prescription niacin (B3) being taken off market

LIPID/METABOLIC
Niacin/laropiprant products to be suspended worldwide

http://www.theheart.org/article/1494843.do?utm_medium=email&utm_source=2013 0111_breaking&utm_campaign=newsletter

just thought i'd pass it on,

didn't know it was on the market, curious to know if anyone knows about niacin use in general? it is known to increase HDL for use in cholesterol treatment, what about bone health?

i'd like to see the research when it's published....

Treatment of HDL to Reduce the Incidence of Vascular Events HPS2-THRIVE
http://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT00461630

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I read your post with interest.

I am not aware of any benefits of taking niacin for bones, but my husband had a low HDL level on a private health check 11 months ago and was told that it increased his risk of a heart attack. His doctor wasn't particularly interested. After reading on the internet I ordered Dr's Best Real Niacin 500mg tablets and he takes one per day. He hasn't had a repeat blood test yet, so I don't know whether its working.

The report doesn't actually say what the health concerns were, besides the fact that a trial suggested that the prescription niacin wasn't showing any benefit to patients on statins.

If anyone knows more about possible side effects from niacin (apart from the initial flushing) I would be interested to hear.

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My partner was on statins, he asked his doctor(MD) if there was a natural approach. His doctor told him he was taking niacin, oatmeal, handful of almonds and fish oil. So, we stopped the statins and did the natural approach which worked. His HDL got better and lowered his LDL. He used statins for a year, and I noticed he differences in him. He got off of them and the differences went away.

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Sally, Could you please tell us what differences you noticed?
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For many years Dr. Abram Hoffer, a Canadian orthomolecular psychiatrist, used high doses of niacin to treat schizophrenia. I once heard him speak and I think he said he gave it to his elderly mother before leaving for a trip, sort of as a placebo, and it had a remarkable effect on her memory.

Dr. Hoffer passed away not too Iong ago, but I believe other orthomolecular docs are still using niacin to treat mental conditions.

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hi all! thanks for responding,

i know,..... the report doesn't disclose any information, just gives general blanket statements, we'll see when they publish the results i guess.

interested to hear more as well from you guys...

i read that vit d is also used to help with schizophrenia

i havent hit the computer to do my reading for niacin yet, so i've nothing to contribute, just thought id throw out the topic anyway.....

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Hi Lilypads, The differences in my partner was that he started acting child like. He is a very sweet man and always was very level headed and emotionally stable. After a couple weeks of this I researched Lipitor, that was the only medication he was taking. I thought to myself it, could be the medication. I found this on physicians part of Lipitor side effects, cognitive decline. Nervous system
Nervous system side effects of headache and weakness have occurred with HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors. In addition, at least one case of polyneuropathy attributed to atorvastatin (the active ingredient contained in Lipitor) use has also been reported. Other nervous system side effects reported with HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors have included dizziness, drowsiness, fatigue, cranial nerve dysfunction, tremor, vertigo, memory loss, decline in cognitive function, paresthesias, peripheral neuropathy, and peripheral nerve palsy.
I sure did not like the sound of that. I asked him to see if his doctor could recommend a natural alternative to statins. He did and in the next couple weeks he was back to normal. I also know of a very healthy athletic woman who was put on Lipitor and could not get out of bed. She had severe kidney problems with it. She ended up going to Shands Hospital to be treated.
Dr. Hoffman was on the right path, as I have seen the B vitamins make a difference with a family member, who had schizophrenia.

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The family of statin drugs all slow down the chemical pathway in the body that also makes CoEnzyme Q10. This enzyme is essential for muscle strength and brain function and is needed by the heart and brain for good health. The European forms of statins come with CoEnzyme Q10 included. Statins are known to give fairly minimal positive results even though they do increase levels of HDL.

