“Can I just stop my medication?” This question, frequently asked of primary care doctors, has a complicated answer. For starters, if you are taking a medication that is controlling an ongoing medical problem like high blood pressure, diabetes or high cholesterol, you should never stop it on your own—or your problem will return. Many patients do come clean though and report that they just plain stopped their meds. See More
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As drug makers are facing increasing scrutiny over high drug prices, pharmacy benefit manager (PBM) Express Scripts announces that they will be excluding 48 new drugs from insurance coverage in 2019. If you have insurance, it’s time to pay attention.
Every year, PBMs like Express Scripts evaluate the clinical value and financial cost of prescription medications and create a list of drugs covered by insurance, known as formularies. See More
“Can I have a drink while I’m taking my medication?” This is a question that primary care doctors are frequently asked, rightly so. Almost 50% of Americans report taking a prescription medication in the previous month. Alcohol in moderation (3 – 5 drinks per week) is recommended for stroke and heart disease prevention, and many folks taking medications known to interact with alcohol still report regular use. See More
Americans’ use of supplements, prescriptions and over the counter (OTC) medications has been steadily increasing over the past couple of years. This increase can sometimes put patients at risk for complications and interactions. Believe it or not, a lot of over-the-counter medications can actually interact with your prescription medications (and affect how they work) without you even realizing it. See More
If you’ve never used pain medications and are given them for pain after a procedure, who is most likely to have a problem down the line? Well, a recent JAMA study evaluated the risk for chronic opioid use following several common surgical procedures in opioid-naive patients (people who have never used opioid medications before). See More
The FDA has issued a new required warning for all opioid pain medications. If you are taking an opioid, you should be aware of a few potential side effects, including reactions with other medications, and effects on hormone levels.
What are some examples of opioid medications?
Opioids are powerful prescription-only medications, used to manage manage pain when other treatments may not work. Some common opiods include:
- hydrocodone/acetaminophen (Vicodin, Norco, Lorcet)
- oxycodone/acetaminophen (Percocet, Endocet, Roxicet)
- oxycodone (Oxycontin, Roxicodone)
- fentanyl (Duragesic, Subsys)
Why exactly was the FDA safety alert issued?
The FDA identified some safety concerns for anyone using opioid pain medications:
- They can interact with many other medications
- They can cause problems with a person’s adrenal glands
- They can decrease sex hormone levels
What kind of medications can react with opioids?
Specifically, opioids may react with antidepressants and migraine medications. See More
Opioid pain medication is an emotional topic for everyone. Patients who struggle with chronic noncancer pain and need opioid medications feel they are portrayed as addicts when they ask for refills. Each week I see many patients using opioids for the appropriate reason, who have tried and failed with other medications and yet feel stigmatized by the use of medicine they need.
The new Goodrx Top 10 Lists are in, and this time we take a look back at the end of 2015. These are the most popular and most expensive drugs in the US, and they cover all kinds of conditions from common heart and pain meds to pricey treatments for cancer and genetic disorders.
To start with—which drugs were filled the most in the last quarter of 2015?
With all the news about high drug prices recently—which drugs are actually costing Americans the most money? What about the prescriptions that are being used the most? Take a look, and we’ll guide you through the highlights of the new GoodRx Top 10s, based on a sample of claims reported by pharmacies across the country.
Which drugs are the most expensive?
- Treatments for rare diseases make up a good portion of the list, particularly for hereditary angioedema (HAE). See More
Our new top 10 lists are in for the most-dispensed and most expensive prescriptions in the US—take a look at these interesting updates.
Which prescriptions have been filled the most in 2015 so far?
Based on a sample of claims reported by pharmacies across the country, thyroid meds like Synthroid and levothyroxine near the top of the list, while standard heart and diabetes prescriptions lisinopril (Zestril, Prinivil), atorvastatin (Lipitor), and metformin (Glucophage) are still very frequently prescribed—no surprises there. See More