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Nerve Problem with Lipitor and Crestor: Ann's Story

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The following comment was posted to this Web site on Dec. 29, 2009 by Ann H. We found it so powerful that we wanted to make sure others have a chance to read it, vote and comment if so inclined.

A couple of cautions first. Some folks at very high risk of heart disease may have to continue taking statins regardless of side effects. No one should ever stop taking a statin without medical oversight. That being said, however, the quality of one's life is important. Exercise, for example, is crucial for good health. This person's experience puts a lot of things into perspective. We welcome your feedback.

The People's Pharmacy

++++++++++++++++++++
Date: December 29, 2009

I am 63 and have struggled with high cholesterol for years. It seems to be a hereditary problem in my family for the most part as I follow a healthy diet. I have been on and off Lipitor for years and at different dosages. At one time, I was put on Crestor and after taking 13 pills could barely walk!

A year ago, I was back on Lipitor and began to experience numbness and tingling in my hands and feet. Just before Christmas, I discovered that I could not feel hot and cold but did have all sorts of itching, burning and shooting pains in my feet that were making it hard to sleep or even tolerate shoes.

I went to a neurological center for testing. A pin prick test showed that the problem was present half way to my knees in both legs and in both hands. Initially they felt strongly that I was probably an undiagnosed diabetic. Blood work ruled out diabetes and other scary stuff, like lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, ALS and MS. An EMG [electromyogram] ruled out neuropathy in spite of the symptoms. I asked if it could in any way be from Lipitor and they said there was a "documented connection".

I chose to stop the Lipitor again. When I returned to them a month later, I reported an improvement in the symptoms and retesting with a pin proved it. We agreed on a wait and see stance for two months. After that time passed I felt that I was 85% back to normal! My regular physician finally agreed that I should not take Lipitor or any statin again.

One year later, I still have some very minor nerve damage but am elated by the turnaround. My energy level has soared and now I actually feel like walking for exercise and do so regularly. I feel younger, more flexible. Next I tried not taking an anti-anxiety medication that had been prescribed for the heart palpitations and breathing issues that I also had experienced while taking Lipitor. To my surprise those symptoms were also gone.

I am a different person today from one year ago. I am so glad that I decided that my quality of life was more important than being afraid of dying because of the high cholesterol issue.

I had read a little suggestion in People's Pharmacy in the newspaper that made me question if the Lipitor was causing my problem. One would expect that a problem would become evident in a short period of time. Not so with me. Looking back, I now believe that the problem was coming on slowly for at least two years.

Thank you and your newspaper column for setting me on the right path to true health.

Ann H.

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What is difficult is convincing physicians that these drugs cause problems. And, since many of us who are prescribed Lipitor, Crestor, etc. are older, it is easy to attribute consequent problems to our age. Hard to know what to do, with physician trying to convince us to take them, and scaring us with threats of dire result if we don't -- and suffering the symptoms of taking the drugs if we do (muscle pain, feeling extremely tired in my case, and actually feeling down in the dumps--coincidence? don't know, but am concerned about drug effect).

Logic tells me that anything that makes one feel badly just can't be good for you.

I hope her case is this exception, but good to know.

I also took lipitor and became old almost overnight. I got so I could hardly walk. I made the connection and stopped taking it. Then I was put on Crestor. Same problem. Now I just have high triglycerides and am not doing anything about them. Think I'll try niacin.

I'm 85 and tried to get the doctor to agree that my cholesterol was not that important at my age but he prescribed Welchol which I have not taken.

My Mom was on Zocor for several years. When she started falling and having pain in her arms and legs we at first thought she was failing (80 yrs old at that time). The Dr thought it was arthritis and prescribed Celebrex.

Within a week she was so weak she couldn't walk and was forced to use a wheel chair to get around the house. My sister and I then went online and started reading about the side effects of these two drugs. We called her Dr and told him what we had found and that we were going to take her off of those drugs for a couple of weeks. He said that was not a good idea and that she needed those drugs, so we consulted another Dr in town and she agreed to take over.

Within 2 weeks my Mom was back on her feet. After 6 years she is still not 100%, but she is active and able to do pretty much what she wants to do.

Interesting. I to have been taking Lipator, for several years, for the same hereditary reasons and am 65 years old. I have experienced tingling and numbness only in my finger tips. However, I have developed nerve-like related pain in my left buttock that extends downward and is so painful that I can not run. Thanks for the info.

Anne, I am glad to hear about your recovery, albeit a partial recovery. My case of Lipitor-itis is a bit different.

I was on this drug for about 3 and 1/2 years when it hit my like a ton of bricks. New onset of relentless and excruciating headaches, bouts of confusion, ataxia, and apraxia. Leading to an MRI revealing multiple lesions scattered through both the white and grey matter, these signs and symptoms progressed to where I could not function on even the most basic level.

I was admitted to the University Hospital, where I spent the next 28 days, underwent MRI's, EMG's, Serial Labs revealing Lactic Acidosis, Brain Biopsy (revealing Multiple Autophagic Vacuoles and Mitochondrial Changes), Muscle Biopsy revealing Mitochondrial Encephalomyopathy with Lactic Acidosis and Stroke-Like Episodes Aka MELAS.

The holes seen in my brain biopsy, appeared to be a New Variant Creutzfeld Jakob disease, a disease with a 100% mortality. Within a few days, I was started on a Mitochondrial Cocktail which is essentially a 12 vitamin, mineral, amino acid and CoQ10. Cholesterol is made in our body and is a necessary component in the synthesis of Hormones, Vitamin D and other necessary components. Statins lower cholesterol by blocking inhibit a liver enzyme which in turn limits the production of mevalonate, blocking an important biochemical pathway in our normal metabolism. Absence or scarcity of mevalonate as induced by statin drugs leads to numerous side effects, some of them very painful, others involving memory and mental and emotional disposition.

The drug companies knew from the very beginning that CoQ10 would be inhibited, just like cholesterol. Merck even filed a patent for a CoQ10/statin combined pill. CoQ10 depletion has been the cause of many thousands of side effects, especially the neuropathies, myopathies and rhabdomyolysis cases. Some of these cases have been fatal. Many have resulted in chronic disabilities.

I urge anyone considering taking these drugs to scour thru a website by Dr. Duane Graveline, a former NASA flight surgeon and Private practice physician, who suffered the ill effects of Lipitor. His website is www.spacedoc.net It is loaded with incredible INFORMATION, which no one makes a buck on, but it may save you from death or disability.

A friend I met online in my years of research since my disability, has since passed away from his Statin effects. His name was Doug Peterson, from Las Vegas, and he and I are just two statin effect sufferers, but if I can prevent one more from being added to this list, I will do whatever I can.

I also have had problems w/statins. My symptoms were similar to Ann's-I went thru the MS testing, neurological tests, etc. I took Crestor for only 3 days and quit. Thru my own investigation, I requested my dr to prescribe Lovastatin, the first statin to be approved by the FDA. It has fewer side effects than the newer drugs and it's also on Walmart's $4 drug list. It has lowered all my cholesterol stats significantly w/my total cholesterol down to 189 from 253 and I have none of the terrible aches. I started on 10mg and increased to 20mg. Maybe Ann should talk to her dr about Lovastatin.

I used Pravachol for a year, then Pravastatin, the generic. I hurt all over so badly, I felt worked over by a baseball bat. I could hardly get out of my car. The dr. tested me for fibromyalgia (no) and a friend suggested I stop the statin. In a week, the aching was way down. I waited a few months and tried the statin again. In 3 days, I was back to aching, weakness in my knees, pain going straight down from the knee, again.

I already have peripheral neuropathy and it got so much worse. I'm off all statins, by choice. And I took Boniva for osteo and the fib was so bad, I went off that. I'm almost 73 and I'll let nature take its course!

Those with high cholesterol should try a combination of Benecol or Take Control margarine and psyllium. It works for me.

My family history includes many heart and vascular problems on both maternal and fraternal sides of the family tree. I, as well as some of my siblings and some of my children struggle with high cholesterol reports. My 41-year old son had a mild heart attack and three years later, more stents.

Since my late 40's, physicians have prescribed statin after statin, all of which gave me difficult symptoms after a few weeks. One caused muscle weakness and fatigue, another muscle and joint pain, another made me extremely weak and my complexion turned yellow after two weeks. Needless to say, I discontinued that immediately and have refused every statin offered since. Over and over I have had to remind physicians that I cannot and will not take statins.

For many years I have lowered fat in my diet, exercised daily and moderately, and used only canola and olive oil.

When Zetia first showed up, I tried it for two years until my LDL cholesterol began to rise again. When the doctor doubled the dosage, the LDL went even higher. Changing to the lower dose of Zetia and adding 1200 mg. Red Yeast Rice capsules daily lowered the LDL significantly. Yet again the LDL began to rise in spite of the fact that I upped the exercise and lost 20 lbs.and more drastically cut out dairy products.

I understand that many factors affect cholesterol figures, including age, thyroid function, etc. But those genes are powerful ones I'm convinced. Finally, I have decided at age 70, that I will take no prescription drugs to lower cholesterol. I have great blood pressure and no evidence of vascular or heart problems. I have no more time or patience for cholesterol-lowering drugs.

Interesting. I am diabetic so my Doctor says EVERYTHING I get is diabetes related. Lately I have had numbness, tingling of the right arm and hand. Doc says its carpal tunnel. Me, I'm not so sure. I take Lipitor and my cholesterol is very good. Am wondering if the long term effect of taking Lipitor has finally caught up with me. I too am tired with mysterious aches and pains the come and go.

I can symphathize with Anne. I took Lipitor for two years with no apparent problem. Then gradually I started to experience the same symptoms she described. I was taken off Lipitor for about 6 weeks and then prescribed Zocor. I only took that about 2 weeks before problems developed. I took Pravastatin after that with the same side effects. Now I'm on Niaspan and started having the same problems again. My doctor just did a blood test to determine if the Niaspan is the problem or if it is something else. I'm awaiting the results. I'm only 58 and have problems walking because of pain and weakness. I cannot walk without a cane. I have muscle pain in my arms and it is a struggle to even do the most simple things. I'm too young to feel this old.

Good grief! What is a person to do? My husband has PAD and also genetic high triglyciderides. Dr put him on one statin that just about crippled him after a week. He is now on Crestor and the triglyciderides have gone down as has his energy level. He feels tired all the time. However, listening to other comments, I realize that may get much worse at any time.

He is only 60 so I fear for the duration of his life. Without a statin, his triglyciderides were over 500. In 6 wks, they went down into the 200's. Is the cure worse than the disease? Sure wish I knew.

Thanks for the website postings to help us try to figure this out for ourselves.

PEOPLE'S PHARMACY RESPONSE: HIGH TRIGLYCERIDES CAN BE LOWERED WITH OMEGA 3 FATTY ACIDS (FISH OIL). THE DOCTOR CAN PRESCRIBE THIS TREATMENT UNDER THE NAME LOVAZA. IT MIGHT BE WORTHWHILE ASKING THE DOCTOR ABOUT IT. STATINS ARE BETTER AT LOWERING LDL CHOLESTEROL THAN LOWERING TRIGLYCERIDES.

I have been fighting high cholesterol for years. The first thing my doctor prescribed was Lipitor. I stopped taking it three weeks later when I was in so much pain I had to get a wrist brace. I have not been able to take any other statin drugs, either, though the side effects differed. Instead, I try to control the cholesterol with diet: steel cut oats, oat bran, flax seed, flax seed oil, garlic pills, fish oil, and red yeast rice, which contains some statins, but has not given me the adverse side-effects of prescription drugs.

I chose the brand based on tests conducted by ConsumerLab.com, an independent laboratory. I also limit my fats (have switched to Coconut Oil with good results) and try to stick to a healthy diet. In addition, I walk three miles 6-7 days a week. My overall cholesterol is still a bit high: 215, but the other numbers pleased me: LDL: 117; triglycerides: 58; and HDL: 86.

I have what I think is a bad case of painful peripheral neuropathology. I now take 1800 mg of gabapentin each day and get very little relief. Alpha lipoic acid does not seem to work for me. I have always thought that the neuropathy was from taking Lipitor. I had the neuropathic pain for almost a year before anyone suspected the Lipitor. I have not had any statin drug for over three years but the neuropathology has only gotten worse. At the time of my diagnosis I had no other causative problems that I know of but am now considered to be a "borderline diabetic" with an A1C of about 6. Could I be wrong about the cause of my neuropathology?

As a chemist who works in the areas of pharmaceuticals and medical diagnostics, I understand and am well aware of drug side effects on patients. The problem is that every patient's body chemistry is different. It is made worse by the fact that doctors are not taught to consider different body chemistries; rather, they are taught to shove pills at patients until they get better (or die).

There are conditions for which a pill is necessary, appropriate, and/or useful. Even then, however, different people will react differently to a particular medication. Our responsibility as patients is to know our bodies as well as (preferably better than) our doctors do and to inform our doctors when changes are occurring that need attention. We should also balance the need to take a particular medication with the need to alter our diet, our exercise, our lifestyles, and so forth to maintain our health.

You should also be aware that the pharmaceutical industry is more interested in developing pills you must take for the rest of your life than in developing medicines that cure the health problems you have. Why? One word. Money. Or better, three words: guaranteed income stream. We as patients are better off when we change all the things over which we have control (diet, exercise, lifestyle) BEFORE committing to taking a medication that we might need to take the rest of our lives.

You should also know that many in the pharmaceutical and medical diagnostic industries are trying to move those fields as a whole towards "individualized medicine." Individualized medicine studies a patient's body chemistry before administering any medication so that the medication given is most appropriate for the patient. We as an industry have a long way to go before medicine is truly individualized, but we are making significant strides. The key to making individualized medicine work, though, is each patient's involvement in his or her own medical care.

