Daily Question is excerpted from the JustAnswer archives and features information provided from an expert on JustAnswer.
Q: Why are there so many types of statin drugs — simvastatin, pitavastatin, lovastatin, etc.? How do you decide among alternatives — is it insurance considerations? Is there a simple alternative to Crestor at 5mg you would recommend?
A: Basically there are so many because each pharmaceutical company wants to have a statin drug. (Statins are the most widely prescribed meds in the world today.)
However, each one has individual characteristics. For example, pravastatin tends to have the least amount of side effects. If you have to switch from Crestor because of side effects, I would try pravastatin.
If it’s for insurance purposes, I would switch to Lipitor (atorvastatin). It is the most well-studied, and it’s generic now. Also the 5mg dosage of Crestor is equivalent to 20mg Lipitor (atorvastatin).
– Answer from DrPhilMD, physician and expert on JustAnswer.
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