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A Stepwise Approach to Medication Disposal

A dose can be changed. A side effect can lead to discontinuation of use. An expiration date can pass. One medication may be replaced by another that is more effective or less expensive. These are only a few of the many reasons unused medications accumulate in medicine cabinets. One common question encountered when working in a community pharmacy is, “what should I do with this medication I no longer need?” This question is important, because improper disposal can pose safety and environmental concerns. For more information, please read How To Safely and Properly Dispose Of Unused Medicines published on this blog 4/22/2012.

Due to the severity of the consequences of improper disposal, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) adopted guidelines for proper medication disposal. All three agencies agree to the following stepwise approach to medication disposal.

1.       Prescription Drug Take-Back Programs.

  • Prescription drug take-back programs allow anyone to deliver unused medications to a central location with no questions asked. They, in turn, ensure the safe and proper disposal of all medications collected.
  • Here at Halsted Pharmacy we are committed to the safe and proper disposal of unused drugs and medications. Every day during regular business hours we accept unused medications from our patients in order to ensure proper disposal.  To find the drop off site closest to you, visit http://www.americanmedicinechest.com/.
  • The DEA also sponsors National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day events. The most recent Take-Back Day, April 27, 2013, resulted in collection of 742,497 pounds (371 tons) of prescription medications for proper disposal.

2.       Follow the directions on the label or package insert.

  • Some medications, specifically patches and strong pain medications, come with a complete set of instructions for disposal after use based on acquired safety data. For example, some medications pose a substantial threat, so much so that a single dose can cause fatality. These medications may be marked with instructions to flush the unused portion down the sink or toilet. For a comprehensive list of flushable medications, visit the Disposal of Unused Medicines: What You Should Know page from the FDA. It is not recommended to flush any medication not found on this list.

3.       Throw the medication away.

  • This does not mean to simply throw unused medication out with the trash. It is recommended to first make the drugs “undesirable” by following a simple procedure.

                                   i.      Take the medication out of its original container, and mix it with an unpleasant substance such as used coffee grounds or kitty litter.

                                   ii.      Place the mixture into a sealable bag or container to avoid the medication leaking or spilling out of the trash bag.

                                   iii.      Remove all personal information from the original container to protect identity and personal health information.

If you have any questions regarding proper medication disposal, contact your local pharmacist for clarification or e-mail me at info@halstedpharmacy.com.

Jaime Weddingfeld
PharmD Candidate 2014
Chicago State University - College of Pharmacy


Sources

How to Dispose of Unused Medicines. Food and Drug Administration Website. http://www.fda.gov/downloads/Drugs/ResourcesForYou/Consumers/BuyingUsingMedicineSafely/UnderstandingOver-the-CounterMedicines/ucm107163.pdf. Accessed July 20, 2013.

How to Dispose of Medications Properly. United States Environmental Protection Agency Website. http://water.epa.gov/scitech/swguidance/ppcp/upload/ppcpflyer.pdf. Accessed July 20, 2013.

Medication Disposal: Disposal of Unwanted or Unused Pharmaceuticals Fact Sheet. Illinois Environmental Protection Agency Website. http://www.epa.state.il.us/medication-disposal/facts.html. Accessed July 21, 2013.

Public Response to DEA's National Prescription Drug Take-Back Days Keeps Growing. United States Drug Enforcement Administration Website. http://www.justice.gov/dea/divisions/hq/2013/hq050213.shtml. Accessed July 19, 2013.


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Three Must Have Vaccinations for Adults

When most people think of vaccinations they think of the shots that babies, small children, and school-aged children receive.  But the fact of the matter is that the science and understanding of disease has advanced greatly in the last fifty years, meaning that our arsenal of weapons against disease has grown as well.  We now possess weapons against countless adult diseases making vaccinations a choice that is applicable for not only the very young, but the middle aged and old too.  The following is a short list of the top three must have vaccinations for adults.   If you read over it and find that you have not had one or more of these vaccinations realize that you are doing a disservice to your own health and well-being.  This can be remedied by stopping at your local pharmacy where most of these immunizations are available to you without even much of a wait.

