VASCEPA vs. LOVAZA – Which is better and what are the benefits?
Lovaza (omega-3-acid ethyl esters) Capsules are manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline and Lovaza is also a FDA-approved drug. It is a combination of ethyl esters of omega-3 fatty acids, primarily EPA and DHA, indicated as an adjunct to diet to reduce triglyceride levels in adult patients with severe hypertriglyceridemia. From this description, Lovaza and Vascepa sound pretty similar in function and form but vary in that Vascepa consists of only EPA and does not contain DHA.
As far as the benefits between these two triglyceride lowering drugs, Vascepa is far superior than Lovaza. Here is why:
- Vascepa actually LOWERS LDL-C (“bad cholesterol”) levels and Lovaza INCREASES LDL-C levels.
- Lovaza INCREASES the recurrent rate of ATRIAL FIBRILLATION (commonly referred to as AFib, A-Fib, or A Fib) or Flutter, while Vascepa does not.
This is just breaking news as on the FDA’s website posted on September 4th 2012, the FDA has requested Lovaza to change its label as a study has just found this fact. This will definitely impact Lovaza sales negatively and be a boon for Vascepa once it is on the drug market in early 2013.
- Vascepa also just got added to the FDA’s “Approved Cardiovascular Medicines (2002 – present)” website.
The FDA link is here. Notice how Lovaza is missing from the list!
- Vascepa tablets do not have the fishy oil smell or taste while Lovaza tablets taste fishy.
- And the biggest reason of all: Vascepa costs LESS than Lovaza, according to Amarin CEO’s presentation at the JP Morgan Health Conference held January 7, 2013. So this is the final knockout blow to all competition.
So in summary, Vascepa is less expensive but way more effective and safer to prescribe for lowering high triglyceride levels over Lovaza. Do you think a doctor will prescribe Lovaza over Vascepa? It’s a no brainer because Lovaza increases the risk of Atrial Fibrillation and raises your LDL-C ‘Bad Cholestrol’ levels, while Vascepa does not and is a cheaper more effective alternative. I will not be suprised if Lovaza annual drug sales sink to under $150 million a year (from its current $1 Billion) once Vascepa launches in early 2013. Nobody will want to manufacturer generic Lovaza too because of the now known associated heart risks of taking Lovaza.