Nicotinic acid: Discontinuation

Discontinuation Active

The supplier of nicotinic acid has informed PHARMAC it is discontinuing supply of this product. 

Nicotinic acid is indicated for the treatment of dyslipidaemia. Fewer than 1500 people take nicotinic acid.   

We are aware that nicotinic acid is no longer recommended as a lipid-lowering treatment (treatment for dyslipidaemia). PHARMAC’s clinical advisors have advised there are several other suitable, funded, lipid-modifying agents, including statins, that are more appropriate treatment options.

We recommend that people taking nicotinic acid go back to their prescriber to discuss changing to an alternative funded treatment for high cholesterol.

Information for prescribers

PHARMAC has received advice that there are several suitable, funded, lipid-modifying agents available for patients.

Prescribers can access advice on alternative lipid-modifying agents from BPACnz(external link) 

Search the Schedule for alternatives

We know that it is not always easy to change patients onto different medicines and apologise for any inconvenience caused by this discontinuation.

Information for pharmacists

We propose delisting nicotinic acid from the Pharmaceutical Schedule from 1 April 2021.

Who to contact

If you take nicotinic acid, contact your health care professional. PHARMAC cannot give clinical advice to individuals. This information is a guide only. 

If you have questions about funded medicines, email enquiry@pharmac.govt.nz