Health Guide


What is it?

Policosanol is a supplement used to treat heart disease and Parkinson's disease. It is also used to decrease cholesterol (fat) in the blood.

Other names for Policosanol include: Octacosanol

Ask your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist if you need more information about this medicine or if any information in this leaflet concerns you.

Before Using:

Tell your doctor if you

  • are taking medicine or are allergic to any medicine (prescription or over-the-counter (OTC) or dietary supplement)
  • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medicine
  • are breastfeeding
  • have other health problems, such as high blood pressure or heart or blood vessel disease


Talk with your caregiver about how much Policosanol you should take. The amount depends on the strength of the medicine and the reason you are taking Policosanol. If you are using this medicine without instructions from your caregiver, follow the directions on the medicine bottle. Do not take more medicine or take it more often than the directions tell you to.

To store this medicine:

Keep all medicine locked up and away from children. Store medicine away from heat and direct light. Do not store your medicine in the bathroom, near the kitchen sink, or in other damp places. Heat or moisture may cause the medicine to break down and not work the way it should work. Throw away medicine that is out of date or that you do not need. Never share your medicine with others.


  • Before taking Policosanol, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding
  • Use caution if Policosanol is taken with anticoagulant and antiplatelet medicine (3,10)

Side Effects:

Stop taking your medicine right away and talk to your doctor if you have any of the following side effects. Your medicine may be causing these symptoms which may mean you are allergic to it.

  • Breathing problems or tightness in your throat or chest
  • Chest pain
  • Skin hives, rash, or itchy or swollen skin

Other Side Effects:

You may have the following side effects, but this medicine may also cause other side effects. Tell your doctor if you have side effects that you think are caused by this medicine.

  • Headache (5)
  • Mild dizziness (9)
  • Nervousness (6)
  • Inflammation of the lining of the nose, diarrhea, bitter taste, shortness of breath (11)


1. Arruzazabala ML, Molina V, Carbajal D et al: Effect of policosanol on platelet aggregation in type II hypercholesterolemic patients. Tissue Reactions 1998; 20(4):119-124.

2. Stusser R, Batista J, Padron B et al: Long-term therapy with policosanol improves treadmill exercise-ECG testing performance of coronary heart disease patients. Int J Clin Pharmacol Ther 1998; 36(9):469-473.

3. Valdes S, Arruzazabala ML, Fernandez L et al: Effect of policosanol on platelet aggregation in healthy volunteers. Int J Clin Pharmacol Res 1996; 16(2-3):67-72.

4. Batista J, Stusser R, Saez F et al: Effect of policosanol on hyperlipidemia and coronary heart disease in middle-aged patients. A 14-month pilot study. Int J Clin Pharmacol Ther 1996; 34(3):134-137.

5. Castano G, Tula L, Canetti M et al: Effects of policosanol in hypertensive patients with type II hypercholesterolemia. Curr Ther Res 1996; 57(9):691-695.

6. Canetti M, Moreira M, Mas R et al: A two-year study on the efficacy and tolerability of policosanol in patients with type II hyperlipoproteinaemia. Int J Clin Pharmacol Res 1995; 15(4):159-165.

7. Castano G, Canetti M, Moreira M et al: Efficacy and tolerability of policosanol in elderly patients with type II hypercholesterolemia: A 12-month study. Curr Ther Res 1995; 56 (8):819-823.

8. Torres O, Agramonte AJ, Illnait J et al: Treatment of hypercholesterolemia in NIDDM with policosanol. Diabetes Care 1995; 18(3):393-397.

9. Snider SR: Octacosanol in Parkinsonism. Ann Neurol 1984; 6(6):723.

10.Arruzazabala ML, Carbajal D, Mas R et al: Effects of policosanol on platelet aggregation in rats. Thrombosis Res 1993; 69(3):321-327.

11.Pons P, Rodriquez M, Robaina C et al: Effects of successive dose increases of policosanol on the lipid profile of patients with type II hypercholesterolaemia and tolerability to treatment. Int J Clin Pharmacol Res 1994; 14(1):27-33.

Last Updated: 7/4/2018
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