I am 68 years young and my cholesterol has always been high. I was given Zocor by my physician in Florida. When I remarried and moved to North Carolina in 2003, my new physician gave me Lipitor because I had gone off the Zocor on my own, I had some muscular side effects I didn't like. I took the Lipitor for a few weeks and started noticing that my right leg was bothering me, starting at the knee at first and then working it's way up my thigh. I could hardly walk and I asked myself what have I done or taken recently that could give me this problem.

I don't take drugs I don't think I need unless it's a necessity and the Lipitor was the only drug I had taken for a while. I stopped taking it and in about 3 days I was fine..no problems at all. Needless to say, I don't take any cholesterol lowering drug and don't intend to. I don't eat fast food, cook healthy for myself and try to avoid high cholesterol foods.

In fact, I don't believe that most of the elderly that have bottles and bottles of medication really need all that they are taking even tho they believe they do. I, myself, do take a small dosage of Enalipril for my blood pressure and that's all I'm going to take regardless of what the television commercials tell you to do.."Ask Your doctor about this drug". I think your doctor should KNOW what drug or drugs you should be taking and what drugs are out there. Why should YOU ask your doctor? Makes no sense to me.

All I can say is that I have been on pravastatin for several years---40 mg. daily, and have not had any serious side effects.

I have been very afraid of statins and Fosamax. I have refused to take either. I have, however, taken Red Yeast Rice to get my coloresterol down where my Dr. finds it acceptable. Will this give me the same symptoms??? Does anybody know the dangers associated with Red Yeast Rice?

Wow! What responses. I will have to add my experiences with statins. I am male and age 63.

I too have had the body aches, depression, metallic taste and allergy like texture in my mouth taking statins. I have been on them since 2001/2002 and have tried some twice and all of them except Crestor. Pravastatin made me ache and did nothing for my cholesterol so I quit and tried Joe and Terry's info on non medical controls. Fish oil made my triglicerides plummet, but my LDL hit a all time high of 167 while I was in UNC hospital for Atrial Flutter. Those doctors persuaded me to try again.

I took Zocor and Zetia for about two weeks, just about the time that the last research report confirmed Niacin was better than Zetia. On followup with my cardiologist, I brought all the cholesterol tests I could find since 2002 and Lipitor had the most dramatic results. I told the doctor I would try once more and started on lipitor at 10 mg taking it at bedtime and with 200 mg of CoQ10. About 3 weeks later I had my annual physical and I complained that the back aches between the shoulder blades when when I worked at kitchen counter height.

She suggested a vitamin D test be added because she said low Vitamin D could cause aches. I was floored when my Vit D level was 23.6 with normal being 32-100. I am now on once per week 50,000 IU mega dose for 3 months. Maybe it is the placebo effect, but after 3 weeks I am feeling better. I still get the horrible metallic taste in my mouth and my inner cheeks feel like a mild rash at times.

What I do is when I cannot take the taste, I stop lipitor for a day or two, but try to go 6-7 days on lipitor. My ldl had dropped from 167 to 112 in about 5 weeks, with the first two weeks being zocor. No depression. Some body aches but a heating pad and sometimes tylenol or advil seems to make it short lived and mild. At the same time I went from 750 to 1500 mg of Niaspan and my last hdl reading was 59. On no Niaspan it is about 30, and on 750 it

I go for a followup Vit D check mid Feb. Barring no additional side effects I plan to stay on lipitor, niaspan, coq10 for at least 6 months.

I have taken Crestor and Lipitor for quite a while and luckily, I've had no side effects. I am 63. Cholesterol runs in my family and I do try to eat better and certainly exercising has helped keep my numbers in check. I think it does make it more of a challenge since it is in my family, both my sisters have HC too, and they take medicines with no side effects.

It is amazing how some people are effected by certain medicines and others slighty or none at all. As a post script to this, I started taking Cinammon tablets for hot flashes, which has helped. They say too that it can help with cholesterol. I am due for a blood test soon and will see if taking cinammon tablets made any difference.

It is easier for doctors to just prescribe certain medicines...if one doesn't work then they prescribe another, etc., etc., etc. So, it is up to us to do the research and question doctors, whether they like it or not. As with medicines, if one doesn't work then try another, etc., etc., etc., until you find a doctor you are comfortable with and understands your concerns and addresses your questions to your satisfaction. Not easy, but we must take control of our own body.

Sandy.... I, too, have been afraid of statins. I am 58 and have two brothers, one five years older and one five years younger. Both had muscle pain when put on statins. One was on Lipitor and I forget what the other was on. Both switched statins and continue to be on them.

My older brother has been diabetic since he was 16 and the drs. want his cholesterol to be very low. His memory is horrible. He also has had a two year, so far, bout with peripheral neuropathy, non-painful and not related to his diabetes. At one point it was so bad he couldn't drive and had to use a walker.

My cholesterol has been about 240 for over 5 years and when my LDL went up to 159 recently I tried Red Yeast Rice. Within 8 weeks I noticed muscle pain when moving my left arm and lifting anything heavy. Slowly my right arm started to hurt also. I let it go for a while and then slowly went off the the low dose I was on. I was taking only one 600 mg capsule a day with an additional Co Q10 capsule.

It took 3 or 4 months for my arms to be totally pain-free. I was advised to get a Fast CT Scan by the naturopath I was seeing and my calcium score for my heart was 0%. My current (western medicine) dr. said I shouldn't go on statins with my family history and personal experience. Recently my triglycerides jumped from 125 to just over 200 and she still gave me that advice. My blood pressure is normal. I eat a very healthy diet and walk, exercise or use kettle bells. I am not over weight. And there you have it. I hope this helps you.

My husband has coronary artery disease, triple by-pass 15 years ago with stents already in two of the arteries. He had been unable to take any statins but tried very hard to watch what he ate and did exercise. His cholestrol was not where his cardiologist wanted it and he asked my husband if he would be willing to try Crestor. He put him on 2.5mg Crestor every other night along with Vit D3 and CoQ10. We gradually changed the dosage to 5 mg every other night and finally after nearly two years are up to 5 mg 7 nights a week along with the D3 and CoQ10. So far so good....no side affects.

I too had problems with Crestor - didn't show up immediately - took close to a year and then the muscle pains started. Within a couple of months, I couldn't touch my toes, pick up my 7 lb cat, or raise my arms to take off a shirt. I belong to Curves and worked out 3 times a week and still had the problems. I finally read about the side effects in the newspaper medical column and told my MD that I was getting off it. Stopped the Crestor and within about 3 months I was back to normal. I've been on Lovastatin for 2 years with no problems.

Hi Sandy,

Red Yeast Rice IS a statin, albeit "naturally occurring". RYR contains monocolins which is lovastatin, the main ingredient in the 1st statin drug, Mevacor. So to answer your question, yes, RYR can cause all the same side effects as prescription statins. Statin's primary benefit is it's a potent anti-inflammatory.

When looking at cholesterol levels, the key is to control each aspect of total cholesterol. Manipulating the numbers doesn't address "underlying conditions", one of which can be a thyroid condition (either not properly diagnosed or under treated).

High triglycerides are primarily caused by a diet high in carbohydrates, especially the white foods: potato, rice, flour, bread, etc. Low HDL can be increase with exercise AND good saturated fats (yes, I said fats). Good saturated fats are virgin coconut oil and organic butter. LDL is comprised of either small dense particles or large buoyant particles. Large buoyant are best as they are less likely to become oxidized and penetrate the arterial wall.

Controlling inflammation should be the primary objective... things that cause inflammation? Smoking, Elevated Blood Sugar Levels, Stress, Oxidized LDL, High Triglycerides.

Fran

Whenever I see Doctors on TV saying how amazing these drugs are, how they should be in the water supply, put on breakfast cereal, I could scream. They act as if there never has been any problems with these drugs. The TV commercials for them say muscle pain is a rare side effect. RARE? Not from what I've seen. I've known so many people to have problems with statins, including both of my parents and best friend. Then the problem is compounded by the Docs refusing to consider that the problem may be from the drugs.

Aside from the considerable personal pain, what about all the costs of all these tests, when it would be so simple to stop the drug and see. But the Docs scare people that if they stop the drugs, they'll keel over. Meanwhile people are suffering from the drugs.

Very fearful of drugs I delayed taking anything until I was 60 years old and my numbers were getting progressively worse despite being thinnish, healthy and active. Finally started crestor and niaspan and all numbers are great with no apparent side affects- but then tried to take a generic for financial reasons and experienced leg cramps.

I do believe that each person must see which statin works for them or whether statins are the answer. I always opt for alternative medicine but my numbers became frighteningly high so I chose this path, it also gave me some peace of mind as there is lots of heart disease in my family! I take fish oils and CoQ10 also.

My wife had similar problems with statins. She could hardly
walk. Now, after discontinuing statins she walks almost
30 miles per month. yet there is some muscle weakness in one leg.

The doctor did not tell us about the side effect!!

Our new family doctor does not feel my wife needs
any statins!!

Rev. Dr. Anil Solanki

To the person with numbness, tingling of their right hand: this does indeed sound like carpal tunnel syndrome. If you had the symptoms in other places, might be attributable to a systemic disease like diabetes, or drug effect but what you describe is classic for carpal tunnel--we just went through diagnosis and surgery for this (husband), so it is all--all too fresh in my mind.

I certainly agree with RHW! I wanted to express my opinion about drug companies and money in my other comment but thought better about it. Also, about the doctors...I know they don't see everyone's chemistry differently. I found that out years ago when I was on a weight loss diet for a month. When I went back to my doctor and got on the scale I hadn't lost an ounce.

I followed the diet strictly but he had the nerve to tell me that I must have cheated and didn't believe that I followed his program. Needless to say, he wasn't my doctor after that! Everyone cannot lose weight on every diet, you have to find the right one for you. The same with drugs and human chemistry!

I still don't believe that all these drugs that some of the elderly are taken and can't afford are not necessary. It's the "scare" tactics that are used to make them keep taking them. Half the time they'd probably feel better WITHOUT all those drugs unless their situation is really serious, of course. I have seen some elderly with a table full of pill bottles. I can't imagine the cost and how many of those drugs could be eliminated.

I am 54, have a family history of heart related illnesses. I have battled high cholesterol for some years. I was on Crestor with no apparent side effects, later the doctor switched to simvistatin, with no apparent side effects.

When the presctiption was renewed he again changed it to Crestor. With in weeks I started to have a cooling/tingling/numbing/burning sensation on my feet, then up my legs, to my arms and hands. Dr. did not feel it was related to Meds.

Symptoms continued and I had EMG and much bloodwork to show that there was no obvious reason. When i quit the Chrestor the symptoms subsided, not gone. A month later, I took a Crestor one eve and in the early morning I woke with the sensations all back, stronger and this time traveled to my face.

I still have some of the sensation, off and on, mostly in my lower legs. At this time I am on no statin, taking Fish oil, CoQ10, cinnimon, Benefil, observed diet.

In hind site I have complained to the doctor of my feet buring for at least 2 years,(diabetes ruled out), skin sore to the touch on the outsides of my calves and was told it was just dry skin. My skin is still tender to the touch on most of my legs. I also felt more tired and forgetful/spacey. I would like to go to a clinic where Drug Reps are not practically part of the "staff". That would help.

In 1998 my Dr. prescribed Lescol (fluvastatin); within 2-1/1 wks I was very weak and had aching all over, especially in bones of hands, feet, ankles, wrists, other joints, and couldn't sleep for the pain. Dr. stopped meds and I was normal in 1 week. He then put me on Lipitor and the symptoms repeated exactly as before.

In 2003 I was put on Tricor and tolerated that for 1 year before same symptoms returned, and by this time my good HDL count had gone from 82 down to 55. After I heard about red yeast rice in your column, my cardiologist agreed I should try it in 2007. In just 3 weeks at 2,400 mg/day, my cholesterol was 192 (from 249) and LDL was 122 (from 170). I've had no aches or pains from it, and last year the dose was increased to 3,000 mg daily.

My husband took Zocor after receiving a stent, but severe nighttime leg cramps were agonizing. He was switched to 80 mg pravastatin and has had no problems with it. This drug is on Walmart's cheap generic list.

I took statins for a little over year and then developed many of the symptoms described above. I stopped the drugs BUT my symptoms didn't go away. I was diagnosed with polymyosistis, a muscle weakening autoimmune disease. I was put on several terrible medications including high doses of prednisone. It took me over a year to walk again. I still take maintenance doses of prednisone.

Interestingly, I have now developed esophageal cancer and polymyosistis is associated with (although not causing) the cancer.

I relate it all to statins although some don't agree with me. I think the statin story is a national disgrace. The research for the problems caused by high cholesterol is faulty as is the prescriptions. Read some of the dollar numbers and you'll understand the motivation of both the pharmaceutical companies and the doctors.

I am printing this story to give to my mom's doctor. Mom is 89 and had been taking Lipitor for many years. She was feeling dizzy, had leg pains so bad that she couldn't sleep, kept falling and couldn't even walk through the grocery store. When her doctor's retirement made her change doctors, I thought it was a good time to get another opinion on this drug.

Without batting an eyelash, the new doctor just changed her prescription to Crestor. The results were the same and after many hours of talking together, Mom and I both agreed that her quality of life is more important than this medical problem. She informed the doctor that she would no longer be taking the drug. While there was no comment from the doctor, all of her symptoms disappeared within 2 weeks and her energy level skyrocketed.

Now I was trying to keep up with her! This past October, her blood test showed high cholesterol. Her doctor gave her a new schedule- take CoQ 10 every day for 2 weeks, then add 1/2 Crestor pill every other day along with the Q10...there was more to the schedule but within 1 week of resuming Crestor, her symptoms reappeared with a vengeance and we decided that, once again, she would not take the drug.

