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Q. My husband was taking amiodarone for a heart rhythm problem. He developed pulmonary fibrosis as a side effect and died last November. I just can’t understand why this dangerous drug is still on the market.A. We are so sorry... (Read More)
Q. I started working as a substitute teacher three years ago. Ever since, I’ve been getting frequent colds that often turn into bronchitis. Then my doctor prescribes antibiotics.I am now suffering with my second cold in a month. I wash... (Read More)
Q. I am a singer, so my voice is critical to both my livelihood and my sense of well-being. I was recently diagnosed with mild asthma and my doctor prescribed an inhaler called Flovent.I am fairly certain that this medicine... (Read More)
Q. My doctor recently prescribed Premarin Vaginal Cream. It has improved my life dramatically, reducing dryness and easing other symptoms of menopause. Are there any negative effects? Is it absorbed into my body?A. Premarin Vaginal Cream contains conjugated estrogens just... (Read More)
Q. I have been taking Protonix for heartburn for at least six months. After I learned that long-term use might lead to complications, I tried to stop taking it. Big mistake!After about a week, I had to start taking it... (Read More)
Q. I have a problem and I don't know where to turn. My partner and I don't have sex very often anymore. We have been together for over five years.I became depressed because of work, family and medical issues but... (Read More)
Q. I had severe leg pain during the night and day for about four months. My doctor did blood work and found that my vitamin D level was 8. She prescribed me 50,000 IUs per week for twelve weeks and... (Read More)
Q. You’ve heard from a lot of people with bad indigestion. I used to be one of them. One day quite by accident I forgot to buy milk. To my surprise the next day the indigestion disappeared. Since I have... (Read More)
Q. I have been on so many cholesterol-lowering drugs I have nearly lost count. Crestor, Lipitor, Zetia and Zocor all give me terrible pains in my shoulders, back and arms. I also have had dreadful muscle cramps in my calves,... (Read More)
Q. I read in your column that Detrol might have a negative impact on memory. Both my sister and I have been complaining about memory problems since we started taking it for overactive bladder problems.I phoned my doctor’s office about... (Read More)
Q. What do you know about prescription Lovaza? My eye doctor prescribed it for dry eyes and eye surface damage due to Sjogren’s syndrome.I have great respect for my doctor, but I would like to know if other forms of... (Read More)
Q. I am not yet 50 but my doctor says I have something called osteopenia, which could put me at risk for osteoporosis. She has suggested Actonel, but says this decision is up to me. She mentioned that there are... (Read More)
Q. Commercials that advertise prescription medicines on TV are my pet peeve. How can we STOP them? I would like to see them go the way of cigarette commercials.Doctors should be prescribing the drugs people need without the rest of... (Read More)
Q. I have been on Effexor XR for the past seven years for depression. I decided to wean myself off it, since it wasn't a good mix with another drug I started taking.The third day I was completely off the... (Read More)
Q. Boudreaux’s Butt Paste caught my eye in your column about diaper rash. Our beagle Buddy was bruising his nose, grinding it to the quick as he went about burying treats, small toys and other objects in some hidden nook... (Read More)
Q. I need more information about the generic for the epilepsy drug Keppra. I understand that the generic is fairly new.Is it safe to take, and does it have the same active ingredient as Keppra?A. Generic drugs are supposed to... (Read More)
Q. I have been taking thyroid hormones (first Synthroid and then Levoxyl) for more than 15 years. My doctor has recently started lowering my dose because he is concerned that the extra thyroid might weaken my bones.Ever since the dosage... (Read More)
Q. My daughter insists you get colds from catching a virus, NOT from being cold, wet, not fully dressed or walking in the rain. Her beautiful 15-year-old son does not use an umbrella and likes to wear just a T-shirt... (Read More)
Q. You recently had an article about treating diaper rash. My granddaughter had a very bad one, and I used an over-the-counter cream called Boudreaux’s Butt Paste. It is not expensive and it works really well.A. Boudreaux’s Butt Paste contains... (Read More)
Q. My son is on Tegretol to prevent seizures and one of the things he has to avoid is grapefruit. I have seen that grapefruit must be avoided by people taking other medicines. What could happen if he does eat... (Read More)
Q. A couple weeks ago, my husband saw his endocrinologist and the doctor ordered a test of his vitamin D level. It was very low, so my husband was put on 2000 units per day.My husband has been having a... (Read More)
Q. When I first met my friend Mike twenty years ago, he was going through bottles of antacids. He’d been doing this for 12 years, far longer than the bottle label recommended.He had a severe bout of anemia and was... (Read More)

Getting Help with Drug Bills

Q. What are the best sites for financial help with very expensive drugs? I don’t qualify for Medicaid but my drug bills can reach $5,000 a month. I have multiple sclerosis, Crohn’s and atrial fibrillation. I am a retired nurse... (Read More)
Q. My 62-year-old husband had a prostatectomy a year ago. It was successful, but he continues to have bladder problems. His urologist put him on Detrol for this.When he started acting confused and paranoid, I got concerned. At the urologist's... (Read More)

In Praise of Ambien

Q. After reading all the complaints about Ambien, I would like to put in a good word for this sleeping pill. I’ve had trouble sleeping all my life. When I finally fell asleep, I had a hard time waking up.A... (Read More)
Q. My husband takes Actos, metformin and glyburide for type 2 diabetes, Lipitor for cholesterol and Diovan HCT for high blood pressure.The doctor prescribed vitamin B12 because my husband’s low in this vitamin. He can’t get up the stairs without... (Read More)
Q. My son was prescribed amoxicillin for an ear infection. The prescription was sent electronically to the pharmacist. The pharmacy gave us prednisone with the wrong doctor’s name on the script. Even the address was wrong.The pharmacy clerk tried to... (Read More)
Q. You ran a story about lisinopril causing cough. I had the same experience.My regular doctor referred me to an audiologist who diagnosed acid reflux. I then went to an ENT doctor who had no suggestions. Finally I saw an... (Read More)
Q. One of your readers asked for advice regarding constipation caused by Fosamax and Lipitor. I was surprised you did not mention taking Metamucil to help with constipation.I have had to follow that regimen for over 30 years, taking 3... (Read More)
Q. I'm a 26-year-old female in a committed relationship with a man I am deeply in love with and have been for two years. I've always had a healthy sex drive, but now I'm concerned.In the beginning we had a... (Read More)