News you can use: health & drug safety updates


  • February 17, 2010
    Medicines are safe and effective only if used as directed, said Margaret Harris, Ph.D., assistant professor-health for the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture. “There are more than 100,000 drug products on the market,” she said. Each has at least one active ingredient that works with your body to relieve symptoms. “With more than 1,000 active ingredients on the market, overdosing, drug interactions and drug abuse of both prescription and over-the-counter drugs are growing increasingly common." With the number of over-the-counter and prescribed medicines that might be in a
  • February 16, 2010
    The National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA), a recent new member of the National Council on Patient Information and Education (NCPIE), is actively seeking resource support to develop a Continuing Medical Education (CME) program for pharmacists and pharmacist technicians that will educate about celiac disease and the identification of gluten in medication. NFCA current educational programming, the Gluten-free Resource Education and Awareness Training (GREAT) programs, provides comprehensive information for food service and
  • January 25, 2010
    Wondering what the side effects are for your new prescription? Go to Mobile MedlinePlus while you’re waiting for the pharmacist to fill your order. Or, instantly look up the symptoms of H1N1 flu if you’re at the supermarket and your child’s school calls you to tell you he doesn't feel well. The National Library of Medicine’s Mobile Medline Plus builds on the NLM’s MedlinePlus Internet service, which provides authoritative consumer health information to over 10 million visitors per month. Visitors access
  • January 15, 2010
    McNeil Consumer Healthcare is voluntarily recalling certain lots of OTC products including some batches of Tylenol caplets and geltabs along with Motrin IB, Benadryl allergy tablets, and children’s Tylenol and Motrin products following an investigation of consumer reports of an unusual moldy, musty or mildew-like odor that, in a small number of cases, was associated with temporary and non-serious gastrointestinal events. These include nausea, stomach pain, vomiting, or diarrhea. This precautionary action is voluntary and has been taken in
  • January 6, 2010
    In December 2009, the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP) reached a scary milestone in its ongoing review of Web sites selling prescription medications. NABP now lists more than 5,000 Internet drug outlets as “Not Recommended.” These sites 96% of the total number of sites reviewed have been found to be out of compliance with pharmacy laws and practice standards established in the United States to protect the public health. NABP researches Web sites selling prescription drugs and reports its findings to
  • January 5, 2010
    About one in every six adults experiences depression at some point in his or her life. The good news is that depression can be treated to give you a better quality of life. But finding the right treatment that fits your needs can sometimes be tricky. The most common treatments are antidepressant medicines, counseling, or a combination of the two. Finding the right antidepressant can be confusing and frustrating. To help you work with your doctor or nurse to select the right medicine, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), developed a guide on antidepressants


  • December 31, 2009
    Pharmacy Times
  • December 29, 2009
    — One in four seniors take between 10 and 19 pills a day — Older Adults in the U.S. are being overwhelmed by the number of prescription medicines they take on a daily basis. According to a new national survey of more than 1,000 people ages 65 and
  • December 7, 2009
    American Medical News
  • November 25, 2009
    Some drugs commonly prescribed to the elderly either at home or in long-term- care facilities raise the risk of falls, according to researchers who analyzed 22 studies that included almost 80,000 people age 60 and older. Three classes of drugs that raised the risk of falls most significantly were sedatives and hypnotics, such as sleeping aids; antidepressants; and benzodiazepines, such as Xanax. The author of the study advised that older people who are taking any of the drugs associated with falls should talk about the medication with their physician and