Benita Lee - August 18, 2018
More than one-third of US adults may be using a prescription medication associated with depression and/or suicidal symptoms as a possible side effect, a recent study finds. Over 200 medications, including birth control pills, blood pressure medications, antacids, and painkillers, were cited with these concerns.
The study, carried out by researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago, found that 38% of adults interviewed from 2013 to 2014 used medications associated with depression as a possible side effect in the 30 days prior to the interview compared to 35% from 2005 to 2006. See More
Dr. Sharon Orrange - August 14, 2018
Synthroid (levothyroxine) is the most commonly prescribed medication in the US, and is used to treat hypothyroidism—often for a lifetime. Symptoms of hypothyroidism, or under-active thyroid, may include fatigue, weight loss, anxiety and depression. Here are seven questions I get asked a lot about levothyroxine and thyroid hormone replacement therapy.
What is levothyroxine?
Synthetic thyroxine (T4) comes as brand-name Synthroid or generic levothyroxine. See More
Dr. Sharon Orrange - July 23, 2018
Can I just change my proton-pump inhibitor? That’s a question patients with acid reflux and heartburn ask me all the time. Whether for insurance purposes, cost, or ease of refilling, can you just switch from one proton-pump inhibitor to another?
Proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs) like esomeprazole (Nexium), pantoprazole (Protonix), omeprazole (Prilosec) and lansoprazole (Prevacid) are commonly used to treat acid reflux (GERD), acid regurgitation and heartburn. See More
Dr. Sharon Orrange - June 20, 2018
Medications for acid reflux, heartburn, and GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) come in three flavors: H2 blockers, proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs), and antacids. They all work differently and are geared towards either prevention or quick relief. If you’re struggling with reflux and want to start treating the symptoms yourself, here’s what you need to know:
H2 blockers — start here
H2 blockers are short-term preventative medications that decrease stomach acid. See More
Tori Marsh - June 13, 2018
Patients often turn to generic medications for cheaper alternatives to brand-name drugs, but over the past couple years, prices for generics have increased substantially, and some of the most expensive generic medications run above $100 for a month’s supply. Every year, people are paying more for them despite insurance coverage due to high deductibles and formulary changes.
Tori Marsh - June 13, 2018
To control drug costs and reduce the use of expensive medications, insurers have long relied on step therapy, a restriction on insurance coverage that requires patients to prove that less-expensive drugs are ineffective before getting coverage for a more expensive, higher-tier drug. Step therapy is another form of a prior authorization, but many argue that step therapy undermines the patient’s health and prevents them from accessing appropriate treatment. See More
Doug Hirsch - January 12, 2018
Epipens. Sovaldi. Tysabri. Acthar. Harvoni. Every month, it seems, there’s fresh outrage–from president Trump, the Congress, in the media, and among the public–over the soaring cost of prescription drugs.
With good reason: The cash price for the average brand-name prescription drug has increased 48% since 2013. These increases put desperately needed treatments out of reach for many, and cost taxpayers (via Medicare and Medicaid) billions of dollars more every year. See More
Dr. Sharon Orrange - November 06, 2017
Most diarrhea will resolve within 24 to 48 hours—if it’s caused by viral gastroenteritis (a stomach bug) or food borne illness. If your diarrhea is hanging on and not resolving, take a look at your medications. It can be challenging to identify which medication may be causing drug-induced diarrhea, especially if you’re taking multiple medications. Here are some well-known offenders commonly associated with drug-induced diarrhea. See More
Dr. Sharon Orrange - March 16, 2017
Many of you don’t want to rely solely on medications for heartburn and reflux symptoms. While proton pump inhibitors—omeprazole (Prilosec), pantoprazole (Protonix), esomeprazole (Nexium)—and H2 blockers—Zantac, Tagamet, Pepcid—do work, there may be downsides to long term use.
Lifestyle changes are a must: limit acidic foods, eat smaller meals, avoid late night eating, keep the head of your bed elevated—but is there anything else you can take for heartburn and reflux? Here are ten common complementary and alternative therapies used for heartburn and gastroesophageal reflux:
- Probiotic supplements. See More
Dr. Sharon Orrange - September 27, 2016
Omeprazole (Prilosec) is a cheap, generic medication available both over the counter, or with a prescription. Used for the treatment of reflux disease, ulcers, and stomach protection from NSAIDS (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), it is one of the most common medications used by adults. Omeprazole is a proton pump inhibitor (PPI), a class of drugs that are used to treat GERD, ulcers and heartburn. See More