Zocor, a prescription drug marketed by Merck, is prescribed to high cholesterol patients above the age of ten. Known by its generic name Simvastatin, the drug is marketed under the name  Zocor. FDA Approved in 1991, it was initially available in 10, 20 and 40 mg tablets, but was soon available in 80mg tablets as well. The core medical use of Zocor is intended to lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels in patients. Zocor is included in a group of drugs collectively called ‘statins’. It was once the second most popular cholesterol lowering drug on the market.

The primary goal of this drug is to lower “bad cholesterol” or LDL level, while simultaneously causing a rise in “good cholesterol” or HDL.

Some drug facts specific to Zocor:

Prevention is better than cure is a known practicality and just like every other thing it goes with medicines too. So, being aware about some drug facts can actually help the medicine do just good, rather than any bad. Some such specific drug facts about Zocor are:

  • The drug is prescribed in patients to lower the risk of heart attacks, strokes and to treat complications in diabetic people and those suffering from coronary heart ailment.
  • The shelf life of Zocor is 24 months or two years, so before buying one should always check the manufacturing date.
  • The tablet should be stored below 25°C, to save the same from getting altered in composition.
  • Telling the healthcare expert about medication one maybe using is a wise thing. Certain drugs on combination with simvastatin can lead to complications, so to avoid this telling beforehand is advised.
  • Zocor is available as tablet or oral disintegrating tablets in composition of 10 mg, 20 mg, 40 mg and 80 mg which are prescribed based on many factors.
  • The medicine is taken orally with water usually as OD or once daily in the evening.
  • Zocor is known to show interaction with 193 drugs, out of which 44 are categorized as major, 140 as moderate and 9 as minor.
  • 3 disease interactions are also noticed with Zocor, which are with renal dysfunction, liver diseases, and rhabdomyolysis.
  • Drinking juice of grapefruit is one food interaction the drug can induce, asking the healthcare expert about this, thus seems vital as this juice can cause increased amount of the medication in blood.
  • In case where patients take additional cholesterol lowering drugs, it is advised to take Zocor after four hours of taking that medication or either at least 1 hour before.
  • The drug may take anywhere around four weeks to help a person know its actual potential.

Like is with every other medication, Zocor too has been seen to cause side effects and complications in people administering the same orally. Ranging from minor to major, these incidences have lead to an alteration in its label and special care is advised before recommending the drug in high doses.

A piece of advice:

Zocor or simvastatin can cause harm to the developing fetus resulting in birth defects. Telling the healthcare expert if one is pregnant thus appears imperative. The doctor should also be informed in case a woman has conceived after starting this drug. It is always advised to use birth control measures that are effective while on this medicine. Nursing mothers should also avoid simvastatin as it can easily pass from the mother to the newborn baby while feeding.