This information was extracted from the package leaflet for simvastatin and from books written by authors (including doctors) who suffered severe side effects. It is worrying that this drug is now available over the counter in pharmacies in the UK, even though it's only available in small doses (10 mg).

Simvastatin (Zocor) is a statin drug which is said to lower cholesterol levels in the blood. What nobody tells you is that cholesterol is a crucial chemical found in the membrane of every cell in the body including brain cells, muscle cells, liver cells and skin cells. Other essential chemicals like Vitamin D and the sex hormones rely on the presence of cholesterol for their production. The series of chemical reactions that produce cholesterol (mevalonate metabolic pathway) also produce other molecules like CoQ10 (necessary for energy production) and the dolichols (which have been associated with aggression, mood disorders and suicide).

Before taking this drug, you should know what you are getting into and the possible consequences. My aim, in giving you this information, is to empower you to make informed decisions. Forewarned is forearmed. The side-effects of statins are horrendous.

When prescribed a statin drug you should ask your doctor for a list of drugs that you should not take at the same time, a list of foods that you should not eat and what you should look out for once you start taking them. Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant, breastfeeding or intending to have other children.

I am not a doctor so please read my disclaimer.

You should not take simvastatin

  • If you are pregnant, breast-feeding or of child-bearing age
  • f you are lactose-intolerant because simvastatin has lactose
  • If you are under the age of 10. Frankly, I think no children should take statins. In fact, I believe that only doctors, "experts" and drug sales reps should take statins.
  • If you have liver disease
  • If you have a respiratory disease
  • If you have a kidney disease

 Drugs that react badly with simvastatin  

Simvastatin is known to adversely react with the following drugs each of which has its own lethal side effects. I say lethal even though pharmaceutical companies refer to the side-effects as rare. However, too many people have experienced them. Because the effects are discounted by medical doctors many sufferers have resorted to writing books to warn others about them. The adverse reactions include muscle disease (myopathy) and rhabdomyolysis, a debilitating condition in which muscles breakdown causing weakness and pain as well as kidney damage.

The contraindicated drugs are known by many names (some of them too many to list) and your prescription might not reflect the names listed here. Click each drug name to view its other names. If the name is not listed, please do your own research. Google the drug name. The web is an incredible information resource. Either way you should not be taking the folowing drugs:


Some of these drugs are combined with other drugs to create a completely different product with a different name. For example, you might take alka-seltzer for heartburn but alka-seltzer contains aspirin, a blood thinner. Even Beechams Powders contain aspirin.

Side Effects

Pharmaceutical companies list the side effects of their drugs as possible or very rare. However, they fund drug research and they are known to suppress negative results (see the book Bad Pharma by Ben Goldacre). Also, many medical doctors are paid (bribed or we could say their palms are greased or we could just talk about corruption in mainstream medicine) by drug companies to prescribe these drugs. The known side-effects are listed below.

  • Myopathy, characterised by muscle pain, weakness and cramps. There may be severe pain in the shoulders and hips, weakness of legs and arms.
  • Rhabdomyolysis, in which the musles actually breakdown. The kidneys, in an effort to excrete the muscle breakdown products suffer severe damage. This muscle disease can result in death.
  • Allergic reactions including swelling of the face, tongue and throat
  • Inflammation of the joints and blood vessels
  • Lupus symptoms with effects on blood cells
  • Inflammation of the liver with yellowing of eyes and skin. There may even be liver failure.
  • Inflammation of the pancreas accompanied by severe abdominal pain
  • Diabetes
  • Inflammation of the lungs
  • Anaemia
  • Headaches and dizziness
  • Constipation, diarrhoea, nausea and vomiting
  • Hair loss
  • Memory loss, forgetfulness and deterioration of cognitive function.
  • Sleep disturbances including nightmares
  • Depression, mood disorders, suicidal tendencies, aggressive behaviour
  • Erectile dysfunction

Further Reading

  1. Sandoz (2012), Simvastatin Package Leaflet, Information for the User
  2. GlaxoSmithKline to stop paying doctors to promote drugs,, Accessed: 13/09/2014
  3. Goldacre B (2013),  Bad Pharma: How Drug Companies Mislead Doctors and Harm Patients, Faber and Faber, Revised Edition

Statin Drugs: !0 Reasons to think twice about taking them

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