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: Terry Graedon January 3, 2019 32 Comments
    Show 1147: How Do You Control Your Cholesterol?

    What causes heart disease? There are a number of risk factors, including cigarette smoking, sedentary lifestyle, high blood pressure, diabetes and others. One well-known risk is high cholesterol. Has …

    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 …

    By: Joe Graedon November 5, 2018 46 Comments
    Do NOT Trust People Smiling During Drug Commerci…

    Have you ever smiled at a stranger and received a smile in return? It inevitably makes you feel good. Everyone loves a smile. It disarms us and makes us feel warm and fuzzy about the person smiling. B…

    By: Joe Graedon November 1, 2018 24 Comments
    The Pros and Cons of Treating Mild Hypertension

    Prepare for whiplash. A year ago the American College of Cardiology (ACC) and the American Heart Association (AHA) issued new guidelines for treating mild hypertension. People with blood pressure at o…

    By: Terry Graedon November 1, 2018 3 Comments
    Will Xofluza Help You Recover from the Flu Quick…

    It’s been almost two decades since the FDA approved a pill to treat influenza. It was oseltamivir, also known as Tamiflu. Last week, the agency approved a new flu pill, Xofluza. What Is the Story on…

    By: Joe Graedon November 1, 2018 18 Comments
    ACE Inhibitors and Lung Cancer | Should You Be C…

    Popular blood pressure medications called ACE inhibitors have been associated with an increased risk of lung cancer. Angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors are taken daily by more than 30 mill…

    By: Joe Graedon October 29, 2018 21 Comments
    Ibuprofen and High Blood Pressure: A Dangerous R…

    Use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) is on the rise (Open Heart, April 28, 2017). We're talking about drugs like ibuprofen and naproxen. Such pain relievers are perceived as quite safe…

    By: Joe Graedon October 22, 2018 9 Comments
    Bupropion Helps With Mood, Sex and Quitting Smok…

    Bupropion (Wellbutrin) was first approved by the FDA in 1985 to treat depression. It remains a totally unique antidepressant. There is no similar antidepressant on the market. Unlike SSRI and SNRI ant…

    By: Joe Graedon October 22, 2018 8 Comments
    Januvia Joint Pain | A Disabling Side Effect

    Sitagliptin (Januvia) is a type 2 diabetes drug that has been on the market for more than a decade. It belongs in a class of drugs called gliptins or DPP-4 inhibitors. These meds enable the body to ma…

    By: Joe Graedon October 22, 2018 6 Comments
    Dutasteride and Depression | A Dark Side of Pros…

    Millions of men suffer with an enlarged prostate gland (benign prostatatic hypertrophy or BPH). One of the most annoying symptoms is getting up frequently to pee during the night. It can be hard to fa…

    By: Terry Graedon October 15, 2018 20 Comments
    Will Osteoporosis Drugs Make Your Joints Hurt?

    As people age, both muscle mass and bone density begin to fade. The consequences of bone loss can be devastating. When bones become weak, they break easily. If an older person fractures a hip, they ma…

    By: Joe Graedon October 15, 2018 12 Comments
    The Inside Story on Zoledronate (Reclast) and Bo…

    The headlines have been enthusiastic: “Osteoporosis drug Shows Promise for Fracture Prevention.” NPR ran a story that emphasized the strong evidence supporting zoledronate as a safe drug to preven…

    By: Joe Graedon October 14, 2018 8 Comments
    Are Your Dietary Supplements Contaminated with D…

    The Food and Drug Administration has been testing dietary supplements for years. “From 2007 through 2016, 776 adulterated dietary supplements were identified by the FDA and 146 different dietary sup…

    By: Terry Graedon October 11, 2018 0 Comments
    How to Take Care of Kids with Colds

    Ask a pediatrician how to treat kids with colds, and you'll probably learn that there are few, if any, medicines that speed recovery or even ease symptoms. During cold season, parents often search for…

    By: Joe Graedon October 8, 2018 30 Comments
    How Can You Lower Blood Pressure Naturally?

    Everyone loves pills. Doctors love to prescribe medicine. Patients love to swallow drugs. We are a pill-taking society. But all medications come with pros and cons. That is true of blood pressure drug…