UK Clinical Pharmacy Association


Issues for surgery

Potential increase in serum triglycerides if omitted.

Risk of myopathy and rhabdomyolysis if continued (see Further information).

Advice in the perioperative period

Elective and emergency Surgery


Surgery for gallbladder disease

Gemfibrozil is contraindicated in gallbladder disease. Consider asking patient’s General Practitioner (GP) or surgeon to review gemfibrozil if patient is awaiting surgery for gallbladder disease – see product literature for further information.

Post-operative advice

Restart post-operatively as soon as next dose is due. 

Monitor liver and renal function – treatment interruption or dose reduction may be necessary if liver or renal function is impaired (see Further information).

Interactions with common anaesthetic agents


Interactions with other common medicines used in the perioperative period


Further information

Renal function and skeletal muscle effects

A concern with perioperative fibrate therapy is the risk of fibrate-induced myopathy and rhabdomyolysis. Perioperatively, factors increasing the risk of fibrate-induced myopathy include impairment of renal function after major surgery. Monitor renal function and adjust fibrate dose or interrupt treatment according to recommendations in product literature. Monitor the patient for signs and symptoms of skeletal muscle effects such as muscle pain, cramps or weakness. If symptoms occur, measure creatinine kinase (CK) level and if found to be more than 5 times the upper limit of normal (ULN), the fibrate should be stopped.

Liver effects

Patients who develop increased serum transaminase levels (alanine aminotransferase, ALT and aspartate aminotransferase, AST) should be monitored until the abnormality(ies) resolve. If liver function abnormalities persist, withdrawal of gemfibrozil is recommended.


Joint Formulary Committee. British National Formulary (online) London: BMJ Group and Pharmaceutical Press. [Accessed on 4th January 2024]

Gemfibrozil. In: Brayfield A (Ed), Martindale: The Complete Drug Reference. London: The Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain. [Accessed 4th January 2024]

Summary of Product Characteristics – Lopid® (gemfibrozil)) 600 mg Film-coated Tablets. Pfizer Limited. Accessed via 04/01/2024 [date of revision of the text April 2021]

Baxter K, Preston CL (eds), Stockley’s Drug Interactions (online) London: Pharmaceutical Press. [Accessed on 4th January 2024]