Gemfibrozil

Gemfibrozil to lower fats

Table of Contents

Gemfibrozil is a medicine to help lower fats (triglycerides) and increase good cholesterol (HDL) in the blood. It may also help lower bad cholesterol (LDL).

Gemfibrozil belongs to a group of drugs known as “fibrates”. It works by reducing the amount of fat produced by the liver. Lowering triglycerides in people with very high triglyceride blood levels may lower the risk of pancreas disease. However, gemfibrozil may not be able to lower the risk of a heart attack or stroke.

Talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of gemfibrozil. In addition to eating a diet low in cholesterol and low in fat, other lifestyle changes may help this medication work better, such as exercising, drinking less alcohol, losing weight if you are overweight, and quitting smoking.

Gemfibrozil Dosage Considerations 

Do not change the dose without doctor’s instructions. Below is recommended dosage of gemfibrozil based on health conditions:

Dosage for Adults with Hyperlipidemia

  • 600 mg orally twice a day, taken 30 minutes before breakfast and dinner.

Dosage for Adults with Type IIb Hyperlipoproteinemia (Elevated LDL + VLDL)

  • 600 mg orally twice a day, taken 30 minutes before breakfast and dinner.

Dosage for adults with Type IV Hyperlipoproteinemia (Elevated VLDL)

  • 600 mg orally twice a day, taken 30 minutes before breakfast and dinner.

Dosage for Adults with Type V Hyperlipoproteinemia (Elevated Kilomikron + VLDL)

  • 600 mg orally twice a day, taken 30 minutes before breakfast and dinner.

Dosage for Adults with Hypertriglyceridemia

  • 600 mg orally twice a day, taken 30 minutes before breakfast and dinner

Dosage for Adults for prevention of cardiovascular disease

  • 600 mg orally twice a day, taken 30 minutes before breakfast and dinner.

Guidelines for Gemfibrozil

Use gemfibrozil as exactly directed by your doctor or read the instructions on the product package. Here’s how to use gemfibrozil:

  • Take this medication by mouth as directed by your doctor, usually taken twice a day, within 30 minutes before breakfast and dinner.
  • The dosage given is based on your medical condition and response to treatment.
  • If you are also taking other medications to lower cholesterol, take gemfibrozil at least 1 hour before or at least 4 to 6 hours after taking other medicines. Medicines to lower cholesterol may react with gemfibrozil.
  • Take gemfibrozil regularly to get the most benefit of the medicine. Remember to take it at the same time every day. Keep taking this medication even if you feel well. Most people with high cholesterol or triglycerides do not feel sick.
  • It is important to continue to follow your doctor’s advice on diet and exercise. It may take 3 months before you get the full benefits of gemfibrozil.

What is Gemfibrozil Used for

Gemfibrozil is a medicine to help lower fat (triglycerides) and other treatments such as:

  • Hyperlipidemia
  • Indications for hyperlipoproteinemia Type IIb (elevated LDL + VLDL)
  • Hyperlipoproteinemia Type IV (Increased VLDL)
  • Hyperlipoproteinemia Type V (Chylomicron Increase + VLDL)
  • Hypertriglyceridemia
  • Prevention of cardiovascular disease

Contraindications for Gemfibrozil

Gemfibrozil may be contraindicated with: 

  • Hypersensitivity
  • Primary biliary cirrhosis
  • Severe liver or kidney disease
  • Underlying gallbladder disease
  • Combined use of gemfibrozil with repaglinide, simvastatin, or dasabuvir

Warnings

Before using gemfibrozil, pay attention to the following precautions: 

  • Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it or to other “fibrates” (such as fenofibrate); or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients which can cause allergic reactions or other problems.
  • Inform your doctor or pharmacist about your medical history, especially if you have liver disease (such as biliary cholangitis and hepatitis), gallbladder disease, kidney disease, and alcohol abuse.
  • Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist about all medications you are currently using, including prescription or nonprescription medications, as well as herbal products.
  • This medicine is not recommended for use during pregnancy. Consult your OB-GYN for more details.
  • It is unclear if this drug passes into breast milk. You should consult your doctor before breastfeeding. 

Gemfibrozil Drug Interactions

Drug interactions can change how medications work or increase the risk of serious side effects. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine without your doctor’s approval.

Examples of drugs that may interact with gemfibrozil include:

  • Atorvastatin
  • Fluvastatin
  • Ombitasvir / paritaprevir / ritonavir and dasabuvir
  • Pitavastatin
  • Pravastatin
  • Repaglinide
  • Rosuvastatin
  • Simvastatin

This medication may slow down the removal of other medicines from your body, which may affect how they work. Below are examples of affected drugs that may have serious interactions with gemfibrozil:

  • Atorvastatin
  • Belinostat
  • Cilostazol
  • Colchicine
  • Dabrafenib
  • Eluxadoline
  • Fluvastatin
  • Irinotecan
  • Irinotecan liposomal
  • Lovastatin
  • Pirfenidone
  • Pitavastatin
  • Pravastatin
  • Repaglinide
  • Rosuvastatin
  • Selexipag
  • Warfarin

List of Gemfibrozil Side Effects

The following are some of the most common side effects of gemfibrozil:

  • Abdominal pain may occur. If it persists or worsens, tell your doctor or pharmacist immediately.
  • Your doctor prescribed this medication because he or she has assessed that the benefits outweigh the risk of side effects. Many people use this drug without serious side effects.
  • This medication may rarely cause gallstones and liver problems. Tell your doctor right away if you notice any serious side effects, such as abdominal pain, nausea, persistent vomiting, yellowing of your eyes or skin, and dark-colored urine.
  • This medication may also rarely cause muscle problems. Tell your doctor right away if you experience symptoms such as muscle pain, pressure, weakness (especially followed by fever or unusual fatigue), or signs of kidney problems (such as changes in urine volume).
  • Tell your doctor right away if you have serious side effects, such as signs of infection (such as fever and persistent sore throat), easy bruising, easy bleeding, unusual fatigue, irregular heartbeat, numbness, tingling sensation in your arm or leg.
  • Very serious allergic reactions to this drug are rare. However, seek immediate medical help if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, such as rash, itching, swelling (especially in your face, tongue, or throat), dizziness, and difficulty breathing.

Book an appointment with your doctor or pharmacist via Smarter Health to find out more about the recommended dosage for Gemfibrozil and its proper use based on your condition. Smarter Health allows you to access healthcare services and facilities whenever you need them. Contact Smarter Health now.

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