Tags: cholesterol | kidneys | fibrate

Cholesterol Drug Can Harm Kidneys

Thursday, 19 Apr 2012 12:12 PM




A common cholesterol medication has been found to cause kidney problems in some older patients.
A new study by the Lawson Health Research Institute and the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences found 1 in 10 older fibrate users experienced a 50 percent increase in creatinine in their blood – a measure of kidney function.
For the study, published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, researchers examined more than 20,000 older Ontario residents with new prescriptions for fibrates -- a group of medications commonly used to treat high cholesterol. After three months, researchers compared them to other patients taking ezetimide, another cholesterol agent not known to have any renal effects.
They found fibrate users were more likely to experience an increase in creatinine, consult a kidney specialist or be hospitalized.
"At the end of the day, we want to prescribe medication with the highest benefit and the least amount of adverse events," said lead researcher Dr. Amit Garg. "When a physician decides to start a fibrate in a new patient, especially an older patient, given the information we have today they should start the patient on a dose that's appropriate, closely monitor their kidney function, and, if the kidney function goes off, either lower the dose or discontinue the drug."

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About 10 percent of older fibrate users may experience a decrease in kidney health.
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2012-12-19
Thursday, 19 Apr 2012 12:12 PM
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