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Cholesterol Management

Cholesterol is a fatty substance (lipid) produced in the body by the liver and other cells. This is where most of our cholesterol comes from, however cholesterol is also found in certain foods we eat.

The body needs cholesterol and another fat called triglyceride in order to maintain healthy cells, produce hormones, vitamin D and produce energy. Cholesterol is therefore a vital to normal body function however, you can have too much. High cholesterol levels increase the risk of atherosclerosis, a condition which involves the narrowing and hardening of the blood vessels. This can contribute to heart disease and circulatory problems.

High Cholesterol can be managed using a combination of dietary changes, increased exercise and where necessary prescription medications.

PharmaDoctor can provide you with a private prescription for Cholesterol Management medication following an online consultation with our GMC and EU-registered doctors.

What is it?

Crestor is a branded medication containing the active ingredient rosuvastatin calcium, a type of medicine called a statin. Statins are prescribed to patients diagnosed with high cholesterol levels as part of a cholesterol management programme. Crestor is available in a tablet form to be taken orally as advised by your doctor.

How does it work?

Crestor works by reducing the production of low density lipoproteins (LDL) by the liver.

LDL cholesterol or “bad” cholesterol sticks to the walls of the arteries causing them to narrow over time. Rosuvastatin inhibits HMG-CoA reductase, the enzyme in the liver responsible for cholesterol production. This in turn lowers the amount of LDL cholesterol in the blood.

Main points to consider

  • Crestor should be prescribed with caution to people aged over 70 years.
  • People of Asian origin may require a lower dose of the medication and should speak to their doctor.
  • Rosuvastatin can cause dizziness. If you feel lightheaded after taking this treatment avoid driving and operating heavy machinery.

What is it?

Lescol is a branded medication containing the active ingredient fluvastatin sodium, a type of medicine called a statin. Statins are prescribed to patients diagnosed with high cholesterol levels as part of a cholesterol management programme. Lescol is available in capsule form to be taken orally as advised by your doctor.

Fluvastatin is also available without a brand name, ie as the generic medicine.

How does it work?

Lescol works by reducing the production of low density lipoproteins (LDL) by the liver.

LDL cholesterol or “bad” cholesterol sticks to the walls of the arteries causing them to narrow over time. Fluvastatin inhibits HMG-CoA reductase, the enzyme in the liver responsible for cholesterol production. This in turn lowers the amount of LDL cholesterol in the blood.

Main points to consider

  • This medication can cause side effects. If these are unpleasant or persistent speak to your GP about changing your medications.
  • Patients with a personal or family history of hereditary muscle disorders should advise their doctor.
  • Patients with a history of muscular side effects during previous treatment with a statin or fibrate medicine should advise their doctor.

What is it?

Lipitor is a branded medication containing the active ingredient atorvastin, a type of medicine called a statin. Statins are prescribed to patients diagnosed with high cholesterol levels as part of a cholesterol management programme. Lipitor is available in capsule form to be taken orally as advised by your doctor.

Atorvastin is also available without a brand name, ie as the generic medicine.

How does it work?

Lipitor works by reducing the production of low density lipoproteins (LDL) by the liver.

LDL cholesterol or “bad” cholesterol sticks to the walls of the arteries causing them to narrow over time. Atorvastin inhibits HMG-CoA reductase, the enzyme in the liver responsible for cholesterol production. This in turn lowers the amount of LDL cholesterol in the blood.

Main points to consider

  • You should avoid drinking grapefruit juice while taking this medicine. This is because grapefruit juice can affect the metabolism of atorvastatin and could increase the amount of the medicine in your blood, thus increasing the risk of side effects.
  • You should continue to follow a cholesterol-lowering diet during treatment with this medicine. Discuss this with your doctor.

What is it?

Lipostat is a branded medication containing the active ingredient pravastatin sodium, a type of medicine called a statin. Statins are prescribed to patients diagnosed with high cholesterol levels as part of a cholesterol management programme. Lipostat is available in capsule form to be taken orally as advised by your doctor.

Pravastatin sodium is also available without a brand name, ie as the generic medicine.

How does it work?

Lipostat works by reducing the production of low density lipoproteins (LDL) by the liver.

LDL cholesterol or “bad” cholesterol sticks to the walls of the arteries causing them to narrow over time. Pravastatin sodium inhibits HMG-CoA reductase, the enzyme in the liver responsible for cholesterol production. This in turn lowers the amount of LDL cholesterol in the blood.

Main points to consider

  • This medication can cause side effects. If these are unpleasant or persistent speak to your GP about changing your medications.
  • Patients with a personal or family history of hereditary muscle disorders should advise their doctor.
  • Patients with a history of muscular side effects during previous treatment with a statin or fibrate medicine should advise their doctor.

What is it?

Zocor is a branded medication containing the active ingredient simvastatin , a type of medicine called a statin. Statins are prescribed to patients diagnosed with high cholesterol levels as part of a cholesterol management programme. Zocor is available in capsule form to be taken orally as advised by your doctor.

Simvastatin is also available without a brand name, ie as the generic medicine.

How does it work?

Zocor works by reducing the production of low density lipoproteins (LDL) by the liver.

LDL cholesterol or “bad” cholesterol sticks to the walls of the arteries causing them to narrow over time. Simvastatin inhibits HMG-CoA reductase, the enzyme in the liver responsible for cholesterol production. This in turn lowers the amount of LDL cholesterol in the blood.

Main points to consider

  • This medication is contraindicated for people taking the following medicines: itraconazole, ketoconazole, erythromycin, clarithromycin, telithromycin, protease inhibitors for HIV infection and nefazodone.
  • Zocor tablets contain lactose and are therefore unsuitable for anyone with a lactose allergy.

For Cholesterol Treatments

 


About Cholesterol

High Cholesterol or Hypercholesterolemia is the presence of high levels of cholesterol in the blood. Abnormally high levels of cholesterol in the blood can be caused by both genetic and dietary factors. Left untreated high cholesterol can lead to heart disease and cardiovascular problems.

Cholesterol requires molecules called lipoproteins in order to travel round the body. There are two main types: LDL and HDL.

LDL or low-density lipoproteins are the main cholesterol transporters and they carry cholesterol away from the liver, where it is produced, to cells that need it. Along the way cholesterol, which is a sticky substance, can attach itself to artery walls causing them to narrow and harden over time. This action means that LDL cholesterol is often referred to as “bad cholesterol”. Keeping LDL cholesterol low is important for maintaining cardiovascular health.

HDL or high-density lipoproteins work in the opposite way by carrying cholesterol away from the cells and back to the liver, where it is metabolised or excreted as waste. HDL or good cholesterol is therefore important in maintaining a healthy level of cholesterol in the blood.

The UK has one of the worst rates of high cholesterol with two thirds of adults exceeding the recommended blood cholesterol levels of 5mmol/L.

High Cholesterol levels can be caused by a number of factors such as:

  • Those related to lifestyle - an unhealthy diet and smoking
  • Those related to your medical history – diabetes or high blood pressure
  • Those related to your family history

For Cholesterol Treatments