Depression after atorvastatin - Cholesterol Support

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Depression after atorvastatin


After taking Atorvastatin for several years I have now stopped about 3 weeks ago. My peripheral neuropathy is worse and I have started to be very depressed. Do the effects of this statin get worse for a while after stopping them before they get better? Help please.

22 Replies

Hi Joy,

Don't know if my other post went through.

I took Atorvastatin for 8 months and had violent back pain at my right rear rib.

It took about 3 weeks for it to subside once the endocrinologist finally agreed to take me off the drug.

My cholesterol went up after removal in late November- detected in late December and as of Friday went down 90 points.

Just my thoughts, let your body adjust to not having the medication in your system.

If you continue to feel poorly, give your doctor a call and let him/her know.

Everyone is different and responds and withdraws differently.

Please message or post to me and let me know how you are feeling.

I care!

Sending good thoughts!


Joy53 in reply to Bet117

Thank you for caring, it means a lot, especially when you're depressed. I had cancer 3 years ago and was on this site for a long time as a guru but gave up as I became frustrated at the number of people posting with really trivial things (one lady was on because her cat her died! I love cats but it really wasn't a medical condition) and how many children under 18 were on here instead of talking to their parents. It upset me. Some days the depression is a lot worse than others, thank God I've got good friends as my husband is oblivious. Not good at emotions. Thank you again.


If you're on statins you're also likely on a beta-blocker and blood pressure medication. Statins can some anxiety, mental fogginess and muscle pain. The beta-blockers are more likely to induce anxiety. Every person is different, for me it took 1-2 months before I felt normal again after stopping ALL prescription medications.

However, keep in mind that in order for me to stop the medications I had to first revolutionize my diet and lifestyle. Unless you address the CAUSE of your heart disease, you should be careful about stopping medications.

Read about my journey here:

Joy53 in reply to sos007

Ok. Thank you for your message but I'm not on any other medication except Gabapentin and I don't have heart disease. But thanks anyway.

sos007Ambassador in reply to Joy53

Heart disease also known as cardiovascular disease or endothelial dysfunction, is considered as any impairment in the cardiovascular system. This can include elevated blood pressure and elevated cholesterol,

If your body weight is above optimal levels, you likely have heart disease.

A lack of routine exercise and a diet that includes sugar in any form, or simple carbohydrates, as well as excess body weight (especially around the abdominal area), creates an inflammatory response within the body and specifically in the arteries.

When there is inflammation in the arteries, the body produces more cholesterol as a repair mechanism.

From my study into this subject, plaque accumulation begins in the first decade of life. How quickly plaque accumulates and manifests itself into symptoms is a function of both genetic predisposition as well as dietary and lifestyle choices. This is why it is often termed 'the silent killer'. Often the first evidence of heart disease is a fatal heart attack.

During the Vietnam War, autopsies were performed on the young men who were killed and even these fit young men in their early 20s had evidence of plaque accumulation.

Therefore, we all have some level and degree of heart disease. What you may not have are overt symptoms, but that doesn't mean it doesn't exist. Angina (chest pain) and shortness of breath usually occur only when their is an arterial accumulation in excess of 70%.

When the accumulation is at 69% you clearly have heart disease but it just hasn't manifested itself with overt symptoms.

If your doctor did not suspect that you had heart disease in some form, he/she would not have, or should not have prescribed a statin drug.

If your doctor prescribed it for prophylactic reasons then that would have been a mistake. Statins which lower cholesterol, have not demonstrated that they can stop strokes and heart attacks from occurring.

Half of all heart attacks and strokes occur to people with normal levels of cholesterol. Heart attacks and strokes are caused by blood clots which implies sticky blood platelets or blood that tends to coagulate too quickly. This is why it is important to have a diet high in green vegetables which will regulate the tendency for blood platelets to stick together. The B vitamins help with this issue and taking supplements such as B6, B9 (folate aka folic acid) as well as B12 will help.

Your best defense for avoiding an acceleration of your heart disease is to follow a lifestyle that includes daily exercise even as simple as walking 30 to 60 minutes, as well as a whole-foods, plant-based diet, commonly referred to as the Mediterranean Diet.

Good luck.

Joy53 in reply to sos007

Please don't message me again, I already know a great deal of what you've told me, I have an excellent, extremely thorough G.P. and it appears that you are determined to persuade me that I have problems that I do not have. You're not exactly a support for depression!

Marz in reply to Joy53

Would you be open to having your thyroid tested ? - if low then that can be a cause of depression as can LOW B12 and Low VitD. Happy to send you links :-)

Joy53 in reply to Marz

Actually that's been suggested to me before. I don't know if my thyroid was tested along with all my other tests but I'll certainly find out. Had B12 done, no problem. On a 3 month course of folic and taking Gabapentin. Thanks for your input, appreciated.

Marz in reply to Joy53

Do obtain your B12 result with range - I was told mine was fine for years but ended up with neurological issues - resulting in spinal surgery. A result below 500 can result in serious neurological symptoms and it is well documented that the brain shrinks with Low B12. Taking Folic Acid can mask B12 Deficiency. Your results are legally yours so request them by phone and say when you will be along to collect ! Important to always obtain copies of your results with ranges so you can monitor your own health and see what has been missed 😊 - yes it happens ! You will be told fine if your result is in range - but it is where you are in the range that is key to your wellbeing.

