High Cholesterol (cont.)
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Medical Treatment: Other Medications
Bile acid sequestrants: These drugs bind with cholesterol-containing bile acids in the intestines and allow them to be eliminated in the stool. Bile acid sequestrants may lower LDL cholesterol by a significant amount. Bile acid sequestrants are sometimes prescribed with a statin to enhance cholesterol reduction.
Cholesterol absorption inhibitors: These drugs inhibit cholesterol absorption in the gut and has few, if any, side effects. Cholesterol absorption inhibitors may be rarely associated with tongue swelling (angioedema). Ezetimibe (Zetia) reduces LDL cholesterol by a significant amount. It is probably most useful in people who cannot tolerate taking statins. When used in addition to a statin, ezetimibe is equivalent to doubling or tripling the statin dose.
Nicotinic acid or niacin: Nicotinic acid lowers total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and triglyceride levels, while raising HDL cholesterol levels.
Fibrates: These cholesterol-lowering drugs are effective in lowering triglycerides.
Side effects of fibrates may include stomach or intestinal discomfort, gallstones, and may affect anticoagulation medication effects in thinning blood.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/28/2015
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High-density lipoprotein (HDL) is positively associated with a decreased risk of coronary heart disease (CHD).