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15 Mar

What's Really In Your Medicine

More than 90 percent of medications contain inactive ingredients that can cause adverse reactions.

Health News Results - 342

MONDAY, March 18, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Patients who have high triglycerides and take cholesterol-lowering statins to lower their risk for heart attack or stroke can cut that risk by another 30 percent by adding a high-dose omega-3 fatty acid pill, investigators report.

The prescription drug, called Vascepa, is not to be confused with over-the-counter dietary omega-3 (often...

SATURDAY, March 16, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- People who've already had a heart attack or stroke can cut their odds for another one in half if they regularly take cholesterol-lowering statins.

Yet new research found that only about 6 percent of patients take these drugs as prescribed by their doctor.

"Very few patients were optimally compliant. We...

WEDNESDAY, March 13, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Doctors may be pulling out their prescription pads less often for opioid medications, but not everyone's on the same page yet.

New research found that initial prescriptions for the addictive painkillers have dropped by around 50 percent.

"The good news is that we're making progress curtailing prescription opioids, but we have t...

WEDNESDAY, March 13, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- More than 90 percent of the medications that Americans take contain an inactive ingredient that could cause an allergic reaction, a new study suggests.

Lactose, peanut oil, gluten and chemical dyes are added to drugs to improve taste, prolong shelf life, improve absorption or make the drug tamper-proof, researchers explained. But they can ...

WEDNESDAY, March 13, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday approved a new generic version of the high blood pressure/heart failure drug valsartan, saying the move might help ease the current medication shortage.

The agency said it prioritized review of the drug from Alkem Laboratories Ltd. after multiple recalls of other generic valsartan products d...

TUESDAY, March 12, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) often occurs in people with epilepsy. Now, new research provides reassurance that taking ADHD medications won't raise their risk of seizures.

For the study, researchers analyzed data from thousands of epilepsy patients in Sweden. Taking ADHD medications such as Ritalin (methylphenidate), was as...

MONDAY, March 11, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Many military veterans can get prescription opioid painkillers from both the VA and Medicare, putting them at nearly triple the risk for an overdose, new research warns.

The finding could have implications for a huge number of vets: Roughly eight in 10 VA-covered patients have additional private or public health insurance coverage. About 51 ...

FRIDAY, March 8, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- People taking blood pressure medications have faced a frightening and bewildering series of pharmaceutical recalls in recent months, as trace amounts of cancer-causing chemicals have been discovered in individual batches of drugs.

But experts from the nation's leading heart groups are urging patients to remain calm, even as the recall list co...

WEDNESDAY, March 6, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Most folks treated in a U.S. emergency room for misuse of prescription medications get into trouble because they mix different substances, a new study reports.

Benzodiazepines like Xanax (alprazolam) and Ativan (lorazepam) are most commonly implicated in health crises that lead to an ER visit, followed by prescription opioids, researchers f...

MONDAY, March 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- For years, doctors have debated the safety of the acne drug most commonly known as Accutane, but new research suggests the medication does not boost depression risk among its users.

"The existing literature to date is quite mixed with regards to the issue of whether there is or is not an association between isotretinoin [Accutane] use and incr...

THURSDAY, Feb. 28, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- For older adults with a urinary tract infection (UTI), antibiotic treatment should begin immediately to prevent serious complications, a new British study finds.

Delaying or withholding antibiotics in this age group can increase the risk of bloodstream infection (sepsis) and death, researchers reported Feb. 27 in the BMJ.

Th...

TUESDAY, Feb. 19, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Drug makers and federal regulators dropped the ball in tracking the use of a potentially deadly fast-acting form of the synthetic opioid fentanyl, putting thousands of patients at risk of a fatal overdose, a new study claims.

Transmucosal Immediate-Release Fentanyl (TIRF) drugs are approved for use in cancer patients who've developed toleranc...

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 13, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Many drugs -- both prescription and over-the-counter -- can cause side effects like dizziness or upset stomach. But some can affect you in surprising ways, like causing problems with your sex life.

Sexual side effects are wide-ranging. You might lose interest in sex, have difficulty becoming aroused or achieving orgasm. Or, if you're a wom...

TUESDAY, Feb. 12, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- It's safe to use antiviral drugs to treat hepatitis C in liver cancer survivors, a new study reports.

The findings contradict previous research suggesting that antiviral drugs might increase these patients' risk of liver cancer recurrence.

That prior research involved a single-center study from Spanish investigators in 2016 that "ga...

TUESDAY, Feb. 12, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Millions of Americans with heart disease say they face financial strain because of their medical care, with some skipping meds or cutting back on basics like groceries.

