Consumer medicine information


Pravastatin sodium


Brand name


Active ingredient

Pravastatin sodium




Consumer medicine information (CMI) leaflet

Please read this leaflet carefully before you start using Lipostat.

What is in this leaflet

The information in this leaflet will answer some of the questions you may have about LIPOSTAT. This leaflet does not tell you everything about LIPOSTAT. This leaflet is no substitute for talking with your doctor or pharmacist.

All medicines have risks and benefits. Your doctor has weighed the risk of you taking LIPOSTAT against the benefits they expect it will have for you.

Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any concerns about taking this medicine.

Keep this leaflet with the medicine. You may need to read it again.

What is LIPOSTAT used for?

LIPOSTAT tablets contain pravastatin sodium, a drug that reduces the level of cholesterol in your blood and helps to protect you in other ways from heart attack or stroke. It is more effective if it is taken with a diet low in fat.

LIPOSTAT is used to treat people who have had a heart attack or an episode of unstable angina, or who have high blood cholesterol levels. In these people this medicine can reduce the risk of further heart disease, reduce the possibility of needing a bypass operation, or reduce the risk of having a stroke.

LIPOSTAT lowers high blood cholesterol levels. It is also used if your cholesterol levels are normal if you have had a heart attack or an episode of unstable angina.

LIPOSTAT is used to treat heterozygous familial hypercholesterolaemia in children and adolescent patients aged 8 years and older as an adjunct to diet and lifestyle changes.

If you have had a heart attack, an episode of unstable angina or you have too much cholesterol in your blood, then you have an increased risk of a blood clot forming in your blood vessels and causing a blockage. Blood vessels that become blocked in this way can lead to further heart disease, angina or stroke.

LIPOSTAT may be used to lower lipids in heart or kidney transplant patients, who are also being given immunosuppressive medicine.

It is used to treat long-term (chronic) conditions so it is important that you take your medicine every day.

LIPOSTAT is not addictive or habit forming. The medicine is only available upon prescription from your doctor.

Before you take it

When you must not take it

You should not take LIPOSTAT if you

  • have ever had an allergic reaction to pravastatin sodium or any other ingredient listed at the end of this leaflet
  • have ever had liver disease
  • have had muscle pain from any other medicine used to treat high cholesterol

Do not take this medicine after the expiry (exp) printed on the pack. If you take this medicine after the expiry, it may not work as well.

Do not take this medicine if the blisters show signs of tampering.

Talk to you doctor if you are not sure whether you should start taking this medicine.

Before you start to take it

Before you take LIPOSTAT for the first time you should tell your doctor if you

  • are taking other medicines or treatment
  • drink alcohol regularly
  • have ever had liver problems
  • have a problem with your kidneys
  • may become pregnant
  • are breastfeeding
  • suffer from hormonal disorders
  • suffer from central nervous system vascular lesions
  • suffer from allergies
  • suffer from homozygous familial hypercholesterolaemia, (a doctor will have told you this)
  • have increased triglycerides in your blood (a doctor will have told you this also)
  • suffer from muscle disease (including pain, tenderness or weakness).

Taking other medicines

Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including any that you buy without a prescription from your pharmacy, supermarket or health food shop.

It is especially important that you tell your doctor if you are taking any of the following:

  • any other medicine to lower cholesterol
  • cyclosporin
  • ketoconazole
  • spironolactone
  • cimetidine
  • gemfibrozil
  • cholestyramine and colestipol
  • antacids

Please discuss any of these with your doctor if you need to take any of them.

LIPOSTAT generally does not interfere with your ability to drive or operate machinery. However some people may experience dizziness, so you should be sure how you react to LIPOSTAT before you drive a car, or operate machinery.

How to take it

Follow all directions given to you by your doctor carefully. They may differ from the information contained in this leaflet.

Ask your doctor or pharmacist for help if you do not understand the instructions on the pack.

How much to take

Your doctor will decide on the correct dose of LIPOSTAT, this will depend on many factors including your cholesterol level. The dose for lowering cholesterol is 10 – 80mg, and is 40mg for reducing the possibility of a stroke or heart attack.

The recommended dose is 20 mg once daily for children 8 – 13 years of age and 40 mg once daily in adolescents 14 – 18 years of age, with heterozygous familial hypercholesterolaemia.

How to take it

Swallow the tablet whole with a glass of water.

When to take it

Take LIPOSTAT once a day in the evening before bed-time.

For best results, take LIPOSTAT on an empty stomach (ie. two or more hours after your last meal).

Take LIPOSTAT at about the same time each day. Taking it at the same time each day will have the best effect and will also help you remember when to take it.

If you forget to take it

If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the dose you missed and take your next dose when you are meant to.

Do not take a double dose to make up for the one you have missed. This may increase the risk of you getting unwanted side effects.

Ask your doctor of pharmacist if you are not sure what to do.

If you take too much (overdose)

Immediately telephone you doctor of Poisons Information Centre (telephone 13 11 26) for advice, or go to Accident and Emergency at the nearest hospital if you think that you, or anyone else may have taken too much LIPOSTAT. Do this even if there are no signs of discomfort or poisoning. You may need urgent medical attention.

While you are taking it

Things you must do

Immediately stop taking LIPOSTAT at the first sign of unexplained muscle pain, tenderness or weakness. Do this even if your symptoms have not been relieved.

Tell your doctor, dentists, and pharmacists who are treating you that you are taking this medicine, especially if you are being started on any new medicines.

Tell your doctor, surgeon, or anaesthetist that you are taking LIPOSTAT if you are about to undergo surgery or an operation.

Tell your doctor immediately if you become pregnant while taking this medicine.

Side effects

Tell your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible if you do not feel well while taking LIPOSTAT.

The most common side effects of LIPOSTAT are:

  • upset stomach
  • nausea
  • diarrhoea
  • wind
  • constipation
  • headache
  • dizziness.

You may also experience-

  • sleep disturbances including insomnia and nightmares
  • depression
  • sexual dysfunction
  • exceptional cases of interstitial lung disease, especially with long term therapy.

Tell your doctor as soon as possible if you have any of these side effects or any other problem while taking LIPOSTAT. Your doctor may arrange blood tests.

You must tell your doctor immediately, or go to the hospital, if you suffer any of the following:

  • unexplained muscle pain
  • tenderness or weakness.

It is also possible to suffer from an allergic reaction to LIPOSTAT.

Tell your doctor if you develop a skin rash or itchiness, fever, joint pain or shortness of breath.

After taking it


Keep the tablets in the blister until it is time to take them. If you take the tablets out of the blister they may not keep as well.

Keep the tablets in a cool dry place where the temperature stays below 25°C.

Do not store LIPOSTAT or any other medicine in the bathroom or near a sink. Do not leave it on the window sill of in the car. Heat and dampness will destroy some medicines.

Keep it in a place children cannot reach. A locked cupboard at least one and a half meters above the ground is a good place to keep medicines.


