My father takes Niaspan and Lipitor, which have lowered his cholesterol to 110. Isn't that too low?
He has severe arthritis, memory problems and debilitating fatigue. I worry that he is taking too much medicine, but he says the doctor knows best and refuses to question him.
The issue of whether cholesterol can be too low is controversial. There is evidence, however, that low cholesterol levels might increase a person's risk of stroke caused by bleeding within the brain. Researchers have also found that depression is more common in people with very low cholesterol.
High cholesterol puts a person at risk of a heart attack or stroke caused by a blood clot, so balance is essential.
Some people have found that cholesterol medications such as Zocor or Lipitor might contribute to fatigue, arthritis or memory problems.
My husband swears he used to take an over-the-counter drug called Q-vel for leg cramps. I can't find it anywhere, and the pharmacist is clueless. What's the story?
Q-vel and other nonprescription quinine products were taken off the market. The Food and Drug Administration considered them too dangerous for over-the-counter use because some people developed a rare but dangerous anemia.
Quinine is still available by prescription.