Cholesterol Home > Lovaza

Lovaza is a prescription fish oil medication used for treating very high triglycerides. It contains two different omega-3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA) that work by decreasing the liver's production of triglycerides. Lovaza comes in capsule form and is taken once or twice a day. While most people tolerate this drug well, potential side effects include indigestion or heartburn, infections, and burping.

What Is Lovaza?

Lovaza® (omega-3-acid ethyl esters) is a prescription medication approved for the treatment of very high triglycerides. It is made from fish oil and is highly refined to remove toxins, impurities, fat, and cholesterol.
This medication was originally named Omacor®, but the name was changed due to potential confusion with another drug with a similar name.
(Click Lovaza Uses for more information on what the medication is used for, including possible off-label uses.)

Who Makes Lovaza?

Lovaza is manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline.

How Does It Work?

Lovaza contains two different omega-3 fatty acids -- DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid). Although the specifics of exactly how DHA and EPA work are not yet clear, it is known that they decrease the liver's production of triglycerides.

Effects of the Medicine

In studies, people with very high triglycerides who took Lovaza lowered their triglyceride levels by 44.9 percent, while people who took a placebo (a "sugar pill" with no active ingredients) actually increased their triglycerides by 6.7 percent. Other studies have shown that Lovaza is also effective for lowering triglycerides in people who are already taking statin cholesterol medications.
Studies have shown that Lovaza can sometimes increase LDL cholesterol ("bad cholesterol"), so it is important for your healthcare provider to check your cholesterol levels regularly.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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