By: The People's Pharmacy May 25, 2015 21 Comments
    Can You Put Lipstick on Big Pharma and Its Piggy…

    Big Pharma has a problem. According to the Wall Street Journal, "Drug Makers are Having Trouble Improving Their Reputations." A new survey shows that drug companies are not perceived as outstanding in…

    By: The People's Pharmacy May 25, 2015 3 Comments
    Turmeric Plus Coumadin Triggered Scary Nosebleed

    Turmeric and its major component curcumin can cause bleeding trouble when combined with drugs used to prevent clotting. It is smart to check on possible interactions before mixing herbs and medication…

    By: The People's Pharmacy May 21, 2015 10 Comments
    Cinnamon Plus Statins Could Be Extremely Harmful…

    A Trip to the ER A woman showed up in the emergency department at the Providence Hospital and Medical Center in Southfield, Michigan "complaining of abdominal pain associated with vomiting and diarrhe…

    By: The People's Pharmacy May 21, 2015 5 Comments
    Aluminum and Alzheimer’s Disease: Is There…

    Q. Is it true that aluminum contributes to Alzheimer's disease? If so, I would like to avoid it as much as possible. Are there any underarm deodorants that don't contain aluminum? A. Aluminum's potent…

    By: The People's Pharmacy May 18, 2015 9 Comments
    Does FDA Care Whether Generic Drugs Work?

    There has been a lively debate about whether generic drugs are truly equivalent to their brand-name equivalents. That has been stirred up even further by questions about the effectiveness of certain g…

    By: The People's Pharmacy May 18, 2015 10 Comments
    Doctors Still Doubt Antidepressants Can Trigger …

    Shortly after Prozac was approved for treating depression in 1987 we received a heartbreaking letter from a physician. He was writing as a bereaved father: "My daughter committed suicide in 1988 one m…

    By: The People's Pharmacy May 18, 2015 4 Comments
    Popular Sleeping Pills Raise Risk of Dementia

    People with chronic insomnia are caught in a difficult dilemma. Too many popular sleeping pills may affect cognitive function and contribute to a potential risk of dementia in later years. Q. I am hav…

    By: The People's Pharmacy May 18, 2015 5 Comments
    Supplements for Blood Pressure

    Many people would prefer to use natural approaches to managing blood pressure, but mixing certain supplements for blood pressure with anti-hypertensive drugs can be risky. Make sure to check out such…

    By: The People's Pharmacy May 14, 2015 16 Comments
    Why Do So Many Doctors Ignore Obvious Drug Side …

    Some adverse drug reactions are subtle and easy to overlook. For example, doctors could be forgiven for not catching a vitamin B12 deficiency associated with long-term prescriptions of popular acid-su…

    By: The People's Pharmacy May 11, 2015 3 Comments
    Diabetes Drug Actos and Billion-Dollar Settlemen…

    People with type 2 diabetes may not need insulin to control their blood sugar, but they often need some medicine. Unfortunately, despite a proliferation of medications designed to help people with thi…

    By: The People's Pharmacy May 11, 2015 6 Comments
    Stopping Allergy Medicine Abruptly Leads to Itch…

    Spring allergies are in full force in some parts of the country, and people are looking for ways to alleviate their congestion, sneezing and itchy eyes. A non-sedating antihistamine can be extremely h…

    By: Joe Graedon May 7, 2015 19 Comments
    Safety Concerns Mount for Sleeping Pill Zolpidem…

    A brand new analysis by the ISMP (Institute for Safe Medication Practices) Quarter Watch reveals a surprisingly high incidence of problems associated with the sleeping pill zolpidem. It is found in Am…

    By: The People's Pharmacy May 4, 2015 9 Comments
    Anti-Anxiety Drugs Pose Hazards for Seniors

    Americans are anxious. That is the inescapable conclusion of a recent analysis of anti-anxiety drug use (JAMA Psychiatry, Feb. 2015). The study shows that more than 10 percent of women over 60 are tak…

