Once upon a time, we trusted that our doctors knew our all of our medications, and how they interacted. But now, trooping off to the cardiologist one day, and the gastroenterologist the next, with a side of psychiatrist? And what happens if, say, you forget to mention all the drugs you’re taking to each doc, and even if you do, do they know how all the drugs you’re taking interact?
I recently heard a horror story from a colleague here at AARP. Her mother had been placed on a new medication, and was acting disoriented and strange, after being put on a new medication. After pushing through and finally getting a doc to look at the full list of medications she was on, it was clear there was a bad drug interaction happening. Her mother has had a stroke, so wasn’t able to communicate for herself; it took her daughter’s intervention to spot and solve the issue.
Welcome, handy Drug Interaction Checker! If you’re on a lot of medications, from different prescribers, it’s worth taking a moment to punch them in here to make sure all your prescriptions play well together. And if you see any red flags? Call that doc, and ask for an alternative.
Have you had any bad experiences with unforeseen drug interactions?
Photo credit: e-MagineArt.com via Flickr