gemfibrozil, Lopid (cont.)

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Medical and Pharmacy Editor:

DOSING: The recommended dose of gemfibrozil is 600 mg twice daily (30 minutes before breakfast and dinner).

DRUG INTERACTIONS: Gemfibrozil, when used together with the statin family of cholesterol-reducing medications, for example, lovastatin (Mevacor), pravastatin (Pravachol), simvastatin (Zocor), fluvastatin (Lescol), rosuvastatin (Crestor), and atorvastatin (Lipitor) increases the risk of a condition called rhabdomyolysis (muscle injury) that when severe can lead to kidney damage and even death. Rhabdomyolysis may occur as early as three weeks or several months after starting combination therapy. The benefit of combining gemfibrozil with statins does not outweigh the risk of rhabdomyolysis.

Gemfibrozil can increase the effect of the blood thinner, warfarin (Coumadin), and thus may lead to bleeding. Therefore, patients on warfarin may need to have their doses of warfarin reduced when starting gemfibrozil.

Gemfibrozil increases blood levels of repaglinide (Prandin) in people with diabetes, increasing the likelihood of developing low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). This combination should be avoided.

Colestipol (Colestid) and cholestyramine (Questran) reduce the absorption of gemfibrozil and reduce its effectiveness if taken at the same time. Therefore, gemfibrozil should be administered one hour before or 4-6 hours after administering colestipol or cholestyramine.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 10/29/2014


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