Reducing Cholesterol

Statins are effective in lowering LDL levels and are safe for most people. Rare side effects to watch for include liver and muscle problems.
Examples of statins used to reduce cholesterol include:
Bile Acid Sequestrants
Bile acid sequestrants help lower LDL cholesterol levels and are sometimes prescribed with statins. These drugs are usually not prescribed as the only medicine to decrease cholesterol.
Bile acid sequestrants used as part of a cholesterol-reduction plan include:
Cholesterol Absorption Inhibitors
This type of cholesterol-lowering medicine reduces LDL and can be used alone or in combination with statin drugs. As the name implies, this medication acts within the intestine to block cholesterol absorption.
An example of a cholesterol absorption inhibitor is ezetimibe (Zetia®). This medication has also been combined with simvastatin into one ezetimibe/simvastatin tablet (Vytorin®).
Nicotinic Acid
Nicotinic acid (niacin) reduces LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, and raises HDL cholesterol. These medicines should only be used under a doctor's supervision.
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