Coenzyme Q(10) and statin myalgia: what is the evidence?

Curr Atheroscler Rep. 2010 Nov;12(6):407-13. doi: 10.1007/s11883-010-0134-3.


Statins lower cholesterol by inhibiting 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A (HMG-CoA) reductase, the rate-limiting enzyme in the biosynthesis of cholesterol. However, severe adverse events, including myalgias and rhabdomyolysis, have been reported with statin treatment. Different mechanisms have been proposed to explain statin-induced myopathy, including reduction of mevalonate pathway products, induction of apoptosis, mitochondrial dysfunction, and genetic predisposition. A decrease in coenzyme Q(10) (CoQ), a product of the mevalonate pathway, could contribute to statin induced myopathy. This article reviews the clinical and biochemical features of statin-induced myopathy, the inter-relationship between statins and the concentration of CoQ in plasma and tissues, and whether there is a role for supplementation with CoQ to attenuate statin-induced myopathy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors / adverse effects*
  • Muscular Diseases / chemically induced*
  • Ubiquinone / adverse effects
  • Ubiquinone / analogs & derivatives*
  • Ubiquinone / blood


  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors
  • Ubiquinone
  • coenzyme Q10