Patients taking the popular cholesterol lowering drug Zocor are suffering Zocor side effects such as muscle injuries, myopathy, and rhabdomyolysis. Rhabdomyolysis can even lead to kidney failure. A new analysis from Food Consumer shows that Zocor and other cholesterol-lowering statins may actually provide little benefit to patients, and even increase the risk of heart attacks and strokes that the drugs are supposed to guard against.

Zocor was the second best-selling cholesterol drug worldwide prior to 2005 (when it became available in generic form). Last year, approximately 2.1 million people were prescribed Zocor or a generic equivalent. One in four Americans over the age 45 takes a cholesterol-lowering statin of some sort. But recent studies show that statin use is linked to an increased risk of coronary artery calcification, a hallmark of heart disease.

A study published in the journal Atherosclerosis found that statin use was linked with a 52 percent increased prevalence and extent of calcified coronary plague, compared to non-users. None of the 6,673 participants of the study had known coronary artery disease when they underwent a CCTA exam. Arterial plague is not only a hallmark of cardiovascular disease, but also increases the risk of all-cause mortality.

Another study published in Diabetes Care journal found that patients with type 2 diabetes with advanced atherosclerosis who are frequent statin users have higher amounts of coronary calcification than less frequent statin users. In addition, a subgroup of participants who began without taking statins experienced progression of coronary artery calcification after they started frequent statin use.

Studies have even shown that statin use can increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes if a patient doesn’t already have it. One study found that statins increased the risk of type 2 diabetes in postmenopausal women by 48 percent.

As of 2009, over 900 studies have documented statin adverse effects. For Zocor, side effects include muscular injuries with higher doses. The FDA issued a warning about Zocor muscular injuries in 2010, stating that there was an increased risk with patients who take 80mg doses of the drug.  A 2011 FDA advisory recommended doctors to avoid prescribing high doses of Zocor to new patients, and required Merck, the manufacturer of the drug to change the drug’s labeling to clearly differentiate dosage amounts and reduce risk of prescription errors.

Zocor muscle injuries may lead to rhabdomyolysis, which can causes muscle fibers to break down and release the protein myoglobin that can lead to kidney failure. Patients who suffered from side effects are filing Zocor lawsuits to seek compensation for their medical expenses and other injuries. For more information and a free case review, call (877) 779-1414.

Published November 7, 2012 by