Fenofibrate | Side Effects, Dosage, Uses & More
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Generic Name:

fenofibrate, Oral tablet

Generic Name:
Fenoglide,Tricor,Triglide

fenofibrate, Oral tablet

All Brands

  • Fenoglide
  • Tricor
  • Triglide
SECTION 1 of 5

Highlights for fenofibrate

Oral tablet
1

Fenofibrate is used to treat high cholesterol levels. It’s mainly used to treat high triglycerides (a type of bad cholesterol).

2

Fenofibrate is often used along with other cholesterol drugs, such as statins.

3

Fenofibrate comes in the form of oral tablets as the brand-name drugs Fenoglide, Lofibra, Tricor, and Triglide. It comes in the form of oral capsules as the brand-name drugs Antara, Lofibra, and Lipofen. It’s also available in both forms as a generic drug.

4

The more common side effects of this drug include constipation, diarrhea, nausea, or headache.

5

Your risk of muscle pain and a serious muscle problem called rhabdomyolysis is increased with use of fenofibrate. The risk is higher if you take it along with statins.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

Muscle pain

This drug raises your risk of muscle pain and a serious muscle problem called rhabdomyolysis. The risk is higher if you take the drug along with statins.

Liver damage

High doses of fenofibrate can cause abnormal results in tests of liver function. These abnormal results indicate liver damage. This drug can also cause other liver damage and inflammation after years of use.

Gallstones

Fenofibrate raises your risk of gallstones.

Pancreatitis

Fenofibrate raises your risk of pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas).

What is fenofibrate?

Fenofibrate is a prescription drug that comes in several forms. It’s available as:

  • Oral tablets in the brand-name drugs Fenoglide, Lofibra, Tricor, and Triglide
  • Oral capsules in the brand-name drugs Antara, Lofibra, and Lipofen
  • Both an oral capsule and an oral tablet in generic versions

Generic drugs usually cost less. In some cases, they may not be available in every strength or form as the brand-name version. Talk to your doctor to see if the generic version will work for you.

Fenofibrate may be used as part of a combination therapy. This means you may need to take it with other cholesterol drugs, such as statins. 

Why it's used

Fenofibrate is used to improve cholesterol levels in three types of cholesterol problems.

More Details

How it works

Fenofibrate belongs to a class of drugs called peroxisome proliferator receptor-activated receptor (PPAR) alpha agonists.

More Details

Why it's used

Fenofibrate is used to improve cholesterol levels in three types of cholesterol problems: 

  • Mixed dyslipidemia: high levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglycerides, and low levels of HDL (good) cholesterol
  • Severe hypertriglyceridemia: very high levels of triglycerides
  • Primary hypercholesterolemia: very high levels of LDL cholesterol 

Fenofibrate helps lower high levels of harmful cholesterol, mainly triglycerides. It also helps increase levels of HDL (good) cholesterol.

How it works

Fenofibrate belongs to a class of drugs called peroxisome proliferator receptor-activated receptor (PPAR) alpha agonists. A class of drugs is a group of medications that work in a similar way. They are often used to treat similar conditions.

Fenofibrate works by increasing the breakdown and removal of bad cholesterol from your body. This helps reduce the risk of cholesterol building up in your blood vessels and causing serious health problems such as heart attack or stroke.

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SECTION 2 of 5

fenofibrate Side Effects

Oral tablet

More Common Side Effects

The more common side effects that can occur with use of fenofibrate include:

  • headache

  • back pain

  • nausea

  • dyspepsia (indigestion)

If these effects are mild, they may go away within a few days or a couple of weeks. If they’re more severe or don’t go away, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

Serious Side Effects

Call your doctor right away if you have serious side effects. Call 9-1-1 if your symptoms feel life-threatening or if you think you’re having a medical emergency. Serious side effects and their symptoms can include the following:

  • Allergic reactions. Symptoms can include:

    • swelling of the face, eyes, lips, tongue, hands, arms, feet, ankles, or lower legs
    • trouble breathing or swallowing
    • rash
  • Liver problems. Symptoms can include:

    • yellowing of the skin or eyes
Pharmacist's Advice
Healthline Pharmacist Editorial Team

Fenofibrate doesn’t cause drowsiness.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible side effects. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always discuss possible side effects with a healthcare provider who knows your medical history.
SECTION 3 of 5

fenofibrate May Interact with Other Medications

Oral tablet

Fenofibrate can interact with other medications, vitamins, or herbs you may be taking. An interaction is when a substance changes the way a drug works. This can be harmful or prevent the drug from working well.

