Medication Information

How Much is a Spoonful?

Recent research shows that 4 in 10 parents make a significant error when measuring liquid medication for their children. They are also twice as likely to make an error when the doses are refereed to in “spoonful” units instead of milliliters. The problem is that not all household spoons are created of equal size. According More…

Going “Off-Label”

  In order to receive FDA approval, drug manufacturers must provide research showing that their product delivers benefit in treating a specific condition. While drug in question may also help with other conditions, pharmaceutical companies may decide not to conduct additional expensive clinical trials that can get the medication approved for treatment for other purposes. More…

Anti-Depressants and Weight Gain

  With concerns about weight gain being so pervasive, it may help to know that recent research indicated that those taking anti-depressants may put on a few pounds. Moreover, the study, which involved nearly 20,000 adults treated with anti-depressants, revealed that some medications are associated with more weight gain than others. Specifically, people talking citalopram More…

About Those E.D. Drugs

Erectile Dysfunction (ED) is a problem to some degree for approximately half of the men between the ages of 40 and 70. This helps explain the popularity of drugs that can alleviate this problem in about 70% of otherwise healthy men. These drugs include sildenafil (Viagra), tadalafil (Cialis), verdenafil (Levitra) and avanafil (Stendra). In combination More…

Bodies in Motion

“Motion sickness” occurs when the inner ear, eyes and other motion-detecting areas of the body send conflicting messages to the brain. That is, one part of the body’s balancing-sensing mechanism may be sensing that the body is moving while the others do not. While prevention is the best course of action against motion sickness, it More…

GROWING LAX

While eating a fiber rich diet, staying active, and drinking plenty of fluids generally help stave off constipation, occasional bouts of irregularity do occur. If so, the first treatment choice should be an over-the-counter, bulk forming laxative, which draws water into the stool and makes it easier to pass. Sometimes marketed as “fiber supplements,” these More…

MEDICATIONS FOR NERVE PAIN

While most of us are familiar with chronic joint and muscle pain and the medications commonly used to treat them, nerve pain is often another matter. In some cases, at least part of the pain associated with an injured and inflamed muscle or joint may come from “neuropathic” pain, producing sharp, stinging, or radiating pain. More…

WHAT’S IN YOUR MEDICINE?

Thanks to consumer-led health campaigns, food labels are clearer about which and how much additives are in our food. Unfortunately, the same cannot always be said about the medicines we take. According to a recent British study, “effervescent” versions of medications (those that provide a sparkling, fizzy, bubbly effect) have high levels of sodium, which More…

TOO LATE?

It’s frustrating to find a needed medication in the medicine chest or closet only to see that is has exceeded its expiration date. This FDA-mandated time stamp represents the manufacturer’s guarantee that the drug will remain chemically stable (maintaining its full potency and safety) until the designated date. For those wondering if it’s safe to More…

SPINE-TO-SPINE COMPARISON

According to a recent study that compares two drugs approved by the FDA for the treatment of osteoporosis, a clear winner has emerged. The study, involving 51 patients who used denosumab (Prolia) and 56 who used zoledronate (Reclast), showed that Prolia was significantly more effective in increasing spinal bone mineral density and produced fewer side More…

JITTERY & SLEEPY?

Ever since 1970s when diazepam (Valium) was popular, people have turned to tranquilizers to calm jittery nerves and combat insomnia. The medications in this class of drugs, known as “benzodiazepines,” have largely fallen out of favor primarily because they exert sedating effects that can prove dangerous. Still, benzodiazepines remain among the most widely prescribed drugs More…

GETTING NEEDED OXYGEN

Patients with conditions that impair breathing, such as heart failure, sleep apnea, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, greatly benefit from home oxygen therapy and being able to carry a personal cylinder or tank of oxygen. Supplemental oxygen improves overall function and quality of life for those who need it by improving sleep, increasing activity levels, More…

A POTENTIALLY BAD COMBINATION

Patients who take blood-thinning drugs to lower their risk of developing blood clots from such conditions as abnormal heart rhythms should avoid taking painkilling drugs known as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). The trouble is that many patients taking blood thinners are older and, therefore, at increased risk for arthritis. Consequently, they may take common NSAIDs More…

SLOWING THE BURN

While physicians often prescribe “proton pump inhibitors” (PPIs) for the treatment of heartburn, research shows that up to 70% of people taking drugs such as esomeprazole (Nexium) and omeprazole ( Prilosec and generic) might not need such strong medication. Designed to treat garden-variety heartburn, PPIs can take one to four days to work. These drugs, More…

WHAT’S THE HARM WITH TAKING ANTIBIOTICS?

When you are feeling sick with flu-like symptoms, do you insist that your doctor write you a prescription for antibiotics? If you do, you may be unknowingly contributing to the general ineffectiveness of antibiotics. The fact is that antibiotics are of no use in combating colds or the flu, which are primarily caused by viruses. More…