By: Terry Graedon February 7, 2019 38 Comments
    What Is the Other Drug Epidemic?

    Much has been written about the epidemic of opioid drug misuse, overdose and death. With more than 130 people dying every day in this country as a result of opioid overdose, we all have a right to be …

    By: Terry Graedon February 7, 2019 13 Comments
    Special Creams Fail to Fight Pain

    Americans spend hundreds of millions of dollars on specially formulated topical pain creams. Medicare Part D paid more than half a billion dollars for such prescription products in 2015. Doctors may p…

    By: Joe Graedon February 4, 2019 16 Comments
    The Itch That Won’t Quit | Itching After Stopp…

    Chances are good that you have seen a Xyzal commercial on TV. You see an animated owl with a distinctive accent. He wears a monocle…presumably to give this wise owl some extra authority. He lets you…

    By: Joe Graedon February 4, 2019 8 Comments
    What Medicines Cause Depression? Are You Vulnera…

    When most people think about drugs and depression, they likely imagine antidepressants. That is, medicines to help overcome the blues. They rarely consider the possibility that the medications they we…

    By: Terry Graedon January 28, 2019 3 Comments
    Can You Get Addicted to Cough Syrup?

    There’s an ingredient in most over-the-counter cough medicine that poses risks that most people are unaware of. Dextromethorphan (DXM, DM, or dex) is a chemical cousin of opiates. This seemingly inn…

    By: Joe Graedon January 28, 2019 14 Comments
    Opioids for Osteoarthritis Seem Scary! How About…

    When you are in pain it is hard to function. People who have osteoarthritis of the spine, hips or knees have difficulty getting around, let alone exercising. There are no perfect drug solutions for tr…

    By: Joe Graedon January 28, 2019 55 Comments
    Nighttime Nasal Congestion | Is There a Non-Addi…

    Do you breathe through your mouth when you sleep? A lot of people do. That’s because they experience nighttime nasal congestion. It’s not pleasant. Your mouth gets terribly dry and scuzzy. Nightti…

    By: Joe Graedon January 24, 2019 19 Comments
    Should You Take Aspirin for your Heart? Does You…

    Aspirin is a very old drug but scientists are still trying to figure out if it should be used to prevent heart attacks and strokes. In April of 2016 the United States Preventive Services Task Force pu…

    By: Joe Graedon January 21, 2019 10 Comments
    Is It Risky to Have Low Cholesterol Naturally?

    You’ve probably heard the expression that “you can’t be too rich or too thin.” We would disagree with the idea that you can’t be too thin. Just ask health professionals who treat people with…

    By: Joe Graedon January 21, 2019 7 Comments
    Overdosing on Xofluza for Flu Led to Devastating…

    Did you know that there is a new flu drug in town? The FDA approved baloxavir (Xofluza) to treat influenza on October 24, 2018. In its announcement, the FDA stated “'This is the first new antiviral …

    By: Joe Graedon January 21, 2019 100 Comments
    Are You Fed Up with the Proliferation of Prescri…

    Drug companies used to focus their marketing strategies exclusively on doctors. They spent millions on sales representatives who traveled the country chatting up physicians and handing out free sample…

    By: Joe Graedon January 17, 2019 7 Comments
    Do Dermatologists Prescribe Too Many Antibiotics…

    Dermatologists love antibiotics. They prescribe proportionately more antibiotics than other medical specialties. Do not take our word for this! Here is a quote from an article in JAMA Dermatology (Jan…

    By: Terry Graedon January 17, 2019 8 Comments
    How Serious Is the Problem of Inappropriate Anti…

    Infectious disease experts worry a lot about the problem of bacterial resistance related to inappropriate antibiotics. A study of patient records suggests that doctors in the US may be prescribing ant…

    By: Joe Graedon January 14, 2019 12 Comments
    Can Repatha Substitute for Statins to Lower Chol…