• Influenza

The flu is a result of the influenza virus, a constantly mutating virus, of which many strains are in play each year throughout the world.  This is why the CDC monitors the influenza strain status of countries around the world in an attempt to determine which strains of the upcoming year’s viruses are the most serious and should be included as part of the yearly flu vaccination.  When you receive the vaccination you receive an injection of pieces of the dead virus.   This bears repeating.  When vaccinated you are injected with pieces of the dead virus.  As a result, the virus is unable to reproduce itself.  You cannot get the flu from the flu vaccination.  It is like a women saying she went on vacation by herself and became pregnant because she took with her the severed finger of her spouse.  Not possible.

What side effects can I experience?

Once the pieces of the dead virus are injected, this triggers a cascade of events that basically wakes up your immune system.
  Some people will experience side effects of the immune system coming awake such as a runny nose, sore muscles, etc.  But this is to be expected, your body is under the impression that you are being invaded.  It is going to react as if there is actually a real live virus in your body and it will gear up for war.  You are going to feel a bit run down and tired, your nose will run because your body wants to try and flush out anything that may be coming in (viruses, etc.) out, and your muscles may feel sore because, well, you just got injected in muscle with a sharp needle.  But the fact of the matter is that rates of infection due to the influenza virus are up sharply, with last year’s rates being some of the highest seen in a while.  So, watch for the influenza vaccination to become widely available in the next several months, and don’t wait to get the shot until it is too late.

Pneumococcal

Often those people who have not been immunized against the flu and contract it end up with pneumonia.  How does it happen?  Your body, which has just spent a good amount of its energy fighting off the totally avoidable influenza infection, is tired.  And along comes either pneumonia causing bacteria or viruses (it can be caused by either or even parasites)  that are generally a controllable presence in the environment.  But your body is weak from the war it has just waged, and this is how pneumonia  takes hold.  As a result, your tired body is unable to defeat it and a full blown case of pneumonia is underway.  Two of the most effective ways to avoid pneumonia, which along with influenza is ranked as the 8th leading cause of death in the United States, is by getting a yearly influenza vaccination and the pneumococcal vaccination.  Getting the pneumococcal vaccination is particularly important to get if you are 65 years or older, a smoker, or have long term disease states such as heart disease, diabetes, cirrhosis, etc. 

Shingles

Shingles is a result of the reactivation of the dormant chicken pox virus.  Those people who once had chickenpox as a child have the possibility of re-experiencing the awakening and expression of this virus as shingles sores.  Since this virus lives in the nerve endings, shingles is a particularly painful re-infection that is totally avoidable!  Seeing even one patient with these painful sores all over their body will convince even the most anti-vaccination advocate of the dangers of this way of thinking.  And unlike the chicken pox, which goes away after a week or two of itchiness, these painful large sores can persist for month after month after month, making even the most basic activities of daily living nearly unbearable.  This vaccination is a must have for all those who have had the chicken pox and are 65 years of age and over.

There was once a time in the United States when children died every day from diseases that were truly every parent’s worst nightmare.  Those days are gone thanks to the scientific miracle known as vaccinations, but diseases are constantly changing, mutating and infections due to viruses that can cause true human misery are on the rise.  Let us not forget our history and pretend that vaccinations are only for the smallest among us.  Stay up to date on the current advances that medical science has brought us, and keep yourself well, with both the science and information!

 

Amy Sharify

            Student Pharmacist, PharmD Candidate Class of 2014

 

Sources:

Available at:  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Pneumococcal Vaccination:  Who Needs It?” http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vpd-vac/pneumo/vacc-in-short.htm  Accessed July 7, 2013.

Available at:  American Lung Association, “Pneumonia Fact Sheet” http://www.lung.org/lung-disease/influenza/in-depth-resources/pneumonia-fact-sheet.html  Accessed July 7, 2013.

