All About Cholesterol-Lowering Drugs

Making healthy lifestyle changes alone is enough to help some people reach the cholesterol goals prescribed by their doctor. Others, however, need to take a cholesterol-lowering medication, as well. Learn more about treating cholesterol ›

When You’re Taking Heart Medications

Millions of Americans take some kind of heart medication. For some people, this means downing a single daily pill to help lower blood pressure. For others, it may mean taking a wide variety of different drugs to strengthen heart function, decrease cholesterol levels, prevent blood clots, or stabilize heart rhythms.

These little pills and potions are life-giving—and powerful. Even a small drop in your blood pressure reading can cut your risk of having a heart attack. 

At the same time, taking these medications the wrong way or discontinuing them without first consulting your health care provider could be dangerous, even fatal.

Learn more about taking heart medications

Is Your Cholesterol Putting Your Heart at Risk?

Over 100 million people have cholesterol levels high enough to increase their heart risk.

Is Your Medication Working for You?

Prescription drugs can enhance your life, but when not used correctly, they may have the opposite effect.

“Medications are serious business and should never be taken lightly,” says Douglas Hoey, R.Ph., M.B.A., chief operating officer for the National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) in Alexandria, Va. “On television you’ll see commercials for prescription drugs all mixed in with commercials for biscuits and auto insurance. This has created a perception that prescription drugs are always safe, but that’s not the case.”

Ask these questions each time you’re prescribed a medication.

Nearly three in four Americans don't take their medications correctly, according to a recent NCPA survey of 1,000 people. Some never bother to fill their prescriptions in the first place. Others stop taking a drug without first getting their doctors’ OK. Others don’t follow label instructions.

Learn more about cholesterol medication

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Did You Know?

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Kids who grow quickly as toddlers or teens tend to have lower cholesterol levels as adults, new research says. A 2007 study in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health also found that people who become overweight after age 15 are more likely to have higher cholesterol levels.