Category: alternatives

multicolored pills

Newer classes of medications have transformed diabetes care and cancer treatment, but is newer always better? Patients often ask me if there is something “newer” than their current medication and if they should switch. My answer? Sometimes yes, sometimes no. Here are 11 medications that have been around forever (and I’m talking some from the… Read More

pills stacked on coins

Treatments for hepatitis C are notoriously expensive, and the price for Harvoni is no different. Patients typically take Harvoni for 12 weeks, and the list price for a one-month supply runs at $31,500 for 28 tablets—or $1,125 per tablet—making Harvoni the ninth most expensive drug in the United States. We’re not kidding. Harvoni’s manufacturer, Gilead,… Read More

diabetes meter next to insulin

Despite outrage over the high cost of insulin, prices for popular insulin treatments have continued to climb in 2018, according to a GoodRx analysis of drug prices. Though prices are not climbing as quickly as they did between 2002 and 2013—when the average cost of insulin therapy tripled—the average price of insulin has increased by… Read More

two prescription bottles with pills next to them

Benzodiazepines are one of the most commonly taken psychotropic drugs, often used for anxiety. Prolonged use of them is a widespread phenomenon in medical practice, yet it may surprise you to know that these medications are really only meant to be used short term. Both alprazolam (Xanax) and lorazepam (Ativan) are considered short-acting benzodiazepines and… Read More

dollar bills and prescription bottles

How do you save on prescriptions? It might be in the way you pay for a prescription, like using a discount instead of insurance when it’s cheaper than your copay. Or it might be in the choice of your medication, like choosing a generic over a brand-name drug. Generics often give patients a way to… Read More

assortment of medicines

Brand-only drugs like Restasis, Eliquis and Lyrica can cost well over $500 for a month’s supply, and without cheaper generic alternatives, patients are often forced to either shell out their life savings or give up essential medications. FDA initiatives to expedite the drug review process and prohibit manufacturers from holding market exclusivity for too long… Read More

High blood pressure can lead to dangerous conditions like heart attack and stroke, so it’s important to keep it under control. Unfortunately, treatments like brand-only Bystolic (nebivolol) can be expensive—a monthly supply can cost well beyond $150 without insurance. What’s more, some commercial plans require patients to get a prior authorization and/or go through step… Read More

birth control dose pack

In May, the makers of Vagisil, the popular over-the-counter cream for vaginal itching and irritation, launched Preventeza, their own version of the emergency contraceptive pill (ECP). This is a good thing: with more options available from online and local retailers, emergency contraception becomes more accessible and more people can prevent unplanned pregnancies. We’ll walk you… Read More

assortment of medicines

Opioids like oxycodone, hydrocodone, and morphine have long been considered some of the most helpful drugs for managing acute pain. However, rates of opioid abuse and overdose deaths have skyrocketed in recent years. And now it turns out that there’s another reason to avoid opioids: they may not be the most effective treatment for pain… Read More

Yeast infections are caused by Candida albicans, a type of fungus that is naturally found in the vaginal flora of most women. However, too much of a good thing can be bad, and overgrowth of Candida leads to a common condition for women called a yeast infection. Telltale signs include itching, soreness, and a white, thick… Read More