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Atorvastatin Calcium

Page history last edited by Joe Redish 5 years, 6 months ago

2.1.4.P9

 

As a newly minted physician, you want to impress your patients with your skill. One of your new patients is a senior who has just moved into your area. Her previous physician had her taking 600 mg of Calcium per day to stave off osteoporosis and 40 mg of Lipitor to manage her cholesterol. When she got to her new pharmacy, her new medical plan required her to use a generic form of her prescriptions. She was surprised when her cholesterol drug came with the label "atorvastatin-calcium". As someone who keeps up on the medical news, she was aware of a Swedish study that reported that too much calcium (1400 mg or more per day) could be harmful to your health and increase your risk of death. She was concerned whether her cholesterol drug could be contributing significantly to her daily calcium intake.

 

You reassured her that 40 mg of atorvastatin could certainly not contain more than 40 mg of calcium so there was not a problem.

 

Although that much is obvious, you take a quick look at the drug info app in your smartphone and find the chemical structure formula shown on the right. Although it certainly isn't necessary, can you fairly quickly estimate a much smaller upper limit for the mass of calcium that is contained in 40 mg of atorvastatin calcium, thereby comforting your patient (and impressing her with your quantitative skills)?

 

Joe Redish 4/11/2013

(Source: http://www.chem.ox.ac.uk/mom/atorvastatin/Atorvastatin.html)

 

 

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