Niacin in its plain form has been used for decades in treating low HDL levels and clogged artery conditions. Doctors are cautious of its side effect of flushing when they give in to unsuspecting patients who sometimes drop the niacin for this minor reason. That said, niacin is reported more effective than statins at extending life for these patients. Most of the problems with "niacin" have been with altered medical forms that try to prevent the flush or add a drug like this combination did and not with the niacin itself and this seems to be the case with this special drug that was found not to work or with bad management of niacin in treatment. The current working research theory is that its the Flushing that is an essential part of the healing process! Note that niacinamide is another useful form of niacin that does not cause flushing, is perfectly safe and is not effective at raising HDL levels like plain niacin is. Dr Andrew Saul and Dr Willaim Kaufman did a lot of work describing the use of various form of the niacin family.

There is also a possible fiscal interest in Merk who ran the testing in that they would see all niacin takers as potential clients who should be taking their heart medications, therefore an interest in a perhaps negative medical test that would be used to scare patients off simple niacin treatment and on to drugs. No need to read the test as being critical of plain niacin, this was a test of the Niacin/Laropiprant drug.

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Hi Tango,

The Doctors Best Real Niacin is Nicotinic acid, is this form any good for increasing a low HDL? This is the one I am giving to my husband. It comes in 500mg tablets and he is taking one per day at present.

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hi tango thanks for the info.

here's an outtake from this article, which also doesn't specify any details:

"The failure of Tredaptive has cast a pall on the whole idea that raising HDL with a drug can help patients avoid heart attacks and strokes."

http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2013/01/11/169125998/merck-halts-sale-of-tr edaptive-niacin-drug-in-40-countries

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what i find interesting is that as far as reducing heart attacks and strokes, that they are saying that it (this niacin drug) doesnt do, but in comparrison; do statins?? statins also increase HDL slightly, and reduce LDL.

maybe there is more to the picture of decreasing heart attacks and stroke other than increasing HDL only?

seems obvious, but again, its looking at one part of a wholly bigger picture of how things interact in the body, that's required and not just decompartmentalizing and focusing on one thing, to achieve a desired result/outcome that in reality, is a cassade of different interactives that we dont know exactly as yet how they all work together.


hi lynh, according to this link nicotinic acid is the form that would raise HDL

here's a link with i think a good basic explanation of vitb3, :

http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/vitamin-b3-000335.htm

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Hi Faylou

Thanks for the D3 link. I have printed the paper off to study.

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Statins only make a minor improvement in heart conditions. While they do improve the HDL levels, there is actually not a lot of effect on overall heart condition and survival rates. In research moderately high doses of niacin combined with 500 mcg to 1000 mcg of chromium have been even more effective at reversing the fatty deposits of atherosclerosis than traditional high dose niacin. There is also a niacin-chromate salt sold that had good results in research. The most current theory is that lowering triglyceride levels is very important and this is best done by lowering sugar and simple carbohydrate intake severely along with adding niacin and chromium to increase insulin sensitivity. When the LDL particles in the blood carry less triglycerides, they become better at carrying cholesterol which keeps the cholesterol out of trouble.
I would suggest looking into the use of Arginine, coEnzyme Q10, and Alpha Lipoic Acid as described by Dr. Loius Ignarro in "No more heart disease" for high blood pressure or heart disease uncomplicated by clotting events. Those with Artery calcification would be strongly advised to add a Vitamin K2 supplement of the MK4 form of the vitamin to reduce soft tissue calcification. Arginine lowers blood pressure and provides the protein needed to form the connective tissue of the arteries. Vitamin K2 both clears out calcium and also reduces the inflammation of the arteries to make both clotting and strokes less frequent.

Much of the official medical sources on Niacin are full of warnings not to use niacin statements which don't work out in research or a practice where the doctor knows how to use niacin or niacinamide. Dr Mercola interviewed Dr Andrew Saul on use of niacin and the methods and description of use looked nothing like most Vitamin B-3 references.