Joy53 in reply to Marz

Forgot to say - was very low on vit D a few months ago and was put on very high dose course but think it's ok now.

Londinium in reply to Joy53

Hi Joy,

I had thyroid blood tests done a few times across many years. I've since realised that each doctor, including a leading hospital endocrinologist, had interpreted my lab results incorrectly and left me undiagnosed/misdiagnosed. If you do get your thyroid tested, encourage the doctor to include FT3 and FT4. They often don't include FT3, and that can lead to misdiagnosis because they're not getting a complete overview. It's helpful to post those results on the Thyroid UK forum. Many clinicians are pretty poor at interpreting thyroid lab results and symptoms correctly.

With regard Vit B12, it was only when I spoke to a retired Anaesthetist and he revealed that he never liked to see any patient with B12 less than 500. That was his absolute minimum. But in Britain, if Vit B12 is even 1/2 of 500, doctors often claim it's normal and adequate. With low mood and depression, a good quality B Complex with extra B12 helps alleviate symptoms, but it's something to take in the longterm and it should help with energy too.

With Vit D3 that's also something that should be kept optimal all year round, otherwise it will exacerbate depression and low mood and fatigue etc. And like B12 etc, it has to be continued. An acquaintance of mine, a guy who suffers from depression. He was taking 1,000 IU of Vit D3 daily. Anyway, I urged him to try a 3,000 IU daily spray of Vit D3 instead, and he has since reported that his depression has improved with the 3,000 IU.

Statins impact so many things, including Vit D and CoQ10 and Mitochondrial health. And the result often leads to low mood and fatigue and physical pain, etc.

Good luck with whatever you decide. 🖖🏻

Joy53 in reply to Londinium

Thank you so much for the info. I have photo shot it so I can take it to my next appointment beginning of August. Thank you again.

Londinium in reply to Joy53

You're welcome. 🖖🏻

I'm actually off to buy Vit B Complex with extra added B12 right now (Viridian product), plus the BetterYou spray product of 3000 IU Vit D3. I've run out of both for the past few weeks... and my mood is affected every time I run out of them.

Even though it's sunny right now, I spend loads of time in doors and when I'm out doors I'm clothed - so I need the Vit D3.

Good luck, and let us know how you do. 🤓

Joy53 in reply to Londinium

Will do. Take care.

Marz in reply to Joy53

Were you advised to add Magnesium to your VitD ? - VitD needs Magnesium to work well. VitD enhances the uptake of calcium but I doubt you were told to take VitK2- MK7 to ensure calcium is directed away ftom the arteries and into bones and teeth. 😊

Thyroid tests : TSH - FT4 - FT3 & Anti -TPO & Anti - Tg. Rarely are they all correctly done in the NHS. What a scandal ...

KatyB in reply to sos007

Thank you for taking the time to write such detailed information. I always look forward to reading the information you give. Such a shame that not everybody appreciates it.

sos007Ambassador in reply to KatyB

Thank you. I appreciate your comment.

I was in similar case too. Took statin in early 20’s and stop them and in late 20’s. I wish I went to see other doctors and realize that I was on sever depression/anxiety/panic attack sooner. I was in denial and didn’t take the matter seriously till I quit my job. I was workaholic and my priority was work rather than my own wellbeing. Been free of statin, took vitD, magnesium, coQ10. And slowly feeling better. And went to see psychologist for a while. Excercise, Yoga, exposing my self to real sun without sun screen helped. Staying away from negative news or topic. Trying not to think too much and focus on making my health better again as focus helps as well:) Hope you feeling better ;)

Thank you. Pretty much how I'm coping too except that I can't take Q10 as it interacts with other medication I'm taking. Just started B3, B6 and Omega 3. I don't watch the news or read the papers because, quite frankly, I can't cope with bad news right now. I keep trying to count my blessings and concentrate on my family but it's not easy is it. I have little interest in any of the the things I usually enjoy but hoping things will improve soon. Thank God I've got fantastic friends!

Einz in reply to Joy53

Same here, I used to enjoy doing so many things and had multiple hobbies and like to dress up and all. But I no longer had interests in a lot of things and don’t really care much bout how I look and keep wearing the same dress(but washed and cleaned ) I just slowly try to do some of the thing I used to like again :) and yes, sometimes, I feel like all the bad things happened so that i can really practice gratitude better and feel closer to God. It’s a bit like blessing in disguise ?;) Hope you feel better day by day :)

I hope so to. I try and count my blessings every day and I know there's a lot of people that would give their right arm to have my life - nice home, lovely children and grandchildren, no money worries etc but what people don't understand if they've never had real depression is that all that is irrelevant when the depression has set in. Everything seems surreal and unimportant. But, as you say, day by day ........

Have you tried yoga practice? Do has nothing to do with your cholesterol or statins etc but for emotional well-being it can be really beneficial! I suffered from anxiety/depression for about 4 years - I find the aches I suffer from statins really get me down but yoga has saved me. I’m not very good at it and I’m not a particularly spiritual person but I have found an inner peace and really feel happy. It might help! Good luck

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