Generic name:  Cerivastatin
Date Approved:  June 26, 1997
Manufacturer:  Bayer Corporation
Status: Removed 2001
Approved Uses:  Cholesterol

Serious Side Effects:
 Dark urination
 Muscle pain

Baycol belongs to a group of drugs referred to as “statins” that lower cholesterol in order to reduce the risk of heart disease.  Bayer voluntarily withdrew Baycol or cerivastatin from the market in 2001.  This decision was fully supported by the FDA because of 31 reported U.S. deaths caused by rhabdomyolysis linked to the drug, and in 12 of these cases patients were also prescribed concomitant gemfibrozil.  Concomitant gemfibrozil taken along with Baycol increases the risk of rhabdomyolysis. 

Rhabdomyolysis causes serious muscle damage by releasing muscle cell contents into the bloodstream.  This can cause fatal kidney damage or other fatal organ damage.  Symptoms of rhabdomyolysis are muscle aches in the calves, back or entire body.  Weakness, nausea, fever, vomiting, and dark urine are other symptoms of rhabdomyolysis.  There have been some cases where no muscle pain was reported.  In some rare cases muscle pain led to renal failure or other fatal organ failures. 

If you are taking Baycol contact your physician to discuss alternative treatment.  Along with drugs approved to control cholesterol that are not statins, five other statins are available: atorvastatin (Lipitor), lovastatin (Mevacor), fluvastatin (Lescol), simvastatin (Zocor), and pravastatin (Pravachol).  While all statins have been associated with rhabdomyolysis, especially when taken with a lipid-lowering drug such as gemfibrozil, Baycol has the most reported occurrences.  For a free consultation, contact Keller & Keller LLP if you have been injured by Baycol.

James R. Keller
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