Niacinol

1 What is Niacinol?

Brand: Niacinol, Niacor, Niaspan, Nicotinex, Slo-Niacin

Generic: Niacin

Niacinol is a B vitamin used to help lower hypercholesterolemia and hypertriglyceridemia o to prevent atherosclerosis. Some strengths of this drug require a prescription. You will be prescribed a personal diet that is low in fats, sugars, and/or cholesterol before you are given this drug.

Proper diet and exercise can control these problems. This drug is only prescribed when additional help is needed and is effective only when a schedule of diet and exercise is properly followed. If you are greatly overweight, you may be advised to go on a reducing diet in order for this drug to work properly.

Consult with your healthcare professional before going on any diet. Inform your health care professional if you are on any special diet, such as a low-sodium or low-sugar diet.

2 What to Know Before Using

Before using Niacinol, you must know all about the risks and complications associated with it. Inform your healthcare provider for any allergic reactions to these drugs or any other drugs, foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals.

Carefully read the label of non-prescription drugs for any possible allergic reaction or contraindications. No data is available comparing the use of niacin for high cholesterol in children with use in other age groups.

This drug is not recommended for use in children under 2 years of age since cholesterol is vital for normal development. It is still unknown whether this drug works exactly the same way they do in younger adults or if it causes different side effects or problems in older people.

This drug is not expected to cause different side effects or problems in older people than in younger adults. Adverse effects have been reported in animal studies but studies in pregnant women or animals are still inadequate. Infant risk is still undetermined when using this drug during breastfeeding.

Discuss with your healthcare professional about the potential risks and benefits of taking this drug while breastfeeding. Drugs should not be taken together to prevent any interactions but in necessary cases inquire your healthcare provider regarding the adjustments in dosage or any other necessary precautions to prevent any unwanted side effects.

Inform your healthcare professional if you are taking any other drugs such as:

  • Atorvastatin
  • Cerivastatin
  • Lovastatin
  • Pitavastatin
  • Rosuvastatin
  • Simvastatin
  • or Warfarin

Intake of specific food or using alcohol or tobacco with this drug is associated with an increased risk of certain side effects. Your healthcare professional can give you special instructions about the use of food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Inform your doctor if you have any other medical problems such as bleeding problems, diabetes mellitus, glaucoma, gout, liver disease or history of jaundice, low blood pressure, stomach ulcers, or kidney disease.

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3 Proper Usage

To use Niacinol properly, you must follow all instructions given by your doctor. To prevent any side effects, take this drug exactly as directed on the label or as prescribed by your healthcare professional.

This drug will only help control your condition. It is recommended to take this drug as directed to keep your cholesterol levels down. The special diet your healthcare professional gave you must be followed as it is the most important part of controlling your condition, and is necessary if the drug is to work properly.

Take this drug with meals or milk if this drug upsets your stomach. Check with your healthcare professional if your stomach upset endures. The capsule must be swallowed whole. Crushing, breaking, or chewing the drug before swallowing is not recommended. Mix the contents of the capsule with jam or jelly and swallow without chewing if the capsule is too large to swallow.

The extended-release tablet must be swallowed whole. If the tablet is scored, it may be broken, but not crushed or chewed, before being swallowed. The tablet must be taken at bedtime after a low-fat snack. It is recommended to take aspirin or ibuprofen 30 minutes before taking this drug to decrease flushing of your face.

Drinking alcohol or hot drinks around the time you take your tablet is not recommended to help reduce flushing of your face. The dose of this drug will be variable for different patients. The directions on the label or the prescription by your healthcare professional should be followed.

The dosage of this drug you take depends on the medical problem for which you are using this drug. Adults and teenagers with high cholesterol are given 500 milligrams to 2 grams one to three times a day. The use and dose of this drug will be determined by your healthcare professional.

The amount prescribed by your healthcare professional must not be surpassed. Use and dose in children must be determined by your healthcare professional.

A missed dose should be taken as soon as possible. However, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule if it is almost time for your next dose.

Store the drug in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing. Keep out of the reach of children.

Dispose any outdated or expired drugs and ask your healthcare professional for the proper disposal of the drugs.

4 Precautions to Take

Before using Niacinol, there are some precautions you must take. Regular visits should be made to your healthcare provider to track your progress and to monitor the effectiveness of the drug.

Check with your healthcare professional before you stop taking this drug as this may cause your blood cholesterol levels may increase again. You will be advised to follow a special diet to help prevent this from happening.

Discuss with your healthcare professional before taking vitamins or other dietary supplements, especially vitamins or dietary supplements that contain niacin or similar ingredients. Check with your healthcare professional if you notice a change in the results of your blood or urine sugar tests or if you have any questions.

This drug may cause you to feel dizzy or faint, especially when you get up from a lying or sitting position. Getting up slowly may help.

This effect should lessen after a week or two as your body gets used to the drug. Consult with your healthcare professional if the problem continues or gets worse.

5 Potential Side Effects

As with many medications, there are several potential side effects associated with Niacinol. Side effects may vary for each individual and prompt medical attention should be given if they occur.

Seek advice from your healthcare professional immediately if you experience any unusual symptoms such as:

  • Darkening of urine
  • Light gray-colored stools
  • Loss of appetite
  • Severe stomach pain
  • Yellow eyes or skin

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. As your body adjusts to the drug, the side effects will slowly disappear. Ask your healthcare professional about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects.

If any of the following side effects persists or are inconvenient, or if you notice any other effects, or if you have any questions about them, consult with your health care professional. Report any side effects to the FDA hotline at 1-800-FDA-1088.

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