Commentary

What Your MD Doesn’t Tell You Can Harm You

What Your MD Doesn’t Tell You Can Harm You

The opioid problems notwithstanding, has it ever occurred to healthcare consumers and allopathic medicine’s patients as to why you aren’t told the warnings, contraindications or adverse effects regarding the Rx-prescription MDs give you, often as many as 3 “scripts” at a time, when no studies have been done to determine if there are adverse reactions or contraindications from taking various chemical pharmaceuticals and legal drugs simultaneously?

Doctors are swift to advise patients about not taking vitamins, supplements, herbal and natural remedies—that’s a known given. However, are they as quick to tell patients about the chemicals they are prescribing, often willy-nilly-like and as guesstimates? Furthermore, how many times are there prescription adverse reactions, especially with the elderly, probably resulting due to what Big Pharma’s sales reps pitch to physicians about mainstreaming new drugs or the kick-backs docs will receive for prescribing them?

By the way, the FDA maintains a reporting system called FAERS—FDA Adverse Event Reporting System—whereby medication error reports and product quality complaints resulting in adverse events that were submitted to FDA.” However, FAERS seems to be a ‘clandestine’ and well-guarded database since one must file a FOIA report to look at the data. Hmmm! What does that tell you?

However, there is one caution MDs are fairly astute at telling patients which relates to taking grapefruit juice with certain prescription drugs. Grapefruit has the ability to decrease a pharmaceutical drug’s breakdown for elimination due to furanocoumarins, which block the CYP3A4 enzymes. This website provides a list of common drug-grapefruit interactions that, if you are taking prescriptions, you may want to print and keep.

Rx’s ability to impact driving a vehicle

Nevertheless, there is other information which MDs and pharmacists should be warning patients about and that is prescription drugs ability to impair one’s driving a motor vehicle and driving-related risk perceptions!

An October 31, 2017 study report titled “Receipt of Warnings Regarding Potentially Impairing Prescription Medications and Associated Risk Perceptions in a National Sample of U.S. Drivers” published in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs described findings which ought to revolutionize the protocols for which pharmaceuticals are prescribed and dispensed by MDs and pharmacists alike.

The study Results found

Receipt of warnings varied by sex, race/ethnicity, income, geographic region, and time of day. For a majority of drug categories, drivers who reported receiving warnings had significantly higher odds of perceived risk of impaired driving/crash and criminal justice involvement.

It’s in the study’s Conclusions that we find one of the problems, plus pitfalls, with MDs having to push patients through their treatment rooms every twenty minutes or less:

Most users of prescription medications reported that the drug was prescribed for their use, but not all reported receiving warnings about driving impairment. Our study provides evidence of missed opportunities for information provision on impaired driving, identifies subgroups that may warrant enhanced interventions, and provides preliminary evidence that receipt of impairment warnings is associated with increased perceptions of driving-related risk.

[CJF emphasis]

MDs should be mandated by law and the AMA to give patients comprehensive warnings

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