Frequently Asked Questions
A prescription drug (also prescription medication or prescription medicine) is a licensed medicine that is regulated by legislation to require a medical prescription before it can be obtained. The term is used to distinguish it from over-the-counter drugs which can be obtained without a prescription. Different jurisdictions have different definitions of what constitutes a prescription drug.
A prescription is a health-care programme that governs the plan of care for an individual patient and is implemented by a qualified practitioner. A qualified practitioner might be a physician, dentist, nurse practitioner, pharmacist, psychologist, or other health care providers. Prescriptions may include orders to be performed by a patient, caretaker, nurse, pharmacist, physician or other therapist. Prescriptions have legal implications, as they may indicate that the prescriber takes responsibility for the clinical care of the patient and in particular for monitoring efficacy and safety. As medical practice has become increasingly complex, the scope of meaning of the term "prescription" has broadened to also include clinical assessments, laboratory tests, and imaging studies relevant to optimizing the safety or efficacy of medical treatment.
The drugs are able to block the action of a chemical in the liver that is necessary for making cholesterol. Although cholesterol is necessary for normal cell and body function, very high levels of it can lead to atherosclerosis, a condition where cholesterol-containing plaques build up in arteries and block blood flow.
By reducing blood cholesterol levels, statins lower the risk of chest pain (angina), heart attack, and stroke.
Several types of statins exist such as atorvastatin, cerivastatin, fluvastatin, lovastatin, mevastatin, pitavastatin, pravastatin, rosuvastatin, and simvastatin. Atorvastatin and rosuvastatin are the most potent, while fluvastatin is the least potent. These medicines are sold under several different brand names including Lipitor (an atorvastatin), Pravachol (a pravastatin), Crestor (a rosuvastatin), Zocor (a simvastatin), Lescol (a fluvastatin) and Vytorin (a combination of simvastatin and ezetimibe). Mevastatin is a naturally occurring statin that is found in red yeast rice.
Research over the last few years has uncovered other benefits linked to statins, apart from cardiovascular ones. Researchers from the Mayo Clinic carried out a study that found that statins may reduce people's risk of developing esophageal cancer (cancer of the gullet).
Benefits of statins largely outweigh the risks. A report published in the journal Circulation: "Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes concluded that overall, the benefits from taking statins are greater than the risks associated with the medication".
Statins inhibit an enzyme called HMG-CoA reductase, which controls cholesterol production in the liver. The medicines actually act to replace the HMG-CoA that exists in the liver, thereby slowing down the cholesterol production process. Additional enzymes in the liver cell sense that cholesterol production has decreased and respond by creating a protein that leads to an increase in the production of LDL (low density lipoprotein, or "bad" cholesterol) receptors. These receptors relocate to the liver cell membranes and bind to passing LDL and VLDL (very low density lipoprotein). The LDL and VLDL then enter the liver and are digested.
In a new study, NYU Langone Medical Center researchers have discovered how cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins promote the breakdown of plaque in the arteries. The findings support a large clinical study that recently showed patients taking high-doses of the cholesterol-lowering medications not only reduced their cholesterol levels but also reduced the amount of plaque in their arteries. However, until now researchers did not fully understand how statins could reduce atherosclerosis, the accumulation of fat and cholesterol that hardens into plaque in arteries, a major cause of mortality in Western countries.
High blood cholesterol is a major culprit in atherosclerosis. As a result of narrowing arteries, blood clots can form or plaque can break off causing blockages in vessels. This can lead to a potentially fatal heart attack or stroke. New research shows statins actually promote the regression of atherosclerosis by altering the expression of a specific cell surface receptor within plaque cells. This molecular phenomenon helps dissolve plaque by expelling coronary artery disease-causing cells from the plaque lining the arteries.
Statins are potent inhibitors of HMG-CoA reductase, the enzyme that plays a central role in the production of cholesterol. Statins have been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and cardiac events like heart attack.
Cholesterol is needed for all proper cellular function.
- High-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), good cholesterol, helps reduce the risk of atherosclerosis by taking cholesterol away from cells.
- Low density lipoprotein (LDL-C), bad cholesterol, carries cholesterol to cells. However, an LDL overload in the body increases a person's risk of cardiovascular disease including atherosclerosis.
At Health Renewal, stains are always prescribed with Ubiquinol, or Co-Q10.
Millions of people are now taking statin cholesterol-lowering drugs, but the majority are completely unaware that if you take statin drugs without taking CoQ10 (and particularly its reduced form, ubiquinol), your health is at serious risk. Nearly all physicians fail to inform you about this problem if you are taking statins.
Statin drugs work to lower your cholesterol in the same pathway your body uses to produce CoQ10. Statins deplete your body's natural production of CoQ10. There have been certain side effects associated with the use of statin medications such as fatigue and chronic muscle aches & pains. If you or anyone you know is taking a statin drug, we truly believe it is absolutely essential to start taking a CoQ10 or ubiquinol supplement immediately to replenish your CoQ10 levels. But not just any CoQ10 supplements.
- Ubiquinol supplements should deliver high-absorption formulas regardless of your age,
- should NOT contain any synthetic ingredients and
- come from a highly reputable company with some of the strictest quality control and safety standard practices in place.
As your body gets more and more depleted of CoQ10, you may suffer from fatigue, muscle weakness and soreness, and eventually heart failure. So if you’re taking statin drugs, it’s imperative that you take CoQ10 or, preferably, ubiquinol, the reduced, electron-rich form of coenzyme Q10.
You can get Ubiquinol and Ubiquinone in small amounts from your diet; however, you would have to eat the foods in such large amounts as to make them an impractical resource for your CoQ10 supplementation needs. And because the body’s ability to convert ubiquinone to Ubiquinol declines with age, food becomes a less practical source of Ubiquinol for older individuals and those suffering from age-related conditions.