If your doctor tells you to stop taking LIPOSTAT or the expiry date is passed, ask your pharmacist what to do with any medicine that is left over.

Product description

What it looks like

LIPOSTAT 10mg tablet - engraved ‘10’ AUST R 118589

LIPOSTAT 20mg tablet - engraved ‘20’ AUST R 118590

LIPOSTAT 40mg tablet - engraved ‘40’ AUST R 118591

LIPOSTAT 80mg tablet – engraved ‘80’ AUST R 118592

LIPOSTAT tablets are yellow capsule shaped tablets supplied in blister packs containing 30 tablets per pack.

Active ingredients

LIPOSTAT 10mg tablets - 10mg pravastatin sodium

LIPOSTAT 20mg tablets - 20mg pravastatin sodium

LIPOSTAT 40mg tablets - 40mg pravastatin sodium

LIPOSTAT 80mg tablets - 80mg pravastatin sodium

Inactive ingredients

LIPOSTAT tablets also contain

  • lactose monohydrate
  • povidone
  • microcrystalline cellulose
  • croscarmellose sodium
  • magnesium stearate
  • magnesium oxide
  • iron oxide-yellow


Arrow Pharma Pty Ltd
15 – 17 Chapel Street
Cremorne Victoria 3121

This leaflet was revised in December 2020.

Published by MIMS February 2021


Brand name


Active ingredient

Pravastatin sodium




1 Name of Medicine

Pravastatin sodium.

2 Qualitative and Quantitative Composition

Lipostat tablets are available in 10 mg, 20 mg, 40 mg or 80 mg of pravastatin sodium.
Excipients with known effect: Sugars as lactose monohydrate.
For the full list of excipients, see Section 6.1 List of Excipients.

3 Pharmaceutical Form

Lipostat are yellow capsule shaped biconvex tablets. The 10 mg tablet (8.8 x 4.4 mm) is engraved "10" on one side, the 20 mg tablet (11.0 x 5.5 mm) is engraved "20" on one side, the 40 mg tablet (14.0 x 7.0 mm) is engraved "40" on one side, the 80 mg tablet (17.6 x 8.8 mm) is engraved "80" on one side.

4 Clinical Particulars

4.1 Therapeutic Indications

1. As an adjunct to diet for the treatment of hypercholesterolaemia. Prior to initiating therapy with pravastatin, secondary causes of hypercholesterolaemia (e.g. poorly controlled diabetes mellitus, hypothyroidism, nephrotic syndrome, dysproteinemias, obstructive liver disease, other drug therapy, alcoholism) should be identified and treated.
2. Lipostat is indicated in patients with previous myocardial infarction including those who have normal (4.0-5.5 mmol/L) serum cholesterol levels.
3. Lipostat is indicated in patients with unstable angina pectoris (see Section 5.1 Pharmacodynamic Properties, Clinical trials).
4. Lipostat is indicated as an adjunct to diet and lifestyle modification for the treatment of heterozygous familial hypercholesterolaemia in children and adolescent patients aged 8 years and older (see Section 5.1 Pharmacodynamic Properties, Clinical trials).

4.2 Dose and Method of Administration

Prior to initiating Lipostat (pravastatin sodium), the patient should be placed on a standard cholesterol lowering diet (AHA phase 1 or NCEP step 1) for a maximum of 3 to 6 months, depending upon the severity of the lipid elevation. Dietary therapy should be continued during treatment.

Adult patients.

The recommended starting dose is 10 to 20 mg once daily at bedtime. In primary hypercholesterolemic patients with significant renal or hepatic dysfunction, and in the elderly, a starting dose of 10 mg daily at bedtime is recommended. For maximum effect Lipostat should be taken at bedtime on an empty stomach.
Since the maximal effect of a given dose is seen within four weeks, periodic lipid determinations should be performed at this time and dosage adjusted according to the patient's response to therapy and established treatment guidelines. The recommended dosage range is 10 to 80 mg administered once a day at bedtime.
Lipostat may be given in divided doses.
For the prevention of coronary heart disease in patients with hypercholesterolaemia the dose is 40 mg per day as a single dose. The same dose is recommended for secondary prevention of MI in patients with average (normal) serum cholesterol.

Paediatric patients.

Children (ages 8 to 13 years inclusive).

The recommended dose is 20 mg once daily in children 8-13 years of age. Doses greater than 20 mg have not been studied in this patient population.

Adolescents (ages 14 to 18 years).

The recommended dose is 40 mg once daily in adolescents 14 to 18 years of age. Doses greater than 40 mg have not been studied in this patient population.
Children and adolescents treated with pravastatin should be re-evaluated in adulthood and appropriate changes made to their cholesterol lowering regimen to achieve adult goals for LDL-C.


In patients taking cyclosporin, with or without other immunosuppressive drugs, concomitantly with pravastatin, therapy should be initiated with 10 mg per day and titration to higher doses should be performed with caution.

Concomitant therapy.

Pravastatin has been administered concurrently with cholestyramine, colestipol, nicotinic acid, probucol and gemfibrozil. Preliminary data suggest that the addition of either probucol or gemfibrozil to therapy with lovastatin or pravastatin is not associated with greater reduction in LDL cholesterol than that achieved with lovastatin or pravastatin alone. No adverse reactions unique to the combination or in addition to those previously reported for each drug alone have been reported. Myopathy and rhabdomyolysis (with or without acute renal failure) have been reported when another HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor was used in combination with immunosuppressive drugs, gemfibrozil, erythromycin or lipid lowering doses of nicotinic acid. Concomitant therapy with HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors and these agents is generally not recommended. (See Section 4.4 Special Warnings and Precautions for Use, Skeletal muscle; Section 4.5 Interactions with Other Medicines and Other Forms of Interactions).
The efficacy and safety of pravastatin 80 mg in combination with other lipid lowering agents have not been investigated.

4.3 Contraindications

Hypersensitivity to any component of this medication.
Active liver disease or unexplained persistent elevations in liver function tests.

Use in pregnancy.

Atherosclerosis is a chronic process and discontinuation of lipid lowering drugs during pregnancy should have little impact on the outcome of long-term therapy of primary hypercholesterolaemia. Cholesterol and other products of cholesterol biosynthesis are essential components for foetal development (including synthesis of steroids and cell membranes). Since HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors decrease cholesterol synthesis and possibly the synthesis of other biologically active substances derived from cholesterol, they may cause foetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman. Therefore, HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors are contraindicated during pregnancy.
Safety in pregnant women has not been established. Although pravastatin was not teratogenic in rats at doses as high as 1,000 mg/kg daily nor in rabbits at doses of up to 50 mg/kg daily, Lipostat should be administered to women of childbearing potential only when such patients are highly unlikely to conceive and have been informed of the potential hazards. If the woman becomes pregnant while taking Lipostat, it should be discontinued and the patient advised again as to the potential hazards to the foetus.

Women of childbearing potential.