    By: The People's Pharmacy May 4, 2015 2 Comments
    Statins Raise the Risk of Developing Diabetes

    Statin drugs to lower cholesterol are prescribed very widely and are generally seen as well tolerated. Although many people, especially younger individuals, seem to do well with low doses of statins, …

    By: Joe Graedon April 30, 2015 16 Comments
    Actos Maker Settles Lawsuits Worth Billions but …

    The drug Actos (pioglitazone) has been one of the most financially successful drugs in the history of diabetes treatment. It first went on sale in the U.S. in 1999. Since then it has been estimated th…

    By: The People's Pharmacy April 27, 2015 3 Comments
    Beware Dangerous Grapefruit Juice Interactions w…

    Grapefruit and grapefruit juice have the potential to interact in a dangerous way with a wide range of medications. It makes sense to ask the prescriber and the pharmacist about this potential. Q. I'v…

    By: The People's Pharmacy April 23, 2015 10 Comments
    Blood Pressure Drug Combos That Could Be Lethal

    When doctors prescribe blood pressure medication, their goal is to reduce the likelihood that a patient with hypertension will develop heart attacks, strokes, kidney damage, eye problems or even Alzhe…

    By: The People's Pharmacy April 23, 2015 5 Comments
    Joe Graedon Discusses Generic Drugs on WTVD

    Joe Graedon talked about the pros and cons of generic drugs on ABC11 (WTVD Durham NC) on April 22, 2015. Here's a link. Saving money is a big advantage, but only if the medication works properly. How …

    By: The People's Pharmacy April 23, 2015 9 Comments
    Another Scary Side Effect Linked to Heartburn Dr…

    Canadian researchers have found that older people taking acid suppressing drugs such as esomeprazole, lansoprazole and omeprazole are at higher risk for kidney failure. The scientists used medication …

    By: Joe Graedon April 20, 2015 34 Comments
    New Statin Study Confirms Scary Link to Diabetes

    Statin-type cholesterol-lowering drugs like atorvastatin, lovastatin and simvastatin are supposed to prevent heart attacks and strokes. New research from Finland suggests that such drugs may increase …

    By: The People's Pharmacy April 20, 2015 15 Comments
    Reader Was Enraged by Advice about Stopping Cymb…

    We were taken to task recently by a reader who thought our answer to a question from someone having a terrible time with Cymbalta withdrawal indicated a lack of respect. None was intended. Q. You blew…

    By: The People's Pharmacy April 16, 2015 6 Comments
    Diabetes Drug Dust-Up Reveals FDA Deficiencies

    A week ago the FDA put out a report that "suggested significant or near-significant increases in all-cause mortality" associated with the diabetes drug Onglyza (saxagliptin). In other words, more pat…

    By: The People's Pharmacy April 13, 2015 9 Comments
    Stopping Cymbalta Suddenly Led to Disaster

    Certain medications have the potential to cause a very disorienting withdrawal syndrome if they are discontinued abruptly. People should be warned about this possibility before they begin taking the d…

    By: The People's Pharmacy April 13, 2015 30 Comments
    Is Mustard for Leg Cramps Snake Oil or the Real …

    One of the strangest remedies we have stumbled across in recent years is a spoonful of mustard to combat leg cramps. If you have ever experienced a charlie horse in a calf muscle in the middle of the …

    By: The People's Pharmacy April 13, 2015 8 Comments
    Do the Risks of Acetaminophen Outweigh the Benef…

    Acetaminophen is a popular pain reliever sold under the brand name Tylenol and around the world as paracetamol. A new analysis of research shows that it may not work as well as expected for some commo…

    By: The People's Pharmacy March 30, 2015 18 Comments
    Can Flu Shots Cause Long-Lasting Arm Pain?

    On December 27, 2014 we first heard about the possibility that a flu shot could lead to persistent arm pain. Don V. shared his experience with the relatively new "Quad" influenza vaccine. This quadriv…

    By: The People's Pharmacy March 30, 2015 80 Comments
    Should TV Drug Ads Skip Scary Side Effects?

