Cholesterol Home > Zetia and Muscle Pain

If you are taking Zetia and muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness occurs (especially if it is accompanied by a fever or feeling of illness), you should contact your healthcare provider immediately. In rare cases, people using Zetia can develop a serious muscle problem such as rhabdomyolysis or myopathy. Rhabdomyolysis can ultimately cause acute kidney failure and become life-threatening. Serious muscle problems are generally more common in people who are taking Zetia in combination with statins.

Zetia and Muscle Pain: An Introduction

While most people tolerate Zetia® (ezetimibe) well, there are possible side effects that can occur. While muscle pain is not a common side effect of Zetia, it is a good idea to keep an eye out for any muscle problems (including muscle pain) while taking almost any cholesterol medication.
In studies of Zetia alone, muscle pain was not reported as a common side effect. In studies of Zetia combined with a statin medication, up to 3.2 percent of people reported experiencing muscle pain (compared to 2.7 percent of people taking the statin alone).

Zetia and Muscle Pain -- What to Watch For

Most people who have muscle pain while on Zetia have no other symptoms. However, in exceptionally rare cases (much less than 1 percent), muscle problems possibly related to Zetia have been reported. Muscle pain can be a symptom of these problems. Two serious muscle problems that are rarely seen in people taking Zetia are myopathy and rhabdomyolysis. Rhabdomyolysis is very serious because it can cause muscles to break down, which can lead to acute kidney failure. This can be a life-threatening condition.
If you develop muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness while on Zetia (especially if you also have a fever or feel ill), call your healthcare provider immediately. This could be a sign that you have a serious condition that needs treatment right away.
Serious muscle problems are more common in people who are also taking statins (Lipitor®, Crestor®, Zocor®, Pravachol®, Lescol®, Mevacor®). Statins are other cholesterol-lowering drugs that are often used together with Zetia.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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