Harvard Health Letter

By the way, doctor: Should coenzyme Q10 be taken with statins?

Q. I take a statin. Should I be taking coenzyme Q10 to protect myself against the muscle pain that statins can cause?

A. Statin drugs cause muscle pain in about 3% to 10% of people who take them, so your concern about muscle pain is understandable. Statins can also cause muscle inflammation, or myositis, although only about one-half of 1% of statin users are affected.

Coenzyme Q10 — or CoQ10, for short — is involved in the generation of ATP, the molecule that provides energy to all cells in the body, including muscle cells. CoQ10 is also an antioxidant that protects mitochondria, the energy engines of cells, from damage by oxygen free radicals. So CoQ10 plays at least two valuable roles in preserving a cell's energy supply.

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