Nexlizet (bempedoic acid/ezetimibe) is a brand-name oral tablet prescribed to help reduce low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol in certain adults. As with other drugs, Nexlizet can cause side effects, such as muscle spasms and abdominal pain.

Nexlizet can cause certain side effects, some of which are more common than others. These side effects may be temporary, lasting a few days to weeks. However, if the side effects last longer than that, bother you, or become severe, be sure to talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

These are just a few of the more common side effects reported by people who took Nexlizet in clinical trials:

* For more information about this side effect, see “Side effect specifics” below.

Mild side effects can occur with Nexlizet. This list doesn’t include all possible mild side effects of the drug. For more information, you can refer to Nexlizet’s prescribing information.

Mild side effects that have been reported with Nexlizet include:

These side effects may be temporary, lasting a few days to weeks. However, if the side effects last longer than that, bother you, or become severe, be sure to talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

Note: After the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves a drug, it tracks side effects of the medication. If you develop a side effect while taking Nexlizet and want to tell the FDA about it, visit MedWatch.

* For more information about this side effect, see “Side effect specifics” below.
† An allergic reaction is possible after taking Nexlizet. However, it’s not clear how often this side effect occurred in clinical trials. To learn more, see the “Side effect specifics” section below.

Nexlizet may cause serious side effects, but they aren’t common. The list below may not include all possible serious side effects of the drug. For more information, you can refer to Nexlizet’s prescribing information.

If you develop serious side effects while taking Nexlizet, call your doctor right away. If the side effects seem life threatening or you think you’re having a medical emergency, immediately call 911 or your local emergency number.

Serious side effects that have been reported and their symptoms include:

* For more information about this side effect, see “Side effect specifics” below.
† An allergic reaction is possible after taking Nexlizet. However, it’s not clear how often this side effect occurred in clinical trials. To learn more, see the “Side effect specifics” section below.

Nexlizet may cause several side effects. Here are some frequently asked questions about the drug’s side effects and their answers.

Can Nexlizet cause weight loss or hair loss?

No, weight loss and hair loss weren’t reported as side effects in clinical trials of Nexlizet.

Nexlizet and other cholesterol-lowering drugs typically don’t affect a person’s weight. That said, Nexlizet is meant to be prescribed along with a statin and a diet for heart health to lower your cholesterol. Following such a diet plan can lead to weight loss by reducing the number of calories you consume.

Some medications can cause hair loss. While there were no reports of hair loss with Nexlizet, the drug is typically prescribed in combination with a statin. Hair loss is considered a very rare side effect of statin treatment.

However, a 2017 research review describes research that shows ezetimibe (one of the active drugs in Nexlizet) combined with simvastatin may be an effective treatment for hair loss, specifically alopecia areata.

If you’re concerned about hair loss, talk with your doctor. They can suggest possible treatments for your symptoms. They can also review your medications with your pharmacist to determine whether any could be causing hair loss.

How do side effects of Nexlizet compare with those of statin drugs?

Both Nexlizet and statins are drugs prescribed to help lower cholesterol. Doctors typically prescribe Nexlizet along with a statin and a diet for heart health. Some side effects of the two drugs are the same. However, Nexlizet isn’t a statin and works differently in the body. So side effects of these drugs also vary.

Nexlizet and some statins both can cause:

Statin drugs are also known to cause muscle pain and weakness. These side effects were not reported in Nexlizet’s clinical trials. To learn more about statin side effects, see this article.

Side effects that only Nexlizet may cause include hyperuricemia. (This is a serious side effect of the drug. For details, see the “Side effect specifics” section below.)

When these drugs are taken in combination, you may have a higher risk of some shared side effects, such as abdominal pain. Talk with your doctor if you have questions about side effects you may experience while taking either drug alone or in combination.

Learn more about some of the side effects that Nexlizet may cause. To find out how often side effects occurred in clinical trials, see the prescribing information for Nexlizet.

Respiratory infections

Nexlizet can cause upper respiratory infections, such as the common cold and bronchitis. Respiratory infection was a commonly reported side effect in clinical trials. Symptoms depend on the specific condition but may include:

What you can do

You can reduce your risk of contracting respiratory infections by taking a few basic precautions, such as:

  • washing your hands frequently
  • exercising regularly and eating a balanced diet
  • avoiding sharing drinking and eating utensils
  • regularly cleaning objects that you touch frequently, such as door knobs

The symptoms of an upper respiratory infection are typically mild, and the infection may resolve on its own. But if your symptoms are bothersome, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. They can suggest treatments that may help ease your symptoms.