Available at:  Mayo Clinic, “ Shingles” http://www.mayoclinic.org/shingles/ Accessed July 7, 2013.

Available at: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “ Shingles” http://www.cdc.gov/shingles/

Available at: NIH Senior Health, “Shingles” http://nihseniorhealth.gov/shingles/aboutshingles/01.html     Accessed July 7, 2013.

Available at: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “ Seasonal influenza (Flu)” http://www.cdc.gov/flu/  Accessed July 7, 2013.

Available at: USA Today, “Deaths Increase, Misery Mounts as Flu Sweeps Nation.” http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/01/10/flu-nation-sick-elderly-flu-deaths-workplace/1823425/ Accessed July 7, 2013.

  

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                                                  Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397

 



Seniors Can Prevent Falls

Just the thought of your 80-year-old mother or father taking a tumble makes you really wince, doesn't it? Or, for that matter—what if that 80-year-old person is you? The idea of falling is certainly not a pleasant thought. The good news is you can help prevent many falls with a few simple changes. Here's what you can do for yourself or the elder in your family.


See the doctor

 If you've had a fall:

  • Discuss this in as much detail as you can with your doctor. Have a conversation about your health conditions and how your body feels when you're walking.1
  • Make a list of all your medications—both prescription and over the counter—as well as supplements. Your doctor can review this list for potential side effects or interactions that could increase your risk of falling.1 Of course I'd be glad to go over this with you as well.
  • Ask whether an emergency call system might be a good idea. These bracelets or pendants allow you to contact an emergency dispatcher in case of a fall.  Some even have motion sensors that can tell if you've fallen and alert emergency services, even if you're unconscious.2  

 Address house hazards

Six out of 10 falls happen at home3—and accidents in the home account for about one-third all injuries in seniors.4 Making simple changes around the house can greatly reduce the risk of falls:

  • Remove clutter, and move loose cords, pet bowls, plants, and other small items from high-traffic areas.
  • Secure carpets and replace throw rugs with nonslip ones. Attached to your throw rugs? Then at least affix them to the floor with a sticky rubber adhesive.4
  • Clean up wet spills right away and use nonskid wax on waxed floors.
  • Put within easy reach dishes or other items used most often.
  • Add nonslip mats in the tub or shower, if you haven't already.1
  • Improve lighting, as needed, especially near entrances, stairways, and outdoor walkways. Use the highest recommended wattage. Install nightlights in bathroom, bedroom, hallways, and kitchen. Put a flashlight by the bed.3

            If you live in snow country, spread sand or salt on icy surfaces. But, whenever possible, avoid the outdoors during the nastiest of weather. 

 Add assistive devices

 You'll find some of the following devices in our store.

  • Ask the doctor whether a cane or walker is a good idea.
  • Install grab bars in the shower and tub and next to the toilet. Also install handrails on both sides of stairs.
  • Add a raised toilet seat or one with armrests.
  • Buy a solid plastic seat and hand-held shower nozzle for the shower or tub.1

            Has a loved one taken a fall, but has trouble taking safety advice from you? Or, are you the one who's fallen, and you're feeling as though your family is a little overbearing? The doctor may suggest having a home health nurse or occupational therapist pay a visit to assess the situation.3 Sometimes it's easier to hear advice from an unbiased observer.

             Just remember: taking steps to prevent falls cannot only prevent falls. It also improves the chances of staying independent as you grow older.

Nothing herein constitutes medical advice, diagnosis or treatment, or is a substitute for professional advice.  You should always seek the advice of your physician or other medical professional if you have questions or concerns about a medical condition.

 Sources

 1.                  Mayo Clinic: "Fall prevention: 6 tips to prevent falls." Available at: http://www.mayoclinic.com/print/fall-prevention/HQ00657/METHOD=print Accessed March 7, 2013.

2.                  Best of the Web Senior Housing: "Senior-Proofing Your or Your Parent's Home." Available at: http://seniorhousing.botw.org/senior-proofing-the-home/ Accessed March 7, 2013.

