Statin Intolerance: Diagnosis and Remedies

Angela Pirillo, Alberico Luigi Catapano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Despite the efficacy of statins in reducing cardiovascular events in both primary and secondary prevention, the adherence to statin therapy is not optimal, mainly due to the occurrence of muscular adverse effects. Several risk factors may concur to the development of statin-induced myotoxicity, including patient-related factors (age, sex, and race), statin properties (dose, lipophilicity, and type of metabolism), and the concomitant administration of other drugs. Thus, the management of patients intolerant to statins, particularly those at high or very high cardiovascular risk, involves alternative therapies, including the switch to another statin or the use of intermittent dosage statin regimens, as well as nonstatin lipid lowering drugs (ezetimibe and fibrates) or new hypolipidemic drugs such as PCSK9 monoclonal antibodies, the antisense oligonucleotide against the coding region of human apolipoprotein B mRNA (mipomersen), and microsomal triglyceride transfer protein inhibitor lomitapide. Ongoing clinical trials will reveal whether the lipid-lowering effects of alternative therapies to statins can also translate into a cardiovascular benefit.

Original languageEnglish
JournalCurrent Cardiology Reports
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2015


  • Myalgia
  • Myopathy
  • Statin intolerance
  • Statins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Medicine(all)


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