For example, certain over-the-counter medications, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil), can help relieve pain and fever. Medications such as pseudoephedrine (Sudafed) can be taken for a runny and stuffy nose. For sore throat, ask your pharmacist about lozenges and throat sprays they recommend. You can also read this article.

Talk with your doctor if your symptoms don’t go away after 2 weeks or get worse. Your doctor can determine whether you need additional treatments.

Hyperuricemia

Hyperuricemia was a common side effect in Nexlizet’s clinical trials. With hyperuricemia, the level of uric acid in your bloodstream is too high. In the drug’s trials, hyperuricemia was most likely to develop during the first 4 weeks of treatment with Nexlizet.

A high uric acid level doesn’t cause symptoms, but over time, it may lead to gout. Symptoms of gout can include:

  • severe joint pain
  • swelling of the affected joint
  • discolored skin near the affected joint

What you can do

Due to the risk of hyperuricemia, your doctor may order a uric acid test to monitor your uric acid level during treatment. If your uric acid level is high, they may prescribe medication to lower it.

If you have a history of hyperuricemia or gout, taking Nexlizet may cause your symptoms to return or worsen. In this case, your doctor can help determine whether the benefits of taking Nexlizet outweigh the risks. They may order more frequent uric acid tests during your treatment if they prescribe Nexlizet.

Allergic reaction

As with most drugs, Nexlizet can cause an allergic reaction in some people. It’s not clear how often this side effect occurred in Nexlizet’s clinical trials. However, allergic reaction has been reported with bempedoic acid (Nexletol) and ezetimibe (Zetia) when these medications are taken on their own. (Bempedoic acid and ezetimibe are the active ingredients in Nexlizet.)

Symptoms can be mild or serious and can include:

  • skin rash
  • itching
  • flushing
  • swelling under your skin, typically in your eyelids, lips, hands, or feet
  • swelling of your mouth, tongue, or throat, which can make it hard to breathe

What you can do

For mild symptoms of an allergic reaction, call your doctor right away. They may recommend ways to ease your symptoms and determine whether you should keep taking Nexlizet. However, if your symptoms are serious and you think you’re having a medical emergency, immediately call 911 or your local emergency number.

Be sure to talk with your doctor about your health history before you take Nexlizet. This drug may not be the right treatment option for you if you have certain medical conditions or other factors that affect your health. These include:

Liver problems: If you have liver problems, such as liver failure, taking Nexlizet could worsen your condition. It’s also not known whether it’s safe for people with moderate or severe liver problems to take the drug. Depending on the severity of your condition, your doctor may suggest a treatment other than Nexlizet. Tell your doctor if you have liver problems before you take Nexlizet.

Tendon problems: If you have tendon problems or have had them in the past, talk with your doctor. You may have an increased risk of tendon tear or rupture while taking Nexlizet. Tell your doctor about any tendon problems you may have before starting treatment with Nexlizet. They may recommend a different treatment option for you. (Note: Tendon injury is a serious side effect of Nexlizet. To learn more, see “Serious side effects of Nexlizet” above.)

Kidney problems: You may have a higher risk of tendon rupture if you have a kidney condition, such as kidney failure, and take Nexlizet. Talk with your doctor before starting treatment with Nexlizet if you have kidney problems. They can determine whether Nexlizet is safe for you to take.

Gout: Before starting Nexlizet, tell your doctor if you have a history of gout. In some people, this drug can cause hyperuricemia, which can cause gout. Having a history of gout increases your risk of gout with Nexlizet treatment. Your doctor will likely monitor your uric acid level while you’re taking the drug. (Note: Hyperuricemia is a serious side effect of Nexlizet. For details, see the “Side effect specifics” section above.)

Allergic reaction: If you’ve had an allergic reaction to Nexlizet or any of its ingredients, your doctor will likely not prescribe Nexlizet. Ask your doctor what other medications may be better options for you.

Pregnancy or breastfeeding: If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding your child, Nexlizet may not be safe for you to take. Talk with your doctor before taking Nexlizet if you’re pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding.

Alcohol consumption: There are no known interactions between Nexlizet and alcohol. However, your risk of liver damage may be increased if you drink alcohol and take Nexlizet. Talk with your doctor about how much alcohol is safe for you to consume while taking Nexlizet.

As with all medications, Nexlizet can cause side effects. Most are mild and tend to go away on their own within a few days to weeks. However, tell your doctor if any side effects are long lasting, bother you, or are serious.

If you’d like to learn more about Nexlizet, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. They can help answer any questions you have about side effects from taking the drug.

Besides talking with your doctor, you can do some research on your own. These articles might help:

Disclaimer: Medical News Today 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 another 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.