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Clinical data
Trade names Lescol, others
AHFS/Drugs.com Monograph
MedlinePlus a694010
  • AU: D
  • US: X (Contraindicated)
Routes of
By mouth (capsules, tablets)
ATC code
Legal status
Legal status
  • AU: S4 (Prescription only)
  • CA: ℞-only
  • UK: POM (Prescription only)
  • US: ℞-only
  • In general: ℞ (Prescription only)
Pharmacokinetic data
Bioavailability 24–30%[3][1]
Protein binding >98%[1]
Metabolism Hepatic: CYP2C9 (75%), CYP3A4 (20%), CYP2C8 (5%)[1][2]
Biological half-life 1–3 hours (capsule), 9 hours (XR formulations)[1][2]
Excretion Faeces (95%), urine (5%)[1]
CAS Number
PubChem CID
ECHA InfoCard 100.224.327
Chemical and physical data
Formula C24H26FNO4
Molar mass 411.466 g/mol
3D model (JSmol)

Fluvastatin (INN,[4] trade names Lescol, Canef, Vastin) is a member of the statin drug class, used to treat hypercholesterolemia and to prevent cardiovascular disease.

Adverse effects[edit]

Adverse effects are comparable to other statins. Common are nausea, indigestion, insomnia and headache. Myalgia (muscle pain), and rarely rhabdomyolysis, characteristic side effects for statins, can also occur.[5]


Contrary to lovastatin, simvastatin and atorvastatin, fluvastatin has no relevant interactions with drugs that inhibit the liver enzyme CYP3A4, and a generally lower potential for interactions than most other statins. Fluconazole, a potent inhibitor of CYP2C9, does increase fluvastatin levels.[5]


Mechanism of action[edit]

Fluvastatin works by blocking the liver enzyme HMG-CoA reductase, which facilitates an important step in cholesterol synthesis.[3]


The drug is quickly and almost completely (98%) absorbed from the gut. Food intake slows down absorption, but does not decrease it. Due to its first-pass effect, bioavailability is lower: about 24–30%[3][1] according to different sources. Over 98% of the substance is bound to plasma proteins.[3]

Several cytochrome P450 enzymes (mainly CYP2C9, but also CYP3A4 and CYP2C8)[6] are involved in the metabolism of fluvastatin, which makes is less liable to interactions than most other statins. The main metabolite is inactive and is called "N-desisopropyl propionic acid" in the literature.[3][5]

93–95% of the drug are excreted via the feces, less than 2% of which in form of the original substance.[3]


Fluvastatin has also been shown to exhibit antiviral activity against hepatitis C virus in a study with 31 patients. This effect has been described as modest, variable, and often short-lived, by the authors.[7]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Neuvonen, PJ; Backman, JT; Niemi, M (2008). "Pharmacokinetic comparison of the potential over-the-counter statins simvastatin, lovastatin, fluvastatin and pravastatin". Clinical Pharmacokinetics. 47 (7): 463–74. doi:10.2165/00003088-200847070-00003. PMID 18563955. 
  2. ^ a b "Lescol, Lescol XR (fluvastatin) dosing, indications, interactions, adverse effects, and more". Medscape Reference. WebMD. Retrieved 18 March 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f Haberfeld, H, ed. (2015). Austria-Codex (in German). Vienna: Österreichischer Apothekerverlag. 
  4. ^ "International Nonproprietary Names for Pharmaceutical Substances (INN). Recommended International Nonproprietary Names (Rec. INN): List 30" (PDF). World Health Organization. 1990. Retrieved 29 November 2016. 
  5. ^ a b c Dinnendahl, V, Fricke, U, eds. (2012). "Arzneistoff-Profile" (in German). 2 (26 ed.). Eschborn, Germany: Govi Pharmazeutischer Verlag. ISBN 978-3-7741-9846-3. 
  6. ^ Lescol Monograph on Drugs.com.
  7. ^ Bader T, Fazili J, Madhoun M, et al. (April 2008). "Fluvastatin Inhibits Hepatitis C Replication in Humans". Am. J. Gastroenterol. 103 (6): 1383–9. doi:10.1111/j.1572-0241.2008.01876.x. PMID 18410471.