin)?
Do not use if you are pregnant. Stop taking this medicine and tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant.
You should not take lovastatin and niacin if you are breast-feeding, or if you have liver disease, severe bleeding, or a stomach ulcer.
Serious drug interactions can occur when certain medicines are used together with lovastatin and niacin. Tell each of your healthcare providers about all medicines you use now, and any medicine you start or stop using.
Call your doctor right away if you have unexplained muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness especially if you also have fever, unusual tiredness, or dark colored urine.
What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking Advicor (lovastatin and niacin)?
You should not take this medicine if you are allergic to lovastatin (Altoprev, Mevacor) or niacin (Niaspan, Niacor, and others), or if you have:
abnormal liver function tests;
a stomach ulcer;
severe bleeding; or
if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.
Lovastatin and niacin can interact with many drugs, and some should not be used at the same time. Lovastatin and niacin should not be taken with any of the following medicines:
an antibiotic--clarithromycin, erythromycin, telithromycin;
antifungal medicine--itraconazole, ketoconazole, posaconazole, voriconazole; or
antiviral medicine to treat hepatitis C or HIV/AIDS--atazanavir, boceprevir, cobicistat, delavirdine, fosamprenavir, indinavir, nelfinavir, ritonavir, saquinavir, telaprevir.
To make sure lovastatin and niacin is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:
chest pain or other heart problems;
a history of liver or kidney disease;
epilepsy or other seizure disorder;
a thyroid disorder;
if you drink more than 2 alcoholic beverages daily; or
if you are switched to this medication from regular niacin, nicotinic acid, or nicotinamide (or vitamin supplements that contain niacin).
Lovastatin and niacin can cause a condition that results in the breakdown of skeletal muscle tissue, leading to kidney failure. This condition may be more likely to occur in older adults and in people who have kidney disease or poorly controlled hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid).
Do not use lovastatin and niacin if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby or cause birth defects. Stop taking the medicine and tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant. Use effective birth control to avoid pregnancy while you are taking lovastatin and niacin.
Lovastatin and niacin may pass into breast milk and could harm a nursing baby. Do not breast-feed while you are taking lovastatin and niacin.
How should I take Advicor (lovastatin and niacin)?
Follow all directions on your prescription label. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results. Do not use this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
Lovastatin and niacin is only part of a complete program of treatment that also includes diet, exercise, and weight control. Follow your diet, medication, and exercise routines very closely.
Lovastatin and niacin is usually taken at bedtime with a low-fat snack. Do not take lovastatin and niacin on an empty stomach.
Do not crush, chew, or break an extended-release tablet. Swallow it whole.
Niacin can cause side effects such as flushing (warmth, redness, or tingly feeling), dizziness, sweating, fast or pounding heartbeats, shortness of breath, or feeling like you might pass out. Avoid alcohol, spicy food, or hot beverages (which can make side effects worse) shortly after taking the medicine.
Taking aspirin 30 minutes before your lovastatin and niacin dose may lessen some of these side effects.
You may need to stop taking lovastatin and niacin for a short time if you have surgery or a medical emergency. Do not stop taking this medicine unless your doctor tells you to.
If you stop taking lovastatin and niacin for longer than 7 days in a row, talk with your doctor before restarting the medication.
While using lovastatin and niacin, you may need frequent blood tests.
Niacin can raise your blood sugar, and may cause unusual results with certain medical tests. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are using lovastatin and niacin.
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222. Overdose symptoms may include severe dizziness, severe redness or tingling, vomiting, or fainting.
What should I avoid while taking Advicor (lovastatin and niacin)?
Avoid eating foods that are high in fat or cholesterol. Lovastatin and niacin will not be as effective in lowering your cholesterol if you do not follow a cholesterol-lowering diet plan.
Grapefruit and grapefruit juice may interact with lovastatin and niacin and lead to unwanted side effects. Avoid the use of grapefruit products while taking lovastatin and niacin.
If you also take cholestyramine (Prevalite, Questran) or colestipol (Colestid), avoid taking them within 4 to 6 hours before or after you take lovastatin and niacin.
Avoid drinking alcohol. It can raise triglyceride levels and may increase your risk of liver damage while taking lovastatin. Alcohol can also make certain side effects worse if you drink while taking niacin.
Ask a doctor or pharmacist before using a multivitamin. Many vitamin or mineral supplements contain vitamin B3 (niacin). Taking certain products together can cause you to get too much niacin.
Advicor (lovastatin and niacin) side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
In rare cases, lovastatin and niacin can cause a condition that results in the breakdown of skeletal muscle tissue, leading to kidney failure. Call your doctor right away if you have unexplained muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness especially if you also have fever, unusual tiredness, or dark colored urine.
Call your doctor at once if you have:
a light-headed feeling, like you might pass out;
changes in your blood sugars (if you are diabetic);
signs of infection (fever, chills, general ill feeling);
kidney problems--little or no urination, painful or difficult urination, swelling in your feet or ankles, feeling tired or short of breath; or
liver problems--nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, tiredness, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).
Common side effects may include:
flushing (warmth, redness, or tingly feeling);
rash, itching; or
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
What other drugs will affect Advicor (lovastatin and niacin)?
Some other drugs can increase your risk of serious muscle problems if you take them together with lovastatin and niacin. Your doctor may need to change your treatment plan if you use any of the following drugs:
blood pressure medication;
heart medication--amiodarone, diltiazem, dronedarone, nicardipine, quinidine, ranolazine, verapamil; or
other cholesterol medicines--fenofibrate, fenofibric acid, gemfibrozil, or any other "statin" medication.
This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with lovastatin and niacin, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide.
More about Advicor (lovastatin / niacin)
Related treatment guides
Where can I get more information?
- Your pharmacist can provide more information about lovastatin and niacin.
- Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
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