Can Lipitor Be Taken Even With Elevated Liver Enzymes?

Question

Asked by Anthony Samonte

Can Lipitor Be Taken Even With Elevated Liver Enzymes?

just had a recent work-up done...elevated cholesterol levels and elevated liver enzymes....Can anti-cholesterol drugs be taken even with elevated liver enzymes?

Answer

Anthony Samonte,

Thanks for your question.

Before initiating therapy with cholesterol lowering drugs, the cause of your elevated liver enzymes should first be determined. The reason for this is simple. Most drugs used today to lower cholesterol can also affect liver function and raise liver function tests on blood work. If you were to start medication and your levels rose even further, you would not be able to determine if this was the medication or another problem that caused the elevation to begin with. Depending on the level of elevation, cholesterol lowering medication may also be contraindicated.

As for causes of elevated liver enzymes, there are several possibilities, too many to list on this posting. But I will add that elevated body fat can cause fatty infiltration of the liver which can raise liver enzymes. Treatment with cholesterol lowering medication has show improvement in these situations.

Your doctor will need to investigate the cause of the liver enzyme elevation before consideration of treatment for your elevated cholesterol. In the mean time, start a healthy diet low in cholesterol and saturated fats. If needed, weight reduction should also be considered.

I hope this has been helpful. Best wishes.

Martin Cane, M.D.