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Compounding a hard-to-find medicine

Posted by on Feb 2, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Compounding a hard-to-find medicine

If you are used to receiving over-the-counter or mass produced medication it can be surprising if your doctor informs that you might need to head to a compounding pharmacy to get your new prescriptions.  Here are some of the reasons that people might need to use compounding services. Temporary disruption to supply In some cases there can be local disruptions to supply, such as a run on flu medication or rabies vaccines, due to local breakout of certain diseases in one area or a shipment of specialised medicine being held up in transit. The Therapeutic Goods Association or ‘TGA‘ keeps a track of these medication shortages on their website. In this case the pharmacy can make up the required medicine to patch the shortfall while the extra medication is being sourced.  Discontinued medication Sometimes pharmaceutical companies will discontinue medication as it is no longer profitable and less used due to more modern alternatives. However sometimes moving a patient from one drug to another drug can result in withdrawal and at times the new medication may not suit the patient as well. This was observed in the Australian market in 2003 when certain psychotropic drugs were withdrawn from the market. This resulted in poor outcomes for patients that do not respond well to alternative treatments. In this case the compounding service can make the drug from scratch to help the patient manage their condition in the short and longer term.  Difficulties in finding the medication locally For people in rural areas, or people with low mobility, it may be hard to find their medication at their local pharmacy (particularly if the medication is not used commonly). This can be particularly common if a medication gets removed from the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, meaning that most patients will often try to find alternatives that are more affordable. However, for some patients they may decide to keep using their existing medication as they know that it suits them and works well with any other medication they are using. In this case it might be more suitable to get the medication made locally by a compounding pharmacy for logistical reasons.  If you have any questions about why your medication is being made at a compounding pharmacy, you can ask either your doctor or the pharmacist. The doctors or pharmacists will be more than willing to answer any questions and guide you through the process of compounding...

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Is Your Bathroom Cabinet a Museum for Barely Remembered Illnesses? How to Safely Get Rid of Old Medication

Posted by on Sep 18, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Is Your Bathroom Cabinet a Museum for Barely Remembered Illnesses? How to Safely Get Rid of Old Medication

How often do you clean out your bathroom cabinet? Like many people, yours is probably home to many different types of expired medication, possibly for illnesses you don’t even remember. Your bathroom cabinet should not be treated as long term storage for expired medication, and old medications need to be disposed of properly. There are some common misconceptions about the best method for disposal, but some of these methods can in fact be harmful. So what is the most appropriate way to rid yourself of medication you no longer need? Don’t Flush It Away Flushing it all down the toilet might seem like the most convenient method of disposal, but this is not advised. While your toilet can certainly take care of a few pills and capsules, you need to think about where these items will end up. Many types of prescription medication have active ingredients that can maintain a certain amount of potency, even after the expiration date. These active ingredients are evident in trace amounts even after passing through a water treatment facility. They can then be dispersed into local waterways where they can harm the environment. There’s actually evidence that flushed contraceptive pills have affected the reproductive abilities of wildlife. Don’t Throw It Away You should not simply throw unused medication away with your rubbish. Your rubbish is sent to a local landfill, and this medication can then leak into the soil. This causes problems similar to when medication is allowed to flow into local waterways. There’s also the risk that some pills or capsules might be spilled during the transport process, and even if they are simply scattered on the street, they can be a dangerous temptation for young children and pets. Take It Back to Where It Came From So it might not be exactly where you picked up your prescription, but you should take your unused medication back to a local chemist. There is a free national scheme where all pharmacies operate as drop off points for out-of-date or unused medication. This is for both prescription medication and anything bought over the counter. The medication is securely stored before being transported to an incinerator for safe disposal. This ensures that there’s no chance of the medication making its way into the local environment. So perhaps it’s time to go through your bathroom cabinet and check how much expired medication is in there. Your local chemist will be happy to take it all off your...

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