    Drug company marketing executives hate having to warn people about dangerous drug complications and side effects. Imagine a car salesman trying to sell a car but having to warn customers that there is…

    By: The People's Pharmacy March 23, 2015 19 Comments
    Soaring Generic Drug Prices Squeeze Patients

    Q. Has anyone done some investigative journalism to expose why several generic medication prices have skyrocketed? My clobetasol ointment has gone up 300 percent over the last year. My understanding i…

    By: The People's Pharmacy March 23, 2015 2 Comments
    Chantix and Alcohol Don’t Mix, Says FDA

    It can take years for the FDA to recognize a drug interaction problem. That's because there is no organized system for anticipating or testing potentially dangerous drug combinations. Alcohol and Chan…

    By: The People's Pharmacy March 23, 2015 8 Comments
    How to Prevent Dementia

    Q. I am interested in information about preventing dementia. What drugs should someone avoid to prevent memory loss? Are there any drugs that might help? Please answer in the newspaper so my wife won'…

    By: The People's Pharmacy March 23, 2015 6 Comments
    Flonase Nasal Spray Can Help with Nose Spray Add…

    Q. I have been using Afrin Nasal Decongestant Spray for two decades. My mom started me on it when I was a kid with bad allergies and then I couldn't stop. I finally got off Afrin by using Flonase and …

    By: The People's Pharmacy March 19, 2015 6 Comments
    Do Januvia Side Effects Include Cancer of the Pa…

    Q. My wife is taking Januvia to control her blood sugar. Without Januvia her sugar level is 130 or more. With Januvia it is in the range of 110, which is close to normal. I heard an interview on the r…

    By: The People's Pharmacy March 16, 2015 15 Comments
    Drugs May Be Driving the Diabetes Epidemic

    Diabetes has become one of the world's most troubling diseases. The American Diabetes Association estimates that nearly 28 million Americans have type 2 diabetes. About 8 million have not been diagnos…

    By: The People's Pharmacy March 16, 2015 1 Comments
    Statins Sap Sex Drive and Lower Testosterone

    As visitors to this website know, statin-type cholesterol-lowering medicines remain among the most popular drugs in the pharmacy. Many cardiologists maintain that such medications are extremely safe, …

    By: The People's Pharmacy March 16, 2015 15 Comments
    Getting Off Prilosec Is a Challenge but Reduces …

    Q. I have been on Prilosec for the last ten years. I was recently diagnosed with C diff and decided after doing some research that I should stop the Prilosec. I've been off it for about a week now and…

    By: The People's Pharmacy March 16, 2015 4 Comments
    Yerba Mate for a Gentle Afternoon Pick-Me-Up

    Yerba mate (pronounced matay) has been valued in South America for centuries, long before Columbus set off on his epic journey. A hot "tea" was made from the leaves of a holly tree (Ilex paraguariensi…

    By: The People's Pharmacy March 16, 2015 26 Comments
    Doctors Disagree About Putting Petroleum Jelly i…

    A decade ago we responded to a reader who put Vicks VapoRub in her nose before bed to control symptoms of post-nasal drip. We suggested that this might not be such a good idea and quoted the manufactu…

    By: Joe Graedon March 9, 2015 17 Comments
    Lisinopril Cough Caused Loss of Consciousness

    We are constantly amazed by the number of reports we have received about ACEi (angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors) and cough. These are among the most widely prescribed blood pressure drugs in t…

    By: Joe Graedon March 9, 2015 22 Comments
    Statin Smackdown: Doctors Disagree on Pros &…

    There are few modern medications that have stirred such heated debate as statins. Some health professionals believe the benefits have been overblown and the risks downplayed. Others have hailed such d…

    By: The People's Pharmacy March 9, 2015 20 Comments
    TV Drug Ads or Pharmaceutical Sales Reps for Inf…

    Have you ever become frustrated or annoyed at prescription drug advertisements on television? Many people love to hate these commercials, but of course they must be effective at increasing prescriptio…