To help avoid interactions, your doctor should manage all of your medications carefully. Be sure to tell your doctor about all medications, vitamins, or herbs you’re taking. To find out how this drug might interact with something else you’re taking, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

Medications that might interact with this drug

Blood-thinning drugs

Warfarin is a drug that’s used to thin the blood. Taking it with fenofibrate raises your risk of bleeding. If you take these drugs together, your doctor may do blood tests more often or change your dose of warfarin.

Cholesterol drugs

Taking fenofibrate and certain cholesterol drugs called bile acid sequestrants may make it harder for your body to absorb the bile acid sequestrant. To prevent this, you should take fenofibrate 1 hour before, or 4–6 hours after, taking the bile acid sequestrant. Examples of bile acid sequestrants include:

  • cholestyramine
  • colesevelam
  • colestipol 

Also, taking fenofibrate with cholesterol drugs called statins raises your risk of rhabdomyolysis. This is a serious condition that breaks down muscle. Examples of statin drugs include:

  • atorvastatin
  • fluvastatin
  • lovastatin
  • pitavastatin
  • pravastatin
  • rosuvastatin
  • simvastatin

Diabetes drugs

Taking fenofibrate with certain diabetes drugs called sulfonylureas raises your risk of low blood sugar. Examples of these drugs include: 

  • glimepiride
  • glipizide
  • glyburide

Gout drugs

Colchicine is a drug used to treat gout. Taking it with fenofibrate raises your risk of muscle pain.

Immunosuppressants

Taking certain drugs that suppress your body’s immune response can increase the level of fenofibrate in your body. This raises your risk of side effects from fenofibrate. Examples of these drugs include:

  • cyclosporine
  • tacrolimus

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs interact differently in each person, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible interactions. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always speak with your healthcare provider about possible interactions with all prescription drugs, vitamins, herbs and supplements, and over-the-counter drugs that you are taking.
Fenofibrate warnings
liver disease
People with liver disease

Fenofibrate can cause liver problems, which could lead to liver failure. Let your doctor know if you have a history of liver disease. Your doctor can tell you if fenofibrate is safe for you. If you have active liver disease, you should not take fenofibrate.

kidney disease
People with kidney disease

Fenofibrate may cause abnormal results from tests of kidney function. These changes are typically temporary and not harmful. To be safe, your doctor may monitor your kidney function more often. If you have severe kidney disease, you should not take fenofibrate.

Pregnant women
Pregnant women

Fenofibrate is a category C pregnancy drug. That means two things:

  1. Research in animals has shown adverse effects to the fetus when the mother takes the drug.
  2. There haven’t been enough studies done in humans to be certain how the drug might affect the fetus.

Talk with your doctor if you’re pregnant or planning to become pregnant. This drug should be used only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.

breast-feeding
Women who are breast-feeding

Fenofibrate may pass into breast milk and cause side effects in a child who is breast-fed.

Talk with your doctor if you breast-feed your child. You may need to decide whether to stop breast-feeding or stop taking this medication.

seniors
For seniors
  • Lofibra (capsule): For this form, your doctor may start you at 67 mg once a day.
  • Lofibra (tablet): For this form, your doctor may start you at 54 mg once a day.
call the doctor
When to call the doctor

Call your doctor if you become pregnant while taking this drug.

allergies
Allergies

Fenofibrate can cause a severe allergic reaction. Symptoms can include: 

  • rash
  • itching
  • hives 

If you have a reaction, call your doctor right away. If your symptoms are severe, call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest emergency room.

Don’t take this drug again if you’ve ever had an allergic reaction to it. Taking it again could be fatal (cause death).

SECTION 4 of 5

How to Take fenofibrate (Dosage)

Oral tablet

All possible dosages and drug forms may not be included here. Your dosage, drug form, and how often you take the drug will depend on:

  • your age
  • the condition being treated
  • how severe your condition is
  • other medical conditions you have
  • how you react to the first dose

What are you taking this medication for?

