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Ezetimibe is used in the treatment of increased cholesterol in the blood (hypercholesterolemia).

How it works

Ezetimibe belongs to a class of medications called cholesterol-lowering drugs. It acts by preventing the absorption of cholesterol in the intestine.

Common side effects

Nausea, Neck pain, Pain in extremity, Bleeding time prolongation, Protein in urine, Rash, Liver enzyme increased, Abdominal bloating, Abdominal pain, Joint pain, Back pain, Chest pain, Decrease in body weight, Diarrhoea, Dizziness, Dry mouth, Fatigue, Weakness, Headache, Heartburn, Increased uric acid level in blood, Increased creatine kinase level in blood, Indigestion, Itching, Limb swelling, Muscle pain, Sleep disorder, Tenderness, Tingling sensation, Urticaria, Vomiting, Muscle cramp


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Expert advice

  • Do not start ezetimibe, if you are allergic to ezetimibe or any of the other ingredients of this medicine.
  • Do not start ezetimibe, if you have liver disease.
  • Avoid taking ezetimibe during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
  • Do not start or continue ezetimibe, if you are taking medications like cyclosporine, warfarin, phenprocoumon, acenocoumarol or fluindione, colestyramine, fibrates.
  • Ezetimibe can cause dizziness and, therefore, caution has to be taken before operating an automobile or machinery or engaging in activities requiring mental alertness and coordination.

Frequently asked questions


Q. Is ezetimibe a bile acid sequestrent /statin?
Ezetimibe belongs to a class of medication called as cholesterol absorption inhibitors. It is not a bile acid sequestrent or statin. 
Q. Is ezetimibe a generic drug / same as Ezetrol/Zetia?
Yes, ezetimibe is a generic name and Ezetrol/Zetia is the brand name of ezetimibe.
Q. Is ezetimibe safe?
Ezetimibe is safe, if used at prescribed doses for the prescribed duration as advised by your doctor.
Q. How does ezetimibe reduce cholesterol in the body?
Ezetimibe prevents the absorption of cholesterol from the intestine into the blood.
Q. Does ezetimibe cause weight gain, muscle pain, cancer, lowers triglyceride, increase HDL?
Ezetimibe lowers triglyceride, increases the level of HDL in blood and has been found to reduce weight and cause muscle pain; however, cancer has not been reported.

Content on this page was last updated on 28 September, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)