Are non-Lipitor cholesterol drugs just as safe?

My doc has me on Lipitor, which has been very effective at lowering my cholesterol. But the stuff costs me $25 a month after my insurance pays their part, and I know that the generic Lipitor is still a couple of years away. Now, Wal-Mart has that $5 prescription thing going on, but the only cholesterol drugs under this program are Lovastatin and Pravastatin.

What’s the story on this? I’d like to save some money, but my doctor thinks that Lipitor is the safest. I’ll stay with it if there’s any safety question, but what’s the conventional wisdom?

Here’s a handy reference list of the statin drugs for your perusal.


IANAD, but I have been taking Lovastatin for years and have had good results. I used to take Lipitor but my doctor switched me over because Lovastatin was cheaper and “just as good”. YMMV :slight_smile:

I’ve been on cholesterol medication (low-level doses) for many years, and I’ve been bounced back and forth between Zocor (sp?), Lipitor, and now a Zocor-generic-equivalent (Simvastatin) based on which particular drug my health care provider at the time was willing to pay for.

Each time the HCP complained the druggist would call my doctor, who apparently said something like "yeah, sure, fine"so apparently he was OK with it.

I have heard that one or the other of these specific medications is medically preferred for folks who experience particular side-effects/other-problems, but apparently I’m not one of them.