Lipostat should not be administered to women of childbearing age unless on an effective contraception and are highly unlikely to conceive and have been informed of the potential hazards. If the patient becomes pregnant while taking this class of drug, therapy should be discontinued and the patient again advised of the potential hazard to the foetus.
Concomitant use of fusidic acid (see Section 4.4 Special Warnings and Precautions for Use; Section 4.5 Interactions with Other Medicines and Other Forms of Interactions).

4.4 Special Warnings and Precautions for Use


Pravastatin may elevate creatine phosphokinase and transminase levels (see Section 4.8 Adverse Effects (Undesirable Effects)). This should be considered in the differential diagnosis of chest pain in a patient on therapy with pravastatin.

Homozygous familial hypercholesterolaemia.

Pravastatin has not been evaluated in patients with rare homozygous familial hypercholesterolaemia. In this group of patients, it has been reported that HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors are less effective because the patients lack functional LDL receptors.


Lipostat has only a moderate triglyceride lowering effect and it is not indicated where hypertriglyceridemia is the abnormality of most concern (i.e. hypertriglyceridemia types I, IV and V).

Thyroid function.

Serum thyroxine was studied in 661 patients who were administered pravastatin in five controlled clinical trials. From observations of up to two years in duration, no clear association was found between pravastatin use and changes in thyroxine levels.

Skeletal muscle.

Myalgia, myopathy and rhabdomyolysis have been reported with the use of HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors. Uncomplicated myalgia has been reported in pravastatin treated patients. Myopathy, defined as muscle aching or muscle weakness in conjunction with increases in creatine phosphokinase (CPK) values to greater than 10 times the upper limit of normal, was reported to be possibly due to pravastatin in < 0.1% of patients in clinical trials. Rhabdomyolysis with renal dysfunction secondary to myoglobinuria has also very rarely been reported with pravastatin. However, myopathy should be considered in any patients with diffuse myalgia, muscle tenderness or weakness and/or marked elevation of CPK. Patients should be advised to report promptly unexplained muscle pain, tenderness or weakness. Pravastatin therapy should be discontinued if markedly elevated CPK levels occur or myopathy is suspected or diagnosed. (Pravastatin therapy should also be temporarily withheld in any patient experiencing an acute or serious condition predisposing to the development of renal failure secondary to rhabdomyolysis, e.g. sepsis, hypotension, major surgery, trauma, severe metabolic, endocrine or electrolyte disorders, or uncontrolled epilepsy). CPK levels should be checked at 6 to 12 month intervals in paediatric patients.
The risk of myopathy during treatment with another HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor is increased with concurrent therapy with either fibrates, cyclosporin, erythromycin or niacin. The use of fibrates alone is occasionally associated with myopathy. In a limited size clinical trial of combined therapy with pravastatin (40 mg/day) and gemfibrozil (1200 mg/day) myopathy was not reported, although a trend towards CPK elevations and musculoskeletal symptoms was seen. The combined use of pravastatin and fibrates should generally be avoided.
Myopathy has not been observed in 3 post-transplant clinical trials which had involved a total of 100 patients (76 cardiac and 24 renal). Some patients have been treated for up to 2 years with pravastatin (10-40 mg) and cyclosporin and either with or without other immunosuppressants. In a separate lipid lowering trial involving 158 patients, no myopathy has been reported with pravastatin in combination with niacin.
Lipostat must not be coadministered with fusidic acid. There have been reports of rhabdomyolysis (including some fatalities) in patients receiving this combination. In patients where the use of systemic fusidic acid is considered essential, statin treatment should be discontinued throughout the duration of fusidic acid treatment. The patient should be advised to seek medical advice immediately if they experience any symptoms of muscle weakness, pain or tenderness. Lipostat therapy may be reintroduced seven days after the last dose of fusidic acid.

Endocrine function.

HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors interfere with cholesterol synthesis and lower circulating cholesterol levels and, as such, might theoretically blunt adrenal or gonadal steroid hormone production. Results of clinical trials with pravastatin in males and postmenopausal females were inconsistent with regard to possible effects of the drug on basal steroid hormone levels. In a study of 21 males, the mean testosterone response to human chorionic gonadotropin was significantly reduced (p < 0.004) after 16 weeks of treatment with 40 mg of pravastatin. However, the percentage of patients showing a ≥ 50% rise in plasma testosterone after human chorionic gonadotropin stimulation did not change significantly after therapy in these patients. The effects of HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors on spermatogenesis and fertility have not been studied in adequate numbers of patients. The effects, if any, of pravastatin on the pituitary gonadal axis in premenopausal females are unknown. Patients treated with pravastatin who display clinical evidence of endocrine dysfunction should be evaluated appropriately. Caution should also be exercised if an HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor or other agent used to lower cholesterol levels is administered to patients also receiving other drugs (e.g. ketoconazole, spironolactone, cimetidine) that may diminish the levels of activity of steroid hormones.
Increases in HbA1c and fasting serum glucose levels have been reported with HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors, including pravastatin.
In a placebo controlled study of 214 paediatric patients with HeFH, of which 106 were treated with pravastatin (20 mg in the children aged 8-13 years and 40 mg in the adolescents aged 14-18 years) for two years, there were no detectable differences seen in any of the endocrine parameters [ACTH, cortisol, DHEAS, FSH, LH, TSH, estradiol (girls) or testosterone (boys)] relative to placebo. There were no detectable differences seen in height and weight changes, testicular volume changes or Tanner score relative to placebo.

CNS toxicity.

CNS vascular lesions, characterized by perivascular haemorrhage and edema and mononuclear cell infiltration of perivascular spaces, were seen in dogs treated with pravastatin at a dose of 25 mg/kg/day a dose that produced a plasma drug level about 50 times higher than the mean drug level in humans taking 40 mg/day. Similar CNS vascular lesions have been observed with several other drugs in this class.
A chemically similar drug in this class produced optic nerve degeneration (Wallerian degeneration of retinogeniculate fibres) in clinically normal dogs in a dose dependent fashion starting at 60 mg/kg/day, a dose that produced mean plasma drug levels about 30 times higher than the mean drug level in humans taking the highest recommended dose (as measured by total enzyme inhibitory activity). This same drug also produced vestibulocochlear Wallerian-like degeneration and retinal ganglion cell chromatolysis in dogs treated for 14 weeks at 180 mg/kg/day, a dose which resulted in a mean plasma drug level similar to that seen with the 60 mg/kg dose.


With lovastatin an apparent hypersensitivity syndrome has been reported rarely which has included one or more of the following features: anaphylaxis, angioedema, lupus-like syndrome, polymyalgia rheumatica, thrombocytopenia, leukopenia, haemolytic anaemia, positive antinuclear antibody (ANA), erythrocytes sedimentation rate (ESR) increase, arthritis, arthralgia, urticaria, asthenia, photosensitivity, fever and malaise. Although to date hypersensitivity syndrome has not been described as such, in few instances eosinophilia and skin eruptions appear to be associated with Lipostat treatment. If hypersensitivity is suspected Lipostat should be discontinued. Patients should be advised to report promptly any signs of hypersensitivity such as angiodema, urticaria, photosensitivity, polyarthralgia, fever, malaise.

