Master Niacin Therapy (Vitamin B3) with Picmonic for Medicine

With Picmonic, facts become pictures. We've taken what the science shows - image mnemonics work - but we've boosted the effectiveness by building and associating memorable characters, interesting audio stories, and built-in quizzing.

Niacin Therapy (Vitamin B3)

Nice-sun
Picmonic
Niacin, also known as vitamin B3, has been used for many years to decrease cholesterol in patients at risk for cardiovascular events. Niacin therapy has been shown to decrease LDL and triglycerides and increase HDL levels. Niacin’s therapeutic effect is thought to be related to inhibition of lipolysis in adipose tissue, as well as via reduction of hepatic VLDL secretion. A red, flushed face is a well-known side effect of niacin use. Because the flushing is mediated by prostaglandin activation, aspirin can reduce flushing by altering or blocking the prostaglandin mediated pathway. Niacin therapy is also associated with hyperglycemia and hyperuricemia.
9 KEY FACTS
MECHANISM
Inhibits Lipolysis in Adipose Tissue
Tied-up with Lip-lights

Niacin's therapeutic effect is thought to be related to inhibition of lipolysis in adipose tissue. This limits free fatty acids available for the liver to produce triglycerides and VLDL, and consequently LDL.

Reduces Hepatic VLDL Secretion
Tied-up Veiled-lady-bug-devil with Liver

Niacin therapy leads to a reduction in hepatic VLDL secretion via decreased free fatty acid availability for the liver to produce TG and VLDL. Decrease in free fatty acids also suppresses hepatic expression of apolipoprotein C3 and leads to reduced VLDL production.

INDICATIONS
Decrease Triglycerides
Down-arrow TAG-triceratops

Triglycerides are esters derived from glycerol and three fatty acids. High levels of triglycerides in the bloodstream have been linked to atherosclerosis, and niacin therapy can decrease triglyceride levels in the body.

Decrease LDL
Down-arrow Ladybug-devil

Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) is associated with health problems, including heart disease, which is why it is commonly called the "bad" cholesterol. Niacin decreases blood LDL levels.

Increase HDL
Up-arrow Hot-dog-angel

High density lipoprotein particles remove fats like cholesterol from cells and transport it back to the liver for excretion or re-utilization. Therefore, HDL is often referred to as "good" cholesterol. Niacin is associated with increased HDL levels in users.

SIDE EFFECTS
Flushing
Flashlight on flushed face

Flushing is a well known side effect of niacin use. Flushing usually lasts for about 15-30 minutes and is mediated by prostaglandin activation.

Decreased by Aspirin
Down-arrow Aspirin

Because the flushing related with niacin use is mediated by prostaglandin activation, aspirin can reduce flushing by altering or blocking the prostaglandin mediated pathway.

Hyperglycemia
Hiker-glue-bottle

High doses of niacin have been associated with elevations in blood sugar, thereby worsening diabetes mellitus.

Hyperuricemia
Hiker-unicorn

Hyperuricemia is another side effect of taking high doses of niacin and may exacerbate gout in certain patients.

Unlock all 9 facts & definitions with Picmonic Free!

JOIN FREE

Take the Niacin Therapy (Vitamin B3) Quiz

Picmonic's rapid review multiple-choice quiz allows you to assess your knowledge.

START QUIZ NOW

It's worth every penny

Our Story Mnemonics Increase Mastery and Retention

Memorize facts with phonetic mnemonics

Unforgettable characters with concise but impactful videos (2-4 min each)

Ace Your Medical (MD/DO) Classes & Exams with Picmonic:

Over 860,000 students use Picmonic’s picture mnemonics to improve knowledge, retention, and exam performance.

Choose the #1 Medical (MD/DO) student study app.

Picmonic for Medicine (MD/DO) covers information that is relevant to your entire Medical (MD/DO) education. Whether you’re studying for your classes or getting ready to conquer the USMLE Step 1, USMLE Step 2 CK, COMLEX Level 1, or COMLEX Level 2, we’re here to help.

Works better than traditional Medical (MD/DO) flashcards.

Research shows that students who use Picmonic see a 331% improvement in memory retention and a 50% improvement in test scores.