Mom has another appointment next month and I am interested in what the doctor will do. I am not happy with the situation and would like her to change doctors again. I am also not happy with the need for medication that causes harm. Mom's cholesterol problem is hereditary, her diet is perfect, she is not overweight and I am looking for a natural medicine to help her.

My grandfather had similar trouble with Lipitor.

I'm so glad my husband's doctor suggested using Benecol before going to statins. Benecol brought his cholesterol down without any side effects.

My mother went into a "chemical freeze" when she took Lipitor and was in bed for two days before she could move again. It messed up her other medications for lowering blood pressure. My physician is very understanding and we are working on a diet approach that will hopefully reduce my high cholesterol. (I exercise, etc., but have had high cholesterol since I started measuring it in my 20's; I am now in my late 50’s.)

Today is my 65th birthday. I have been on Lipitor for over 10 years and it was not until I read comments in here that I associated that drug with the numbness and tingling of my hands and some other symptoms of memory loss such as word loss and blank spots. To celebrate my birthday, I am stopping the Lipitor today and will have a blood test in three months to see what effect it has had, if any.

I will also keep a diary of my other misc odd symptoms to see if they do recede. I have been on omega3 fish oil for over a year and in the winter I also take extra D3 and my diet is healthier than it has ever been. We'll see about this Lipitor drug. I am disgusted with the drug business as I truly believe they would rather keep us drug dependent than find real cures. Will make a note to return here and advise of my experience with stopping this drug.

After taking Crestor for around a year I have pain in knees and right wrist, my feet at night tingle and have cramping in right ankle area. My Dr. changed me to 5mg of Crestor every oyher day. Didn't help. Can't seem to play a round of golf without suffering a lot of pain in hips and knees. If I sit for a hour playing cards or driving the car I am in serious pain when attempting to walk or stand. I also can't walk with the wife, After about a block I have to set for even a couple minutes before resuming.
I had a mild heart attack in 2008 and have a stint. My quality of life is starting to mean more to me than following the Dr's advice on Crestor.

Have you considered the possibility of sciatica with the pain in your buttock and leg? Mine has increased with the deterioration in my spine. Am taking Simvistatin and not having any problems.

I would like to submit a question:::: In reading comments from others I noted one regarding cooling sensation in the feet on January 6, 2010. For the past 2 years in most nights, I'm awakened about 4 a.m. with a cool sensation in my toes, especially right foot. Foot is not cold to the touch and bed covers are adequate. This keeps me awake and there is loss of sleep that keeps me from getting through the day. My doctor and podiatrist have checked my blood circulation and there is no problem there. Could it be due to Lipitor which I have taken since 1998? Through the years I have also had many episodes of leg weakness and burning in my feet which I've attributed to heat sensitivity or sweets. Please comment

Betty, your best bet may be going for the most simple of solutions, and wear warm, soft socks to bed. Perhaps this would be enough to make your feet feel warm. Certainly can't hurt to try.

I have been on Lipitor for two years and am now in a mess with severe nerve damage, and what upsets me most is that the medical people I complained to did not take any notice. It started when doctor put me on a 80mg dose of Lipitor as he wanted my bad cholesterol below 2 while it was 2.2 and that was too high for me according to him.

I have pins and needles right through my body and a train seems to be running all the time keeping me awake. I am now on antidepressants but nothing else, and I would like to scream it from the rooftop that the statins are the biggest rubbish there is in our modern world.

I was doing fine on a low dose, but 80mg daily was too much, and I am really resentful of the little attention paid by the medical world that this drug does not suit everybody.

No, this case is not a one off. There are many many people with nerve damage out there and I am sorry that I did find out too late what statins can do. I believed blindly in what the doctor prescribes must be good for you. If only I had known what statins can do I would not be in such a mess, and I am bitter that medical interference can do such a harm.

This may seem far fetched to some, but I have good reason to believe that 8 years of taking Lipitor caused the terminal cancer I have today. I have talked to several doctors who agree that this is likely true.

I took Lipitor for 8 years and had muscle pain the entire time. This was 15 years ago, before doctors were careful about this sort of thing. I saw many doctors trying to find the source of my pain but Lipitor was never suspected, until I had a nerve and muscle breakdown. I first noticed fasciculations all over my body that kept getting worse. Then I began having muscle spasms alternating with myopathy. This lasted for several months. I quit taking the Lipitor after some research on line and things slowly began to get better, but it took 3 years for me to recover.

It wasn't much later that I was diagnosed with Cardiac Angio Sarcoma. I've had two surgeries to remove it from my heart, but now it has metastasized and there is no treatment or cure. I've done some research and found that Lipitor does have an effect on angiogensis, which is the action of the cancer as well. It doesn't seem too far fetched to consider that a drug that causes angiogenesis may be the culprit in a cancer which is comprised of the out of control generation of blood vessels.

My dad is 85. He took Lipitor and started having leg pains. He then was unable to walk without a walker, progressing quickly to a wheelchair. He now has no sensation from the waist down and yesterday was diagnosed with ALS. It is too late for him, but my advice is to AVOID taking a statin if at all possible. A good place to expand your knowledge of natural treatments is to read "The cholesterol hoax" by Dr. Sherry Rogers. Good luck to you all.

I am 90 years of age. Was on Lipitor for several years for moderately high cholesterol until my Doctor changed it to Prevastatin. Do not know the numbers but cholesterol is in good range. I fractured a vertebrae in 1977 which will have effect on me as long as I live. For about the past year I have had pain in my left buttock, sometimes excruciating for short periods, just a noticeable ache most of the time. At times pain extends to my knee.

It was thought that nerves from the back injury caused the buttock pain. A recent CT scan showed a "little" arthritis. Also have pain in both shoulders, said to be rotator cuff problems that can not be repaired with surgery. Pain medication will stop the back and shoulder pain, but will not touch the buttock pain. I have LOW blood pressure and at times have tingly arms, hands and feet. My question is: could the statins be the cause all or part of this buttock pain and tingly feelings????

PEOPLE'S PHARMACY RESPONSE: YOUR PAIN AND "PARESTHESIA" (TINGLY FEELINGS) ARE CONSISTENT WITH STATIN REACTIONS. DO ASK YOUR DOCTOR WHETHER YOU HAVEN'T ALREADY GOTTEN ALL THE BENEFIT YOU WOULD EXPECT FROM STATIN TREATMENT. IT IS MOST HELPFUL PREVENTING HEART ATTACKS IN MIDDLE-AGED MEN OR THOSE AT HIGH RISK OF HEART DISEASE. AT YOUR AGE, IT IS NOT REALLY RELEVANT ANY LONGER UNLESS YOU HAVE HEART DISEASE.

Lipitor, changed my life forever. I was healthy, flexible for sports, active for a great life with my wife and children, until my doctor prescribed Lipitor. After a few months on Lipitor, my knees began to click and give out on me. When my right knee clicked it was very painful. Next it moved into my back muscle along my waistline. Everyday pain and stiffness, make life miserable.

When I told my doctor, he immediately took me off lipitor. After about a year, my knees click, but the pain is lesser. My back is still stiff and I wear heat-pads to help with the pain along with everyday advil.

Why is there not more testing of these drugs before they are prescribed? In the modern world of medicine and dna, they should be able to tell how a drug will effect the patient. Instead, they use us as testers and if they get a few people that have a negative reaction, they figure that is the price we all pay.

I am a medical provider who also has taken various statins, CoQ10, fish oil and Niaspan for years. I am 58 years old with a TERRIBLE family history of cardiovascular/heart disease/stroke. I have one cousin who died young already, one who has had heart bypass in her late 40's as well as other members having had MI and strokes, etc.

I was part of the Berkeley Heart Lab studies which revealed numerous risks and I also underwent carotid IMT (intimal medial thickness) testing which revealed my arteries showed thickening in an abnormal distributed (ie were 10 years older than they should be when I was 42). At that point, I made dramatic changes to my diet, exercise and started Niaspan and a statin. Over the subsequent 18 months my cholesterol profile (I had a VAP test for a more complete evaluation of the lipid markers) changed from absolutely scary to excellent with "beach ball" pattern A LDL and increased HDL and low LDL.

I was initially started on Lipitor and after 2 years (and following multiple stories from patients complaining of how much they had been aching with Lipitor) I realized I really had been aching more than usual. I have chronic pain from a motor vehicle accident so tend to just "suck it up" but decided maybe life could be different. I then went to Advicor and did fine on the lovastatin for 7 years with reduced pain.

Recently in the name of cost savings as well as the reputation that pravastatin was even less likely to cause muscle pains (so much for leaving a good thing alone) I changed from Advicor to Niaspan and pravastatin. Last fall I suddenly developed numbness and tingling of my feet and sometimes my hands and a slight sense of imbalance at times when walking. My PCP ordered labs, but he didn't think about the new statin as being an option either.

I went to my endocrinologist who thought it might be my pre-diabetes which although I accepted, also thought on one level that was strange to me since my blood sugar has been under control until only just recently it popped up to a little above normal when I was having a hard time walking with the symptoms.

Now, 6 months after the symptoms started, I have just run across the studies showing peripheral neuropathy side effects to statins. I have known about the weakness from statins but never realized the significant presence of paresthesias with statins. I immediately went to my bottle of pravastatin to see the date of the Rx, indeed, the sudden appearance of those symptoms in my extremities correlates to about 2 weeks after the change to new statin.

I took my last dose of pravastatin last night. I will wait to see if the symptoms resolve and if so will return to lovastatin which I did just fine with. There was no change in the aching and it is tolerable for me to get the improvements in my lipid profile. I think statins are an important tool for people who are high risk along with other measures. I however am a strong believer in quality of life and agree that everyone needs to take that into account when balancing "lowering risk" with living now.

I have never had seriously elevated cholesterol - 213 was the highest, but the ratios have been a bit off, and my father died of coronary heart disease before he was sixty, so I took my doctors' advice and started Prevastatin (the lowest dose), despite having had terrible muscle pain from red yeast rice, which I'd tried previously. I already had a dodgy hip/sciatic pain, and though I've noticed I now have pain down to my knee, along the outside - I'm not sure whether or not it's the result of the drug.

Am extremely anxious after reading all the preceding posts, and am seriously thinking of just stopping altogether. Though my LDL levels went down after taking Prevestatin, my HDL levels were not significantly reduced and my triglycerides, which had ALWAYS been normal, went through the roof! Has anybody had that experience before?

The letter from Ann could have been written by me. Five years ago, after learning my cholesterol was somewhat elevated, my family Dr. put me on Lipitor. One month later, I began experiencing severe itching in both feet, even though there was no visible evidence of the cause... no rash, skin irritation, etc. Shortly the itching progressed to severe pain, tingling, numbness, etc. in both feet and both hands.

I called the Dr. and explained symptoms, which were so unusual to me, and asked if the Lipitor could be causing the problem. She emphatically said absolutely "no" and that I obviously had developed neuropathy for some "unknown" reason. She called a prescription in for Neurontin 300 mg., which I began taking three times a day as prescribed and continued the Lipitor as I was told.

I am now 60 yrs. old with chronic, unrelenting painful peripheral neuropathy (PPN) as documented by nerve conduction studies. The Neurontin's side effect of weight gain has caused a 50 lb. weight gain, endangering my health, not to mention the severe pain which is worsened by walking to the extent that I cannot do any physical activity or exercise where I have to stand on my feet, thereby making weight loss nearly impossible. My life will never be the same.... because my doctor prescribed Lipitor without learning of the possible consequences....

I am not diabetic or have any other conditions health-wise that could have caused this... it ABSOLUTELY was the Lipitor which did permanent damage to the nerves supplying my hands and feet with feeling.

Scott,
I've got the same numbness in my hand and foot. And now it has spread to buttock. I suspect it was crestor. Is yours resolved?

Did you try niacin and did it work for you?

It is always important for people to be proactive about prescriptions. I have had the experience of several times being offered the wrong prescription, twice in a hospital. In both cases I did not recognize the medicine and asked questions. In both cases the nurse left the room and came back with the correct medicine, but never apologized or acknowledged that she made a mistake. It scares me to think what could happen to a patient that is under anesthesia or sedatives that might effect their ability to protect themselves.

Since nurses (and doctors, too) are only human, mistakes can happen. Patients should ALWAYS be vigilant about their own care, no matter the circumstances. Good idea to have a family member present--when possible--when one is incapacitated by sedation or anesthesia. Never, ever be afraid to question a pill, an Xray or whatever. Having said this, the nurse should have at least acknowledged that she had checked, and indeed, the patient was correct. When I was a young nurse, we were taught to ALWAYS check three times before any pill was given to a patient, and to make them "say" their name, not even to rely on labels.

And, in those pre-computer days, the preparation of medications to pass to patients was considered very serious, and done with as much care as humanely possible. Should be harder today for errors to happen with computerized pharmacy records, carts, etc. But, still a human element, so always CAN happen.

I just ran across this website and feel compelled to share my story about Crestor use. I was prescribed Crestor early last year. Because of a very hectic work schedule, I blamed the fatigue, back pain and loss of energy to work and never made the correlation to side affects I was experiencing. It was only in late March when my body finally gave out and had to be rushed to the ER not being able to move at all and in the worst pain I had ever experienced.

Long story short, I was diagnosed with an extreme case of Rhabdomyolysis and after a week in the hospital was released. After using a walker and later on a cane, I was able to just barely get along. It took several months of physical therapy to finally be able to walk around freely. Unfortunately, my story does not end there as it is now a new year and I am left with some of the strangest pains in my groin, mid/lower back and legs.

There are days that making it down the stairs is a major task and I've been very limited to what I can and can't do. There are times that my legs cannot sustain the weight of my body and they will begin shaking rapidly. I had no issues prior to taking Crestor so I am convinced that this drug has done some major damage. Is there anyone else out there that might be experiencing these symptoms? I can't be the only one. I've done everything the doctors have asked but I'm beginning to get worried.

