Pitavastatin is a medication belonging to the class of HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors, commonly known as statins. Its primary use is to complement dietary modifications, weight-loss, and exercise in reducing the concentration of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, commonly referred to as “bad cholesterol,” while increasing the levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, known as “good cholesterol.”
Pitavastatin is also used to decrease the concentration of cholesterol and other fatty substances in the blood of children aged 8 years and older diagnosed with familial heterozygous hypercholesterolemia, an inherited condition that impedes normal cholesterol removal from the body. This medication’s mechanism of action involves slowing down cholesterol production in the body, reducing the buildup of cholesterol on the walls of the arteries, and preventing blockages in blood flow to vital organs such as the brain, heart, and other body parts.
Uses and Dosage
To take this medication, follow your doctor’s instructions and consume it orally with or without food, usually once daily. Dosage depends on your medical condition, response to treatment, and other medications you may be taking.
Inform your doctor and pharmacist about all the products you use, including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products.
If you take other medications to lower your cholesterol, such as bile acid-binding resins like cholestyramine or colestipol, take pitavastatin at least 1 hour before or 4 hours after taking those medications. These products may react with pitavastatin, affecting its absorption.
For maximum benefits, take this medication regularly and at the same time each day. Continue taking it even if you feel well, as most individuals with high cholesterol or triglycerides do not experience any symptoms.
Follow your doctor’s advice on diet and exercise while taking this medication. It may take up to four weeks before experiencing its full benefits.
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention:
- back pain
- memory loss or forgetfulness
Inform your healthcare provider immediately if you experience any serious side effects:
- muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness
- extreme tiredness
- unusual bleeding or bruising
- lack of energy
- loss of appetite
- pain in the upper right part of the stomach
- yellowing of the skin or eyes
- dark urine
- flu-like symptoms
Prior to taking pitavastatin, inform your doctor or pharmacist of any allergies you may have, including allergies to inactive ingredients present in the product that could result in allergic reactions or other issues.
Before using this medication, disclose your medical history, particularly liver disease, kidney disease, or alcohol use.
Refrain from consuming alcohol, as daily use of alcohol may increase your chances of experiencing liver problems, especially when combined with pitavastatin. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for additional information.
Older adults may experience more side effects from this medication, particularly muscle problems, and should exercise caution.
This medication must not be used during pregnancy since pitavastatin can be harmful to an unborn child. Avoid pregnancy while taking this medication, and you should discuss the use of reliable forms of birth control with your doctor. If you become pregnant or suspect that you are pregnant, inform your doctor right away. Consult with your doctor regarding when to discontinue pitavastatin if attempting to conceive.
It is unknown if this medication passes into breast milk. Breast-feeding while taking this drug is not recommended due to the potential risk to the infant.
Form and Strength
Livalo is available in the following forms and strengths:
Livalo film-coated tablet:
What is the best time of the day to take Livalo?
You may take this medicine at any time of the day with or without food.
What makes Livalo different from other statins?
Livalo produces a larger increase in high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (HDL-C) levels when compared to some of the other statins.