gemfibrozil, Lopid (cont.)

Pharmacy Author:
Medical and Pharmacy Editor:

DOSING: The recommended dose of gemfibrozil is 600 mg 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) which when severe can lead to kidney damage and seven 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 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.

PREGNANCY: The effect of gemfibrozil in pregnant women has not been well-studied. Gemfibrozil should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the unknown but potential risk to the fetus.



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