Peter Hibberd, M.D., is a doctor whose advice is based on more than 28 years of hospital outpatient and inpatient experience. He is an experienced emergency medicine physician, surgeon, and consultant. Dr. Hibberd is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. He is also a fellow and active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, an active member of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and a member and fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Hibberd has earned numerous national and international professional certifications, memberships, and awards.

Should All People Who Take Statins Avoid Grapefruit?

Thursday, 18 March 2010 08:10 AM

Question: Should grapefruit be avoided by all people who take statins?

Dr. Hibberd's Answer:

Yes. Both grapefruit and grapefruit juice should be avoided by all users of statin medications and those who use drug combinations containing statins. Remember to check the side of canned and bottled soft drinks for added grapefruit juice.

Grapefruit and grapefruit juice will prolong the half life of statins and other medications that are metabolized by the liver. This delayed metabolism will permit toxic accumulation of statins and other drugs. Major side effects and even death may occur in some patients.

The list of drugs affected by grapefruit is long. It includes a number of antihistamines (astemizole, terfenadine), all statins (Lipitor, Mevacor, Zocor, Pravachol, Lescol, and Crestor), and all all statin combo drugs (Vytorin, Caduet, and Advicor).

In addition, immune suppressants (cyclosporin), dextromethorphan, methadone, OxyContin, midazolam, caffeine, and even sildenafil (Viagra), as well as many chemotherapy agents, should be avoided.

© HealthDay

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