3.                  NIH Senior Health: "Fall Proofing Your Home." Available at: http://nihseniorhealth.gov/falls/homesafety/01.html Accessed March 7, 2013.

4.                  Dr. Marion: "'Elder Proofing' Your Home." Available at: http://drmarion.com/news/elder_proofing_your_home Accessed March 7, 2013.

 

  

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More on Medication Taken During Pregnancy

So why do doctors make such a big deal about not taking medication when you are pregnant?  This, of course, is due to the fact that the medication can have a negative effect on the growing fetus.  Depending on the trimester of your pregnancy the threats are different. 

In the first trimester, especially between weeks 3 through 8, the fetus is particularly vulnerable to medications taken due to the fact that this is the time period when the organs begin to be developed.  Adverse effects of medications may result in the organs not developing properly and can create a situation where the fetus is not able to survive either while in utero or once outside the womb.  While in the second trimester the nervous system, among other things, continues to develop and mature.  Drugs taken during this time may influence this development, and so careful consideration must be given in order to minimize the risks.  And in the third trimester, although for the most part medication use is considered safer, there are still some medications that if taken can cause harm to the soon to be born baby.

But even so there are times and issues that arise that necessitate a trip to the doctor and the taking of some sort of medication.  The following are the top reasons expectant mothers visit their doctor and the possible options for treatment. 

1) Morning Sickness


Afflicting nearly 50% of soon to be moms, this complication of pregnancy is usually due to the increased levels of hormones in the body resulting in feelings of nausea and even vomiting.  The options for treating this complaint have just increased with the return of a medication that use to be available called Diclegis.  It is currently available and listed as a pregnancy category A, with the most common side effect being drowsiness.  Previously, doctors would mainly prescribe Zofran (ondansetron) for the treatment of nausea and vomiting due to pregnancy.  This is also a safe drug to take while pregnant and is a pregnancy category B medication.

2) Constipation

The changes that come along with pregnancy are many.  Some are wonderful, while others, not so much.  While an expectant mother’s body is trying to build another human being, it funnels a great deal of energy to the baby building process.  As a result, other bodily functions that were once medium priority become low priority.  This is why the typical transit time for food through the lower portion of the gastrointestinal tract (fancy way of saying the small and large intestines) becomes much longer resulting in that full feeling of constipation.  Additionally, there is a benefit to this longer transit time.  While the food slowly makes its way through the lower GI, the body is able to remove as much of the nutrients and water it needs for the pregnancy, wasting nothing.  To make matters worse, the increased level of iron in prenatal vitamins is a third reason that constipation can occur in pregnant women.  Some treatments for pregnancy related constipation include increasing the amount of water and fiber in your diet.   Green leafy vegetables and whole wheat breads and cereals should help.  Additionally, women may be told to try to increase their level of physical activity.  A fifteen minute walk can spur the peristaltic action that happens in the intestinal tract that creates the urge to have a bowel movement.  Sometimes stool softeners will be suggested to help those who are not finding relief elsewhere.   Using laxatives, however, is not recommended and should only be taken if directed to by a physician.

In addition to the above medications, pregnant women will occasionally experience aches and pain associated with muscle strain or even due to the common cold.  An often prescribed medication includes Acetaminophen.  Known by the brand name Tylenol, it is generally considered as safe if taken for a short period of time.

Taking medication during pregnancy can be a cause for worry and stress for expectant parents, but with the proper information and sound advice from your doctor and pharmacist, it doesn’t have to be. 

                                                  Amy Sharify

      Student Pharmacist, PharmD Candidate Class of 2014

Sources:

Available at: Indian Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences, “Drug Use In Pregnancy; A Point To Ponder!” http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2810038/  Accessed July 1, 2013.

Available at: American Pregnancy Association, “Morning Sickness” http://americanpregnancy.org/pregnancyhealth/morningsickness.html  Accessed July 1, 2013.