My doctor prescribed Pravastatin 40 for me because I have high cholesterol and triglicerides, plus a family history of heart disease. For the first few weeks I didn't notice anything, then my left foot started cramping when I walked. Then the other foot started cramping and my hands and feet would go numb when I sat still to read or watch TV. I got a headache every night about two hours after taking the Pravastatin, but I thought these were temporary side effects and treated them with ibuprofen.

After 6 weeks, all my joints started cracking and popping and my feet hurt too much to go on my daily walk with my husband. My toes sometimes cramped completely under and wouldn't straighten out. At my 8 week appointment, my doctor said the main side effect of statins was muscle weakness, which I didn't have, and doubled my Pravastatin dose to 80.

I took one pill and got a searing pain through my head like a lightning bolt. I could barely walk down the stairs to get an ibuprofen because the muscles in my legs and feet cramped up completely and it felt like I was walking on needles. I stopped taking Pravastatin. 6 months later, the cramping and pain when I walk is gone but my hands still feel slightly numb and weak. My doctor wants me to try Crestor, but I am too afraid to try another statin. It is so wonderful to be able to walk and exercise again.

For the past 3 years I took a low dose of Lipitor 20 MG. About 7-8 months ago I discovered a weakness in right arm and hand and a dropped foot, which has caused me to fall. I was on Lipitor 10 mg prescribed by a another MD recently. I stopped taking Lipitor about 3 months ago and started taking flax seed with my yogurt, started taking CrestOFF 2x and taking 8 mg of Vitamin C.

I have been to several MDs, who could not figure out what was going on with my right side. Finally I med and MD who thought I had ALS. I went for tests and he said I had ACUTE MOTOR AXONAL NEUOPATHY (AMAN).

I believe the Lipitor caused this. Recently I got the muscle tone back my right leg. I hadn't felt it for a long time. I am hoping that AMAN is treatable.

I am 38 and have been having a lot of nerve related issues. I have had numbness in legs, hands feet, side of face, top of head. I have been on 40 mg of Lipitor for the past 4 years. I am constantly undergoing tests and the doctors are baffled by my symptoms. I was now told I have low levels of vit. D. I am wondering if all of my nerve issues can be stemming from the Lipitor. I am glad I found this site. At least I know I am not the only person out there thinking the Lipitor has negatively affected my body.

PEOPLE'S PHARMACY RESPONSE: LIPITOR CAN CAUSE NERVE PROBLEMS. IT MIGHT BE WORTH ASKING YOUR DOCTOR IF YOU COULD DISCONTINUE FOR A TRIAL PERIOD OF 6 TO 8 WEEKS TO SEE IF IT IMPROVES.

I can write for years, but I will try to make it short. I am an RN, BSN, MBA, MSN, my husband is an MD. I took Lipitor 10mg for about 1 1/2 yes. Always active and worked many hours. I started with leg pains on & off - took 4 Advil & went away. The pains were so severe I could not walk. We blamed it on working too much, stress, etc.

Soon after I started with severe pitting edema in both lower extremities, malaise, excruciating shin pain and bloating. I stopped the Lipitor and it took many months to improve or so I thought. I took experienced the imbalance walking.

About 1 year after stopping Lipitor, the nightmare began. One evening I went to get a 6 pk of coke in my home. I had to go up one steep step and my left leg gave and I fell. I could not get up from the floor without 2 people helping me. I was brought to a chair and after I settled down, I went to stand and I could not get up from the chair. Of course my being a nurse for 30yrs, everything imaginable was going through my head.

I went to a neurologist who has known me for yrs. He took one look at me, examined me and referred me immediately to a neuromuscular specialist. After the EMG, then the muscle biopsy, I got the news - polymyositis and dermatomyositis. I started an auto-immune medication 2 yrs ago and have to stay on it for life or I will die.

I also have osteoporosis - 10 compression fractures in 6 months due to trying to stand, etc., as well as people trying to help me. I am now totally disabled with horrific back pain, improved legs, cannot climb stairs, etc. and high risk for spontaneous fractures even after 3 years of biophosphonates. The specialists I have spoken to do not think there is any correlation to Lipitor, I totally disagree. Maybe there will be a class action suit at sometime. To all of you statin suffers, be thankful if your symptoms subside, there are those of us totally destroyed both physically and mentally.
N

Male, age 70, took Lipitor for 10 years but stopped 3 years ago since it caused ache, pain and tingling in left shoulder, arm and fingers. Family doctor referred to orthopedic doctor who took MRI and X-rays and prescribed physical therapy which made it worse, evidence of some arthritis and spinal membrane thinning in neck vertebra so he schedule neck surgery.

A few days before surgery I cancelled and thought it might be the Lipitor so stopped taking it and gradually improved until two months later was pain free. Reported to family doctor and he discounted the Lipitor cause and told me to take it so I took half a dose, 5 mg daily and 2 months later ache and pain in shoulder returned, stopped lipitor and 2 months later was pain free. I am convinced it is the cause but family doctor still wants me to take it. I reported my case to FDA, with no response.

I too have been on 80 mg - for the past 3 years. Prior to that was on 40 mg. I have experienced ever increasing neck and back muscle pain, at times almost debilitating. My Doctor has never attributed my pain to Lipitor. For the past 3 plus weeks, all of a sudden I have had a tingling/burning sensation in first my right hand, it has now spread to my left hand and both feet.

The past few days I have tingling on my face. it used to be occasional but now it is always there. I have been taking Gabapentin For a couple of months for my neck and back pain and have read that this is used for pain of peripheral neuropathy also. It is not doing any good but I am seeing that there are serious withdrawal side effects from this as well. I feel desperate to know if anyone can tell me of their success in losing these tingling sensations once stopping Lipitor? I have not taken it for 5-6 days but the symptoms have not gone away.

I have 2 brothers that are on statins. One was put on Lipitor and the other on Crestor. They both had painful muscle reactions and were switched (Lipitor to Crestor and Crestor to Lipitor). The one brother has been diabetic for almost 50 years and his doctors want his cholesterol to be insanely low. He has serious memory issues.

Also, over 4 years ago he started having a numbness in his legs, feet, hands, and arms. Not a painful diabetic neuropathy. It progressed to the point he could not walk without a walker, couldn't drive, etc. He described it as feeling as if he was walking on balloons. He went through testing for every possible problem, Guillain-Barre syndrome, etc. Nothing was ever diagnosed. He went several times a week to have, I believe it was called, plasmapharesis. He is much better now, but was never taken off statins.

I was seeing a naturopath a few years ago and was put on Red Yeast Rice for high cholesterol and a very short time later developed arm pain. I would feel the pain when moving my arm and my arms would ache in the evening. I weaned myself off and after seeing a mainstream doctor was advised not to take any statins (which from my research I would not do anyway. It is not a black and white issue.)

My advice to you is to do research about how to safely stop statins and to keep searching for a doctor to support your wishes and to be patient. It took months after my weaning to have my arms back to normal and I had only been on a low dosage of the Red Yeast Rice for a very short time. Also, check out Duane Graveline, M.D., online.

Hi Christina, I took Lipitor for 10 years, first 20 mg, then 10 mg for the last 5 years and two years ago experienced left shoulder ache, arm weakness, tingling in the hand. Doctor prescribe physical therapy, made it worse, took X-rays and MRI and found thinning of the protective myelin sheath around the spinal cord and neck vertebra was rubbing nerves going to the arm.

Had neck surgery scheduled to remove bone spur touching the nerve but I got concerned about such a serious surgery so thought it might be caused by the statin since cholesterol is needed to maintain and heal myelin. Doctor insisted there was no relation but I stopped my Lipitor against his orders. In 3 weeks the ache and tingling got better and in 3 months pain and tingling was all gone but cholesterol level went up so started taking 5 mg lipitor daily and in 3 months pain was back so I stopped taking Lipitor again and in 3 months pain is gone.

I am 95% sure it is the statin and no longer take it, pain free now with elevated cholesterol but I will not take statins. I also take flax seed oil and Co-EnzymeQ10 supplements that is supposed to help in repairing damaged myelin that protect and insulate nerve fibers. I reported all this to my Doctor, FDA and Pfizer but get no acknowledgment, no thanks, no notice that they included in adverse effects database, just totally ignore adverse reports.

Christina, 5 or 6 days is not long enough to restore cholesterol levels needed to heal. it will take weeks and months to restore the myelin to a healthy thickness. However, if symptoms continue, other causes such as ALS, arthritis and MS autoimmune disease need to be considered in the diagnosis.

After 2 weeks on Lipitor my left arm got too painful to use and my left calf felt like it was in a vise, so my m.d. switched me to another statin drug called Livalo. After about 3 months on Livalo, I started getting a stiff neck which progressed within 2 weeks to excruciating pain so much that at times I cannot walk or chew. I would like to know if my neck muscle is permanently damaged, and I'm really scared. I'm hoping so much that with cessation of all statins this will go away. Nothing in my Dr visits explained that statins could cause this level of problem.

Don't think it is the neck muscle but the insulating membrane (myelin) protecting the nerve fibers coming out of the neck vertebra is thinned out and rubbing against bone so it hurts. I too suffered from stiff neck for years and painful shoulder and weakness, tingling arms and hands but they have gone away since I stopped taking Lipitor. Most people can take statins without adverse effects but for some of us developing arthritis, narrowed nerve channels, and bone spurs can short and irritate the nerve fibers.

Myelin needs cholesterol to maintain and heal. Doctor still wants me to take statins but I refuse, I prefer to live pain free and take my chances with elevated cholesterol, my dad has high cholesterol, never took statins and he is a 103. Personally think cholesterol linkage to arterial damage is weak and there is some other cause and the statin industry is a multi-billion dollar pharmaceutical conspiracy.

I took Crestor for a couple of months and ended up with a severe case of Rhabdomyolysis a rare side-affect of this medication. I was in the hospital for a week in extreme pain and not being able to move. After flushing my system and gaining some mobility, I was released and told it would take about six weeks to fully recover.

Over a year later, I am on disability (at 45 yrs old) with an array of nerve and muscular issues that doctors are struggling to explain. I am very limited with what I can and can't do and have lost my quality of life. I felt perfectly fine prior to taking Crestor so I'm confident this medication caused more harm than good. If there is anyone out there that has had extended problems with this medication, I'd be very interested in hearing your story. Thanks and best of luck to everyone!

Some time after after my first heart attack (1994) I started taking Lipitor because the cardiologist convinced me that downside risk was low and upside potential was good - because of high Cholesterol and family risk factors.

One day, a year or better after taking it I was overcome with SEVERE fatigue, joint pain and muscle cramps. I called my cardiologist and asked if it could be the Lipitor. Oh nooo... you're psychosomatic he says - because of my initial questioning and hesitance to take it.

Well, I never talked to him again and took myself off the Lipitor and within two weeks I was my old self again. In 2006 I had a second heart attack and was convinced to take statins (Vytorin) again. For the better pat of a year I experienced muscle cramping and my right thigh started to get numb. My GP says oh you're just dehydrated and the leg thing must be something from an old lower back pain problem that I'd had.

About that time I ran across the book called The Queen of Fats by Susan Allport (the best book I've read on the subject) and found out about fish oil, flax and Omega 3 and 6 ratios. I also found Dr. Duane Graveline's fine book called Lipitor Thief of Memory which explained the peripheral neuropathy and cognitive issues (forgetting and temporal global amnesia) I had been dealing with. That led me to other diet related stuff and changing my diet (which wasn't bad before).

My arrythmias stopped, joint pain went away, my blood pressure dropped to where I'd black out if I got up too quick and my blood thinned out to where I'd bleed to "death" from a paper cut. The blood thinner, statins, and blood pressure meds got tossed in the trash - I'm not on any meds now and I've felt great ever since (except I'm stuck with the neuropathy) with a blood pressure now of 113 over 64.

If I'd been doing that stuff when I was younger I believe I could have avoided both heart attacks.

I think the best thing to do is avoid statin drugs no matter what your risk factors are. Do some research on nutrition and diet and make the changes in your eating habits. I think you'll find that Cholesterol is a good thing. Start by reading Allport and Graveline's books. I'd also recommend NO More Heart Disease by the Nobel Laureate Dr. Louis Ignarro, The Omnivore's Dilemma and Nourishing Traditions by Michael Pollan and Check out the Weston Price Foundation for some interesting nutritional advise. I have recently run into some compelling and provocative research on sulfur deficiency by Dr. Stephanie Seneff - Google her name to get her web site. Dr. Seneff has some statin information also.

Best of luck

I have been taking Lipitor & other Statins for over 20 years--- without any complications or side effects & very good Cholesterol levels. I am now 83 years old & am sure that I would not have lived so long with out the use of a Statin because of Family History, High BP, & extremely high Cholesterol initially

Thanks to this site and dr. Mercola newsletter, I refused to take statins two years ago. I'm 39 years old and my doctor diagnosed higher liver markers (AST, ALT, GGT, ALP) plus higher cholesterol (just over 8 mmol/L, EU measures). What really makes me angry is fact that I visited specialist, and after just two short visits she prescribed me statins! She didn't even try to figure out WHY my cholesterol level is high and what is happening with my liver.

So I decided not to take statins and try to eat healthier (less carbohydrates and far less sugar, more proteins, vegetables, olive oil etc.) - nothing special, just used my common sense. During childhood and college I was active athlete, so I decided to start my trainings again. Now I regularly swim twice a week (40 minutes, 1.5-1.8 km) and every weekend I ride my mountain bike with friends or family for couple of hours.

After two years my problems are past tense - my liver is in great condition again, and my cholesterol is just a little bit higher (dropped from over 8 to little over 6 mmol/L), and all my other tests (ultrasound, EKG, etc.) are great.

I don't think we should ignore MD's opinions and recommendations, but we also need to use our logic and common sense.
Best wishes to everyone.

