Most antihistamines that is, sedating antihistamines decrease alertness and have many other side effects, and they may be dangerous for people with certain disorders. Consequently, being able to identify which products contain these antihistamines is useful. OTC antihistamines are listed under active ingredients on the package. Antihistamines that have such side effects include the following:. Drugs can move from a pregnant woman to her fetus primarily through the placenta—see Drug Delivery During Pregnancy , and drugs can be transmitted through breast milk to the baby.
Some such drugs can affect or harm the fetus or baby, so pregnant women and breastfeeding women should consult their doctor or pharmacist before taking any over-the-counter OTC drug or medicinal herb. OTC drug labels should be checked because they contain warnings against use during pregnancy and breastfeeding, if applicable. Certain types of drugs are particularly problematic. They include antihistamines commonly contained in cough and cold remedies, allergy drugs, motion sickness drugs, and sleep aids and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs NSAIDs. NSAIDs should not be used during the last 3 months of pregnancy unless specified by a doctor, because they may cause problems in the fetus or complications during delivery.
A number of chronic disorders can become worse if an OTC drug is taken inappropriately. Because OTC drugs are intended primarily for occasional use by people who are essentially healthy, people who have a chronic or serious disorder or who plan to take an OTC drug every day should consult a health care practitioner before they purchase OTC products.
In such cases, drug use is beyond the normal boundaries of self-care and requires the advice of an expert. Recovering alcoholics need to be vigilant about avoiding any products that contain alcohol, including cold remedies. People with diabetes should consult a doctor before they take decongestants because these drugs can worsen diabetes and have dangerous side effects. Cough syrups. People with diabetes may need help locating liquid products that do not contain sugar, cough syrups included. Enlarged prostate. People with an enlarged prostate should consult a doctor or pharmacist before they take antihistamines and decongestants because side effects can be dangerous.
People with heart disease should consult a doctor or pharmacist to help them select an antacid or cold remedy that does not interact with their prescription drugs. People with heart disease should consult a doctor or pharmacist before they take decongestants because side effects can be dangerous. High blood pressure hypertension. People with high blood pressure should consult a doctor or pharmacist before they select an analgesic or antacid.
People with high blood pressure should consult a doctor or pharmacist before they take decongestants because side effects can be dangerous. Hyperthyroidism over activity of the thyroid gland. People with hyperthyroidism should consult a doctor or pharmacist before they take decongestants because side effects can be dangerous. People with kidney disorders should consult a doctor or pharmacist before they select an antacid or use an NSAID. Many people neglect to mention their use of over-the-counter OTC drugs to their doctor or pharmacist.
Drugs taken intermittently, such as drugs for colds, constipation, or an occasional headache, are mentioned even less often. Health care practitioners may not think of asking about use of OTC drugs or medicinal herbs when they are prescribing or dispensing a prescription. Yet many OTC drugs and medicinal herbs can interact adversely with a wide range of drugs see Drug Interactions. Some of these interactions can be serious, interfering with the effectiveness of a drug or causing side effects.
OTC (Over the Counter) Drug Database - oguzoperip.ga
For example, taking aspirin with the anticoagulant warfarin can increase the risk of abnormal bleeding. An antacid containing aluminum or magnesium can reduce the absorption of digoxin , taken for heart disease. Taking a multiple vitamin and mineral supplement can interfere with the action of some prescription drugs. For example, the antibiotic tetracycline may be ineffective if swallowed with a product that contains calcium, magnesium, or iron.
OTC drug-drug interactions have not been studied systematically. Many serious problems have been discovered accidentally, after side effects or deaths were reported. Even when interaction warnings are printed on the label for OTC drugs, the language may be meaningless to most people. For example, the labels of some cold remedies that contain pseudoephedrine caution against using the product with a monoamine oxidase inhibitor MAOI—used infrequently for depression and certain other medical problems or during the 2 weeks after discontinuing the MAOI.
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For the many people who do not know that the antidepressant they are taking is an MAOI such as phenelzine and tranylcypromine , this important warning is not helpful. The best way to reduce the risk of drug-drug interactions is to ask the pharmacist to check for them. Additionally, the doctor should be told about all drugs being taken, both prescription and OTC. Another potential problem is drug overlap.
Over-the-counter products used to treat different problems may contain the same active ingredient.
PrEP and PEP Could Become Over-the-Counter Drugs
Unless people read the labels on everything they take, they can accidentally overdose themselves. For example, a person who takes a sleep aid and a cold remedy, both of which contain diphenhydramine , may take double the dose considered safe. Many products contain acetaminophen.
A person who simultaneously takes two different products that contain acetaminophen —one for a headache and another for allergies or sinus problems—may exceed the recommended dose. Merck and Co. From developing new therapies that treat and prevent disease to helping people in need, we are committed to improving health and well-being around the world. The Manual was first published in as a service to the community. Learn more about our commitment to Global Medical Knowledge. Common Health Topics.
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Courtesy of. Older People. Pregnant and Breastfeeding Women. People With Chronic Disorders. Drug-Drug Interactions. Drug Overlap. More Information. Test your knowledge. The effect a drug has on a person may be different from what is expected.
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Which of the following is NOT considered to be a major factor in the effect a drug has on a particular person? Some people have difficulty breathing due to illnesses which constrict their airways such as asthma. Medications for these respiratory symptoms can be given by inhalation. The lack of regulation is troubling, in that it heightens the risk of OTC drugs being taken inappropriately. Therefore stringent safety monitoring and regulations are needed.
Many of these drugs, like paracetamol, are low-risk, and will likely be recategorised as OTC. But it also includes some higher-risk products that should never be administered in this manner. For example, antibiotics are often acquired without prescription, contributing to the growing problem of antibiotic resistance. The government has lately been pressing for more cautious use of antibiotics. When illegal drug sales proliferate, this is likely to hit poorer communities the hardest. With Valium, Xanax and Lyrica. Such incidents, of course, are mercifully rare, but they do point towards a greater need for oversight.
This will also help us create more awareness among consumers. At present, it is not clear which of these new drugs are appropriate for retail sale. This would be great both for customers and companies planning their strategies in this very important segment.
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