Interstitial lung disease.

Exceptional cases of interstitial lung disease have been reported with some statins, especially with long-term therapy. Presenting features can include dyspnoea, nonproductive cough and deterioration in general health (fatigue, weight loss and fever). If it is suspected a patient has developed interstitial lung disease, statin therapy should be discontinued.

Immune mediated necrotizing myopathy.

There have been rare reports of an immune-mediated necrotizing myopathy (IMNM) during or after treatment with some statins. IMNM is clinically characterized by persistent proximal muscle weakness and elevated serum creatinine kinase, which persists despite discontinuation of statin treatment.

Use in hepatic impairment.

HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors have been associated with biochemical abnormalities of liver function. As with other lipid-lowering agents, marked persistent increases (greater than three times the upper limit of normal) in serum transaminases were seen in 1.3% of patients treated with pravastatin in the U.S. for an average period of 18 months. In clinical trials these elevations were usually not associated with clinical signs and symptoms of liver disease and usually declined to pre-treatment levels upon discontinuation of therapy. Only two patients had marked persistent abnormalities possibly attributable to therapy.
The significance of these changes, which usually appear during the first few months of treatment initiation, is not known. In the majority of patients treated with pravastatin in clinical trials, these increased values declined to pre-treatment levels despite continuation of therapy at the same dose. These biochemical findings are usually asymptomatic although worldwide experience indicates that anorexia, weakness, and/or abdominal pain may also be present in rare patients.
As with other lipid-lowering agents, liver function tests should be performed periodically. Special attention should be given to patients who develop increased transaminase levels and those on higher doses of pravastatin. Liver function tests should be repeated to confirm an elevation and subsequently monitored at more frequent intervals. If increases in alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) equal or exceed three times the upper limit of normal and persist, therapy should be discontinued.
Caution should be exercised when pravastatin is administered to patients with a history of liver disease or heavy alcohol ingestion. Such patients should be closely monitored, started at the lower end of the recommended dosing range, and titrated to the desired therapeutic effect.

Use in renal impairment.

A single 20 mg oral dose of pravastatin was administered to 24 patients with varying degrees of renal impairment (as determined by creatinine clearance). No effect was observed on the pharmacokinetics of pravastatin or its 3x-hydroxy isomeric metabolite (SQ 31,908). A small increase was seen in mean AUC values and half-life (1.5) for the inactive enzymatic ring hydroxylation metabolite (SQ 31,945). Given this small sample size, the dosage administered, and the degree of individual variability, patients with renal impairment who are receiving pravastatin should be closely monitored.

Use in the elderly.

Pharmacokinetic evaluation of pravastatin in patients over the age of 65 years indicates an increased AUC. There were no reported increases in the incidence of adverse effects in these or other studies involving patients in that age group. As a precautionary measure, the lowest dose should be administered initially.

Paediatric use.

The safety and effectiveness of Lipostat in children and adolescents with heterozygous familial hypercholesterolaemia from 8-18 years of age have been evaluated in a placebo-controlled study of 2 years duration. Patients treated with pravastatin had an adverse experience profile generally similar to that observed in adults with influenza and headache commonly reported in both treatment groups. (See Section 4.8 Adverse Effects (Undesirable Effects), Paediatric patients). Doses greater than 40 mg have not been studied in this population. For dosing information see Section 4.2 Dose and Method of Administration, Adult patients and Paediatric patients.
Double-blind, placebo-controlled pravastatin studies in children less than 8 years of age have not been conducted.

Effects on laboratory tests.

See Section 4.8 Adverse Effects (Undesirable Effects), Laboratory test abnormalities.

4.5 Interactions with Other Medicines and Other Forms of Interactions


In a crossover study in 20 healthy male volunteers given concomitant single doses of pravastatin and gemfibrozil, there was a significant decrease in urinary excretion and protein binding of pravastatin. In addition, there was a significant increase in AUC, Cmax and Tmax for the pravastatin metabolite SQ 31,906. Combination therapy with pravastatin and gemfibrozil is generally not recommended.

Cholestyramine/ colestipol.

When pravastatin was administered one hour before or four hours after cholestyramine or one hour before colestipol and a standard meal, there was no clinically significant decrease in bioavailability or therapeutic effect. Concomitant administration resulted in an approximately 40-50% decrease in the mean AUC of pravastatin (see Section 4.2 Dose and Method of Administration).


In a single dose study, pravastatin levels were found to be increased in cardiac patients receiving cyclosporin. In a second multidose study, in renal transplant patients receiving cyclosporin, pravastatin levels were higher than those seen in healthy volunteer studies. This does not appear to be a metabolic interaction involving P450 3A4.


With concomitant administration, pravastatin did not alter the plasma protein binding of warfarin. Chronic dosing of the two drugs did not produce any changes in the anticoagulant status.


Clearance by the cytochrome P450 system was unaltered by concomitant administration of pravastatin. Since pravastatin does not appear to induce hepatic drug metabolizing enzymes, it is not expected that any significant interaction of pravastatin with other drugs (e.g. phenytoin, quinidine) metabolized by the cytochrome P450 system will occur.

Other drugs.

Unlike simvastatin and atorvastatin, pravastatin is not significantly metabolised in vivo by cytochrome P450 3A4. Therefore, plasma concentrations of pravastatin are not significantly elevated when cytochrome P450 3A4 is inhibited by agents such as diltiazem and itraconazole.
In interaction studies with aspirin, gemfibrozil, nicotinic acid or probucol, no statistically significant differences in bioavailability were seen when Lipostat was administered. In other interaction studies antacids (one hour prior to Lipostat) reduce and cimetidine increase the bioavailability of pravastatin; these changes were not statistically significant.
The risk of myopathy including rhabdomyolysis may be increased by the concomitant administration of Lipostat with systemic fusidic acid. Coadministration of this combination may cause increased plasma concentrations of both agents. The mechanism of this interaction (whether it is pharmacodynamics or pharmacokinetic, or both) is yet unknown. There have been reports of rhabdomyolysis (including some fatalities) in patients receiving this combination. If treatment with fusidic acid is necessary, Lipostat treatment should be discontinued throughout the duration of the fusidic acid treatment. See Section 4.4 Special Warnings and Precautions for Use.
During clinical trials, no noticeable drug interactions were reported when pravastatin was added to diuretics, antihypertensives, digitalis, angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors, calcium channel blocker, beta blockers or nitroglycerins.

4.6 Fertility, Pregnancy and Lactation

Effects on fertility.