My mother experienced the same thing. A diabetic, she was told she had neuropathy (a cop out by most docs who do not practice medicine anymore) in her right foot. Complaining for years of pain and in the end barely walking (crippled), I, thanks to Dr. Mercola's web site, decreased her Lipitor to 5mg three times a week. The pain disappeared within 2 weeks. The nerve damage, I'm afraid is permanent. However, she is pain free.

We removed sugar from the diet, which is linked to high uric acid, and increased cholesterol. Started taking quality super anti-oxidants (Astaxanthin, krill, ubiquinine). She had a blood test after about 4 months and her cholesterol is basically stable. Lipitor is no longer taken by her.

Moral of the story? Trust your doctor, but verify their advice; they do not know everything.

You feel Red Rice Yeast worsened your situation? I thought that was a natural remedy that may not help, but wouldn't hurt!

People's Pharmacy response: Some people are so sensitive to the statin compounds that even the low-dose natural statins in red yeast rice can cause them trouble.

I took Simvastatin for six weeks beginning in August 2010 at the age of 60. I had borderline high LDL. First I noticed leg, knee and foot pain which I associated with over-exercise so I took a break from my work outs. The pain got worse and spread to my entire body and all my joints. I also developed terrible gastro-intestinal cramps and inflammation of my sinuses and my lungs which worsened my asthma.

Finally I developed cognitive impairment such that I couldn't read books, remember names and suddenly had a loss of balance issue that caused me to fall over backwards while talking to my wife one day. I had to start using a cane to walk and couldn't drive a car under any circumstances due to my slow reaction time. I had turned from an active 60 year old into a 90 year old in six short weeks. What a miracle drug!

Once I stopped the Simvastatin it took a week for the balance and cognitive impairment issues to go away. The joint and gastro pain disappeared after two weeks. The worst of the muscle pain resolved itself after 6 months although I still have leg pain the day after exercise which I didn't before taking the drug. It seems to be lessening over time. I will never take a statin again. Frankly I would rather die than live like that.

I stopped taking statins 4 years ago because of weakness, aching etc. I am still very bad. CoQ10 doesn't help. I think it's permanent damage. In particular the aching, weakness and a deep tickling that feels inside the bones (like the "feeling" of restless legs but without the restless legs, and all over my body, not just in the legs) is symmetric. The neurologist took this aspect to mean I had poison in the blood, but she carried out no further work to find out what the poison was. The symptoms vary. Sometimes I feel so weak I feel I can't keep my eyes open (I shopped at the supermarket with my eyes shut almost the whole time)

I am taking Simvastatin which is just a generic, but I have been feeling very drained lately, I feel like I am losing the muscle I have, and am needing to stretch more often as my muscles ache, I am thinking of stopping the Simvastatin but am concerned as my bad cholesterol was at 345 before I started taking it, there is no history of heart problems in my family but there is a history of high cholesterol.

We have struggled with this problem for years. My husband was given statin Medication, has been on Crestor and Lipitor - he started having problems approx 8 years ago. Showing the exact symptoms reported here. We had endless trips to the ER, Dr's, Neurologists, paid for private consultations with homeopathic Drs. I asked at every turn could it be his medication, with the answer always "no" Our niece came to see us 2 years ago and told us she had had a minor heart attack and her Dr prescribed Cholesterol pills but she started having trouble with her arm, so he took her off of them.

The light came on! I hit the internet and sure enough, every symptom my husband had, was a side effect of these drugs.

His family Dr reduced his medication to a very minimal dose of Cozaar and Acebutolol (he has had 2 heart bypass surgeries in the past). When visiting his cardiologist a short time ago he all but threw us out of his office because he insisted my husband need to be on these drugs!

He cannot walk (dizzy and off balance) has lost the use of his right arm. His legs are weak, has a lot of difficulty preforming daily tasks. I have home care that comes in to get him ready for the day!! We have no doubt that these prescribed medications are the cause of his illness. The neurologist tagged him with Suspected Multiple Systems Atrophy, because he has been tentatively diagnosed with MSA, there is no financial support for him because nobody contributes to this cause and nobody knows what it is!

I recently came off Crestor after being on it for years. I am a Type II Diabetic and was never able to do anything about my blood sugar. Occasionally I got my A1C down close to good but never for long. I could outright fast from noon on and STILL have a BGL above 160 in the morning. All this despite being on the maximum dosages allowed of metformin and glypizide plus Avapro and Januvia for kidney issues.

Then I read about the link between statins and high BGL. I did a simple experiment. I came off the Crestor. Two days later (I didn't check BGL before then) I had a fasting BGL of 92 when I got up. The next day I got busy (I've been watching my new grandson - 14 months old now - since he was 5 weeks old) and didn't eat lunch. I actually got HYPO! Having never BEEN hypo before I didn't know what it felt like! I managed to down some M&Ms and get back to feeling normal.

The next time I went to the Dr. (I have to go every 3 months to get new scripts) my A1C was just a tad high (I had only been off Crestor about 5 weeks at that point) as was my cholesterol (213 IMS) and kidneys and such were fine. I told the Dr. I wasn't going to be taking the Crestor any more - nor the Januvia or Avapro either. He was not happy. He started to give me a lecture but I stopped him (He HATES it when I do that!) and asked him whose body it was. Then I asked him which was likely to kill me first - slightly high cholesterol or uncontrolled diabetes? He agreed that the odds were on the diabetes.

So I am still doing well on my BGL although I have to be careful not to go too long before having lunch. The cholesterol is still a tad high - but some people's naturally is. Bottom line is that I have reduced the number of medications I take significantly (> half) and my cost for medication is GREATLY reduced.

No more statins for this old man. One other thing I remind my Dr. of. That is the fact that the initials behind his name are M.D. not GOD. It really aggravates him when I do that. Also aggravates him no end when I remind him that he is merely a paid consultant to help me maintain my health. I generally follow his advice - generally but not always.

I took Lipido at 5 mg per day ( 1/2 a 10mg tablet) initially without much problem although some occasional muscle pain at the leg socket (buttock)area. When I increase this to 10 mg per day, that is when the nightmare began. I had itchiness which developed into rashes in most parts of my body - the feet, calf muscle, tight muscle, both arms, the back etc.

I went to the skin specialists but NONE of them attributed this to Lipido. Of course steroid cream which they recommended eliminated the itch and rashes, but not the root cause. Once I stopped the steroid cream, the skin and rashes reappeared. I do not want to use steroid cream as long term use will result in negative side effects which may be worst then the problem you are treating.

As I was seeking God over the problem, He impressed upon me to stop the Lipido. The problem did not immediately go away after I stopped it, but only after about 4 months. Now the itch and the rashes are no more and my skin is beautifully smooth!

However I would appreciate some comments on how to bring down the cholesterol without using statins.

At age 61 suffered a supposedly mini-stroke. BP at 199/96, lost consciousness for 4 hours while in emergency room; but continued to talk. Was given MRI brain scan for any damage, echocardiogram, carotid artery scan,chest x-ray, blood tests, etc.; typical tests for stroke. Nothing was discovered, not even high cholesterol.

But, to cover, in case, was prescribed 20 mg Simvastatin, 12.5 mg Losartan for BP and 81 mg. baby aspirin daily. Soon developed a dry cough which started waking me at night, then the leg pain started. That pain became so disabling I had to hold onto the walls and furniture or husband to walk--very slowly. My husband told me to stop blaming meds for the pains and realize I am getting older. HA--after I researched the two drugs I found out they can cause muscle pain and the cough.

I reported this to my Dr. and was prescribed different meds.--well, same problems, and the third time I had to argue with my Dr.s nurse and she would not say that the meds were the cause; so, I stopped taking everything without my Dr.'s ok and now back to my normal self. AND, have since found out that I did not have a stroke--more like an anxiety attack, which mimics heart attacks and stroke. I was hospitalized 3 times with the stroke symptoms.

The last time on a follow-up for Menieres Disease (to explain the dizziness) I met a Dr. who suffers with anxiety attacks and she told me that my symptoms were identical to hers.
So, this is where I am now 1 1/2 years later.

I was just taking my naturopath's advice to try a low dosage of Red Yeast Rice to lower my cholesterol (overall) and my LDL which was at 150. I had no reaction other than that I developed arm pain shortly after starting the Red Yeast Rice. I have read since that the amount of natural statins in it can very.

I had an interesting experience with trying a change in what and how I eat and tried a 28-day vegan challenge. My husband and I both ate totally vegan and low fat for 28 days. Thinking it would surely change my cholesterol numbers I went for my yearly exam at the end of my challenge.

Even though I ate very healthy, balanced, small portions, rice and beans, whole grains, fruit, nuts etc., my cholesterol did not lower, I did not lose any weight (though I was just at the far edge of a good BMI) and my triglycerides went UP from 125 to 205. I have since done lots of research about carbohydrate digestion and how some people who have diabetes in their family react to all carbs (processed or whole grain).

I am also, though I thought it crazy when it was first suggested years ago, am trying the Eat Right For Your Blood Type lifestyle. My being a Type B, Non Secretor (of blood antigens into my saliva, 20% of people no matter what their blood type) and what types of issues run in our family really seems to fit my situation and what we are prone to or have.

I will be having my cholesterol checked shortly to see if this works at lowering my cholesterol and triglycerides. My husband, Type A, thrives on a vegetarian diet (which is what the blood type diet says to be true.)

I am now 81,I began with Simvastatin 8 years ago. having problems with this then prescribed Lipitor. After taking this for 9 months, I realised I could not get in/out of the bath. I found the strength in my muscles were just so weak. Pins and needles in my hands, hard to get up from a chair..leg muscles again. Aches all around my hip/buttock area.Sooo tired, I could fall asleep after breakfast, even after a regular sleep at night. I took myself off the lipitor, and found my ch. levels shot back up to 7.5. I was told to get back on them I did, but after reaing all these reports will again take myself off them,hopefully forever.Keep up the good work and tell us more.

For me it is a choice of living pain free or with a possible higher risk of heart disease. I choose pain free against Dorctor's orders to take Lipitor. There is no history of heart disease in my family.

Wow!
While I am not glad to hear about all of the problems people are having with Lipitor, I was relieved to know that it was just all in my head. I have been taking Lipitor along with Zetia for over 5 years now and have had the feeling that I am going down-hill for the past 3. I ache all over, can hardly walk without a walker...cannot sleep...feel depressed... have no energy or strength.

I am about to turn 68 and feel like I am 108, I love my family, but do not have enough energy to enjoy my grand kids or my friends.

Thank you for your input, hopefully it is not too late for me to make some positive changes in my life.

My cholesterol, like my parents is very high. Mum (85) was put on statins, lost her memory and all her energy - stayed home sleeping. Her Doctor insisted that statins were essential - though the memory loss meant she missed most of her heart medication. At last we took her off the statins and put her on 200mg Q10. Her memory is slowly repairing but her energy levels have shot up.

I was put on Simvastin, after 3 months I could hardly walk - I thought my hip joints had gone as they felt partially dislocated. I suggested to my GP that it could be the statins, she suggested that I stopped for a month. The weakness slowly subsided and a month later I tried again - same thing but more serious. My GP then denied that she had said to retry! I lost confidence in her.

Two years later I tried a low dose simvastin with same results, now v low dose provastin - I have pain in my thigh muscles and a strange transient pains on my skin a point that grows to an area about the size of a tennis ball over about an hour then fades - nothing to see. I am going to cease statins - I have now researched and I consider them to be a menace. People with high cholesterol have less heart attacks, strokes and cancer than those with low - look up up the long term statistics.

So true! My husband was on Lipitor for 3 years and one day, out of the blue, he lost his memory. Scary. He knew his name but not the date, or where he had been the day before,etc. but was able to tell me something was going on and he felt funny.

The amnesia lasted about six hours, and in that time we took him to the hospital where he had several expensive tests. Finally, they ruled out any stroke or TIA and sent him home.

We stopped taking Lipitor and now take niacin and plan meals more carefully. Very little meat, fruits and vegetables increased, etc.

Doctors are taught to prescribe pills for this and that...the media pushes this....."Ask your Dr. about ___." But we should be more tuned into what healthy food can do to help! Amen!

Presently 68 years old. I was taking Lipitor and then Zocor for a few years at the insistence of my doctor and family and against my own wishes. (I gave in to pressure.) Originally Lipitor gave the sore leg problem so I was switched over to the Zocor. As someone else mentioned it creeps up on you so slowly that I felt that it was just old age settling in. At one point I was lifting my legs into the car because of weakness and discomfort.

I have now taken myself off of these pills after a lot of online reading. It has been a couple of years and my legs symptoms have all but disappeared, the only thing remaining is peripheral neuropathy affecting my feet. At this point I think the neuropathy is improving but it is hard to evaluate.

I can imagine how many people are suffering from this medication and have no one to advise them of the the adverse reactions. Why do doctors believe the big pharma propaganda?

I had a friend who had a heart problem and was put on statins and he stated that his doctor said everyone should take statins just in case of any possible problems!
My parents lived to late 80's and 90's without even a cholesterol test so I wonder what has happened in the last few decades to change our health to the point that everyone believes that ridiculously low cholesterol levels are the way to go.

I am 57 yrs old. I was put on Crestor (10 mg a day) 7 yrs ago. Since then I've always had two very serious, and reoccurring cramps in the front of my thigh(s). I assumed it was just me. Not drinking enough water, and or a lack of potassium. The pain would be so severe at times that I've even jumped in my hot tub fully clothed in an effort to relieve the pain. Due to my profession, I was shot in the hand with a 45 caliber bullet, (soft tissue, no bone) and I can tell in all confidence that this cramp pain is worse!

This last year, I fell on hard financial times, and had to quit paying for my health insurance. Long story short, I was forced to stop taking Crestor. To my surprise the cramps are totally gone!!