Primary hypercholesterolemia and mixed dyslipidemia

Brand: Antara

Form: Oral capsule
Strengths: 45 mg, 130 mg

Brand: Fenoglide

Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 120 mg

Brand: Lipofen

Form: Oral capsule
Strengths: 50 mg, 150 mg

Brand: Lofibra

Form: Oral capsule
Strengths: 67 mg, 134 mg, 200 mg
Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 54 mg, 160 mg

Brand: Tricor

Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 145 mg

Brand: Triglide

Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 160 mg

Generic: fenofibrate

Form: Oral capsule
Strengths: 43 mg, 130 mg
Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 54 mg, 160 mg
Adult dosage (ages 18 years and older)

Brand-name drugs:

  • Antara: 130 mg per day
  • Fenoglide: 120 mg per day
  • Lipofen: 150 mg per day
  • Lofibra capsule: 200 mg per day
  • Lofibra tablet: 160 mg per day
  • Tricor: 145 mg per day
  • Triglide: 160 mg per day

Generic drugs:

  • Fenofibrate capsule: 130 mg per day
  • Fenofibrate tablet: 160 mg per day
Child dosage (ages 0–17 years)

This medication has not been studied in children. It should not be used in people younger than 18 years.

Senior dosage (ages 65 years and older)

The kidneys of older adults may not work as well as they used to. This can cause your body to process drugs, including fenofibrate, more slowly. As a result, more of a drug stays in your body for a longer time. This increases your risk of side effects.

Your doctor may start you on a lowered dose or a different dosing schedule. This can help keep levels of this drug from building up too much in your body.

Special considerations

Kidney disease: If you have mild kidney disease, you may need a lower dose of fenofibrate.

Hypertriglyceridemia

Brand: Antara

Form: Oral capsule
Strengths: 45 mg, 130 mg

Brand: Fenoglide

Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 120 mg

Brand: Lipofen

Form: Oral capsule
Strengths: 50 mg, 150 mg

Brand: Lofibra

Form: Oral capsule
Strengths: 67 mg, 134 mg, 200 mg
Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 54 mg, 160 mg

Brand: Tricor

Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 145 mg

Brand: Triglide

Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 160 mg

Generic: fenofibrate

Form: Oral capsule
Strengths: 43 mg, 130 mg
Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 54 mg, 160 mg
Adult dosage (ages 18 years and older)

Brand-name drugs:

  • Antara: 43–130 mg per day
  • Fenoglide: 40–120 mg per day
  • Lipofen:  50–150 mg per day
  • Lofibra capsule: 67–200 mg per day
  • Lofibra tablet: 54–160 mg per day
  • Tricor: 48–145 mg per day
  • Triglide: 160 mg per day

Generic drugs:

  • Fenofibrate capsule: 43–130 mg per day
  • Fenofibrate tablet: 54–160 mg per day
Child dosage (ages 0–17 years)

This medication has not been studied in children. It should not be used in people younger than 18 years.

Senior dosage (ages 65 years and older)

The kidneys of older adults may not work as well as they used to. This can cause your body to process drugs, including fenofibrate, more slowly. As a result, more of a drug stays in your body for a longer time. This increases your risk of side effects.

Your doctor may start you on a lowered dose or a different dosing schedule. This can help keep levels of this drug from building up too much in your body.

Special considerations

Kidney disease: If you have mild kidney disease, you may need a lower dose of fenofibrate.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this list includes all possible dosages. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always to speak with your doctor or pharmacist about dosages that are right for you.
Pharmacist's Advice
Healthline Pharmacist Editorial Team

Fenofibrate comes with risks if you don’t take it as prescribed.

If you stop taking the drug suddenly or don’t take it at all

Your cholesterol levels may not be controlled. This raises your risk of serious health problems such as heart disease, heart attack, or stroke.

If you miss doses or don’t take the drug on schedule

Your medication may not work as well or may stop working completely. For this drug to work well, a certain amount needs to be in your body at all times.

If you take too much

You could have dangerous levels of the drug in your body. Symptoms of an overdose of this drug can include:

  • headache
  • back pain
  • nausea
  • muscle pain
  • diarrhea
  • common cold
  • upper respiratory tract infection

If you think you’ve taken too much of the drug, call your doctor or local poison control center. If your symptoms are severe, call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest emergency room.

