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Recently published research strongly suggests that treatment of acute pain after hospitalization or after outpatient dental surgery is best achieved with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) rather than opioids.
Combining opioids with other central nervous system depressants — mainly alcoholic beverages or benzodiazepines — greatly increases the risk of opioid overdose and death. These dangers are highlighted by new research showing that alcohol and benzodiazepines were commonly co-involved in U.S. opioid overdose deaths in recent years.
Although impaired driving usu¬ally is caused by alcohol or marijuana, many commonly used prescription and over-the-counter medications also can impair one’s ability to drive safely. Learn about several classes of medications that can cause this serious problem to protect yourself, your passengers and others who share the road with you.
Unused, unneeded or expired drugs in homes present a number of risks, including intentional or accidental overdose in humans (particularly young children). Learn how to safely dispose of these drugs.
Most U.S. adults drink alcohol at least occasionally. Many also take prescription or over-the-counter drugs that have the potential to inter¬act adversely with alcohol. Avoid serious harm by knowing which drugs should not be taken in combination with alcohol.
Abnormal involuntary movements (movement disorders) occur as adverse events associated with many widely used medications and can cause substantial hardship for affected individuals. Find out which drugs are associated with these adverse effects.
In March 2017, a federal jury found the co-owner of a now-bankrupt Massachusetts compounding pharmacy guilty on more than 50 counts of racketeering and mail fraud for his role in the deadly nationwide fungal meningitis outbreak in 2012, which had been linked to tainted steroid drugs. Read the troubling details of how the company’s co-owner escaped being convicted of second-degree murder.
Readers of Worst Pills, Best Pills News are aware that all benzodiazepine tranquilizers and sleeping pills, except for alprazolam (XANAX) and clonazepam (KLONOPIN), are now considered Do Not Use drugs. In this article, we explain why combining these drugs with opioid painkillers could kill you.
Recent research revealed that many patients consume alcohol while using drugs that may can cause dangerous side effects when combined with alcohol. Read this article to learn about the many ways alcohol can adversely interact with prescription and over-the-counter medications.
The article reviews a recent petition to the FDA seeking improvements on the labels of prescription opioids (narcotics). The label change would prevent drug companies from promoting these drugs for noncancer pain for dangerously long periods of time, at doses that are too high, and for uses other than severe pain in noncancer patients. The petition was signed by 37 public health experts, including leaders in the fields of pain medicine, addiction and primary care; the health commissioners of New York City and New York state; and Dr. Sidney Wolfe, director of Public Citizen’s Health Research Group.
Bupropion is used to treat depression (brand name: WELLBUTRIN) and to aid smoking cessation (brand name: ZYBAN). The drug has a number of potentially dangerous interactions, some of which are quite different from typical antidepressant interactions.
The article lists 24 drugs that can increase the toxicity of oxycodone if taken together with the drug and 11 other drugs that can weaken its effectiveness as a painkiller if they are simutaneously used.
This article, based on a recent review in Drug Safety, lists 62 prescription drugs that can cause eye disease. The range of drug-induced eye diseases includes diseases of the eyelids, glaucoma, cataracts, retinal damage and optic nerve damage. As is true for drug-induced diseases in other parts of the body, you should consider newly developed eye symptoms beginning shortly after starting a new medication to be possibly drug-induced and consult a physician.
If you are now taking Avinza or Kadian, you should ask your doctor whether another painkiller such as immediate-release morphine might be more appropriate. If you decide to continue taking Avinza or Kadian, you should be sure never to consume alcohol or chew, crush, or dissolve the capsules.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) asked the maker of the long-acting potent narcotic, or opiate, painkiller hydromorphone (PALLADONE) to remove the drug from the market because of a potentially fatal interaction with alcohol. If you are now taking Palladone, Avinza, or Kadian you should talk to your physician immediately to discuss alternative treatment.
A high frequency of drug intake to manage headache pain may mean that you have a condition known as medication overuse headache (MOH). According to the International Headache Society, MOH may exist when the following criteria are fulfilled: (1) there is headache on 15 or more days a month; (2) pain characteristics are dull, and of light to moderate intensity on both sides of the head; (3) drug intake includes ergots, triptans and opioids (these drugs are discussed below) for 10 or more days per month, simple painkillers 15 days or more for a minimum of 3 months; and (4) the headache disappears after withdrawal.
This is the first of a two part series on drug induced psychiatric symptoms that is based on the July 8, 2002 issue of The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics. Regular readers of Worst Pills, Best Pills News will recognize The Medical Letter as a reference source written for physicians and pharmacists that we often use because of its reputation as an objective and independent source of drug information. The article lists the drugs and their psychiatric adverse effects.