    Not everyone can tolerate statins to lower cholesterol. Some people react to drugs like atorvastatin, lovastatin, pravastatin, rosuvastatin or simvastatin with muscle pain and weakness, arthritis, mus…

    By: Terry Graedon January 10, 2019 4 Comments
    Are Older People More Likely to Fall on Antidepr…

    Older people may be at particular risk of falls and fractures when they take antidepressants. Back in 2012, experts added SSRI and SNRI type drugs such as fluoxetine (Prozac) and venlafaxine (Effexor)…

    By: Joe Graedon January 7, 2019 37 Comments
    Why Was the FDA So Slow to Warn About FQ Disaste…

    We would be the first to admit that the Food and Drug Administration has a LOT of responsibilities. The agency is supposed to ensure that our food supply is safe. It monitors those never-ending prescr…

    By: Joe Graedon January 7, 2019 13 Comments
    Swollen Ankles from Amlodipine and Swollen Tongu…

    "Swelling" as a drug side effect doesn't seem like that big a deal. And yet drug-induced swelling can be unpleasant at best and life threatening at worst. Amlodipine (Norvasc) is the second most presc…

    By: Joe Graedon December 24, 2018 41 Comments
    What to Do When Eczema or Atopic Dermatitis Driv…

    The symptoms drive you to distraction. Eczema or atopic dermatitis can cause itchy red skin. The rash can show up on hands, wrists, arms, legs, face, neck or scalp. The itching can be especially awful…

    By: Joe Graedon December 20, 2018 52 Comments
    FDA Warns About Fluoroquinolone Antibiotics and …

    There are side effects and then there are SIDE EFFECTS! A drug that causes headaches or heartburn can be annoying, but such symptoms are tolerable if the medicine is doing great good. Side effects th…

    By: Joe Graedon December 20, 2018 12 Comments
    Exercise for Blood Pressure Control Is Surprisin…

    Have you checked your blood pressure recently? Guidelines from the American College of Cardiology (ACC) and the American Heart Association (AHA) encourage physicians to treat people with systolic bloo…

    By: Joe Graedon December 17, 2018 40 Comments
    Doctors and Patients Confused About Statins and …

    Tens of millions of people take statins such as atorvastatin, lovastatin, pravastatin, rosuvastatin and simvastatin. Most physicians acknowledge that they have patients who complain about muscle pain …

    By: Terry Graedon December 17, 2018 9 Comments
    Why Is Duexis So Expensive?

    People with chronic joint pain often find themselves between a rock and a hard place. If they take an NSAID pain reliever, they can keep moving–which is good. But they may also suffer serious digest…

    By: Joe Graedon December 10, 2018 32 Comments
    Will Yellow Mustard Ease Cramps from Statins?

    Millions of people take statins to lower their cholesterol levels.Here are just a few examples of the numbers of prescription filled each year: atorvastatin= 97 million; simvastatin= 65 million; prava…

    By: Terry Graedon December 10, 2018 4 Comments
    What Should You Know About Xofluza Side Effects?

    Whenever a new drug is introduced, we want to know two things: how well does it work? and also, what are the side effects? We recently wrote about the flu medicine Xofluza, which shortens the duration…

    By: Terry Graedon December 6, 2018 1 Comments
    Did the Maker Recall Ibuprofen for Your Baby?

    Parents across the country have been alarmed today to hear that some brands of ibuprofen sold as fever medicine for infants have been recalled. What led the manufacturer, Tris Pharma Inc., to recall i…

    By: Joe Graedon December 6, 2018 22 Comments
    How Safe Are Mail-Order Medicines If Not Tempera…

    We know we sound like a cracked record when it comes to mail-order medicines. That's because no one seems to want to take responsibility. The FDA has very strict guidelines for temperature fluctuation…

    By: Terry Graedon December 6, 2018 0 Comments
    Do Personal Care Products Speed Up Puberty?

