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Lipofen®, generic name fenofibrate, is a drug that helps to reduce the level of triglycerides and cholesterol in the blood. It is typically prescribed to patients at risk of having clogged arteries, also known as atherosclerosis. The drug is most effective when combined with regular exercise and a healthy, low-fat and low-cholesterol diet.
The drug works by increasing good cholesterol, also known as high-density lipoprotein (HDL), in addition to lowering bad cholesterol, which is known as low-density lipoprotein (LDL). Lipofen® encourages the enzyme that reduces triglycerides and helps to speed the process that removes fatty acids from the body. It also works to reduce the production of more triglycerides, which is the chemical form most fat takes while in the body.
Lipofen® can help to reduce the risk of several serious conditions. It is most effective in lowering the levels of fat-like material in the blood that can cause pancreatitis — an inflammation or infection of the pancreas. The drug can also help to ward of stroke, angina, heart disease, and heart attack.
Patients taking Lipofen® typically have regular blood tests in order to ensure that there are no adverse side effects. The doctor must also determine whether the dosage needs to be adjusted. There may also be gallbladder and liver tests so that use of the medication may be discontinued quickly if it appears to be causing damage.
Lipofen® pills are usually prescribed to be taken daily. The drug is generally most effective when taken during mealtime with a full glass of fluid. Lipofen® must be taken whole in order to be effective. Pills that have been broken or chipped should be discarded.
In order to be effective, Lipofen® should be supplemented by a regular regime of exercise and healthy diet. Patients should at least engage in low-impact physical activity such as walking. It is also important to eat a diet with an emphasis high in fiber and whole foods and low in fat and cholesterol.
There are some conditions which are either too risky for or require special attention before taking Lipofen®. Patients with gallbladder disease, severe kidney disease, or liver conditions such as hepatitis or cirrhosis should not take the drug. Individuals with moderate kidney disease, diabetes, hypothyroidism, and liver disease will require additional testing in order to determine if it is safe to take Lipofen®.
A variety of reported side effects are possible from taking Lipofen®. Mild effects include rash, joint pain, and indigestion, bloating, or gas. Some of the more serious effects, such as fever, severe pain in the stomach, nausea, or vomiting should receive immediate medical conditions. Though it is rare, one of the most serious side effects is a condition of the muscles characterized by tenderness, weakness, and unusual pain.