Nonetheless, I was able to keep my cholesterol in check by nearly eliminating all sugar in my diet, and eating mainly vegetables, and lean meats, (very little bread and pasta) and riding a stationary bike every day for 30 minutes.
I'll never go back on Crestor again!

I was put on 40mg of zocor, after having quad- angioplasty.
Everything was good for 2 years, then it started- weakness in the legs ( iI thought it might be age related 72 Yrs.)

Bought a cane, had to sit down and recover every 5 minutes, then the pain started, Excrutiating pain in alkl muscles below the waist.

I had to take 6 tylenol 2, per day , to sleep at night and function during the days, the tylenol did not take away all of the pain.

]I asked my doctor to investigate the cause of the pain!
After 8 months of every test under the sun, the neurologist suggested it may be my cholesterol medication "Zocor."

I took this information to my Cardiologist, who reduced my medication in half to 20mg Zocor, Within one week all pain was gone!

After researching the internet, I discovered that there were Class Action Lawsuits in the USA against Merc and Zocor, patients that took higher doses and for longer periods of time, developed Rhabdomyalosis.

I stopped all statins, and decided to Eat no Meat, eat only meals that contained Chicken - Turkey - or Fish. I put 3 Tablespoons of Crushed Flax Seed on my Cereal each morning. no Cholesterol problems, walk 1 hour a day.

4 Years later still experiencing Nerve Damage and feel that the damaging agent from zocor, will be permanently active, for ever. Nerve damage to the Myelin sheathe from the statin drugs discovered within past 12 months.

I believe Doctors are Shareholders in Drug Companies, and are reluctant to point the finger, at a source of their income.

My problems with statins took 25 years before they became a huge problem for me. From what I read.......I believe it's just a matter of time!

I am a 44 year old woman who has the familia genetic cholesterol issue despite being on a fat free vegetarian cholesterol free diet my entire life. I am also athletic, lean/thin and run 20-30 miles a week, etc. I resorted to taking 10mg of Crestor for just 4 weeks and landed in the ER 3 weeks ago with pain that warranted morphine. The statin caused severe nerve inflammation/pain and neuropathy in my hands, nose and ears, chest, legs, etc.

My body felt like I was on fire- burning alive and my skin turned beet red. The lining of my nose became so inflamed that I developed nose bleeds, plus I had chest burning with a red rash. My face -which is usually pale Irish white turned sunburn red and the palms of my hands became red as lobsters with burning pain and numbness in the fingers, etc.I also had scary kidney test results until I quit the statin.

Since I practice natural medicine, I put myself immediately on an anti-inflammatory diet with anti-inflammatory herbs to purge my body of the fire that the statins have caused. I am also on supplements for nerve health and regeneration. Everything seems to be working as my pain is diminishing and every day I am getting better!
I urge everyone to NEVER take statins under any circumstances as they almost killed me. Plus, seek out alternative medicine, as western medicine has very little to offer in terms of help and recovery for statin victims. Western med also believes many disorders and diseases and damage is irreversible, but natural medicine views this in the opposite way. There is hope. Recovery is possible. Don't give up, and learn from me, don't take statins despite having high cholesterol!

I take Crestor and my muscles ache. I thought it was part of aging. I am 72 and have had breast cancer. I take celebrex for the muscle pain but the last few months my arm skin opens up and bleeds. I can touch anything and the arms bleed. They also go to sleep a lot.

Any advice?

I had a few stents put in and the cardiologolist had novocained my nerve in the groin. Well that led to nerve issues in my right leg. Within a week after I started feeling zaps same kind of stinging sensation from my leg so I knew it was nerves in my stomach neck chest back arms and hands so I thought oh boy its spreading went to a neurologist he says no has to be something different.

A couple months later just out of the blue my neck and head felt like pressure as if putting a sponge in water and it expanding and getting very tight. That evening watching tv it was like hot heat in my neck and head that's same tight pressure and all of a sudden the tv was doing 3d as soon as I stood up it went away the 3d.

For three weeks after that was feeling dizziness and everything I looked at had like a rolling wave to it. This has been ongoing for 4 months now. I am still having issues in the head with the tightness and heat in neck and head. Some of the stings in head are still present not as bad. Neurologist put me on gabapentin seems to be helping some but don't want to live on this drug. I stopped the crestor a month ago.

How long does it take to regain normal and do you actually go back to normal. I can handle the stings throughout the body but not the feeling in the head its horrible. I did stop the gabapentin for a week and the side effects starting coming back so started it back up. Is this permanent or will it go away.?

Just to say, 'beware of the doctor' (as my father told me when I was at an impressionable age). I am 67 now and not on any medication. But my husband is
because he had a heart attack about 16 yrs ago. However, when I noticed that he is no longer the energetic person he used to be, I took note.

I rarely visit the doctor. But in 2007 I did because I felt a bit achy in the bones. I was told by the doctor after a blood test that I was type 2 diabetic. (My dad had type 2 diabetes.) It was said, initially, that I could help myself with diet and exercise.
My husband & I did a change in diet, from fairly normal (processed & fresh foods) to vegetarian! In the 3 yrs of being a vegetarian, my husband gained 6 lbs in weight! I had become physically weak. (I had been used to doing maintaining our large garden!)

So, I went on the internet and searched for another way of feeding ourselves. I stumbled across Barry Groves and his second opinion website. This has been 2 yrs ago and we never looked back! I have got loads of energy and am the same weight I was years ago.

My husband, after a lot of skepticism has followed my example and feels better for it. On my advice, he stopped taking statins ages ago, but does not tell his doctor.
I did visit a doctor in our clinic on a simple problem. This doctor, after testing my blood pressure (I ride a bike for transport , do not drive) told me I must take blood pressure tablets & statins (she looked at the computer and saw that my file says I am diabetic). She did not test my cholesterol!!!

I did not like the idea of taking drugs that alters my bodily chemistry. I went through the menopause without HRT, (my Grandmother was into herbalism, so
I have that leaning). I have in the 2 yrs of changing to a low carbohydrate diet done plenty of research about nutrition and have come to the conclusion, that its best to stick to as natural foods as possible.

The most worrying thing is, one has trusted the doctor and to find one is prescribed drugs without tests is very unacceptable. There is far too much intervention from these so-called 'experts'. It is really good to find info here on all these important issues. And, one should always be questioning anything and everything!

I so appreciated reading your reply. I, since hitting my 60s, have started to question everything "advised for everyone". Even the healthy advice. We are all such unique systems. My brother has been a type I diabetic for 49 years (there is also type II in our family). Both he and my younger brother had muscle reactions to statins (Lipitor and Crestor) but were switched on brands and remain on them. My brother with diabetes had what I feel was a severe muscle reaction to statins about 5 years ago. Definitely not a painful diabetic neuropathy, but severe muscle weakness in his arms, hands and legs.

He still blames it on the flu shot he had, but was tested for Guillain Barre syndrome with negative results. He deteriorated to walking with a walker but has improved to the point of being able to drive again after a last resort of weekly apheresis treatments. Now he has extreme fatigue with any exertion even though he wakes up feeling well rested. I believe there is heart damage because the heart is our biggest muscle and why wouldn't it be affected after his original episode.

I took Red Yeast Rice as advised by a naturopath when my ldl was creeping up. Even a small dose caused me arm pain which took months to recover from after I slowly took myself off of it.

Thinking a 28-day-vegan challenge, including low to no added fat, brown rice, whole grains etc., which I totally adhered to, might be the answer.... I then went to the doctor to find that in addition to not losing any weight (though I don't need to lose much... I am 4"10' and 117 lbs.), seeing no change in my cholesterol numbers, and having a huge rise in my triglycerides, I did my own research. Evidently there are SOME people who have diabetes in their family history that have a type of syndrome and they just don't process carbs properly even though they are not diabetic. Even small portions of whole grain carbs can effect triglycerides. Two books that I am reading now are Wheat Belly (written by a cardiologist) and Real Food.

I totally respect doctors and their education, but anytime I hear "everyone should" I am skeptical. Slathering sunscreen on every morning when you live in Seattle and might be outside for 20 minutes running errands from the car is just crazy. Our skin is our largest organ and all those chemicals being absorbed daily cannot be good. I truly think it falls in with the same philosophy stated at one time by statin manufacturers .... it should be in the water.... I don't think so! It is only making manufacturers rich.

I am 55 years old and have taken 3 different statins. Over the last 3 years I have had 3 episodes of serious muscle bleeding/haematoma and stopped taking statins 6 months ago following the last episode of muscle damage/bleeding, My Dr suggested I started lipitor again and after 10 days I had a bash on the leg and a huge haematoma and pain in my feet. Lumps had appeared before on the soles of my feet and dissapeared when I stopped taking statins.

I have now stopped taking statins for good and will concentrate on diet and natural products and fish oils!

Your sciatica is probably caused by your statin intake, not spine deterioation. I had terrible sciatic pains after taking Crestor 10mg tablets back in 2003, needed 2 crutches for 4 weeks and a walking stick for 6 months. I stopped the Crestor as soon as the pain hit and never taken a statin since.

I have been taking Lipitor for just over 10 years, prescribed by my cardiologist. For the past two months, my lower legs and feet have felt like I have a very tight elastic stockings on and my toes have felt somewhat numb. At times when sitting for a period of time, I felt as if my feet would fall asleep, but they didn't. When moving my ankles, they would often "lock" but only for perhaps 1/10 of a second.

I saw my family physician 5 days ago and he immediately took me off the Lipitor. He was well aware. I have also had occasional feelings of "waves" of weakness in my arms although they were not weak. Six months ago, I had told my cardiologist that I was having occasional numbness on one side or the other of my face but that was dismissed. I have also had a metallic taste in my mouth for two months. My dentist saw no reason for it but after going off the Lipitor for five days, that is gone.

My instruction sheet that came with the Lipitor, speaks of muscle damage but not nerve damage. I am to have extensive blood work done in five weeks including Vitamin B12. level. I have been taking CoQ10 for four years. I am in my 80's, active and not over weight and hope that I shall feel better soon. I held off seeing my doctor because I thought he might think it was all in my head but as I noted above, he knew exactly what was causing this problem.

I am a 47 yr old female diagnosed in sept 2012 as pre diabetic with high cholesterol by gynecologist after an annual blood panel. He scared me to death and insisted on immediately putting me on Lipitor, a nightly baby aspirin, and metforin to control the diabetes.

The first tablet of metforin caused my throat to swell needless to say I did not take again. I did a diet overall and was feeling better until 2 months ago I started having severe leg pain, my legs would often feel numb and would go to sleep. I thought it was from sitting long hours at work. I just disregarded it. The symptoms got worse, I started having unbearable pain and stiffness in my back as well as legs. My right kidney area felt like I had been punched. My balance was off my strength deteriorated. I felt like my body was shutting down. I really felt I had ms or something very serious.

I called my gyno to see if it could be related to the lipitor he said I was just getting older and it was probably arthritis not to worry. I rarely go to the Dr thus is the reason I do not have a regular internal med only a gyno. But these symptoms forced me to get seek one and I am so glad I did.

She listened to me describe my symptoms and without hesitations took me off Lipitor immediately. She was shocked and appalled as to why my gyno would have me on it. I am relieved to have an answer to what is going on but I'm still not out of the woods. I have to get updated blood work with the hopes that there is no liver or kidney damage as well as seeing a neurologist to determine if I have irreversible verve or muscle damage.

I have been off of it for 3 days this date and already my legs feel better. I would encourage everyone to do your research on medications and more importantly listen to your body. Mine was telling me something is wrong and I had to be an advocate for my health. I just hope I did not react too late.

Hi, I am a 46 year old woman. I started Lipitor 3 months ago, 20 mg., and it seemed okay. I have family history of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. The doctor thought it would be good to start on a statin. Anyway, I am on the third month and about a month ago I started waking up with numbness in both hands... now I am having some numbness and tingling in my right leg.

I stopped taking the Lipitor and my hands are much better but my leg is still kind of tingly and numb. I am just hoping and praying that these will go away after a little while. Has anyone had a similar problem and had it go away? My doctor has ordered nerve ending test and is looking at MS and will do a head MRI. I am scared about the prospect of these test but I think it's related to the Lipitor. I asked him about it and he said it's not a common side effect. Looks to me like it is. Is there something natural that might help with cholesterol and pre-diabetes? I'd appreciate any information. I'm really worried. Thanks for taking the time to read this :)

Hi Paula...My family history includes heart disease, Type I and II diabetes and Non-alcoholic liver disease. I, as well as my two brothers, all had pain reactions to Lipitor, Crestor or Red Yeast Rice (me). After 40 years of being a Type I diabetic, my brother had a severe nerve reaction which I feel was due to being on a statin for many years. He was tested for Guillain-Barre syndrome and MS but results for those tests came back negative.

I tried to lower my cholesterol by eating a vegan diet, but it did NOT work for me. It consisted of lots of vegetables and small portions of whole grains/
starches. I tried the 28-day challenge and was religious about it. I did not eat large portions or over eat. I also used very little, if any, fat.

My research has found that some people who have diabetes in their family history do not process carbohydrates properly. I am at a normal weight and have normal blood sugar.

I would suggest you read "Wheat Belly" and look at their website. It is written by a Preventative Cardiologist. I have started really watching my carbs. I don't eat starches every meal or every day. I also keep the portion down to 1/4 to 1/2 cup (for all starches). I am now on a 28-day challenge to avoid wheat and sugar. His book seems very logical to me. My next doctor's visit will hopefully show some results in my numbers. Good luck!

