If you are reading this article it is because you are thinking of buying your prescription medications from a Canadian pharmacy. You may have heard that Canadian pharmacies sell their drugs 50-80% cheaper than ones in the U.S. The reason that the prices are so much cheaper in Canada is that over there prescription medicines have price limits imposed on them. In fact, the United States is one of the only industrialized countries in the world not to use price-limits on prescription medicines. Accordingly, Americans pay some of the highest prices anywhere for their medications. A recent poll, carried out on behalf of The Wall Street Journal, showed that more than 80% of Americans were in favor of importing drugs from Canada and more than one in ten Americans already do so. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has said that it does not intend to go after individuals buying prescription medications from Canada. And the State of Michigan has been running seniors, free of charge, into Canada to obtain their drugs, as reported on CBS News. The question for you is, when buying prescription medications from Canada, do you use a pharmacy online or make the trip yourself into Canada? Canada Pharmacy Online The advantage of using a Canadian pharmacy online is one of simple convenience. Using an online pharmacy means you not have to make the expensive and time consuming trip into Canada. If you live a long way from the border, or if you are too ill to make the journey, then the simplicity and ease of going online to find a Canadian pharmacy to serve your needs is obviously attractive. Some people are wary of Canadian pharmacies online, worried that they might be scammed in some way. This is understandable as there are a tiny minority of unscrupulous people in cyberspace willing to prey on the sick and vulnerable. However, there are precautions you can take to avoid being ripped off. A genuine online pharmacy will have its physical address and telephone number in Canada displayed clearly on its website. You can telephone the number and check that they are for real. Additionally, all reputable Canadian online pharmacies will bear the Canadian International Pharmacy Association (CIPA) logo on their website. You can contact the CIPA to check that the pharmacy you are thinking of using truly is a member of their association. Visiting a Pharmacy in Canada Making a trip into Canada to visit the pharmacy in person may ensure that you don’t fall prey to some bogus pharmacy online. However, this trip will be costly and since you can only buy a 90 day supply at a time, you will have to make four trips a year. People who live a long way from the border, or are too sick to travel, or need long term medication will find a using a pharmacy online much easier. Making a trip into Canada to visit the pharmacy in person may ensure that you don’t fall prey to some bogus pharmacy online. However, this trip will be costly and since you can only buy a 90 day supply at a time, you will have to make four trips a year. People who live a long way from the border, or are too sick to travel, or need long term medication will find a using a pharmacy online much easier.
Local Drug Search launched, and for the first time Americans could search for the lowest prices on prescription drugs at over 20,000 pharmacies across the US. With just a few clicks, the easy-to-use website compares prices for the prescriptions users input at their local pharmacies. Starting today, Local Drug Search is making it even easier for consumers to save money by integrating hundreds of manufacturers’ prescription drug coupons and savings plans into the search results. “Local Drug Search is committed to helping the consumer easily find the best deals for their prescriptions,” comments Mike Todasco, founder of Local Drug Search. “We started by setting up the first website of its kind to aggregate prescription drug prices from the major US pharmacies. Searching on the site could save the average family hundreds of dollars a year in a few moments of their time. In addition, many Americans don’t realize that most drug manufacturers offer coupons to help offset the cost of a prescription. Whether you have no insurance, or are lucky enough to have a health plan with no co-pay for prescriptions, now everyone can save even more money by searching for prescription drug coupons on Local Drug Search. Many of today’s most popular brand name medications offer significant savings which are now displayed on LocalDrugSearch.com. If you are searching for Cialis, you will find that Eli Lilly, the maker of Cialis, offers a free 30 day trial or three free 36 hour tablets. If you are taking Lipitor, searching the LocalDrugSearch.com site will show a promotion from Pfizer for a $4 co-pay, up to $600 a year. Users of Nexium are directed to the AstraZeneca site which offers a Purple Plus Savings Card to save up to $50 per refill and a personal calculator to estimate the cost of the prescription under their health plan. “Local Drug Search is all about making it easier to make informed decisions and save money on your prescriptions,” says Todasco. “Instead of searching multiple websites and calling your local pharmacies to get a price quote for your medications, Local Drug Search does the work for you by finding the best prices in your area,” he adds. Enter your zip code and medication, and with an easy click you will see a map of your local pharmacies and a retail price list for your selected prescription. The site also tells you if your FDA approved generic medications are available for brand name drugs which can potentially save you even more money. More than one-half of Americans are taking prescription drugs. IMS Health reports that Americans spent more than $300 billion on prescription drugs in 2010. The American healthcare debate and uncertain economic times have brought increased focus on what individuals can do to control their healthcare costs. While many Americans are covered by private health insurance plans, Medicare, or Medicaid, not all prescriptions are covered by all plans. And prescription costs vary widely by location and pharmacy. Local Drug Search serves as a tool to empower consumers to save money by allowing them to easily compare prices at the local pharmacies they trust. Local Drug Search is the first website of its kind that empowers consumers to compare prices of prescription drugs at the neighborhood pharmacies they trust. LocalDrugSearch.com was recently featured in the Baltimore Sun as Consumer Website of the Week.