In a study in rats, with a daily dose up to 500 mg/kg pravastatin did not produce any adverse effects on fertility or general reproductive performance.
The clinical significance of these findings is not clear.
(Category D)
Drugs which have caused, are suspected to have caused or may be expected to cause, an increased incidence of human foetal malformation or irreversible damage. These drugs may also have adverse pharmacological effects. Accompanying texts should be consulted for further details.
HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors are contraindicated in pregnancy. The risk of foetal injury outweighs the benefits of HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor therapy during pregnancy.
In two series of 178 and 143 cases where pregnant women took HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor (statin) during the first trimester of pregnancy serious foetal abnormalities occurred in several cases. These included limb and neurological defects, spontaneous abortions and foetal deaths. The exact risk of injury to the foetus occurring after a pregnant woman is exposed to a HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor has not been determined. The current data do not indicate that the risk of foetal injury in women exposed to HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors is high. If a pregnant woman is exposed to HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor she should be informed of the possibility of foetal injury and discuss the implications with her pregnancy specialist (see Section 4.3 Contraindications).
A negligible amount of pravastatin is excreted in human breast milk. Because of the potential for adverse reactions in nursing infants, if the mother is being treated with Lipostat, nursing should be discontinued.

4.7 Effects on Ability to Drive and Use Machines

The effects of this medicine on a person's ability to drive and use machines were not assessed as part of its registration.

4.8 Adverse Effects (Undesirable Effects)

Lipostat is generally well tolerated. Adverse events, both clinical and laboratory, are usually mild and transient. In all clinical studies (controlled and uncontrolled), approximately 2% of patients were discontinued from treatment due to adverse experiences attributable to Lipostat.
The safety and tolerability of pravastatin at a dose of 80 mg in two controlled trials, with a mean exposure of 8.6 months, were similar to that of pravastatin at lower doses. However, musculoskeletal adverse events, gastrointestinal adverse events and CK elevations are slightly more common with an 80 mg dose.
In seven randomized double blind placebo controlled trials involving over 21,500 patients treated with pravastatin 40 mg (N = 10,784) or placebo (N = 10,719), the safety and tolerability in the pravastatin group was comparable to that of the placebo group. Over 19,000 patients were followed for a median of 4.8-5.9 years, while the remaining patients were followed for two years or more.
Clinical adverse events probably or possibly related, or of uncertain relationship to therapy, occurring in at least 0.5% of patients treated with pravastatin or placebo in these long-term morbidity/ mortality trials are shown in Table 1.


In 820 patients treated with Lipostat for periods up to a year or more, there was no evidence that Lipostat was associated with cataract formation. In placebo controlled studies, 294 patients (92 on placebo/ control), 202 on Lipostat) were evaluated using the Lens Opacity Classification System (a sophisticated method of lens assessment) at six months and one year following the initiation of treatment. When compared with the baseline evaluation, the final examination revealed the following (see Table 2):
There was no statistically significant difference in the change in lens opacity between the control and pravastatin treatment groups during this time interval.
Comparative data indicate that pravastatin is 100-fold less potent than both lovastatin and simvastatin (other HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors) in inhibiting cholesterol biosynthesis in rat lens and 40-fold less potent than lovastatin in inhibiting cholesterol biosynthesis in rabbit lens. Furthermore, unlike lovastatin and simvastatin, cataracts have not been observed in animal studies (beagle dogs) when chronic oral doses of pravastatin were administered for two years.
In three large placebo controlled trials West of Scotland Study [WOS], Cholesterol and Recurrent Events Study [CARE], Long-Term Intervention with Pravastatin in Ischaemic Disease [LIPID] (see Section 5.1 Pharmacodynamic Properties, Clinical trials) involving a total of 19,786 patients treated with pravastatin (N = 9895) or placebo (N = 9873), the safety and tolerability profile in the pravastatin group was comparable to that of the placebo group over the median 4.8-5.9 years of follow-up.
The following effects have been reported with drugs in this class; not all the effects listed below have necessarily been associated with pravastatin therapy.


Myopathy, rhabdomyolysis, arthralgia.


Examples of signs and symptoms are muscle weakness, muscle swelling, muscle pain, dark urine, myoglobinuria, elevated serum creatine kinase, acute renal failure, cardiac arrhythmia. Rhabdomyolysis may be fatal. (See Section 4.3 Contraindications; Section 4.4 Special Warnings and Precautions for Use; Section 4.5 Interactions with Other Medicines and Other Forms of Interactions.)


Dysfunction of certain cranial nerves (including alteration of taste, impairment of extraocular movement, facial paresis), tremor, vertigo, memory loss, paraesthesia, peripheral neuropathy, peripheral nerve palsy, anxiety, insomnia, depression.

Hypersensitivity reactions.

An apparent hypersensitivity syndrome has been reported rarely which has included one or more of the following features: anaphylaxis, angioedema, lupus erythematous-like syndrome, polymyalgia rheumatica, dermatomyositis, vasculitis, purpura, thrombocytopenia, leukopenia, haemolytic anaemia, positive ANA, ESR increase, eosinophilia, arthritis, arthralgia, urticaria, asthenia, photosensitivity, fever, chills, flushing, malaise, dyspnea, toxic epidermal necrolysis, erythema multiforme, including Stevens-Johnson syndrome.


Pancreatitis, hepatitis, including chronic active hepatitis, cholestatic jaundice, fatty change in liver and, rarely, cirrhosis, fulminant hepatic necrosis and hepatoma; anorexia, vomiting.


Alopecia, pruritus. A variety of skin changes (e.g. nodules, discolouration, dryness of skin/ mucous membranes, changes to hair/ nails) have been reported.


Gynecomastia, loss of libido, erectile dysfunction.


Progression of cataracts (lens opacities), ophthalmoplegia.

Laboratory abnormalities.

Elevated transaminases, alkaline phosphatase and bilirubin; thyroid function abnormalities.

Sleep disturbances including insomnia and nightmares.


Sexual dysfunction.

Exceptional cases of interstitial lung disease, especially with long-term therapy.

Laboratory test abnormalities.

Increases in serum transaminase (ALT, AST) values and CPK have been observed.
Transient, asymptomatic eosinophilia has been reported. Eosinophil counts usually returned to normal despite continued therapy. Anaemia, thrombocytopenia and leukopenia have been reported with HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors.

Paediatric use.

In a two (2) year double blind placebo controlled study involving 100 boys and 114 girls with HeFH, there were no serious adverse events or discontinuations for adverse events attributable to pravastatin. Pravastatin was generally well tolerated in paediatric patients and the adverse reaction profile was similar to that observed in adults. The incidence of headache was 23.6% vs 15.7%; musculoskeletal pain 16.0% vs 7.4%; CPK elevations greater than four times the pretreatment level 3.8% vs 2.8% and dizziness 5.7% vs 0%, in pravastatin treated patients vs placebo treated patients, respectively. (See Section 5.1 Pharmacodynamic Properties, Clinical trials, Paediatric study; Section 4.4 Special Warnings and Precautions for Use, Paediatric use.)

Reporting suspected adverse effects.