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hi all! i am only just beginning to get interested in HBP (high blood pressure), as a close friend of mine has that and is otherwise healthy,

i've recommended magnesium and vit d3, which he took for only as long as the bottle had pills, Q10, which he is fairly noncompliant as most people are, they want 'natural alternatives' to medications, yet their approach is pill approach,(one pill=one medication+equals one problem+quick and immediate results) which i find so frustrating and infuriating,

there are a lot of herbal/vit/mineral mixes on the market for HBP, mixes such as hawthorn berries, olive leaf, red grape leaf, magnesium,vit b6, Q10, pycnogenol (pine bark extract), etc.... has anyone tried or had experiences with with?

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I've had the experience of lowering my BP from 145/80 to 125/70. This took about four months of taking four to six grams of L-Arginine (the amino acid) daily on an empty stomach. I was already taking a series of supplements suggested by Dr Louis Ignarro and was training 15 miles a week for a marathon. I took my own BP and noticed that my BP would relax about 20-30 minutes after taking the arginine. This short term effect BP lowering was useful in overcoming a panic disorder I had at the time that caused sporadic mild chest tightness. Over the four months there was a steady downward trend in my BP to normal. Note that I was doing everything right with exercise, other supplements, and diet according to Ignarro's book.

The L-Arginine helps in two ways, first its used to generate nitric oxide which signals the blood vessels to relax and second, it is used in making the connective tissue of the blood vessel walls thus enabling larger diameter walls to be made. I found that many of my soft tissue injuries healed up after the body had enough Arginine to repair everything damaged in training. I was thrilled with the results and found my running speed increasing by 10%.
The one caution is that Arginine is also used by the immune system. If you have inflammation in your arteries and a prior clotting event or heart attack, the immune system is active there and you need an anti inflammatory diet and to take the MK4 form of Vitamin K2 (1000 to 5000 mcg) to reduce this immune activity along with fish oil, Ginkgo Biloba, Ginger, Vitamin E gamma, and other blood thinners to make sure you don't have thick and easily clotted blood. Start taking the arginine after three months of this initial treatment if you have a prior clotting event!
Ignarro suggests magnesium, alpha lipoic acid, CoEnzyme Q10, Vitamin E gamma and a number of other nutrients along with the arginine. Pomegranate pills are also known to be effective as is the essential reduction of simple sugars and high glycemic index foods from the diet to reduce blood triglyceride levels.

Other treatments that would work with this are niacin treatment for the heart and 500 mcg to 1000 mcg of chromium daily to raise insulin sensitivity. Niacin is known for reducing atherosclerosis, slowly work up to taking one to three grams per day in increments of 50 mg or 100 mg in divided doses to reduce the flushing. The flushing seems to be a required event for the niacin to work.
Calcified arteries or arteriosclerosis can be remedied by taking the MK4 form of Vitamin K2 which potentiates the calcium scavenging proteins in the body. I had good results taking 1300 mcg of MK4 for four months for a 90% reduction in my chest symptoms with this progress continuing over 18 months. MK4 taken as 15 mg three times daily has been used as treatment for both heart disease and bone loss in Japan since 1995! Too bad medical people don't know about it here.

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I talked to my cardiologist just a few hours ago about Niacin and he stated it is good but only in very rare cases. He said it can be given to patients with high Lp(a) because it would break it down and lower it's levels in the blood stream. But he said there is a very dangerous problem with it because it requires just the right elements for it to be good for the patient. Patients with normal HDL should never take this for any reason. It is a two fold medication, it will break down Lp(a) cholesterol but it will raise the level of HDL in a person with levels about 39 to high and cause a heart attack. The same will hold true of the bones, unless you bones are thin and your HDL is below 39 you should not be taking niacin because you only trade off one condition for another. I have had advanced osteoporosis since I was 35, I crush the bone in my fore arm as flat as a piece of paper planing volley ball. My doctor has been treating it with a good diet and no contact and low impact exercise. I have not had a major break since.

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