Hi Paula,
Really think it is caused by statin, happened with me but took 3 months for pain, weakness and tingling to go away after I stopped taking Lipitor, Doctor insisted statin was not the cause so I again took half a pill daily, 10 MG and pain came back so quit statins altogether and now pain free. I believe sugar, carbs and starches cause the high cholestoral so suggest eat primarily green vegetables, whole grain foods, nuts and cut out any sodas, sugar drinks, potatoes, white bread, pancakes etc. and exercise to reduce cholesterol; also take CoQ10 supplements to strengthen the myelin nerve protective shield.

I am 68 years old and I have high cholesterol caused by my liver producing too much not from my diet. I have been on and off of statins for 15 years or more. Every one from the first Zocor to the last one crestor has caused muscle problems. My recent problems are the worst.

About 1 month ago I started getting tingling in both my feet and ankles and lower legs and they feel numb inside. Then I went on vacation and while walking around I started getting pains in both my front thighs. It was so bad I had to use a wheel chair for the rest of my vacation.

After resting and using the wheel chair I felt pretty good except for the pains in my shoulders. When I returned home I went grocery shopping and all the pain and tingling came back and my whole body was aching really bad.

I took myself off Crestor when I was on vacation and I have felt a little better. I was wondering how long it takes for someone to get back to normal after going off Crestor. I was on it for 1 1/2 years. I haven't told my doctor I am off it but I will when I see her in a couple of weeks. I am so sorry for all of you who have suffered from these stupid pills. We do all the doctors tell us to do and it still isn't enough is it?
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks.

Kat It took about 9 months for me to 95% recover from nerve damage caused by Crestor. Had to use 2 crutches for about 4 weeks. Never had any problem with my hands or arms.

I too have been given all the latest colesterol drugs in high doses to try and control my high colestrol since diet and exercise were not working. After being taken off 80 mg of zocor and put back on 40 mg of lipitor the fatigue and leg pain got a lot worse... I just though it was old age, (55), I could barely climb stairs, could not use my treadmill anymore, walking is difficult, sleeping was out of the question because of the pain... I purchased compression stocking for my leg pain & took lots of naproxen... my husband came home one day to say a few guys at work had the same problems and had to stop taking lipitor... by now my head and hands were shaking.... my hands were so shaky I could not write.... I had not thought about it being lipitor... called my doctor and I am off all statins.

I went to a neurologist and I still can't walk far, have trouble with stairs and take meds for the shaking... I have damage that has not cleared since stopping the statins... but I was on them for years and at very high doses... I started taking them in my 40's......

It is amazing that so many people have had problems with Lipitor, Crestor and etc. I was recently advise that my blood sugar was pre-diabetic. I couldn't believe it as I do have a very healthy diet and limit sweets and white flour etc. I exercise at least 1-2 hrs per day.

I read on the Lipitor website that "Elevated Blood Sugar levels have been reported with statins - including Lipitor ". I have been on Lipitor for almost 2 years, and my blood sugar was 79 when I started, and it is now 118. In addition, I have the tingling and numbness in my feet and hands, and wasn't aware that was an side effect of Lipitor.

It recently appeared on my prescription listing possible side effects and to contact your doctor. It wasn't on some former drug receipts. My doctor really pushes the statin drugs. I have decided that I am stopping Lipitor on my own to see what happens. I, also, have noticed the memory problems that many people talk about. These statin drugs certainly can do a lot of harm. I know you are supposed to advise your doctor if you are stopping medications, but I know he will go through the roof and say they do not do this.

I would strongly suggest not stopping cold-turkey. Google how to stop statins slowly and you will find a lot of information. It doesn't take long. I had been on Red Yeast Rice for a very short time and immediately had arm muscle pain. I knew better than to take them but caved. Both my brothers had problems taking Lipitor and Crestor. It still took a few months for my arms to return to normal.

Cathy it sounds like you need to find another Dr. I do too as my doctor is a moron. Sadly, it's not amazing that Lipitor has done this to you. Just look at the wreckage it wreaks on the mevalonate pathway and one would expect all sorts of damage. In my case I have permanent damage and I stopped the statins too late. Good luck
Fred

WOW!!!

I stopped taking Lipitor cold turkey and it was all good and healed rapidly, but then again I was taking only 10 mg daily. Pain, ache, weakness and tingling in shoulder, arm and hands gone after 3 months. I wonder when this statin conspiracy will be revealed and ended, so far FDA, big Pharma and Doctors ignore the problems. My Doctor wrote in my records: "Patient has high cholesterol and refuses to take statins" to cover himself.

My Dr gave me 80mg simvastatin (Zocor) per day then the equivalent of Lipitor.

I have had and am having severe allergic reaction to a number of drugs but what is even more distressing is that MDs are either not sufficiently astute in the effective practice of medicine; ignorant (not knowing) or simply may not care enough to recognize and give proper attention and care to their patients.

My first experience with allergic reaction to drugs was in 2005 when I had severe allergic reaction to 2 drugs: PLAVIX and/or TOPROL XL after a stent was inserted in my artery. My Cardiologists (2 of them) as well as a PA all said I should see a Dermatologist when I developed tons of really bad rashes over most of my body, but I knew better. My Primary care physician agreed with me, it was an allergic reaction and I should see an Allergist which I did. This Allergist told me he could not test for these drugs but he did not believe these drugs were the cause of my rashes. I had to take these 2 drugs for 9 months so I had to endure the consequences. After I stopped taking these drugs the rashes began to disappear. 7-years later I still have some marks left over from the rashes.
If I ever have to take these 2-drugs again I'd prefer to die instead.

I now have similar severe allergic reactions to ADVAIR HFA, SEREVENT. ASMANEX, SYMBICORT, and the latest, PULMICORT (Budesonide). A UNC Pulmonary Specialist is now trying to find a drug that treats my asthma effectively yet will not cause me to have these severe allergic reaction. It appears I am averse to all these Cortico-Steroids, which I however need to be able to breathe.

I reported these adverse reactions to the FDA and the drug companies but I have no idea what they are doing about it.

I have had highish cholesterol for years (323 at highest). Even biking and running for over 20 years didn't help. My doc got me on Lipitor and the numbers improved. The dose was cranked up to 40mg/day and my doc wasn't satisfied with the numbers. She put me on Crestor, same dose. Somewhere in there I found I had tingling and pain in my toes and feet and went to a foot doc who said I have peripheral neuropathy.

It segued into pain in my right shoulder, both quads and both knees. I was getting older (I'm nearly 82) very quickly. I could hardly make it upstairs to bed and the pain after walking was terrible, even taking Naproxen twice daily. An orthopedist was no help and neither was a rheumatologist. Leaning on a grocery cart as we shopped gave some help and sometimes kind people stopped to ask if I were alright.

I was given the How Statins Really Work etc. article written by Seneff and decided enough was enough, no more statins or Naproxen. Three days later the quad and knee pain has stopped and stair climbing and walking are easier, but of course neuropathy persists. We'll see.

I am a 64 yr old male. My blood pressure is normal and have no history of heart disease. My cholesterol was slightly elevated so I was on 5 mg of Lipitor for 5 years. I had some mild muscle pain but assumed it was age related. My doctor retired and my new doctor wanted my cholesterol lowered even though it was in the normal range. He started me on 10 mg of Crestor. My wife immediately noticed a decrease in cognitive function (more than usual). I didn't like taking the medication so I often skipped doses. My blood work showed cholesterol in low range but that wasn't good enough for the doctor so he raised dose to 20 mg. After about 2 months my left leg (thigh and groin) pain was unbearable. I had been doing research on Crestor so I stopped it immediately. The leg pain got slightly better but my shoulders and hand pain got worse.

I told the doctor and he said stop the Crestor. I didn't tell him I had been off it for 2 weeks. I asked about CoQ10 and he said to take it. I had been taking it already. It has been 6 weeks and my leg and back continue to improve. However, my shoulder (both shoulders) pain requires pain medication. The doctor says the pain must be osteoarthritis because if it was Crestor the pain would be gone in 2 weeks. I am taking Vimovo which is esomeprazole 20 mg / naproxen 500 mg. It is slow release so it gets me through the day. I am reading these posts because I was curious as to how long it takes to be back to normal.

Even though it can take months as indicated in the stories, it gives me hope that I will have my life back at some point. If you can share recovery time, please do. These drugs are poison.

Jimmy James,
I believe cholesterol is needed to maintain the protective and insulating myelin sheath over the nerve fibers so it will take several months for cholesterol levels to be restored and complete the healing. For me, 70 years old, it took 3 months before all the pain was gone and strength restored. Unfortunately the level of cholesterol needed to maintain healthy nerves can also cause plaque build-up in the arteries, but some studies say that it is not so much the cholesterol but inflammation.

It amazes me that doctors are so intent on prescribing statins that they ignore side effects. Having lower cholesterol levels doesn't mean that you will not develop heart disease. The side effects of pain and numbness will cause you to exercise less and have a poorer quality of life which may lead to the development of heart disease or other ills. This pervasive narrow minded outlook regarding statin use is downright scary. Where is the common sense?

was on crestor 40mg for only 3 months, healthy 44 year old male, experienced pins and needles in hands and feet which turned into peripheral neuropathy, all the symptoms started within days of commencing the lipitor! (if that's not proof I don't know what is) Doctors ignored it, and I took it upon myself to visit a neurologist and confirmed the neuropathy. Doctor now just says that there is still no proof that the statin caused the PN, it's all a joke the doctors attitude towards statins. I will never go back on a statin, still battling to get rid of the neuropathy.

History: I took Vytorin in 2006 without problem and changed due to publicity of harmful side effects. My family doctor prescribed Crestor in February 2008. In May 2008 I developed fatigue and muscle weakness as well as elevated liver enzymes. In January of 2009, my doctor prescribed Pravachol. By March 2009 same as above. I was then prescribed Simvastatin in 2010. The same thing happened. In April of 2012 I was prescribed Zetia and Amlodipine, a Calcium Channel Blocker which is known to enhance the detrimental effects of statins in persons who may be sensitive to statins, as I am.

By July 2012 I was developing weakness and would quickly fatigue with normal activity. I immediately stopped the Zetia. At that time I did not know about the effects of Calcium Channel Blockers. I contacted my physician and he told me he could do no more. I then made an appointment with a neurologist for September 19, 2012. Labs were ordered. I had a muscle study and a nerve study. The nerve study was okay, I was told it was muscular and was referred to Dr. Shaibani in Houston for a muscle biopsy (October 10, 2012). He found no underlying muscle disease but stated the symptoms were consistent with antilipidemic administration.

On October 31, 2012 I saw Dr Callerame again and after that visit started taking Niacin 500mg daily and L-Carnitine 1000mg daily.
Update: Within two weeks I was concerned that my pain had increased. By the 18th of November I knew that my pain was worse than it was on October 10 and October 31, 2012. After researching I found that Niacin can also lead to muscle weakness.

An article on Journal Watch-Specialties says “other cholesterol lowering agents (e.g. fibrates, niacin, and ezetimibe (Zetia) can also lead to muscle toxicity.” The article also states that “the pathogenesis of statin myopathies is unknown.” Also around this time on November 7, 2012 I started using a C-Pap nightly. It is set on “6”.

Update: In December my primary care physician ordered the Butrans patch for me. I used 5 mcg for two weeks then increased it to 10 mcg. I used the 10 mcg for two weeks. On January 8 I visited my primary care physician and told him I was continuing to have symptoms of random pain, sharp in character, and it would move around. I would have sensations of phantom sweating and burning on the lower half of my legs. He discontinued the patch and ordered Neurontin 300mg po 1x daily times x 1 week, then Neurontin 300mg po bid.

At present I am still having some pain taking the Neurontin once daily at night although my primary physician stated I could begin taking one in the morning also. I have not taken the morning dose because I don’t want to feel sleepy. Taking the Neurontin once daily has helped with 90% of my pain, but I am resting almost all day. The pain that I do have is a sharp pain here and there, every now and then. Sometimes I can move and it will go away. My rest at night is uncomfortable. I turn a lot. I sleep decent for 4 or 5 hours only.

My wife says I am more irritable and depressed since taking the Butrans and now the Neurontin. I feel like I am weaker and more easily fatigued since around Christmas.

As I am reading this information from the People' Pharmacy community, I am almost in tears. For the past couple of years I have severely suffered with very painful neuropathy in my feet and now my hands. I have started falling and having moments of memory lapse. I'm only 54 years old and have been taking Crestor for about 4 years now.

I am going to discuss with my doctor about stopping it since I have never really had a problem with my cholesterol prior to going to a cardiologist. I am in a lot of pain even as I write this and will be VERY ANGRY if I do stop Crestor and start feeling better.

I am afraid that I have already irreparable nerve damage in my feet and hands. Please keep me posted if you find out anything about the use of this drug and if it indeed does cause peripherial neuropathy.

Angela, I don't expect your Doctor to change. My Doctor got angry with me when I stopped taking his prescribed statins and told him I will live with the risk of high cholesterol, he made a note in his folder that patient has high cholesterol and refuses to take prescription, he did not add that it caused severe pain and weakness. I reported it to drug company and the FDA and did not get any acknowledgement of receipt or adding the data to their database of side effects.

Angelia, I had posted on this website in August 2012. I stopped my Lipitor on my own against a lot of skepticism. I must tell you that it has been almost 6 months since I quit. About six weeks after quitting 40 Mg. Lipitor, I noticed one morning that I had feeling in my feet. It was just amazing to me. They have greatly improved and I would say are just about back to normal. I can actually feel my toes and have no tingling in my feet. Even some of my new shoes actually hurt, but I never felt it before. My total cholesterol number did increase from 133 to 180, but my
Triglycerides improved from 78 to 60, HDL improved from 49 to 63 and LDL did actually increase from 68 to 105.

I am working on improving and making some changes in my diet and hope to bring the LDL and total cholesterol down. I feel so much better and have much more energy.

My blood sugar was just tested in January and it has come down. I am no longer pre-diabetic. My glucose reading still is a little high, but I am working on my diet and eating more veggies instead of more fruits.

