If it’s been more than a year since you sat down with your doctor to review the medications and supplements you’re taking, schedule a checkup.
It’s important to see if the medicine is working as intended and if you still need to take it, or if adjustments are needed. Checkups also allow you to provide feedback about any new side effects you may be experiencing.
During a checkup, your doctor screens for any interactions that may be occurring because of new medications or supplements you started taking since the original prescription began. These might include vitamins and over-the-counter medications for pain. Doctors also investigate if newer and safer prescription drugs are an available option.
Reviewing your medication intake becomes even more important as you age. Not only can drugs interact with each other in undesirable ways, but certain medications can worsen a medical condition. For example, those with kidney problems should avoid ibuprofen and metformin. Ibuprofen and naproxen may lead to a worsening of heart failure. And certain psychiatric medications may worsen the motor symptoms of someone with Parkinson’s disease.
Gather a comprehensive list of the medications, supplements and over-the-counter drugs you take so your doctor can provide you with the most thorough review. Knowing this information helps with future prescriptions and with avoiding any dangerous drug interactions.
Weekly Health Tips are brought to you by UCF Health, the College of Medicine’s physician practice. Offering primary and specialty care under one roof, UCF Health treats patients age 16 and up in primary care and age 18 and up for specialty care. Most major insurance plans are accepted. Two locations are now open: the original in East Orlando at Quadrangle and University boulevards just blocks from the main UCF campus, and the newest one in Medical City at Narcoossee Road and Tavistock Lakes Boulevard. Information for both facilities can be found at UCFHealth.com, or call (407) 266-DOCS to schedule an appointment.
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