Risk of drug addiction is higher with opioid painkillers than with other drugs. We frequently hear or read about people who have become addicted to painkillers after being prescribed them by their doctor for chronic pain. The problem is that once the pain is gone or manageable, the person can find themselves trapped by the drug and has to keep taking it. Next thing you know, they’re “doctor shopping”, stealing drugs from medicine cabinets, buying them off the Internet, or from drug dealers. Really, their only hope at that point is a drug detox program that will help them get off the drug. These stories are always sad and somewhat frightening. For me, they also raise a number of questions: How many people actually suffer from the severe chronic pain that requires these prescriptions? And how do they become addicted? Some of the answers I found were shocking. A study conducted by Stanford University Medical Center found that one in five adult Americans suffer from chronic pain – pain lasting for several months or longer. And, according to a study published in The Journal of the American Medical Association, common and chronic pain costs American workers more than $61 billion a year in lost productivity. These facts alone provide significant incentive to ask for, and write prescriptions for painkillers. People don’t want to be in pain, and they do want to go to work. So, they are likely to be on these drugs for an extended period of time. But will they become drug addicts? That depends on a number of factors. First, the type of drug they’re taking; If they’re taking opium-based painkillers like OxyContin, Dilaudid, Vicodin, Percocet, oxycodone, or morphine, it is almost certain the person will become physically dependant and, if taken for a long period of time, they’ll probably require drug detox to safely get off the drug with a minimum of debilitating withdrawal symptoms. However, even though the risk of drug addiction with opioid painkillers is higher than with other drugs, addiction goes beyond mere physical dependency. It is more a mindset – it’s a solution that enables a person to cope with the stresses of living life. And it takes more than drug detox to handle it. Drug detox helps the person handle their physical dependency, but they’ll need drug rehab to conquer the addiction. Whether or not someone is addicted to a drug is a complex question. But the bottom line is this: given the right set of conditions, there is a great risk of addiction. The best way to find out if someone is addicted is to get them treatment in a medically-supervised drug detox program that helps them withdraw safely from the drug and then provides counseling to determine if further treatment is needed.