Reporting suspected adverse reactions after registration of the medicinal product is important. It allows continued monitoring of the benefit-risk balance of the medicinal product. Healthcare professionals are asked to report any suspected adverse reactions at

4.9 Overdose

There has been limited experience with overdosage of pravastatin. To date, there are two reported cases, both of which were asymptomatic and not associated with clinical laboratory test abnormalities. Of these two cases, one occurred in a clinical trial patient who ingested 3 g pravastatin; the other ingested 280 mg pravastatin, as marketed tablets. Both cases also involved overdose of concomitant medications.
Should overdose occur, treat symptomatically and institute supportive measures as required.
For information on the management of overdose, contact the Poisons Information Centre on 13 11 26 (Australia).

5 Pharmacological Properties

5.1 Pharmacodynamic Properties

Mechanism of action.

Lipostat produces its lipid lowering effect in two ways. First, as a consequence of its reversible inhibition of HMG-CoA reductase activity, it affects modest reductions in intracellular pools of cholesterol. This results in an increase in the number of LDL receptors on cell surfaces and enhanced receptor mediated catabolism and clearance of circulating LDL. Second, pravastatin inhibits LDL production by inhibiting hepatic synthesis of VLDL, the LDL precursor.
Clinical and pathologic studies have shown that elevated levels of total cholesterol (total-C), low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) and apolipoprotein B (a membrane transport complex for LDL) promote human atherosclerosis. Similarly decreased levels of HDL cholesterol (HDL-C) and its transport complex, apolipoprotein A, are associated with the development of atherosclerosis. Epidemiologic investigations have established that cardiovascular morbidity and mortality vary directly with the level of total-C and LDL-C and inversely with the level of HDL-C. In multicentre clinical trials those pharmacologic and/or nonpharmacologic interventions that lowered total-C and LDL-C and increased HDL-C reduced the rate of cardiovascular events (both fatal and nonfatal myocardial infarctions) and improved survival. In both normal volunteers and patients with hypercholesterolaemia, treatment with Lipostat reduced total-C, LDL-C, apolipoprotein B, VLDL-C and TG while increasing HDL-C and apolipoprotein A.
The effects of HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors on Lp(a), fibrinogen and certain other independent biochemical risk markers for coronary heart disease are unknown.
Pravastatin is a hydrophilic HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor.

Clinical trials.


In controlled trials in patients with moderate hypercholesterolaemia with or without atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, pravastatin monotherapy reduced the progression of atherosclerosis and cardiovascular events (e.g. fatal and nonfatal MI) or death.
Lipostat is highly effective in reducing total-C and LDL-C in patients with heterozygous familial, familial combined and nonfamilial (non-FH) forms of hypercholesterolaemia. A therapeutic response is seen within 1 week and the maximum response usually is achieved within 4 weeks. This response is maintained during extended periods of therapy.
A single daily dose administered in the evening is as effective as the same total daily dose given twice a day. Once daily administration in the evening appears to be marginally more effective than once daily administration in the morning, perhaps because hepatic cholesterol is synthesized mainly at night.
In multicentre, double blind, placebo controlled studies of patients with primary hypercholesterolaemia, treatment with pravastatin significantly decreased total-C, LDL-C and total-C/HDL-C and LDL-C/HDL-C ratios, decreased VLDL-C and plasma TG levels, and increased HDL-C. Whether administered once or twice daily, a clear dose response relationship (i.e. lipid lowering) was seen by 1 to 2 weeks following the initiation of treatment. (See Table 3.)
In a pooled analysis of two multicenter, double blind, placebo controlled studies in patients with primary hypercholesterolemia, treatment with pravastatin at a daily dose of 80 mg increased HDL-C and significantly decreased total-C, LDL-C and TG from baseline after 6 weeks. The efficacy results of the individual studies were consistent with the pooled data. Mean percent changes from baseline after 6 weeks of treatment were: total-C (-27%), LDL-C (-37%), HDL-C (+3%) and TG (-19%), with placebo subtracted changes for LDL-C and TG of -36% and -20%, respectively.
Lipostat, in combination with diet, has been shown to reduce the incidence of cardiovascular events (e.g. fatal and nonfatal myocardial infarction). The mechanism responsible for the beneficial effects of Lipostat in hypercholesterolaemic patients is not known.


In the Pravastatin Limitation of Atherosclerosis in the Coronary Arteries (PLAC I) study, the effect of pravastatin therapy on coronary atherosclerosis was assessed by coronary angiography in patients with coronary disease and moderate hypercholesterolaemia (baseline LDL-C range = 3.4-4.9 mmol/L). In this double blind, multicentre, controlled clinical trial, in which 408 patients were randomized, angiograms were evaluated at baseline and at three years in 264 patients. No statistically significant difference between pravastatin and placebo was seen for the primary endpoint (per patient change in mean coronary artery diameter), or for one of two secondary endpoints (change in percent lumen diameter stenosis). For the other secondary endpoint (change in minimum lumen diameter), statistically significant slowing of disease was seen in the pravastatin treatment group (p = 0.02). Although the trial was not designed to assess clinical coronary events, for myocardial infarction (fatal and nonfatal), the event rate was reduced in the pravastatin group by a statistically significant margin (10.5% for placebo versus 4.2% for pravastatin, p = 0.0498).
In another 3 year, double blind, placebo controlled, randomized trial in patients with mild to moderate hyperlipidaemia, the Pravastatin, Lipids and Atherosclerosis in the Carotids (PLAC II) study, the effect of pravastatin therapy on carotid atherosclerosis was assessed by B-mode ultrasound. No statistically significant differences were seen in the carotid bifurcation, internal carotid artery, or all segments combined (the primary endpoint); pravastatin did reduce the increase in wall thickness in the common carotid artery (p = 0.02). Although the study was not designed to assess cardiovascular events or mortality, the event rates were reduced in the pravastatin treatment group by statistically significant margins for two combined endpoints: nonfatal or fatal myocardial infarction (13.3% placebo versus 2.7% for pravastatin, p = 0.018) and nonfatal myocardial infarction or all deaths (17.1% for placebo versus 6.7% for pravastatin, p = 0.049).
Analysis of pooled events from PLAC I and PLAC II showed that treatment with pravastatin was associated with a 67% reduction in the event rate of fatal and nonfatal myocardial infarction (11.4% for placebo versus 3.8% for pravastatin, p = 0.003) and 55% for the combined endpoint of nonfatal myocardial infarction or death from any cause (13.8% placebo versus 6.2% pravastatin, p = 0.009). Divergence in the cumulative event rate curves began at one year and was statistically significant at 2 years.
In consideration of the results of Pravastatin Limitation of Atherosclerosis in Coronary and Carotid Arteries Trials (PLAC I and PLAC II), it is important to be aware of the limitations of angiography in defining the extent and site of atherosclerosis plaque. Acute coronary events tend to occur not at the site of severe stenosis, but at lesser stenoses which are lipid rich and more prone to rupture. In addition, angiographic changes are not properly validated endpoints to measure morbidity and/or mortality in patients with atherosclerotic coronary artery disease associated with hypercholesterolaemia.

