Fenofibrate is commonly prescribed to treat high cholesterol and high triglycerides. The medication is a form of fibrate and works by increasing the production of an enzyme that is responsible for breaking down triglyceride-rich particles and increasing their removal from the body. Fenofibrate comes in either capsule or tablet form -- your healthcare provider will tell you when and how to take it.

What Is Fenofibrate?

Fenofibrate is a prescription medication that is used to decrease triglycerides (a fat-like substance) and cholesterol levels in the body. It is sold under several different brand names, including:

What Is It Used For?

Fenofibrate has been licensed for several uses, including:
  • Improving cholesterol levels in people with hypercholesterolemia (high cholesterol) or dyslipidemia (unhealthy cholesterol levels). Fenofibrate can reduce total cholesterol, LDL ("bad" cholesterol), apo B (a component of cholesterol that is related to several heart disease risk factors), and VLDL (very low density lipoprotein cholesterol). The medication can also raise HDL ("good" cholesterol).
  • Triglycerides in people with hypertriglyceridemia (high triglyceride levels). Very high triglyceride levels in the body increase the risk for developing a condition known as pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas).
Fenofibrate can actually cause an increase in LDL cholesterol for people with very high levels of triglycerides (greater than 350 mg/dL). Therefore, the medication should be used with extreme caution or not at all for people with this condition who also have high levels of LDL cholesterol.
(Click What Is Fenofibrate Used For? for more information, including possible off-label uses.)
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