Lovastatin is a cholesterol- lowering medicine. It inhibits the production of cholesterol by the liver. It lowers overall blood cholesterol as well as blood LDL cholesterol levels. LDL cholesterol is believed to be the "bad" cholesterol that is primarily responsible for the development of coronary artery disease. Lowering LDL cholesterol levels retards progression and may even reverse coronary artery disease.
Lovastatin blocks the action of an enzyme required for the manufacture of cholesterol, thereby interfering with its formation. By lowering the amount of cholesterol in the liver cells, lovastatin increases the formation of receptors for LDL, and thereby reduces blood levels of total and LDL cholesterol. In addition to lowering LDL cholesterol, lovastatin also modestly reduces triglyceride levels and raises HDL (the so-called "good") cholesterol.
Lovastatin is used with diet changes (restriction of cholesterol and fat intake) to reduce the amount of cholesterol and certain fatty substances in your blood. Accumulation of cholesterol and fats along the walls of your arteries (a process known as atherosclerosis) decreases blood flow and, therefore, the oxygen supply to your heart, brain, and other parts of your body. Lowering your blood level of cholesterol and fats may help to prevent heart disease, angina (chest pain), strokes, and heart attacks.