Crestor (rosuvastatin calcium)

Crestor (rosuvastatin calcium) is manufactured and marketed by AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals and is a statin drug; i.e. a medicine that lowers "bad" cholesterol and triglycerides, and raises "good" cholesterol in the blood.

Why Prescribed

Crestor is an orally administered, lipid-lowering agent that belongs to a class of drugs called HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors (statins), designed to lower bad cholesterol (LDL) and triglycerides (TG) levels in the blood stream.

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FDA Approved Uses

In August 2003, the FDA approved Crestor, the latest of six cholesterol reducing drugs called statins. Crestor is approved as an adjunct therapy accompanied by a low-cholesterol diet and exercise program to reduce the overall level of bad cholesterol in the blood stream. It was also touted for raising levels of High-Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol (HDL-C, or good cholesterol) in many cases.

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Side Effects

Crestor can cause or contribute to causing rhabdomyolysis, a condition in which muscle cells are damaged causing release of myoglobin, which in turn causes kidney damage and can be fatal. Symptoms of rhabdomyolysis include dark or red urine, muscle tenderness, muscle or generalized weakness, muscle stiffness, joint pain, fatigue and, sometimes, seizures.

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Warnings and Alerts

Crestor side effects could prove crippling or even deadly - rhabdomyolysis occurs when a large number of skeletal muscle cells die, resulting in the release of a massive amount of muscle protein into the bloodstream. The muscle protein becomes trapped in the kidneys, affecting the filtering process of the kidneys and leading to kidney failure. Related Crestor side effects include serious liver damage and liver death.

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Drug Contraindications

Crestor is contraindicated in patients with hypersensitivity to rosuvastatin or to any of the excipients, in patients with active liver disease including unexplained, persistent elevations of serum transaminases and any serum transaminase elevation exceeding 3 x the upper limit of normal (ULN), in patients with severe renal impairment, in patients with myopathy, in patients receiving concomitant ciclosporin, in women during pregnancy and lactation, in women of childbearing potential not using appropriate contraceptive measures, and in Asian patients or patients with Asian ancestry.

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What should I tell my doctor before taking Crestor?

Before starting Crestor, tell your doctor or health care provider about all medical conditions, including:

  • If you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant
  • If you are breast-feeding
  • If you have liver problems
  • If you have kidney problems
  • If you drink alcohol

Also, be sure to tell your health care provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Crestor and certain medicines may interact with each other causing serious side effects.

What drugs affect Crestor?

Do not take Crestor if you are taking:

  • The blood thinner Coumadin
  • Cyclosporine, a medicine with multiple uses, including use after organ transplants or for rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis
  • Certain types of other medicines that lower cholesterol
  • Antacids.

What are the grounds for a Crestor law suit?

If you have developed rhabdomyolysis or liver damage, or if a loved one has died due to liver failure or other complications from taking Crestor, you may qualify for a defective drug lawsuit. As with all cases of negligence and product liability, it is important that you consult with an experienced litigation attorney to discuss your legal claim for compensation.

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