After years of drug abuse, Vicki Lynn Marshall finally met her end with a deadly combination of prescription and over-the-counter drugs. The jury’s still out on whether the cause of death was accidental or otherwise, but one thing is certain – had Vicki Lynn completed a successful drug rehab long ago, she would likely be alive today. For Vickie Lynn, the spiral to the autopsy table started years ago. Drug and alcohol abuse, dependency, and perhaps addiction, were part of her lifestyle. But when a series of adverse personal events led her to combine several prescription drugs, she was physically pushed over the edge. The long list on the pathologist’s report was shocking. At the time of her death, she had consumed not two or three, or even four drugs – the autopsy found nine different prescription drugs and one powerful over-the-counter medication, at least five or six of which cascaded into the next, adding to and increasing their effects: 1. Cipro, a powerful antibiotic used to handle bacterial and viral infections 2.Chloral hydrate, a sedative and hypnotic to help her sleep 3. Benadryl, an OTC antihistamine 4. Four powerful tranquilizers 5. Atropine 6. Topiramate, an anticonvulsant now prescribed for migraines Although the antibiotic was obviously needed to handle an infection, the sedatives and tranquilizers were indicative of needing drug rehab to get down to the bottom of what was causing the drug abuse. And the sedatives and tranquilizers, along with the antihistamine, atropine and Topiramate, are what actually killed her – each of them depresses respiration and circulation and, in Vicki Lynn’s case, these systems became so depressed they simply shut down. “She didn’t suffer,” the pathologist said, “she went to sleep.” According to her autopsy records, Vickie Lynn Marshall died of an “acute combined drug intoxication” complicated by two minor infections, neither of which was dangerous if treated properly. Taken singly, none of the drugs was life-threatening, and none was an overdose. Could Vicki Lynn’s life have been saved? Probably everything possible was done in the end but, factually, the problem started years ago – when she became dependant on drugs and alcohol. Had Vicki Lynn, or someone who cared about her, recognized the signs and made sure she got through a drug rehab program that addressed the issues behind her drug abuse, she may not have turned to drugs when events seemed to conspire against her and she may be alive today. Vicki Lynn’s story is not unusual – millions of people depend on prescription drugs. But, as we can see from Vicki Lynn’s story, some of them can be dangerous. If someone you care about is dependant on or addicted to prescription drugs, find a successful drug rehab program. Don’t let them end up on the autopsy table like Vicki Lynn Marshall – who you may know as Anna Nicole Smith.
The influence of drug advertising on television and in magazines has been the focus of many news articles since the recent OxyContin hearings. And it’s no wonder: Relaxing, upbeat images in television drug ads distract the consumer from already insubstantial warnings about the risks. Some people don’t get the full picture until they’re checking into a drug detox program for prescription drug addiction, or asking their wife to drive the car over their leg so they can justify another OxyContin prescription. But what’s being done about the advertising? After a recent analysis of DEA statistics done by the Associated Press (AP) showed an 88% increase in retail opiate painkiller sales, the AP concluded that one of the reasons for this increase is direct manufacturer to consumer drug ads. That is to say that Pfizer, Lilly, Merck and others can advertise directly to the public. A congressional investigation found, in fact, that the amount spent on advertising campaigns to the public increased 330% from 1997 – 2005. In 2001, Purdue Pharma spent $200 million on advertising just for OxyContin. The FDA is now planning a study to determine whether people have an overly positive impression of the drug despite audio warnings about the risks. However, I think it’s possible we may already have an answer to that question: A study conducted by the FDA in 2001, for the purpose of determining the influence of drug advertising, found that 30% of the viewers asked their doctor about the drug after having seen an ad. And 44% of the doctors gave them the prescription. No word on how many of them are now in drug detox. Of those who did not ask their doctor about the drug, 67% said it was because they didn’t have the condition described in the ad. The FDA survey also asked viewers how much they trust the information in drug ads. Over 60% of viewers said they trust the ads ‘a lot’ or ‘some’. They may feel differently now if they’ve followed the OxyContin hearings. Nevertheless, the FDA has chosen to study this subject again. The money might be better spent getting people who’ve already seen the ads and fallen prey to all the pretty pictures into drug detox. Drug companies are required by law to show the benefits and risks equally. Critics claim that the relaxing, pleasant images clearly overshadow the audio warnings about the risks of the drugs. What do you think people are going to notice? The images of happy children, couples in love and people leading productive lives with a background of relaxing, uplifting music and a phone number to call so you, too, can transform your life, or an announcer in the background listing the side effects like an auctioneer on steroids? Dr. Sidney Wolfe, of the advocacy group Public Citizen, claims, “If advertisers were really interested in getting information about drug risks out, they’d show pictures of those problems, but you almost never see that.” That’s right. And until it’s mandated by law, we likely never will. But you may see some of those images right in your own household just before you take your wife, husband or kid to a drug detox program that specializes in prescription drug addiction.
Welcome to WordPress. This is your first post. Edit or delete it, then start writing!