Niacin and Vytorin

Niacin and Vytorin: Recommendations

Generally, it is recommended that people not take niacin and Vytorin together. If you are taking niacin and Vytorin or a supplement with niacin in it, let your healthcare provider know. This is not an issue for supplements with very small amounts of niacin (such as multivitamins).
However, there may be times when your healthcare provider recommends both niacin and Vytorin. This is most often the case when either Vytorin or niacin alone is not able to lower cholesterol to "normal" levels. For some people, a combination of the two drugs is needed to reach healthy cholesterol levels. Your healthcare provider may feel that the risk of a niacin and Vytorin interaction is less than the risk of high cholesterol in your particular situation.
If you are taking Vytorin and/or niacin and you develop muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness (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 (see Vytorin and Muscle Pain).

Niacin and Vytorin in Chinese Patients

Studies have suggested that Chinese people may be at a higher risk for myopathy or rhabdomyolysis due to the combination of niacin and simvastatin (one of the components of Vytorin), compared to non-Chinese patients. Again, this is only thought to be a problem with lipid-lowering dosages of niacin, not the small amounts found in foods or multivitamins.
At this time, it is unclear if this increased risk occurs only in Chinese people or if it is also a problem for other people of Asian descent.
It is recommended that people of Chinese descent who take lipid-lowering dosages of niacin should not take Vytorin 10/80 mg (or more), since high doses appear to increase the risk of problems. Even at a lower Vytorin dosage, though, these two products should be combined with caution.
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