Friday, October 2, 2009

I didn't know I was on medication

In the last few days, I saw 2 patients who were taking over-the-counter antihistamines bought at one of the large warehouse stores, and they forgot to mention this when I asked what medications they were taking.  Later they remebered! It's common to think that over-the-counter (OTC) medications are not as strong or effective as prescription products.  Not so!  The 24 hour antihistamines we have available e.g. loratadine or cetirizine, are the same strength as when they required a doctor's prescription for branded prescription Claritin or Zyrtec.  When you see your doctor, don't forget to mention all the non-prescription or OTC products you are taking as well as any vitamins, hormones, dietary supplements or herbal products.  If you are on several, make a list and give a copy to the doctor for your medical record.  It will be appreciated, and make your visit more productive.

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