Current medication for FCS, and evaluating the risk versus benefits of medicines that raise triglyceride levels

Medications for high triglycerides

In September 2020 a medication called Volanesorsen developed specifically for patients with FCS was approved by NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence).  The medication is to be taken alongside a restricted diet and lowers triglyceride levels.  There are specific criteria for eligibility, and close monitoring is required. Discuss with your specialist to learn more. You will find the regulatory decisions made by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and NICE at the bottom of the page.

Dietary management remains essential for all patients with or without medication.  For more information on the dietary restrictions and strategies for managing the diet, go to Living with FCS.


Speak to your specialist about medications for FCS.

Medications that may be beneficial

Fibrates can reduce total triglyceride levels almost by half in some individuals who have FCS, but for most the response is limited.

Sitagliptin is used for diabetes but can also be given to those without diabetes to lower triglyceride levels.

Omacor is a fish oil that lowers triglyceride levels for people with high lipid levels for reasons other than FCS. The benefits of Omacor are uncertain for people with FCS.

Statins may be of benefit to those who have high cholesterol levels, thought to be as a result of other causes than FCS.


Risks versus benefits

Some medications are known to raise triglyceride levels.  If you are prescribed a new medication, ensure that you discuss any potential effect on your lipid levels and any potential risk vs potential benefit the new medication might offer.  Some medications known to raise triglyceride levels are:

Oestrogens, most likely to be prescribed for contraception or to manage the symptoms of menopause.

sometimes called water pills and used to treat oedema.

Corticosteroids, anti-inflammatory medicines used for auto-immune diseases, skin conditions and asthma.

Tamoxifen, used for homorne-positive breast cancers.

There are many other medications which can raise triglyceride levels. Always read the patient leaflet of any medication you are prescribed to check whether this is the case.

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