rosuvastatin, Crestor (cont.)
Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD
Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD
Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.
Medical and Pharmacy Editor:
PREGNANCY: Statins should not be used by pregnant women because there is a high risk of harm to the fetus.
NURSING MOTHERS: There is no information on whether rosuvastatin is excreted in breast milk.
SIDE EFFECTS: The most common side effects of rosuvastatin are headache, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and muscle pain. The most serious side effects are liver failure, muscle breakdown (rhabdomyolysis) and kidney failure. Sever liver disease of liver failure caused by statins is very rare. More often, statins cause mild abnormalities in liver tests due to injury to the liver. The abnormalities usually disappear with continued therapy, but if the level is over three times the upper limit of normal or baseline, practitioners usually stop the statin. Liver function tests should be performed at the beginning of treatment then as needed thereafter. Rhabdomyolysis is a very rare but serious side effect of statin therapy. When used alone the frequency of rhabdomyolysis due to statins is less than one percent. Rhabdomyolysis is a process in which there is severe injury to muscles leading to severe pain and the release of muscle protein (myoglobin) into the blood. Myoglobin may cause kidney failure. To prevent the occurrence of rhabdomyolysis, patients taking statins who develop unexplained muscle pain, weakness, or tenderness should report the symptoms to their health care professional.
Rosuvastatin may cause reversible increases in the amount of protein excreted by the kidneys, and in some patients kidney failure has occurred as a result. This effect depends on the dose and occurs more often at the 40 mg dose. Statins have been associated with increases in HbA1c and fasting serum glucose levels, as occur with diabetes. There are also post-marketing reports of memory loss, forgetfulness, amnesia, confusion, and memory impairment. Symptoms may start one day to years after starting treatment and resolve within a median of three weeks after stopping the statin.
Reference: FDA Prescribing Information
Last Editorial Review: 5/1/2012
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