Physicians determine the right pravastatin dosage based on several factors that include the patient’s medical condition, age, target cholesterol blood levels, response to treatment, and other medications currently taken.
Physicians conduct a thorough medical evaluation and health history review before prescribing pravastatin. Make sure that you inform your healthcare provider of other underlying medical conditions that you have as well as all health products that you use. This includes prescription medicines, over-the-counter drugs, vitamins, supplements and herbal products.
What is the usual pravastatin dose?
The average daily dose of pravastatin is 40 mg. It is usually taken once a day, with or without meals.
However, some patients may require higher dose especially if the lipid profile tests reveal poor response to the medication. Maintenance dosages may be adjusted after four weeks depending on the patient’s cholesterol blood levels. For this medication to be effective, it is important to take it exactly as directed by your healthcare provider.
Below is general dosage information for specific medical conditions.
Management of Hyperlipidemia in Adults
The recommended initial dose of pravastatin is 40 mg taken once a day. If the starting dose does not achieve the target lipid levels, the dose may be increased to 80 mg taken once a day. Usually, the maximal effect of pravastatin is seen within four weeks. Periodic lipid profile tests are recommended at this time to evaluate the patient’s progress in the therapy as well as for necessary dose adjustment.
Management of Hyperlipidemia in Children
- For Children (8 to 13 years old): The recommended dose of pravastatin for this patient population is 20 mg taken once a day. There are no studies conducted on this specific population for doses greater than 20 mg.
- For Adolescents (14 to 18 years old): The recommended dose of pravastatin for this patient population is 40 mg taken once a day. There are no studies conducted on this specific population for doses greater than 40 mg.
Caution must be taken for children and adolescents taking this medication. Regular physician visits and evaluation is necessary to prevent potential drug overdose and side effects. In addition, pediatric dose of pravastatin must be reevaluated and, if necessary, adjusted in adulthood to achieve target cholesterol levels.
Dosage Adjustments When Used With Other Medications
- Concomitant Lipid-Altering Medications: Patients taking bile acid resins (ex. cholestyramine, colestipol) must take pravastatin drug at least 4 hours after or 1 hour before the resin.
- Cyclosporine: For patients using this immunosuppressive agent, the initial dose of pravastatin is 10 mg or the lowest possible. The maximum dose is 20 mg per day.
- Clarithromycin: For patients taking this antibiotic, the daily dose of pravastatin should not exceed 40 mg.
In addition, patients with kidney, liver or thyroid problems may be given an adjusted pravastatin dosage. Be sure to inform your physician of other underlying medical conditions to avoid potential problems.
Each patient is given an individualized dosage of pravastatin. Do not adjust the dose without approval of your physician. And most importantly, lead a healthy lifestyle that includes heart-healthy diet and regular exercise.