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Simvastatin is a cholesterol management medication that lowers your cholesterol levels and lowers your risk of heart attack and stroke.
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Simvastatin is a medication used to treat high cholesterol. It’s part of a group of medications known as statins, and it’s named after the active ingredient it uses – simvastatin. Statins are medications that lower the levels of LDL cholesterol in your blood and contribute towards the prevention of cholesterol-related comorbidities.
LDL cholesterol is commonly referred to as the “bad” cholesterol, but it’s actually not all bad. We need cholesterol to build healthy cells, so our aim is never to eliminate it completely. The problems arise when the cholesterol levels are too high and the substance starts to cling together in your blood vessels which can lead to hypertension, diabetes, heart disease and other issues. By lowering your LDL levels, Simvastatin will help prevent most issues caused by high cholesterol.
Simvastatin’s main actions happen in the liver. The active substance in the medication can slow down the production of LDL cholesterol, which in turn decreases the LDL cholesterol levels in your blood. Simvastatin also increases your levels of HDL, known as the ‘good cholesterol’, which will also contribute towards lower levels of LDL long-term.
This medication is used to control LDL levels, but its main objective is to prevent coronary heart disease and lower your chances of mortality due to heart conditions.
Simvastatin comes in 10mg, 20mg, 40mg, and 80mg tablets, and which one you take will depend on how high your cholesterol levels are. No matter which dose you’re prescribed, they all need to be taken once a day in the evening.
If you don’t know which dosage is best for you, our clinicians can assess your health background and cholesterol levels to advise you on what you should be taking.
Biochemistry, LDL Cholesterol. Nih.gov.
Statin Medications. PubMed.
Grapefruit juice and statins - Harvard Health. Harvard Health.
National Institutes of Health National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.
Simvastatin: increased risk of myopathy at high dose (80 mg).
Randomised trial of cholesterol lowering in 4444 patients with coronary heart disease: the Scandinavian Simvastatin Survival Study (4S). (1994). Lancet (London, England), 344(8934), pp.1383–1389.
The clinician who prescribed the medication to you will tell you which dosage is right for you, as well as how to take it, so if you follow their directions the treatment should work as well as possible. They’ll also be able to answer any questions you have at any point during your treatment.
Taking Simvastatin is a straightforward process and you just need to know a few key facts:
If you follow these directions, your cholesterol levels should be considerably lower within a few weeks of starting your treatment.
It can take up to a week after starting your treatment for your cholesterol levels to start shifting, and the medication will typically reach its full effect within a month. To achieve the best results possible, you should take your medication alongside a cholesterol-lowering diet and make some healthy lifestyle changes.
Some of these changes may include:
If you need help with your diet, our clinician can help point you in the right direction. But you can also find information online. For instance, the TLC diet is a diet for people with high cholesterol levels, recommended by the National Cholesterol Education Program. It promotes lifestyle changes as well as the consumption of whole foods such as vegetables, fruits, cereals, and lean meat.
If you miss a dose of Simvastatin and realise it too late, you can skip the dose and take the next one as scheduled. You don’t need to, and shouldn’t, take two tablets to make up for the missed one.
If you take more Simvastatin than your prescribed daily dosage, contact a clinician so they can monitor your symptoms and advise you further in case you develop any adverse effects. Taking more Simvastatin than you’re prescribed can increase your risk of developing myopathy,  so make sure to never take more than you should.
It’s also very important to avoid drinking grapefruit juice while you’re taking Simvastatin, as it can compromise the absorption of the medication and therefore your high cholesterol treatment.
If you have any questions or concerns, you can contact our clinicians on your account if you’re ordering Simvastatin with us.
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