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19.02 Atorvastatin (Lipitor)

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Generic Name

Atorvastatin

Trade Name

Lipitor

Indication

Management of high cholesterol (hypercholesterolemia), primary prevention of cardiovascular disease

Action

Lowers total cholesterol as well as LDL while slightly increasing HDL. Inhibits HMG-CoA reductase which plays a role in the liver in cholesterol formation

Therapeutic Class

Lipid-lowering agent

Pharmacologic Class

HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor

Similar Medications

Simvastatin (Zocor), rosuvastatin (Crestor)

Nursing Considerations

• Contraindicated in active liver disease
• May cause rhabdomyolysis
• Monitor renal function
• Monitor serum cholesterol before, about 4 weeks after starting, and fre-
quently during drug therapy
• Monitor liver function tests
• Instruct patient to report muscle weakness (sign of rhabdomyolysis)

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