I have done a lot of research on the internet regarding statin drugs, and I am a firm believer now that women should not take statins unless they have had a previous heart attack. You will see that several doctors say that your cholesterol numbers do not have to be as low as many cardiologists want them. I know mine wanted to increase me to 60mg just before I quit and my cholesterol was 133 at that time.

I hope and wish all the best for you. Perhaps if you talk with your doctor you can convince him/her about some of the dangers of statins. Crestor is one of the strongest statins on the market. I forgot to mention that my memory has also improved and I am a senior citizen and was blaming that on old age.

Cathy

Just reporting back in. It's been almost 10 years since I took my last Crestor. I had terrible sciatic pain. That is all fine now. I was diagnosed type 2 diabetic last September. To reduce my carb intake I discovered the book Wheat Belly. I have not had any bread, wheat pasta, pizza, cookies for 4 1/2 months. My weight has dropped 20 lbs, clothes fit well again. People say I look healthier. All my cholesterol and triglycerides are normal now. Try going wheat free for a couple of months. Google Wheat Belly. My weight continues to drop at one lb per week and it is all coming from the visceral fat.

Long story short, I cannot take even Red Yeast Rice because of muscle problems. After researching the real causes of many heart attacks I am not going to worry about my cholesterol numbers at this point in time. I tried a vegan 30-day challenge a few years ago and my numbers did not improve AND my triglycerides went UP over to over 225. Bill Clinton and Michelle Phieffer have raved puplically about the vegan diet and how well it works (for them). I don't believe it to be true for everyone. I, too, read Wheat Belly and The Carb Sensitivity Program. Both are excellent. Even though not being diabetic, there are those of us that don't process carbohydrates normally.

I am at a loss as to what to do and need some serious advice please !!!!
I am 57, have had 3 heart attack, first at 39 when I was diagnosed with hypercholesteroleamia with triglycerides of even now about 17mmol (excuse spelling please).

Last MI resulted in 6 bypasses (yes, I thought 4 was max also). I am now a type 2 diabetic. I now take 40mg Rosovastatin plus 10mg Ezetimbe to try to get lipid levels down. Triglys levels still 15mmol +

My diet is pretty good. I have had muscle wasting in my upper back/shoulder are with pain/burning/tingling sensation for many years. I now have such pain in my hip/upper (outside) leg area I can hardly walk properly, especially if I've been sitting down. I have reduced feeling in feet, lower legs, cramping, numbness in fingers 4/5, and forearm pain. My shoulder joints are causing me immense pain and making life miserable. The anti inflams only just mask the problem. I take heaps of paracetamol just to function.

GP says, when I complain. "you will die if you stop taking statins"
I think I will stop....

I was in Lipitor for over 10 years, plus a baby aspirin a day. Then one day I had a TIA minor stroke, and quickly went into the hospital, no permanent damage. However while I was hospitalized for 4 days they put me on Plavix and Crestor 40 mg. this made me feel extremely heavy, like I weighed 400 pounds, I was 57, active, and weighed 200 pounds. When I got out of the hospital I stopped taking the Plavix and started taking a 325mg aspirin. The heaviness went away in a few days.

For a few weeks I felt great and like my normal self. Then I started to get muscle cramps in my legs, so my primary Dr switched me back to Lipitor 40 mg. The cramps only got worse, and then the burning started. Horrible burning in my hands and feet. Then the pins and needles. Primary Dr. Tested me for diabetes and then referred me to a neurologist - 2 month wait to see her. Negative on the diabetes, and the burning continued to get worse. Pins and needles, cramps, night sweats ect.

Finally got in to see the neurologist - more and more tests. Put me on gabapentin 1800 mg over the day. Cuts the pain, but does not make it go away and puts me in a brain fog. She took me off Lipitor. Told me I have Small Fiber Neuropathy. No cure, just live with it.

Now 2 years later, blood tests and my new primary Dr wants me to go back on a statin. Hell no!

What can I take that will lower my cholesterol and triglycerides that will not do me more harm?

Like many of you, I too have been on Lipitor for almost 1 year and didn't notice any real side effects until now. I went to my Doctor describing various "symptoms" that I seemed to be developing, specifically changes in my blood sugar. I seemed to be getting increased low-blood sugar reactions and they were starting to get worse with alarming frequency.

When I addressed this issue with my Doctor saying I had read recent reports that there is an increased risk of developing Diabetes while on statins and my Doctor literally demeaned me and got angry and said "No that is definitely not from the statins." To which I replied, "How can you say that when you are not in my body experiencing these side effects."

I also have been really fatigued and seems like my heart has palpitated all to which he adamantly once more argued that it is not from the statins. I disagree, because every time I go off of them for awhile, my energy returns, I have no low-blood sugar reactions and I seem to feel much better.

I am sick and tired of these Doctors not truly "listening" and taking these very real side effects into consideration. They just keep dismissing them. I want answers and no one is giving them to me. Why does it have to be like pulling teeth to get straight answers from these medical professionals about the real dangers of taking statins?

I know what it is - the pharmaceutical companies push these medicines and they all get a percentage profit from selling these drugs, all of which have not thoroughly been tested. I am so afraid that these statins are going to end up being those dreaded drugs you hear about 20 yrs. later that caused some horrible permanent side effect and then you have to go to a lawyer long after the damage has already been done to your body. I had a Doctor actually tell me to my face that the "Simvastatin", which I was on initially, and right away it started giving me muscle pains, etc. - this Doctor said, and I quote, "Oh yes, that statin is well known to cause the most serious side effects immediately, as opposed to the other satin drugs.

I was floored! I said, "then why in the world would the Doctor prescribe it, knowing fully well about these immediate side effects.? His answer, "Unfortunately it's the cheapest statin drug. We need to keep asking questions and pushing for answers.

I am an MD - no longer practicing. Came here as I have an elderly uncle on Crestor who is having the kind of problems described.

Just to point people to Dr Joel Furham's books and websites. I have found there effective and rational advice for what for me was a weight problem but the claims seem good for cholesterol, hypertension, heart disease and so on.

My uncle is set in his dietary ways and afraid to challenge his doctors over the crestor so I have a bit to go with him -but if you are open to a non-toxic approach to controlling cholesterol then it is worth a look.

I cried when I read Ann's story and wish that I had put two and two together back when I was put on Lipitor 20mg about 10 yrs ago, when I turned 50. I kept telling my doctor that in general, I just did not feel well when taking it. After a very short time, I developed severe nerve pain in my right leg and eventually started to have an elevated fasting blood sugar and was told I had early stages of type 2 diabetes. The nerve pain was diagnosed as meralgia paresthetica and was thought to be caused by the diabetes.

The neuropathy eventually became present in my left leg as well, from groin to knee. I took myself off of Lipitor (my cholesterol was never all that high anyway; just slightly elevated)because I felt it was contributing to my nerve pain, for which I now see a pain specialist as it has gotten so severe. Recently, the nerve pain has affected one of my feet and I am just so angry that my mobility is limited and I use a cane/walker to get around.

I never dreamt my quality of life would be like this by age 50 and now pushing 60. My mother is 89 and more active than me and her mother lived to be an active 100 yr old. I was hoping for the same for myself, but now I feel this condition is irreversible and I blame the Lipitor for ruining my life, esp when my cholesterol was not that bad to have been placed on this horrible medication. I would rather die from a heart attack than to have to live this way and not even be able to care for my own grandchildren as I would like to do. Something needs to change.

I keep seeing PREdiabetic? Isn't this just another way for big pharma to get more and more people on drugs? Seriously??

Thank you everyone for sharing your experience with these drugs! I went to my doctor yesterday and he put me on Pravastatin which I am always cautious about taking medications because I am very sensitive to medications. I am not able to take the dosage that most people can take. For example, I take fish oil but I can only take one a day and it still leaves me feeling drugged and so tired. And that is just one example. I've had other doctors to take me off of medications because the side effects were worse for me than the problem it was treating. I asked him about the side effects and he told me "some people have muscle problems while taking it". That sent out a red flag for me and that is why I'm here reading your responses. Because of this, I am not going to take it! I will take my chances. Thank you again for educating me about this type of drug!

I also had a very severe reaction to being on Lipitor. Severe numbness in feet and hands. I stopped taking it, have nerve tests which show damage from it. The dr. Had me take alpha lipoic acid (over the counter) for a month which helped regenerate the nerve damage. At some point I think I will have to go on a statin drug again but it won't be Lipitor that is for sure!

I have been on Pravastatin for about a year and a half. I started to feel fatigued. Normally I exercise a lot and am just very active, but because of the fatigue, I was not. I am also on Atenolol. Is it the Pravastatin or Atenolol that made me fatigued?

I'm really glad I found the site. I have been taking crestor. I too have heart problem that run hard in my dads side of family. I have high cholesterol my doctor was giving my crestor and I was doing ok. But he stopped practicing. So I had his replacement. I'm not liking her much because she time me off the crestor and put me on lipitor. I see all the warnings of it causing diabetes which I don't have, but all the women on my mothers side have had it. I have only been on it for a couple months and feet have swelling up and it feels like my bones are crushing together every time I walk.

I'm really scared of what this medication has caused me. I have a hard time remembering to take it at night. Maybe this was a blessing. I'm not taking it any more and gong to a different doctor to get feet look at and to get on different meds. I would like to find a cholesterol med to take in the morning, that I can remember. Thanks guys and gals for all information.

Hi I'm nazmul. I am 29 years old. First time I went to doctor for neck pain then doctor checked my full blood. Then doctor said he got diabetes and high cholesterol I mean 193 borderline. He gave me simvastatin 40 mg and metformin for diabetes 500mg. After taking medication 30 days later I am feeling feet and hand burning and sometimes getting cold, warm pain my hand and feet. I went to doctor doctor checked my blood and said blood sugar is fine and cholesterol was 119 its too low.

I told my doctor its happened for cholesterol tablet but doctor said it can be diabetes, but my blood sugar its fine. He refers to the neurologist he checked me did some test but he cant find anything. I told them its happened for statin. Then I stopped my statin now feeling better. I mean 80% better. but I know normal cholesterol is 150-200. but after statin was 119. It's too low cholesterol. I think statin medication can cause nerve damage.

I was on lipitor in Oct 2012, by Mar 2013 the peripheral neuropathy, fatigue, muscle cramps, shooting pains, hot flashes, memory loss, and the symptoms would get worse at night, till exhaustion just knocked me on my butt. I was 46 and got real old very quick. My doctor said my cholesterol was around 250 because of my hypothyroidism and put me on lipitor.

I was already feeling crappy before lipitor and the doctor just blew me off and after the lipitor side effects he did the same as before. I asked for a referral to an endocrinologist, he said stop taking lipitor, then he referred me to a neurologist, then referred to a podiatrist. They could not find a problem with my feet. I would be on my feet most of the day and I could barely walk up the stairs at work. It got so bad driving home, when I put my feet on the pedals it felt like being stabbed with a knife. So I went on medical leave and still have nerve damage in my feet. I'm ready to sue because my quality of life has gone down due to lipitor !!

I had the same problem with my doctor aka drug dealer and lipitor.

I have been on the forum about blood thinners, and just found out today that one or more of the stents that I had placed in Dec. 2012, after a heart attack, are closing, thus causing chest pain. I have to have an angiogram in a week or so to see what needs to be done. I am on Crestor, since the heart attack, and I have had horrible muscle pain from the beginning.

My problem is, that I also have severe RA, for which I take Enbrel injections. It is difficult to tell if the pain is from RA or the Crestor, but it is different. I can't take the Advil for pain, that helped me cope before, because I take a blood thinner.

I did not have high cholesterol before my HA, now I am on a roller coaster, like so many here. My mom is 96, has high cholesterol, but takes no meds, eats no meat but chicken, and lots of veggies.she had one HA in her 80's. I guess no one really knows what will work. I had a stent placed about 16 years ago... it is still fine, but the new ones, are closing already. I have been in constant pain for seven years with the RA, but I still love life, and now just pray.

Ann, what was your total cholesterol measure when they put you on statins?

Boy, I've just sat here for almost 20 minutes reading all these posts about statins and it's like reading a horror story. The reason I started is because I was curious if the Lipitor that my OLD MD and I say old boldly because of her putting me on Lipitor. She put me on it because my total cholesterol was high, when it was my good cholesterol that was bringing the total values up.

I argued with her, but she insisted so I took it for years and I mean years. I only know now that it is only meant to be taken for two years. Now I'm wondering if that's the cause of my small fiber neuropathy since the neurologist has ruled out all other causes. The only other cause would be my hypothyroidism that was left chronically in a low state due to an endocrinologist who apparently didn't understand Hashimoto's Thyroiditis.

All I know is that I've been off Lipitor for almost three years now and the neuropathy is progressing, not improving.

But God bless you all who have suffered from indiscriminate statin use.

Had heart attack in '97 have 6 stents. Been on Lipitor since then added Crestor after that. U.C. Started up when I worked at school as a custodian. Had appendix taken out. Had my left knee replaced. Discs in back were slowly getting bad. Had back fusion surgery to fix the back. Went back to work. Broke right foot sweeping floor. Back to work with soft cast on for 12 weeks. One weekend left leg hurt really bad. Went to ER and sent me home. Got up next day and leg hurt and had no feeling. Fell several times. Had second back surgery to tighten screws and clear area around nerve. Still the same. Couldn't lift right arm had rotator cuff surgery. Left leg was the same. Couldn't breath had ultra sound found blood clots in leg that let go and lodged in my lung. Spent 3 days in hospital and 6 to 8 months on blood thinners.

Thought nerve might heal over time. Been almost 3 years after surgery. Leg pain has kept me up all night some nights. Lost my job tried all kinds of pain remedies nothing seams to work. 62 now, been on disability and S.S. Ever since.

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