Prevention of coronary heart disease.

Lipostat is effective in reducing the risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) death (fatal MI and sudden death) plus nonfatal MI and improving survival in hypercholesterolemic male patients without previous myocardial infarction.
The West of Scotland Study (WOS) was a randomised, double blind, placebo controlled trial among 6595 male patients (45-64 years) with moderate to severe hypercholesterolaemia (LDL-C = 4-6.6 mmol/L), a total fasting cholesterol > 6.5 mmol/L and without a previous MI. Patients were treated with standard care, including dietary advice and either pravastatin 40 mg (n = 3302) or placebo (n = 3293) each evening for a median duration of 4.8 years. The study was designed to assess the effect of pravastatin on fatal and nonfatal coronary heart disease (CHD). Significant results (p < 0.05) are given in Table 4.
The effect on the combined endpoint of coronary heart disease death or nonfatal myocardial infarction was evident as early as six months after beginning pravastatin therapy.
There was no statistically significant difference between treatment groups in noncardiovascular mortality, including cancer death. (See Table 5 and Figure 1.)

Myocardial infarction and unstable angina pectoris.

Lipostat is effective in reducing the risk of a fatal coronary event and nonfatal MI in patients with a previous myocardial infarction and average (normal) serum cholesterol, who are > 65 years of age and whose serum LDL cholesterol is > 3.36 mmol/L. Lipostat is effective in reducing the frequency of stroke in patients with a previous myocardial infarction and average (normal) serum cholesterol. Lipostat is also effective in reducing the risk of total mortality, CHD death and recurrent coronary events (including myocardial infarction) in patients with unstable angina pectoris.
In the Cholesterol and Recurrent Events (CARE) study the effect of pravastatin on coronary heart disease death and nonfatal MI was assessed in 4159 men and women with average (normal) serum cholesterol levels (baseline mean total-C = 209 mg/dL) (5.4 mmol/L) and who had experienced a myocardial infarction in the preceding 3-20 months. Patients in this double blind, placebo controlled study participated for an average of 4.9 years. Treatment with pravastatin significantly reduced the rate of a recurrent coronary event (either CHD death or nonfatal MI) by 24% (p = 0.003). This risk reduction was statistically significant in those patients aged 65 years of age or older and in those who demonstrated a serum LDL cholesterol of > 3.36 mmol/L. The reduction in risk for this combined endpoint was significant for both men and women. The risk of undergoing revascularisation procedures (coronary artery bypass grafting or percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty) was significantly reduced by 27% (p < 0.001) in the pravastatin treated patients. Pravastatin also significantly reduced the risk for stroke by 32% (p = 0.032) and stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA) combined by 26% (p = 0.025). At baseline, 84% of the patients were receiving aspirin and 82% were taking antihypertensive medications. The comparison of the primary, secondary and tertiary endpoints for the study are summarised in Table 6.
In the Long-Term Intervention with Pravastatin in Ischemic Disease (LIPID) study, the effect of pravastatin 40 mg daily was assessed in 9014 men and women with normal to elevated serum cholesterol levels (baseline total-C = 4.0-7.0 mmol/L; mean total-C = 5.66 mmol/L; mean total-C/HDL-C ratio = 5.9) and who had experienced either a myocardial infarction or had been hospitalised for unstable angina pectoris in the preceding 3-36 months. Patients with a wide range of baseline levels of triglycerides were included (≤ 5.0 mmol/L) and enrollment was not restricted by baseline levels of HDL cholesterol. At baseline, 82% of patients were receiving aspirin, 76% were receiving antihypertensive medication and 41% had undergone myocardial revascularisation. Patients in this multicentre, double blind, placebo controlled study participated for a mean of 5.6 years (median = 5.9 years). Treatment with pravastatin significantly reduced the risk for CHD death by 24% (p = 0.0004). The risk for coronary events (either CHD death or nonfatal MI) was significantly reduced by 24% (p < 0.0001) in the pravastatin treated patients. The risk for fatal or nonfatal myocardial infarction was reduced by 29% (p < 0.0001). Pravastatin reduced both the risk for total mortality by 23% (p < 0.0001) and cardiovascular mortality by 25% (p < 0.0001). The risk for undergoing myocardial revascularisation procedures (coronary artery bypass grafting or percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty) was significantly reduced by 20% (p < 0.0001) in the pravastatin treated patients. Pravastatin also significantly reduced the risk for stroke by 19% (p = 0.0477). Treatment with pravastatin significantly reduced the number of days of hospitalisation per 100 person years of follow-up by 15% (p < 0.001). The prespecified subgroup (age, sex, hypertensives, diabetics, smokers, lipid subgroups) analyses were conducted using the combined endpoint of CHD and nonfatal MI. The study was not powered to examine results within each subgroup but formal testing for heterogeneity of treatment effect was undertaken across each of the subgroups and no significant heterogeneity was found (p ≥ 0.08), i.e. a consistent treatment effect was seen with pravastatin therapy across all patient subgroups and event parameters. Among patients who qualified with a history of myocardial infarction, pravastatin significantly reduced the risk for total mortality by 25% (p = 0.0016); for CHD mortality by 23% (p = 0.004); for CHD events by 22% (p = 0.002) and for fatal or nonfatal MI by 25% (p = 0.0008). Among patients who qualified with a history of hospitalisation for unstable angina pectoris, pravastatin significantly reduced the risk for total mortality by 26% (p = 0.0035; for CHD mortality by 26% (p = 0.0358); for CHD events by 29% (p = 0.0001) and for fatal or nonfatal MI by 37% (p = 0.0003). (See Table 7.)

Solid organ transplantation.

The safety and efficacy of pravastatin treatment in patients receiving immunosuppressive therapy following kidney and cardiac transplantation were assessed in two prospective randomised controlled trials. Patients were treated concurrently with either 20 mg or 40 mg pravastatin and a standard immunosuppressive regimen of cyclosporin and prednisone. Cardiac transplant patients also received azathioprine as part of their immunosuppressive regimen. Plasma lipid levels were reduced in patients who received pravastatin. In the patients who received pravastatin in these trials (n = 71) no significant increases in creatinine phosphokinase or hepatic transaminases were observed and there were no cases of myositis and rhabdomyolysis. However, there is limited data available on the incidence of these adverse events in transplant patients and physicians should consider the risk of myositis and rhabdomyolysis when prescribing pravastatin therapy for hyperlipidaemia in transplant patients.

Paediatric study.

