Vascepa vs. Lipitor

Reviewed on 8/1/2019

Are Lipitor and Vascepa the Same Thing?

Vascepa (icosapent ethyl) and Lipitor (atorvastatin) are used to lower high triglycerides (fats).

Lipitor is also used to treat reduce total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol, and to elevate HDL cholesterol.

Vascepa and Lipitor belong to different drug classes. Vascepa is a type of omega-3 fatty acid and Lipitor is an HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor (a "statin" drug).

Side effects of Vascepa that are different from Lipitor include joint pain and sore throat.

Side effects of Lipitor that are different from Vascepa include constipation, diarrhea, nausea, fatigue, gas, heartburn, headache, and mild muscle pain.

Vascepa may interact with blood thinners.

Lipitor may interact with alcohol, grapefruit and grapefruit juice, antibiotics, antifungals, birth control pills, other cholesterol-lowering medications, heart medications, and medicines to treat HIV/AIDS.

SLIDESHOW

How to Lower Your Cholesterol & Save Your Heart See Slideshow

What Are Possible Side Effects of Vascepa?

Common side effects of Vascepa include:

What Are Possible Side Effects of Lipitor?

Common side effects of Lipitor include:

  • constipation,
  • diarrhea,
  • nausea,
  • fatigue,
  • gas,
  • heartburn,
  • headache, and
  • mild muscle pain.

Contact your doctor if you experience serious side effects of Lipitor including:

What Is Vascepa?

Vascepa (icosapent ethyl) is a type of omega-3 fatty acid, a fat found in fish oil. It is used along with a low-fat and low-cholesterol diet, to lower high triglycerides (fats). Vascepa is thought to work by decreasing the amount of triglycerides made by the body.

What Is Lipitor?

Lipitor (atorvastatin) is a statin used for the treatment of elevated total cholesterol, LDL, triglycerides, and to elevate HDL cholesterol.

QUESTION

What are triglycerides? See Answer

What Drugs Interact With Vascepa?

Vascepa may interact with other drugs affecting coagulation (e.g., anti-platelet agents). Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you take.

What Drugs Interact With Lipitor?

Erythromycin (E-Mycin), ketoconazole (Nizoral), itraconazole (Sporanox), cyclosporine (Sandimmune), indinavir (Crixivan) and ritonavir (Norvir) decrease elimination of Lipitor. Lipitor increases the effect of warfarin (Coumadin) and cholestyramine (Questran) decreases the absorption of Lipitor. Lipitor should not be taken during pregnancy because the developing fetus requires cholesterol for development, and Lipitor reduces the production of cholesterol. Lipitor passes into breast milk and could harm a nursing baby. Breastfeeding while taking Lipitor is not recommended.

How Should Vascepa Be Taken?

The recommended dosage is 2 capsules (4 grams) twice daily with food.

How Should Lipitor Be Taken?

The recommended dose of Lipitor is 10-80 mg daily.

Disclaimer

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References

Amarin. Vascepa Prescribing Information.
https://www.vascepa.com/
Pfizer. Lipitor Product Information.
https://www.lipitor.com

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