That's the finding of a new national study of heart disease and stroke patients younger than 65 -- a group that's too young for Medicare but often lack health insurance, or "g...

TUESDAY, Feb. 12, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- New (and pricey) hepatitis C medicines, such as Harvoni and Sovaldi, are living up to their promise and greatly reducing patients' odds for liver cancer and death, a new French study finds.

The news came as little surprise to one U.S. liver expert.

The advent of this class of drugs "has led to almost universal cure of chronic hepati...

MONDAY, Feb. 11, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- America's ongoing opioid epidemic has struck poor whites harder than any other group, and a new study argues that racism likely played a role in that.

Whites have better access to prescription medications than either blacks or Hispanics. That privilege may have been their undoing when doctors began to more aggressively treat pain with prescrip...

FRIDAY, Feb. 8, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Cancer patients are already fighting a tough battle, so quitting smoking while doing so is a real challenge.

Now, research from Northwestern University in Chicago and the University of Pennsylvania shows that a combo of counseling and extended use of an anti-smoking medication can boost their odds for success.

One lung cancer patient ...

THURSDAY, Feb. 7, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A popular anti-diarrheal drug is fast becoming another dangerous byproduct of the opioid crisis, as more addicts take huge quantities of it to ease withdrawal symptoms or get dangerously high.

Investigators found that the number of patients who were reported to the U.S. National Poison Data System after taking toxic doses of loperamide (one o...

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 6, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Medicare rule changes could trigger a spike in out-of-pocket drug costs for patients with multiple sclerosis (MS).

Due to rules that restrict access and require patients to cover more of the cost, those without low-income subsidies can expect to spend almost $6,900 a year out of pocket for MS medicines, researchers reported.

"It's ...

TUESDAY, Feb. 5, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Easing chronic pain is the main reason Americans use medical marijuana, a new study finds.

"We wanted to understand the reasons why people are using cannabis medically, and whether those reasons for use are evidence-based," said lead author Kevin Boehnke. He's an investigator at University of Michigan's Chronic Pain and Fatigue Research Center...

THURSDAY, Jan. 31, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- The first generic version of the widely used Advair Diskus inhaler for asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) has won U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval.

This approval "is part of our longstanding commitment to advance access to lower cost, high-quality generic alternatives," said Dr. Janet Woodcock, director of the ...

MONDAY, Jan. 28, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Newer blood thinners are recommended over warfarin for people with the heart condition called atrial fibrillation (a-fib) in updated treatment guidelines issued by three major American heart groups.

The newer drugs are called non-vitamin K oral anticoagulants (NOACs). Examples include dabigatran (Pradaxa), rivaroxaban (Xarelto) and apixaban (E...

FRIDAY, Jan. 25, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- By itself, a Trump administration plan to make drug companies disclose the cost of their medicines in TV ads is unlikely to help tame drug prices, a new study shows.

Researchers did find that revealing the cost of expensive drugs in ads would significantly lower patient demand for those drugs, but that impact largely vanished when the ads incl...

THURSDAY, Jan. 17, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- As the United States battles an epidemic of opioid abuse, people living in rural areas have nearly two times the odds of being prescribed the painkillers when compared to their urban peers.

That's the finding from a new study that suggests more must be done to curb opioid prescribing by doctors in rural America.

The research was ba...

THURSDAY, Jan. 17, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Nearly 25 percent of antibiotics prescribed in the United States are given for conditions they aren't meant to treat, a new study finds.

Antibiotics are miracle drugs that can cure deadly bacterial infections. But too often they are given to treat viral infections, such as colds and flu, for which they are ineffective.

And the ov...

THURSDAY, Jan. 17, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- As if the opioid crisis wasn't already bad enough, new research shows a sharp rise in the number of Americans taking dangerous combinations of opioids and sedatives.

These sedatives, known as benzodiazepines, are prescribed for pain, insomnia and anxiety. And another class of similar medications, called Z-drugs, are also being taken with sed...

THURSDAY, Jan. 17, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Would you stop taking a medication if you heard a negative news story about it?

Sticking with a prescription drug regimen, or "medication adherence," is already a challenge for many patients, with not taking medications as prescribed being a key reason people struggle to control chronic conditions. Adding to the problem, according to a Danis...

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 16, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. dermatologists are prescribing fewer antibiotics overall but are writing more short-term orders for the drugs, a new study finds.

Dermatologists prescribe more antibiotics per doctor than any other medical specialty -- more than 7.1 million prescriptions per year, the University of Pennsylvania researchers said.

According to ...

TUESDAY, Jan. 15, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- To fight America's opioid epidemic, lawmakers and regulators have clamped down hard on doctors' prescribing practices.

