Statins side effects: Joints may become 'sore' or painful - list of side effects
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The NHS says there are five types of statin available on prescription in the UK. They include atorvastatin, fluvastatin pravastatin, rosuvastatin and simvastatin The Mayo Clinic says that pravastatin along with its needed effects, may cause some unwanted effects. This can include making some areas in your body sore or even painful.

The organisation says you should check with your doctor immediately if you experience muscle or bone pain, muscle stiffness, pain in the joints, arm, back, or jaw pain or muscle cramps, spasms, tenderness, wasting, or weakness.

The Mayo Clinic says: “Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention.

“These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects.”

The NHS states: “The risks of any side effects also have to be balanced against the benefits of preventing serious problems.”

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It notes that a review of scientific studies into the effectiveness of statins found around one in every 50 people who take the medicine for five years will avoid a serious event, such as a heart attack or stroke, as a result.

The health body adds: “If you find certain side effects particularly troublesome, talk to the doctor in charge of your care. Your dose may need to be adjusted or you may need a different type of statin.”

Indeed, the NHS notes statins can occasionally cause muscle inflammation (swelling) and damage.

It says: “Speak to your doctor if you have muscle pain, tenderness or weakness that cannot be explained – for example, pain that is not caused by physical work.”


The health body says your doctor may carry out a blood test to measure a substance in your blood called creatine kinase (CK), which is released into the blood when your muscles are inflamed or damaged.

The NHS explains: “If the CK in your blood is more than five times the normal level, your doctor may advise you to stop taking the statin.

“Regular exercise can sometimes lead to a rise in CK, so tell your doctor if you’ve been exercising a lot.

“Once your CK level has returned to normal, your doctor may suggest you start taking the statin again, but at a lower dose.”

You usually have to continue taking statins for life because if you stop taking them, your cholesterol will return to a high level within a few weeks.

“If you’re sensitive to one statin, you might not be sensitive to another. You should have a blood test after any change of statin to see how effectively the new medicine is lowering your cholesterol,” says the British Heart Foundation (BHF).

The BHF adds: “If you’re taking simvastatin or atorvastatin, avoid grapefruit and grapefruit juice as they can increase your risk of side effects.”

It adds that if you take another type of statin, limit your intake of grapefruit juice to very small quantities or you may want to avoid it altogethe

The Yellow Card Scheme allows you to report suspected side effects from any type of medicine you’re taking.

It is run by a medicines safety watchdog called the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

The purpose of the scheme is to provide an early warning that the safety of a medicine or a medical device may require further investigation.

Side effects reported on Yellow Cards are evaluated, together with additional sources of information such as clinical trial data.

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