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Lipitor (Atorvastatin)

Last updated on November 27, 2023

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Atorvastatin is authorised in the world under the following brand names: Alipid, Altoram, Alvastin, Ampliar, Antorcin, Anvistat, Anzitor, Arvastatil, Atacor, Atarva, Atasin, Atenfar, Ateroclar, Ateroz, Atocor, Atogal, Ator, Ator-Chol, Atorgon, Atorin, Atoris, Atorlip, Atorlonga, Atorpharm, Atorsan, Atorstat, Atorva, Atorval, Atorvalet, Atorvan, Atorvanox, Atorvastan, Atorvastatina, Atorvasterol, Atorvin, Atorvox, Atova, Atovarol, Atovin, Atractin, Atroact, Atrost, Atrosterol, Atrovita, Atrox, Avarte, Avas, Avascare, Avastatin, Axo, Aztor, Biger, Biostatina, Bisatum, CTR, Caduet, Card-OK, Card-ok, Cardyl, Cardyn, Cholvast, Citalor, Colastin l, Colip, Colostat, Corator, Danelip, Delipost, Dislipat, Divastin, Divator, Doss, Doss-medichrom, Faboxim, Finlipol, Fluxol, Holisten, Hypolip, Kalcor, Kasitrin, Kolestor, Larus, Liparex, Lipex ariston, Lipibec, Lipicon, Lipidan, Lipidra, Lipifen, Lipigan, Lipinor, Lipitaksin, Lipitin, Lipium, Lipium-Raldex, Lipivastin, Lipizem, Lipizim, Lipobi, Lipocambi, Lipodial, Lipofin, Liponorm, Liporest, Lipostatin, Lipostop, Lipovast, Lipovastatin, Lipovastatinklonal, Liprimar, Liptor, Livas, Locol, Lorvaten, Lowlipen, Nor lipox, Normalip, Orva, Pharmastatin, Plan, Prevencor, Rotova, Saphire, Sincol, Sortis, Stacor, Stator, Storvas, Tahor, Tarden, Tarimyl, Taven, Tcl-r, Telvarte, Texzor, Tialipol, Tiginor, Torid, Torivas, Torva, Torvacard, Torvalipin, Torvaplipin, Torvaplus, Torvast, Torvastin, Torvazin, Totalip, Triglyx, Trimstat, Trova, Tulip, Vartrual, Vasolip, Vass, Vastatin, Vastazor, Vastina, Vaston, Vastor, Visvas-ez, Voredanin, Xanator, Xarator, Xelitor, Xelpid, Zarator, Zoamco, Zurinel, Zydus atorva.

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Atorvastatin (Lipitor) is a hydroxymethylglutaryl-coenzyme, a (HMG-CoA) reductase inhibitor or “statin.” HMG-CoA reductase is the enzyme responsible for converting HMG-CoA to mevalonate; this occurs at an early and rate-limiting step in cholesterol biosynthesis.

lipitorMechanism of action of Lipitor (atorvastatin)

Although several “statins” are now available, Atorvastatin is the only drug in this class indicated as an adjunct to diet in the reduction of elevated total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), apolipoprotein B (apo-B), and triglyceride (TG) levels in patients with primary hypercholesterolemia and mixed dyslipidemia.
It is the first drug of its class specifically indicated for lowering both low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and triglyceride levels. It is also the only statin indicated for reducing total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol in patients with homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia, a rare, severe, life-threatening, autosomal dominant, inherited lipid metabolism disorder.

Clinical Tips

Atorvastatin (Lipitor) for Reduction Cholesterol

In head-to-head clinical trials, when starting doses were compared, Atorvastatin was superior to lovastatin, pravastatin, and simvastatin in reducing elevated total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and triglycerides. In two placebo-controlled, dose-response studies in hypercholesterolemic patients, once-daily administration of Atorvastatin significantly reduced low-density lipoprotein cholesterol by 39% to 60% across the 10 mg to 80 mg dose range. In addition, Atorvastatin reduced triglyceride levels by 19% to 37% across the dose range.

A large clinical study assessed the number of patients meeting the National Cholesterol Education Program – Adult Treatment Panel II target levels while taking 10-mg doses of Lipitor daily. After 16 weeks, 93% of patients with fewer than two risk factors for coronary heart disease and a baseline low-density lipoprotein cholesterol of 190 mg/dL or lower reached a target of 160 mg/dL or lower, and 19% of those with coronary heart disease and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol of 130 mg/dL or more reached a target of 100 mg/dL low-density lipoprotein cholesterol or lower.

The most frequent treatment-related adverse events are constipation, flatulence, dyspepsia, and abdominal pain. Fewer than 2% of patients treated with Lipitor in controlled studies discontinued treatment because of drug-related adverse events. Elevations of serum transaminases occurred in fewer than 1% of patients. Still, it is recommended that liver function tests be performed before the start of treatment, after 6 and 12 weeks, and periodically after that.

As with other statins, the risk of myopathy is increased when the drug is taken with cyclosporine, fibric acid derivatives, niacin, erythromycin, or azole antifungals. Patients should be advised to report unexplained muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness, especially if accompanied by malaise or fever.