But one avenue for obtaining prescription opioids appears to have been overlooked, according to a new study.

Veterinarians are prescribing large quantities of opioids to pets, raising concern that some people might ...

FRIDAY, Jan. 11, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- An experimental Ebola drug was effective against all strains of the deadly virus in laboratory animals, scientists say.

Previous research typically took the "one bug, one drug" approach, said researcher Thomas Geisbert, a professor at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. But due to the unpredictable nature of Ebola, scientists ...

THURSDAY, Jan. 10, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- People who take prescription opioid painkillers are at increased risk for pneumonia, especially those with HIV, a new study suggests.

The findings support concerns that prescription opioids can weaken the immune system. Doctors who prescribe opioids need to reduce patients' risk of pneumonia through vaccination and by encouraging them to sto...

THURSDAY, Jan. 10, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A new study is raising the question of whether certain cholesterol, blood pressure and diabetes drugs could help manage mental illnesses like schizophrenia.

The findings come from a study of over 142,000 Swedish patients with serious mental illnesses -- including schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. The researchers found that those patients t...

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 9, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Ritalin, a widely used stimulant drug to treat attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), likely poses no risk of heart damage in children, new research in monkeys suggests.

The findings are "very reassuring," said the study's principal investigator, Dr. Steven Lipshultz.

Each year, more than 1.8 million children in the Unit...

TUESDAY, Jan. 8, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- It's a common belief that rising drug prices are due to the high cost of cutting-edge medications, with manufacturers charging a bundle to make back development expenses for their new products.

But drug companies have also been steadily hiking prices on older brand-name drugs, a new study reports.

Increasing prices for brand-name pil...

FRIDAY, Jan. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- When a woman with epilepsy uses the anti-seizure drug valproate during a pregnancy, the odds that her baby will go on to develop ADHD rise, a new study suggests.

The Danish report can't prove that valproate causes attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in these cases, only that there's an association.

But in the new study, f...

FRIDAY, Jan. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- New mothers who take opioid painkillers after either vaginal birth or cesarean section may be at increased risk of becoming persistent users, a new study finds.

Researchers from Vanderbilt University in Nashville examined data from more than 102,000 new mothers in Tennessee. None had used opioids in the 180 days before delivery.

After...

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 2, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Despite being slashed by half in recent months, the price tag for advanced cholesterol-fighting drugs is still too high to make them cost-effective, a new analysis has concluded.

In March, the manufacturer of alirocumab (Praluent) announced that it would cut the cost of the medication from $14,000 a year to $7,000.

But the price wo...

THURSDAY, Dec. 27, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- About one in every five people who take Valium, Xanax and other benzodiazepines are misusing the potentially addictive medication, U.S. survey data show.

The statistics also revealed that benzodiazepine use among adults is more than twice as high as previously reported, with nearly 13 percent using the drugs within the past year.

S...

THURSDAY, Dec. 27, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Antibiotics are life-savers. But they're being overprescribed and overused, leading to antibiotic-resistant germs stronger than the drugs available to treat them.

This is also creating more drug side effects, allergic reactions and serious infections.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in one year alo...

TUESDAY, Dec. 18, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Potentially addictive opioid painkillers are often prescribed for chronic pain, but they actually work only slightly better than placebo pills, a new review shows.

The analysis, of 96 clinical trials, found that on average, opioids made only a small difference for people with conditions like osteoarthritis, fibromyalgia and sciatica.

<...

FRIDAY, Dec. 7, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Over the past few months, numerous recalls of the popular heart drug valsartan have already occurred. Now, generics maker Mylan Pharmaceuticals is adding more products to the list.

The recall involves 104 lots of three medicines: valsartan tablets; combination tablets with the drugs valsartan and amlodipine; and combination tablets with vals...

FRIDAY, Dec. 7, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Hot flashes, a common curse in menopause, can be especially bothersome after breast cancer. But a new study suggests an existing medication may help.

The drug is oxybutynin (Ditropan XL), long used to treat urinary incontinence.

The study found that women taking the medicine had an average of five fewer hot flashes a week, compared w...

THURSDAY, Dec. 6, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Tamoxifen is considered a vital weapon in the fight against breast cancer, but many women who have to take the drug struggle with its significant side effects.

Now, new research shows that a lower dose of the hormone therapy helped prevent breast cancer from returning and guarded against new cancers in women who had high-risk breast tissue.

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 5, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- For certain women with early stage breast cancer, a newer drug that combines an antibody with chemotherapy may cut the risk of disease recurrence in half, a new trial finds.

