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Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 18 years

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Is simvastatin 40mg vary high as a dosage ?

i am 51 and just had my blood work done. I am a female. my total cholestrol is 245 and my ldl is 174. My sugar is 110. I am 5ft.1 and weigh 165lbs. My doctor put me on 40mg. of simvastatin once a day, and on a diet . I have taken it for 6 days and i am going to stop taking it. The side effects are very scary from wht i am reading . I also have a terrible case of upper respiratory infection going on at the same time i started this med. I feel sick in my stomach and am coughing and wheezing. I want to try to get my cholestrol down through diet and exercise instead of this terrible med. I think 40mg. is too high of a dose. What do you think? Thank you I am terrified to continue taking this drug.
Wed, 4 May 2011
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  User's Response
Hi Lisa,

Welcome to Healthcare Magic forum.

Simvastatin is a hypolipidemic drug which reduces LDL levels to 50% and increases HDL (beneficial for the body). The dose is started with 20 mg and then increased gradually if cholesterol levels are not coming under recommended range.

Common side effects may include abdominal pain, diarrhea, indigestion, and a general feeling of weakness. Rare side effects include joint pain, memory loss, and muscle cramps. Cholestatic hepatitis, hepatic cirrhosis, rhabdomyolysis and myositis have been reported in patients receiving the drug chronically.

Please do not be scared of the side effects. Every drug has it own side effects which may present in some people and not everybody. You having a respiratory infection is not a side effect of simvastatin and might be present coincidentally. Coughing and wheezing could be due to the respiratory infection while nausea could be due to gastritis on consuming many drugs at a time (as you might be on antibiotics, bronchodilators, hypolipidemic drugs).

The course of simvastatin is short term. It would be discontinued once your cholesterol levels comes under recommended range. So I advise you to continue simvastatin as prescribed by your doctor.

Hope this answers your query.

Wish you a speedy recovery.

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