What to do if you miss a dose

Take your dose as soon as you remember. But if you remember just a few hours before your next scheduled dose, take only one dose. Never try to catch up by taking two doses at once. This could result in dangerous side effects.

How to tell if the drug is working

Your cholesterol levels should improve. You won’t feel fenofibrate working, but your doctor will check your cholesterol levels using blood tests. Your doctor may adjust your dose based on the results of these tests.

Fenofibrate is used for long-term treatment.

Important considerations for taking fenofibrate
taken with food
Some forms of this drug should be taken with food
See Details
timing
Take this drug at the time(s) recommended by your doctor
don't crush
Don’t cut or crush the tablets or capsules
storage
Store these drugs carefully
See Details
medication is refillable
A prescription for this medication is refillable
See Details
Travel
Travel
See Details
Clinical monitoring
Clinical monitoring
See Details
diet
Your diet
See Details
not usually stocked
Not every pharmacy stocks this drug. When filling your prescription, be sure to call ahead
prior authorization required
Insurance
See Details

Some forms of this drug should be taken with food

This can help increase the amount of drug your body absorbs. These forms are fenofibrate tablets, Fenoglide, Lipofen, and Lofibra capsules.

Other fenofibrate drugs can be taken with or without food. Even so, taking them with food may help to reduce upset stomach.

Store these drugs carefully

  • Store Antara, Fenoglide, Lipofen, and Tricor at room temperature between 59°F and 86°F (15°C and 30°C).
  • Store Triglide tablets, fenofibrate capsules and tablets, and Lofibra capsules and tablets between 68°F and 77°F (20°C and 25°C).
  • Don’t store these medications in moist or damp areas, such as bathrooms.
  • Keep Triglide in its moisture-protective container until you’re ready to take it.

A prescription for this medication is refillable

You should not need a new prescription for this medication to be refilled. Your doctor will write the number of refills authorized on your prescription.

Travel

When traveling with your medication:

  • Always carry your medication with you. When flying, never put it into a checked bag. Keep it in your carry-on bag.
  • Don’t worry about airport x-ray machines. They can’t hurt your medication.
  • You may need to show airport staff the pharmacy label for your medication. Always carry the original prescription-labeled box with you.
  • Don’t put this medication in your car’s glove compartment or leave it in the car. Be sure to avoid doing this when the weather is very hot or very cold.

Clinical monitoring

Your health will be monitored during treatment. Your doctor will do blood tests. These tests will help make sure your cholesterol levels are within the range your doctor feels is best for you. They will also tell if your medication is working.

Also, your doctor will likely monitor certain health issues. This can help make sure you stay safe while taking this drug. These issues include:

  • Kidney function. Blood tests can check how well your kidneys are working. If your kidneys aren’t working well, your doctor may lower your dose of this drug.
  • Liver function. Blood tests can check how well your liver is working. If your tests are abnormal, it may mean that fenofibrate is causing damage to your liver. Your doctor may switch you to a different medication.
  • Lipid levels. Blood tests can check how well this drug is lowering your cholesterol and triglycerides. Your doctor may change your therapy based upon these results. 

Your diet

In addition to taking this drug, you should follow a heart-healthy diet to help control your cholesterol levels. Talk with your doctor about a diet plan that’s right for you.

Insurance

Many insurance companies require a prior authorization for this drug. This means your doctor will need to get approval from your insurance company before your insurance company will pay for the prescription.

Are there any alternatives?

There are other drugs available to treat your condition. Some may be better suited for you than others. Talk to your doctor about other drug options that may work for you.

What does the pill look like?

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SECTION 5 of 5

How Much Does fenofibrate Cost?

Oral tablet

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Lowest price for fenofibrate

Walmart $21.26
Membership warehouse $31.45
Kroger Pharmacy $31.70
These prices represent the lowest priced national pharmacies for fenofibrate on GoodRx. They may be lower than your insurance.

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These prices represent the lowest priced national pharmacies for fenofibrate on GoodRx. They may be lower than your insurance.

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Content developed in collaboration with University of Illinois-Chicago, Drug Information Group

Medically reviewed by Creighton University, Center for Drug Information and Evidence-Based Practice on December 22, 2015

Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up-to-date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or other healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.
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