Atorvastatin is used to lower cholesterol and prevent other heart related conditions from developing such as heart disease and heart attacks. Atorvastatin works by blocking the enzyme in your Liver responsible for creating cholesterol.


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Atorvastatin for High Cholesterol

Atorvastatin is used to lower cholesterol. By lowering cholesterol levels, we can prevent heart attacks, strokes and heart disease from developing. It is part of a group of medicines called statins. They work by blocking the enzyme in your liver responsible for creating cholesterol. You may also know Atorvastatin by its brand name Lipitor.

Atorvastatin Dosage and Strength

Here, at Medicine Direct we sell Atorvastatin in the 10mg strength. You may be prescribed to take between 10mg-80mg, depending on your condition, age and weight. It will be up to your doctors’ discretion to decide this after reviewing you.

Atorvastatin 10mg

This strength dose of the medicine is regularly used as an initial prescription for adults and children. If this proves effective, you will remain on it as part of your maintenance course. If your doctor does not think that 10mg is strong enough to create the desired results, he might increase the dosage after review.

How to take Atorvastatin

Atorvastatin is taken once a day with a glass of water, usually it is recommended to take it in the evening. However, if you have not been given set instructions as to when you should take the medicine, you are able to take it at any time, as long as you stick to that time each day.

If you forget to take your dose, you can take it as soon as you remember. However, if this means that it ends up being close to your next dose (i.e. within 4 hours), skip the tablet and resume your schedule as normal. Do not double dose to make up for missing tablets. If you think you may have taken more Atorvastatin then was prescribed to you for the day, contact the doctor or pharmacist for advice. It is unlikely to harm you unless it was greatly over your intended dose.

Here is a list of the usual instructions of Atorvastatin administration given by doctors in accordance with varying conditions. Please use this information just as a guideline. You should follow the exact advice given to you personally by your doctor regarding how to take your medicine.

  • Prevent Cardiovascular Disease

Initial dose to treat this is between 10mg-20mg to be taken once a day. To maintain the improved results, a doctor may then keep the patient on between 10-80mg after the first course. The level of fats in the patients’ blood should be reviewed within 2-4 weeks to check that the strength of dose is satisfactory.

  • Treat High Cholesterol

Take between 10mg- 80mg once a day alongside a healthier lifestyle.

  • Treat Hyperlipidemia

Initial treatment will be either 10mg or 20mg once a day. This may be adjusted when the levels of lipids in the patients’ blood have been reviewed after taking the medicine for over 2 weeks.

Possible Side Effects of Atorvastatin:

As with all medicine, atorvastatin may cause side effects in some people. It is unlikely that you will experience side effects, but if you do and are worried about the symptoms showing, then contact your doctor or pharmacist. If the symptoms are more severe seek medical attention immediately. Below are a list of some of the side effects Atorvastatin may cause:

Common Side Effects

  • Nausea
  • Pain in joints or muscles
  • Nose bleeds
  • Throat soreness
  • Symptoms associated with a cold i.e. runny or blocked nose and sneezing
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhoea

Uncommon Side Effects (Inform your doctor if you experience any of these)

  • Muscle pain/ cramps
  • Yellowing of skin or eyes
  • Skin rash which may be blotchy and found on the palms of the hands or soles of feet

In rare cases patients taking Atorvastatin can suffer from a severe allergic reaction to the medicine. If you experience any of the warning symptoms you MUST contact an emergency service such as 111 or 999 immediately. The signs of a severe allergic reaction are:

  • Developing a skin rash which is itchy, red, swollen, blistered or peeling
  • Your chest or throat feeling tight. This can also be displayed through wheezing.
  • Experiencing difficulty in breathing or talking
  • Your facial extremities become swollen i.e. you mouth, face, lips, tongue or throat.

Please be aware that Atorvastatin can interact negatively with some other medicines. Make sure you tell your doctor of all other medicine you are taking before being prescribed Atorvastatin. Below are some of the medicines which may have interaction issues with Atorvastatin.

  • Some antibiotics
  • Various antifungal medication
  • Medicine which treats hepatitis C
  • Warfarin
  • Ciclosporin
  • Colchicine
  • Contraceptive pills
  • Some medicine for high blood pressure
  • Amiodarone

If you are currently taking any of this medication, you may have to lower your dose or be prescribed a different statin medicine.

How can I buy Atorvastatin online in the UK?

If you are a valid UK citizen and have a prescription from a doctor, you will be able to purchase Atorvastatin online in the UK with us, Medicine Direct. If you do not yet have a prescription for atorvastatin, you can fill in one of our health questionnaires which will be reviewed by one of our doctors. After assessing your answers, the doctors will then prescribe you the medicine if they deem it appropriate to do so. 

What is Atorvastatin used for?

Atorvastatin is prescribed, alongside a healthy lifestyle, to treat high cholesterol. By reducing the amount of cholesterol in our blood, the medicine will help prevent more serious conditions from occurring such as heart disease, heart attacks and strokes.

Another high cholesterol medication that works in a very similar way is Simvastatin. You can also buy simvastatin online at Medicine Direct using our online Doctor service.

What is Atorvastatin’s mechanism of action?

Atorvastatin works by inhibiting the enzyme in the liver which producing bad cholesterol. This slows down the production of the cholesterol which means that there will be a drop in the amount of cholesterol in the blood. High levels of cholesterol can mean that fatty deposits begin to build up in the walls of arteries and block blood flow to the heart, brain and other areas of the body. This is what causes heart disease, heart attack and strokes.

Is Atorvastatin safe to take if you are pregnant or breastfeeding?

No, you should not take Atorvastatin if you are pregnant, trying to conceive or if you are breastfeeding. It may harm your baby. If you become pregnant whilst taking this medication, stop the course of medicine and contact your doctor.

Does Atorvastatin stop contraception from working?

Atorvastatin may increase the hormones that are released by some contraceptive pills. You will still be protected from pregnancy; however, it may mean that you chances of experiences side effects from the contraception will be increased. If you have any concerns regarding this speak with your doctor or pharmacist.

Are there any foods I should avoid whilst taking Atorvastatin?

You should avoid consuming alcohol as this can increase the levels of triglycerides in your blood, which can then increase the risk of liver damage. It is also advised that you should not eat or drink grapefruit whilst taking Atorvastatin. This is because the grapefruit can cause the medication to stay in your body longer then it is meant to which will increase your chances of suffering from side effects.

Why do you have to take Atorvastatin at night?

Certain statins work better when taken at night. This is because the enzymes in our liver are most actively producing cholesterol at this time. 

How can I lower my cholesterol?

There are other ways to help lower cholesterol in our bodies. Lifestyle changes such as losing weight, stopping smoking, exercising more and cutting down on alcohol will help you decrease your chances of developing or worsening cholesterol levels. You should try and avoid eating a lot of food with high levels of saturated fats such as meat pies, butter, cakes, cheese, and fattier red meats.

Instead try and eat more foods which are fortified with fiber and low saturated fat such as wholemeal bread, yoghurt, orange juice, fish, fruits and vegetables and other wholegrain products. Moreover, rather than roasting and frying food, try steaming, boiling and grilling your meals.

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