Medications and Falls in the Elderly. Are They Linked?

Falls increase in severity and frequency as we age. Many factors contribute to this reality. They include gait and balance disorders, hearing and visual impairments, environmental factors, and orthostatic hypotension (blood pressure that drops when a person goes from a reclining position to a sitting or standing position). One factor, though, is often overlooked as…


Is it okay to have a glass of wine? Alcohol and medications do interact

Working behind the pharmacy counter, I was asked this question often from patients receiving a prescription for an antibiotic. Rarely, if ever, was I asked this question when they received a new prescription to control their blood sugar or blood pressure. The fact is alcohol consumption interacts negatively with many different medications and disease states.…


Controlling blood sugar levels (diabetes) in the over 65 age bracket

There was an excellent article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on January 27th, 2015 entitled Diabetes in the elderly: safe sugar isn’t simple.( I encourage anyone with diabetes and their caregivers to read this article. The article talks about the need for an individualized approach to controlling blood sugar. Blood sugar goals, such as your…


Acetaminophen: It’s in Everything, it works AND it can lead to Liver Failure and Death

  Keeping track of medications and their associated risks may be more complicated than initially realized. Most of us are very familiar with Tylenol and probably have a bottle in our medicine cabinets. It is a very effective pain and fever reducer, and safe when taken correctly. However, too much acetaminophen may lead to sudden…


What Can a Personal Pharmacist Do for You?

Jacob, age 92, and Rebecca, age 89, both Miami residents, are excited about their decision to get married. They go for a stroll to discuss the wedding, and on the way they pass a drugstore. Jacob suggests they go in. He then addresses the man behind the counter: “Are you the owner?” The pharmacist answers,…

Prescription Drugs

Are you taking your medications correctly? Why is it important?

Warfarin, insulin and digoxin: three commonly prescribed medications. More than likely your loved one is on at least one of these medications and possibly all three. These medications can definitely be lifesavers. They also account for one-third of all ER visits. The majority of problems related to these medications is unintentional overdoses. Taking your medications…