    Many personal care products such as soaps, shampoos, deodorants, perfumes and cosmetics contain endocrine-disrupting chemicals. These include phthalates, parabens and phenols such as triclosan, which …

    By: Joe Graedon December 3, 2018 11 Comments
    Can Clonazepam Increase the Risk for Dementia?

    Millions of people take benzodiazepines every day. Such drugs are variously described as anti-anxiety agents, sedatives, hypnotics (to aid sleep) or benzos for short. At last count about five million …

    By: Joe Graedon November 26, 2018 11 Comments
    Anticholinergic Drugs | Dry Mouth and Alzheimer …

    Anticholinergic drugs are generally bad for the brain. They affect the crucial neurochemical acetylcholine. One worry about anticholinergic drugs is a link to memory problems or Alzheimer's disease (J…

    By: Joe Graedon November 26, 2018 17 Comments
    Is New Aimovig Migraine Medicine an Advance or a…

    There have not been many new advances in migraine treatment until recently. The triptans, starting with sumatriptan (Imitrex), were the last so-called breakthroughs against migraines. That was 25 year…

    By: Terry Graedon November 19, 2018 1 Comments
    Should You Worry About Vision Loss from Viagra?

    It makes sense to inform yourself about the potential harms as well as benefits that might result from any medications you plan to take. But for certain drugs the list of possible side effects is long…

    By: Joe Graedon November 19, 2018 14 Comments
    A DUI Driving Citation After Taking Ambien (Zolp…

    Americans love sleeping pills, especially Ambien (zolpidem). At last count nearly 20 million prescriptions are dispensed annually in the U.S. Once people start taking Ambien (zolpidem), many keep on t…

    By: Terry Graedon November 12, 2018 16 Comments
    Will Testosterone Help Women Feel Strong and Sex…

    If we say low testosterone, you might think of a TV ad starring a middle-aged man worried about "low T." But even though testosterone is the quintessential "male" hormone, women make it too. Could a p…

    By: Joe Graedon November 12, 2018 31 Comments
    Brits Contradict U.S. Experts About Blood Pressu…

    A key component of medical treatment is blood pressure management. Whenever you visit a doctor’s office, you will almost always have your blood pressure measured. Guidelines from the American Colleg…

    By: Joe Graedon November 12, 2018 5 Comments
    Meloxicam for Pain | This NSAID is NOT a Narcoti…

    We are not huge fans of NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) for arthritis pain. That’s because arthritis is a chronic condition that requires long-term treatment. When you take an NSAID da…

    By: Terry Graedon November 12, 2018 15 Comments
    Is Fish Oil Linked to Heart Rhythm Changes?

    Could a supplement that people take for heart health actually lead to heart rhythm changes? Most people take fish oil with the expectation that it will lower their likelihood of a heart attack or stro…

    By: Joe Graedon November 8, 2018 28 Comments
    Irbesartan Is Contaminated with Probable Cancer-…

    We are getting very tired of saying “Not Again!” Sadly, though, this has become a surprisingly familiar refrain here at The People’s Pharmacy. This time it is another ARB (angiotensin receptor b…

    By: Terry Graedon November 8, 2018 4 Comments
    Can You Delay Alzheimer Disease with Drugs for D…

    People with Alzheimer’s disease have distinctive lesions within their brains. Individuals with diabetes also have pathological changes resembling those seen in patients with Alzheimer’s disease. P…

    By: Terry Graedon November 8, 2018 2 Comments
    Will Alirocumab Save You from a Heart Attack?

    Alirocumab (Praluent) is a cholesterol-lowering drug that works through a different enzyme system than statins. (Here are the technical details: alirocumab and its cousin evolocumab inhibit an enzyme …

    By: Joe Graedon November 5, 2018 11 Comments
    Aspirin and Ulcers: A Potentially Deadly Reactio…

    We like aspirin. It’s inexpensive and as effective as any other OTC pain reliever on the market. Millions take it or another NSAID (ibuprofen or naproxen) every day. They swallow such pills to ease …