Dosage of Atorvastatin (Lipitor)

The usual starting dose of Atorvastatin (Lipitor) for adults is often 10 to 20 milligrams once a day. However, the appropriate dosage can vary based on individual health factors and your doctor’s recommendations. It’s crucial to follow your healthcare provider’s instructions and inform them about any concerns or side effects you may be experiencing. I

Important Safety Information 

While atorvastatin (Lipitor) can effectively manage cholesterol levels, it’s essential to be aware of potential side effects and other safety considerations. 

  1. Muscle Effects: Some people may experience muscle pain or weakness, and in rare cases, this can lead to a serious condition called rhabdomyolysis. If you notice unexplained muscle pain or weakness, especially with fever or fatigue, seek medical attention promptly.
  2. Liver Function: Atorvastatin can affect liver function, so your doctor may monitor your liver enzymes through blood tests. If you have a history of liver problems, let your doctor know.
  3. Drug Interactions: Inform your healthcare provider about all the medications and supplements you’re taking, as atorvastatin can interact with certain drugs, potentially increasing the risk of side effects.
  4. Pregnancy and Breastfeeding: Atorvastatin should not be used during pregnancy and is generally not recommended during breastfeeding. If you’re pregnant or planning to become pregnant, discuss alternative options with your doctor.
  5. Allergic Reactions: If you have a known allergy to atorvastatin or its components, inform your doctor. Allergic reactions can include rash, itching, swelling, severe dizziness, or difficulty breathing.
  6. Routine Monitoring: Regular check-ups with your healthcare provider are essential to monitor your cholesterol levels and overall health.

Always consult your healthcare professional for personalized advice, and don’t hesitate to reach out if you experience any unusual or severe side effects. Your well-being is the top priority!

Side Effects 

Atorvastatin (Lipitor) is generally well-tolerated, but it can have side effects like any medication. Remember that not everyone will experience these, and some people may not experience any side effects. Here are some potential side effects:

Common Side Effects:

  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Muscle and joint pain

Serious Side Effects (Rare):

  • Muscle problems: Unexplained muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness, which can be a sign of a rare but serious condition called rhabdomyolysis.
  • Liver problems: Elevated liver enzymes or inflammation of the liver.
  • Allergic reactions: Rare, but can include rash, itching, swelling, severe dizziness, or trouble breathing.

Side Effects Requiring Immediate Medical Attention:

  • Severe muscle pain or weakness, mainly if associated with fever or fatigue.
  • Yellowing of the eyes or skin (jaundice) can indicate liver problems.

It’s crucial to promptly report any unusual or severe symptoms to your healthcare provider. Additionally, let your doctor know about all medications, supplements, and over-the-counter drugs you are taking, as interactions can occur.

Remember, the benefits of lowering cholesterol and reducing the risk of cardiovascular events often outweigh the potential risks of side effects. Your healthcare provider will monitor your health and adjust your treatment plan if necessary.


Atorvastatin (Lipitor) can interact with other medications and substances, potentially affecting its effectiveness or increasing the risk of side effects. Here are some examples of interactions:

  • Grapefruit and Grapefruit Juice: Grapefruit can interfere with the metabolism of atorvastatin, leading to increased levels of the drug in the bloodstream. This can amplify the risk of side effects.
  • Certain Antibiotics: Some antibiotics, like erythromycin and clarithromycin, can increase atorvastatin levels in the blood, potentially leading to an increased risk of side effects.
  • Antifungal Medications: Certain antifungal drugs, such as ketoconazole and itraconazole, may interact with atorvastatin, affecting its metabolism.
  • Other Cholesterol-Lowering Medications: Combining atorvastatin with certain other cholesterol-lowering drugs, such as fibrates, can increase the risk of muscle-related side effects.
  • Certain Blood Thinners: Warfarin, a blood thinner, may interact with atorvastatin, requiring careful monitoring of blood clotting parameters.
  • Certain HIV Medications: Some antiretroviral medications used to treat HIV can interact with atorvastatin.
  • Certain Heart Medications: Drugs like amiodarone, verapamil, and diltiazem may interact with atorvastatin.

Always inform your healthcare provider about all medications, supplements, and over-the-counter drugs you are taking. Your doctor can adjust your treatment plan or monitor for potential interactions. Do not start or stop any medication without consulting your healthcare professional.

Other Brand Names of Atorvastatin (Lipitor)

Atorvastatin is the generic name for the medication commonly known by the brand name Lipitor. As a generic drug, it is also available under various other brand names, depending on the pharmaceutical manufacturer. Some examples of brand names for atorvastatin include:

  1. Torvast
  2. Sortis
  3. Totalip
  4. Xarator
  5. Cardyl
  6. Zarator
  7. Atorlip
  8. Lipicure

These are just a few examples, and availability can vary by region. It’s important to note that while the active ingredient (atorvastatin) is the same, the inactive ingredients and formulations may differ between brands. Always follow your healthcare provider’s prescription and guidance regarding the specific brand or generic version of atorvastatin you should use.

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