Posted On: February 23, 2011 by Pennsylvania Personal Injury Attorney

Understanding Zocor Rhabdomyolysis

When muscle tissue fibers break down, they release potentially harmful chemicals into the bloodstream in a process called rhabdomyolysis, according to the National Institutes of Health. Rhabdomyolysis may cause permanent and life-threatening damage to the kidneys in some patients.

Symptoms of rhabdomyolysis include muscle stiffness, tenderness, or weakness. The urine may be unusually dark, red, or brownish colored. Some patients also experience fatigue, seizures, joint pain, or unintentional weight gain. A physical exam by a physician may reveal weak, painful, or stiff skeletal muscles, while a blood test may reveal high levels of myoglobin, creatinine, and/or potassium in the bloodstream. Urine may also contain myoglobin or test positive for red blood cells, even though no red blood cells can be seen when the sample is placed under a microscope.

Once rhabdomyolysis is diagnosed, early treatment with fluids may help prevent damage to the kidneys. Some people require dialysis in addition to fluids and other treatments. If the kidneys are severely damaged, a lifelong regimen of dialysis or even a kidney transplant may be required.

The Food and Drug Administration recently linked the use of Zocor and other cholesterol-lowering medications to increased risk of rhabdomyolysis, especially in older patients and those on certain heart medications. If you or a loved one have been taking Zocor or similar simvastatin medications, it is wise to ask your doctor about any unusual symptoms or any concerns about rhabdomyolysis you may have. If you’ve already been diagnosed with Zocor-related rhabdomyolysis, please don’t hesitate to consult an experienced Pennsylvania Zocor rhabdomyolysis attorney like those at Cherry Fieger & Marciano, LLP. To schedule a free and confidential case evaluation, call Cherry Fieger & Marciano, LLP today at 1-888-684-7192.