The study focused on nearly 1,500 women with early stage breast cancer that was HER2-positive -- meaning it carries a protein that promotes cancer growth.

Abou...

MONDAY, Dec. 3, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- There's been a steady decline in opioid prescriptions for children and teens in the United States since 2012, a new study reveals.

"Understanding patterns of opioid use in children and adolescents is important because use in early life has been associated with a higher likelihood of opioid misuse in the future," said the study's first author, J...

MONDAY, Dec. 3, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- More than one-quarter of people with diabetes have skimped on needed insulin because of the drug's soaring price tag, according to a new small study.

Surveying nearly 200 Americans with type 1 or type 2 diabetes, researchers found 26 percent had underused insulin because of cost.

But insulin isn't a drug you can safely ration, doctor...

MONDAY, Dec. 3, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Teens and young adults who are prescribed opioid painkillers after having their wisdom teeth removed are at increased risk for addiction, new research suggests.

For the study, researchers looked at nearly 15,000 patients, aged 16 to 25, who were prescribed opioids (such as Vicodin or Lortab) after wisdom tooth extraction in 2015. The median num...

MONDAY, Dec. 3, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- An increase in prescriptions for antidepressants followed the 2016 "Brexit" vote in England, a new study reports.

This increase may have stemmed from increased uncertainty in some people following the unexpected vote in favor of the United Kingdom leaving the European Union, according to the researchers.

For the study, the researcher...

SUNDAY, Dec. 2, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- A marijuana-derived drug that helps control epileptic seizures appears to become less effective over time in some patients, a new Israeli study reports.

Cannabidiol (CBD) liquid has been proven effective against seizures, but about one-third of patients develop tolerance that blunts the drug's effectiveness, accordin...

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Wellness Library Results - 9

How do you tell whether an online pharmacy is legitimate? Armed with the information below, you can easily weed out unscrupulous sellers and take advantage of the convenience of buying prescription drugs online. How do I know if a pharmacy is legitimate? The National Association of Boards of Pharmacies has an excellent screening tool: It issues a seal of approval, called VIPPS, which is short for ...

Ever since aspirin hit the market in the late 1800s, it has been a fixture in medicine cabinets everywhere -- and for good reason. It erases headaches, soothes arthritis, lowers fevers, helps prevent heart disease, and may even ward off some types of cancer. If it were discovered today, doctors would hail it as a medical breakthrough. But for some people, aspirin has a serious downside -- especia...

"I used to stockpile antibiotics," admits Ann Pascual, an editor for an Internet-based company in northern California. "I'd get a prescription, take half of it, and keep the rest. Sometimes I'd give a handful to friends who were sick. Instructions on the label? I don't think I ever really even read them." Fortunately, Pascual suffered no ill consequences from taking antibiotics haphazardly. Barbar...

What special risks do medications pose for seniors? As people grow older, needing a prescription medicine is almost as inevitable as gray hair and reading glasses. Two-thirds of all seniors take at least one medication each day, and 25 percent take three or more. Many seniors owe their lives -- or at least their lifestyles -- to medications, but the remedies can also carry serious risks. As a sen...

Can prescription drugs be hazardous for senior citizens? Senior citizens need more medications than any other sector of the population, and the drugs can take a toll. By some estimates, one-third of their prescriptions may trigger serious consequences. While some of the risk is unavoidable, you can provide some protection for yourself and loved ones by staying informed. Many thousands of dangerou...

At a time when millions of Americans are making dangerous mistakes with their medications, experts are taking a hard look at the labels on prescription drugs. Are the labels really as clear and informative as they could be? The instructions on labels are often complicated and hard to understand -- if you can read the small type in the first place. But the most baffling items on labels may be the ...

A pill bottle with a skull and crossbones on it sends a universal warning: DANGER. But in plain view in the average home, dozens of items used every day are potentially hazardous. And when young children touch and swallow things that catch their eye -- peppermint pink cleaning fluid or bright red iron pills -- the substances can be fatal. Hundreds of children were dying from poisoning each year ...

What image comes to mind when you think of a drug addict? Do you picture someone smoking crack or shooting heroin? You'd be wrong. A typical drug abuser could easily be your next-door neighbor, the teen who babysits your kids, or the grandmother you chat with at the grocery store. That's because drug abusers could be abusing the medication they bought at the local pharmacy. About 7 million Americ...

Thanks to the tribulations of Rush Limbaugh and a cover story in The New York Times Magazine, just about everyone has heard of OxyContin addiction. Naturally, some patients with prescriptions for the pain reliever are worried that they, too, will get hooked. OxyContin is one of many opioids that are used for chronic pain management. When taken properly, these opioids are very effective and very s...

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