A double blind placebo controlled study in 214 patients (100 boys and 114 girls) with heterozygous familial hypercholesterolaemia (HeFH), aged 8-18 years, was conducted for two (2) years. The children (aged 8-13 years) were randomised to placebo (n = 63) or 20 mg of pravastatin daily (n = 65) and the adolescents (aged 14-18 years) were randomised to placebo (n = 45) or 40 mg of pravastatin daily (n = 41). Inclusion in the study required an LDL-C level > 95th percentile for age and sex and one parent with either a clinical or molecular diagnosis of familial hypercholesterolaemia. The mean baseline LDL-C value was 239 mg/dL (6.2 mmol/L) and 237 mg/dL (6.1 mmol/L) in the pravastatin (range: 151-405 mg/dL, 3.9-10.5 mmol/L) and placebo (range: 154-375 mg/dL, 4.0-9.7 mmol/L) groups, respectively. The mean baseline total cholesterol and apolipoprotein B levels in the pravastatin group were: 302 mg/dL (7.8 mmol/L) and 141 mg/dL (1.4 g/L), respectively; mean baseline total cholesterol and apolipoprotein B levels in the placebo group were: 299 mg/dL (7.7 mmol/L) and 140 mg/dL (1.4 g/L), respectively.
The treatment criteria for heterozygous familial hypercholesterolaemia in children and adolescent patients aged 8 years and older are:
LDLc consistently greater than 95th percentile for age and gender and;
an adequate trial of a lipid lowering diet; and
one parent with a clinical or molecular diagnosis of familial hypercholesterolaemia.
Pravastatin significantly decreased plasma levels of LDL-C, total-C and apolipoprotein B in both children and adolescents (see Table 8). The effect of pravastatin treatment in the two age groups was similar.
The safety and efficacy of pravastatin doses above 40 mg daily have not been studied in children. The long-term efficacy of pravastatin therapy in childhood to reduce morbidity and mortality in adulthood has not been established.

5.2 Pharmacokinetic Properties

Lipostat is administered orally in the active form. It is rapidly absorbed, with peak plasma levels attained 1 to 1.5 hours following ingestion. Based on urinary recovery of radiolabelled drug, the average oral absorption of pravastatin is 34% and absolute bioavailability is 17%.
Pravastatin undergoes extensive first-pass extraction in the liver (extraction ratio 0.66), which is its primary site of action, and the primary site of cholesterol synthesis and of LDL-C clearance. Since it is excreted in the bile, plasma levels are of limited value in predicting therapeutic effectiveness. Pravastatin plasma concentrations [including area under the concentration time curve (AUC), peak (Cmax) and steady-state minimum (Cmin)] are directly proportional to administered dose. Steady-state AUCs, Cmax and Cmin plasma concentrations showed no evidence of pravastatin accumulation following once or twice daily administration of Lipostat tablets. Approximately 50% of the circulating drug is bound to plasma proteins.
The plasma elimination half life (t1/2) of pravastatin (oral) is between 1.5 and 2 hours. Approximately 20% of a radiolabelled oral dose is excreted in urine and 70% in the faeces. After intravenous administration of radiolabelled pravastatin to normal volunteers, approximately 47% of total body clearance was via renal excretion and 53% by nonrenal routes (i.e. biliary excretion and biotransformation). Accumulation of drug and/or metabolites may occur in patients with renal or hepatic insufficiency, although, as there are dual routes of elimination, the potential exists for compensatory excretion by the alternate route. The major metabolite of pravastatin is the 3α-hydroxy isomer. This metabolite has one-tenth to one-fortieth the HMG-CoA reductase inhibitory activity of the parent compound.
After 2 weeks of once daily 20 mg oral pravastatin administration, the geometric means of AUC were 80.7 (CV 44%) and 44.8 (CV 89%) for children (8-11 years, n = 14) and adolescents (12-16 years, n = 10), respectively. The corresponding values for Cmax were 42.4 (CV 54%) and 18.6 nanogram/mL (CV 100%) for children and adolescents, respectively. No conclusion can be made based on these findings due to the small number of samples and large variability.

5.3 Preclinical Safety Data


In six genetic toxicology studies performed with pravastatin, there was no evidence of mutagenic potential at the chromosomal or gene level.


In a 2-year oral study of rats, a statistically significant increase in the incidence of hepatocellular carcinomas was observed in male rats given 100 mg/kg daily of pravastatin. This change was not seen in male rats given 40 mg/kg or less, or in female rats at doses up to 100 mg/kg daily. Increased incidences of hepatocellular carcinomas were also observed in male and female mice dosed with pravastatin at 250 and 500 mg/kg daily, but not at 100 mg/kg/day or less. An increased incidence of pulmonary adenomas was seen in female mice dosed at 250 mg/kg/day. The AUC value for the serum concentration of pravastatin at the no effect dose level of 100 mg/kg/day in mice was 2 times higher than that in humans receiving 80 mg pravastatin per day.
The hepatocarcinogenic effect of pravastatin in rats is associated with proliferation of hepatic peroxisomes. Other HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors (simvastatin and lovastatin) also induce hepatic peroxisome proliferation and hepatocellular carcinomas in rats and mice. The clinical significance of these findings is unclear.

6 Pharmaceutical Particulars

6.1 List of Excipients

Lipostat tablets contain the following inactive ingredients: lactose monohydrate, povidone, microcrystalline cellulose, croscarmellose sodium and magnesium stearate, magnesium oxide and iron oxide - yellow.

6.2 Incompatibilities

Incompatibilities were either not assessed or not identified as part of the registration of this medicine.

6.3 Shelf Life

In Australia, information on the shelf life can be found on the public summary of the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG). The expiry date can be found on the packaging.

6.4 Special Precautions for Storage

Store below 25°C. Protect from light and moisture.

6.5 Nature and Contents of Container

Lipostat 10 mg: 30 tablet blister packs (Al/Al).
Lipostat 20 mg: 30 tablet blister packs (Al/Al).
Lipostat 40 mg: 30 tablet blister packs (Al/Al).
Lipostat 80 mg: 30 tablet blister packs (Al/Al).

6.6 Special Precautions for Disposal

In Australia, any unused medicine or waste material should be disposed of by taking to your local pharmacy.

6.7 Physicochemical Properties

Pravastatin sodium is one of a new class of lipid lowering compounds, the HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors, that reduce cholesterol biosynthesis. These agents are competitive inhibitors of 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A (HMG-CoA) reductase, the enzyme catalysing the early rate limiting step in cholesterol biosynthesis, conversion of HMG-CoA to mevalonate.
Pravastatin sodium is an odourless, white to off white, fine or crystalline powder. It is a relatively polar hydrophilic compound with a partition coefficient (octanol/ water) of 0.59 at a pH of 7.0. It is soluble in methanol and water (> 300 mg/mL), slightly soluble in isopropanol and practically insoluble in acetone, acetonitrile, chloroform and ether.

Chemical structure.

Pravastatin sodium is designated chemically as: (3R,5R)-7-[(1S,2S,6S,8S,8aR)-1,2,6,7,8,8a-hexahydro-6-hydroxy-2-methyl-8-[(S)-2- methylbutyryloxy-1-naphthyl]]-3,5-dihydroxyheptanoic acid, sodium salt and has the following structure:

CAS number.


7 Medicine Schedule (Poisons Standard)

S4 - Prescription Only Medicine.

Summary Table of Changes