Honored Contributor
Posts: 15,777
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Lipitor is a serious medication.  Unless you are taking this proactively to ward off high cholesterol vs treating high cholesterol, then I think you need to fork over the money for a new prescription and eat pasta for the month to cover the cost ;o)


For me, I would not mess around with taking something that may not be as effective as it should be if I was treating a serious condition.


I understand it's expensive, but you are talking about your life here.  Do you really want to risk your cholesterol rising over 30 days to an unhealthy level that can lead to a more serious issue?  And then how long will it take to correct once you get back on the proper levels?


You are taking a big chance with your health that will cost you much more than money in the long run.



QVC Shopper - 1993

Honored Contributor
Posts: 11,505
Registered: ‎10-25-2010

I'd take either drug with no problems.  We waste too many products in America with sold by dates, use by dates and general concerns over nothing.


Your pharmacist confirmed that it is safe.  It is probably at full potency too.  Six hours is not a long time and since it was a tablet and not a liquid it didn't freeze.



Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,459
Registered: ‎05-09-2016

I spent the bulk of my career working for a pharma manufacturer. Before that drug got to your pharmacy, at the very least, it was shipped by truck from the manufacturer warehouse to the wholesaler warehouse. From there it went by truck to your pharmacy. If you bought it from a large chain, it may have even made a stop at the pharmacy warehouse/distribution center. Those cargo trucks aren't heated - drugs that require strict temperature controls are shipped seperately. It could've very well spent far more than 6 hours in sub freezing temps. It's fine. 

~The more someone needs to brag about how wonderful, special, successful, wealthy or important they are, the greater the likelihood that it isn't true. ~

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,051
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

yes @CARMIE I agree. Do you recall when there was a Rx shortage of particular drugs in California, they used expired ones claiming they were ok. Also, it is my understanding that many expired meds are sent overseas to be used.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 19,539
Registered: ‎05-22-2016

Re: Medication question

[ Edited ]

I would be more concerned if the statins were exposed to light. Statins are very sensitive to light, including fluorescent and sunlight.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 22,219
Registered: ‎05-10-2010

I would take the expired one.  It's only a few weeks over the expiration date and my opinion is that it hasn't lost any of it's effectivens in a few weeks.  I'm sure they fudge those expiration dates anyway.  I would not use the one that froze because it is indeed likely that the chemicals might have broken down from cold.  In fact, there was an article in our local paper that talked about the things we should not leave in our cars over night in frigid cold weather and prescription medications was on that list.

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 6,835
Registered: ‎06-25-2012

@MaeE wrote:

Personally, I never take statin drugs..I think they do more harm than good..personal experience


Does your response actually help the OP? It doesn't address her problem whatsover. 

"Pure Michigan"
Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,181
Registered: ‎03-09-2010


Thanks so much everyone!  Well almost everyone lol.


Great info on the temperature control & expiration dates - I appreciate it.


And no I don't have high cholesterol.  I'm high normal/borderline but since I'm diabetic I'm on the statin for prevention.  But thanks for the concern.


And I wasn't asking for an opinion about statins. 


Thanks again!

Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,176
Registered: ‎04-23-2010

@FranandZoe wrote:

My husband picked up my Atorvastatin (generic Lipitor) on Friday - left it in the car for 6 hours with outside temperature around zero.  Pharmacist says no harm in taking it but may not be effective in doing what it's supposed to do.  I have an old bottle that expired in 12/18.  They told me the same thing about the expired medication.  So which do you think would be better to take/more likely to be as effective as usual?  I'm thinking the expired one.  It's unlikely that it would be bad the next month or a few months after the expiration date.  (My insurance won't pay for another bottle.)  Thanks.

Have you considered calling the doctor who prescibed it?

Valued Contributor
Posts: 924
Registered: ‎07-10-2011

Why call the Dr who prescribed it? The Pharmacist knows more about drugs than the Dr. If it werent for my Pharmacist, I would have had a lot of problems from a drug my Dr prescribe which would have counteract with another drug that my Dr previously prescribed.


I would take both (the one from last year and then the one that was left out in the cold).