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Drug company to push for the over-the-counter cholesterol medication

Category: Heart Health and Cholesterol

Individuals who have received unhealthy cholesterol test results may soon have a new option for treating the condition. News reports indicate that Pfizer, the pharmaceutical giant that produces the cholesterol-lowering drug Lipitor, will soon move to make the medication available over the counter.

BusinessesWeek reports that company is looking to head off major financial losses as its patent on the drug is set to expire at the end of the month. After this point, it will be possible for other companies to start producing lower-cost generic versions of Lipitor.

It could still be some time before an over-the-counter version of Lipitor becomes available. Pfizer's CEO Ian Read told the news source that they do not currently have any evidence indicating that they will be able to implement the plan, which would be contingent upon approval from the Food and Drug Administration.

Still, making the cholesterol-lowering medication more available could benefit many people. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that heart disease is the cause of 26 percent of deaths in the U.S., with high cholesterol being one of the primary contributors to the condition.

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