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 50’s) and are still recommended as first-line therapy.
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According to the Centers for Disease Control, more than 60,000 children end up in the emergency room every year due to accidental overdose — often from medications they find around the home.
This danger may increase around the holidays, when kids are exploring new territory in a relative’s house and grown-ups might not be keeping a close eye. It’s especially risky when older adults are involved, as many medications for people age 50+ can be very harmful to children. See More
Medications are a common offender when it comes to lower extremity edema, either as the cause or as a factor that can make it worse. Swelling in the lower legs from fluid in the tissues—lower extremity edema—is a familiar complaint among patients. Imprints from your socks, puffy legs, and feet so you can’t put your shoes on, or swelling so that you can make an indent with your thumb (pitting edema) may lead you to wonder what’s going on. See More
Tinnitus, or ringing in the ears, is a perception of sound in one or both ears in the absence of an external source. It’s often described by patients as buzzing, ringing, or whooshing. While there is often no known cause for tinnitus, there are a handful of medications that may contribute.
Medications that are known to cause tinnitus or hearing loss are considered “ototoxic medications.” Discontinuing these medications can prevent tinnitus and hearing progression, though the ringing may not always go away. See More
High blood pressure is a key risk factor for stroke and heart disease, but it is easy to treat! If you have tried lifestyle changes and your blood pressures is still greater than 140/90, your doctor may discuss starting a medication to lower your pressure. If this is the case, it might be difficult to decide on which blood pressure medication is best for you. However, it turns out this question has been well studied, and the answer partly depends on your age and race. See More
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?
Good news if you have a Kmart pharmacy near you—Kmart is introducing a new savings program for 2016.
The Kmart Pharmacy Savings Plus program will offer discounts on generic medications, along with savings on extras like pet meds, immunizations, and other extras that will change every few months.
How much can you save?
Kmart will be offering nearly 200 generic drugs at two pricing levels: $5 for a 30-day supply and $10 for a 90-day supply, or $10 for 30 days and $30 for 90 days. See More
For many Americans with health insurance, more than 40 popular brand-name drugs may no longer be covered starting in January 2015. Express Scripts and Caremark, companies that handle pharmacy benefits for more than 200 million Americans, are removing over 40 drugs from their formularies at the end of 2014. This is in addition to the more than 50 drugs removed last year.
What are Express Scripts and Caremark?
Express Scripts and Caremark are companies that administer prescription drug benefits for many health insurance companies and Tricare. See More
Poor control of blood pressure (BP) is bad news, and is associated with enhanced risk of cardiovascular disease. Therapy with a single blood pressure medication fails to reach goals 75% of the time. This is just one reason that single pill combinations (two different blood pressure medications in one pill) make perfect sense.
Combining medications that have different and often complementary actions can lead to more complete and prompt reductions in BP. See More
If you take prescription drugs to treat a chronic illness, it’s possible to save more than 50% off cost of your medication by simply splitting your pills.
Sadly, it’s not all that easy to know when pill splitting is all right.
Not all pills can be split. However, many doctors and insurance companies are advising this strategy with an increasing number of medicines. (It’s also worth noting that the American Medical Association, the American Pharmacists Association, and most pharmaceutical companies oppose pill-splitting. See More