Tuesday, July 29, 2014


A large number of people, when they fall sick, do not consult the physician. They either consult a chemist and obtain a medicine from his shelf, or may consult a neighbor who may be having some tablets left over from his previous illness, and readily spares them. May be most of the times nothing untoward happens on following such advice, but it can be dangerous.

Proprietary drugs which are sold over-the-counter include pain relievers, cough remedies, antiallergics, laxatives, vitamins, tonics, antacids and many others. Even dangerous drugs like the antibiotics and the hormones can be procured, somehow or the other, without a valid prescription.

Self-medication usually involves common drugs which are freely available. A study carried out in the United States showed that nearly 2 billion dollars per year were spent on such remedies. It is questionable whether the benefits outweigh the potential hazards. They account for poisonings, allergy, habituation, addiction, and other adverse reactions. Above all their use often delays proper treatment of the disease.

The most misused drugs are the analgesics or pain relievers. In fact, age old, ordinary aspirin is as effective, and even safer than any of the modern analgesics like fenamates, oxicams, or Cox-2 inhibitors like rofecoxib and celecoxib.

Similarly cough remedies, antiallergics, laxatives, vitamins, tonics, and antacids can lead to serious side effects. Even lavish use of vitamins, specially the fat-soluble (A,D,E, & K) can cause problems.

finally is the availability of many irrational drug combinations in the market, which expose the individual to several drugs needlessly, each of which can cause adverse effects. Very few combinations have a legitimate place in modern medicine. Yet irrational combination abound and are being used by some professionals.

Always consult your Physician

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