Available at: ABC News, “FDA Approves Morning Sickness Drug Once Feared Unsafe” http://abcnews.go.com/Health/fda-approves-morning-sickness-pill-pulled-market/story?id=18914496#.UdQ_VpwvC2w  Accessed July 1, 2013.

Available at: Medline Plus, “Ondansetron” http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/meds/a601209.html Accessed July 1, 2013.

Available at: Mayo Clinic, “Pregnancy Week By Week” http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/pregnancy-constipation/MY01849  Accessed July 1, 2013.

 

                        

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The C Word: Cancer

The word cancer inspires fear in most people. It is a disease that takes the lives of many people throughout the world. Although there has been a lot of progress made in the treatment of cancer, there is still a great deal that scientists do not understand. Additionally, there are some basic factors that make cancer a harder disease to cure than say a viral infection.

 To begin, why is cancer harder to cure than another type of disease? For instance, imagine that you are afflicted with a bacterial infection of some kind. To have this happen some type of bacteria would have had to have found entry into your body. Once inside, it would have reproduced itself, and sent its copies to do more damage and reproduce again. When we fight a bacterial infection with an antibiotic we are targeting the vulnerable parts of the bacterium life cycle, which fortunately are DIFFERENT than the life cycle of the human cell. In this way, we can kill the bacteria without harming the human cells around it.

However, with cancer cells, which are human cells that have lost the ability to control their growth and reproduction, anything that would kill them would also kill the healthy human cells as well. This is why cancer is such a formidable enemy. Currently, many cancer medications work by targeting the minute differences in the cancer cell vs. the healthy human cell in an attempt to destroy the cancer but not affect (very much) the healthy non-cancerous cells.

So what does cancer need to grow?  As previously explained, cancer cells are human cells that have lost the ability to control their growth and reproduction. Since they are similar in many ways to normal healthy cells, it stands to reason that they use the same kind of fuel a normal healthy cell uses, just more of it. Since cancer cells are growing out of control you can think of them like the lanky teenage boy that comes home after you just filled up the fridge. He is going to eat you out of house and home in no time flat. In the same way, cancer cells growing out of control require much more fuel, and also produce much more waste. Since their need is so great, the blood supply around cancer cells, which carry nutrients and oxygen and take away waste products, actually can begin to expand, creating more blood vessels in the area, in an attempt to continue supplying the cancer cells voracious need for more, more, more. 

With this information you can see why the idea of starving the cancer cells by restricting certain foods is not a viable option. Starving the cancer cells, which receive a higher percentage of the fuel a person consumes due to the extra blood supply reaching them, would in effect, starve the healthy cells too. Again, you can see why cancer is such a difficult foe to defeat. 

So how does nutrition play into the prevention of cancer?  Experts say that balance is the key. Eating a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes such as beans is beneficial in lowering your risk of cancer.  Maintaining a healthy weight is also of great benefit in lowering your cancer risk.  Participate in physical activity for at least 30 minutes a day, every day.  Limit your intake of processed foods, sugary drinks, foods high in fat, etc.  Avoid processed meats and limit weekly intake of red meats.  Eliminate alcohol or limit it to 2 drinks per day for men and 1 drink a day for women.  Limit excess sodium consumption by eliminating salty foods or processed foods which are naturally high in sodium. 

But what if you are diagnosed with cancer, how do you make sense of the foreign and scary ideas of surgery, radiation and chemotherapy?  For many people who have a cancer diagnosis, the first treatment option will be surgery.  The thought process is that by physically removing as much of the cancer cells, as possible, it will be easier to eliminate the remaining cancer cells using radiation and/or chemotherapy.  Scientists know that when surgery is an option starting with radiation and chemotherapy is not a good idea because it is a proven fact that only a percentage of cancer cells will be killed using those methods.  By removing as many cancer cells as possible first through surgery, the total cancer cell numbers are reduced. 

So why does chemotherapy only kill a certain percentage of cancer cells?  Well, a cell of any kind has a life cycle.  Over time a healthy cell will go through the different stages of its life cycle.  You can imagine its life cycle like spring, summer, winter, and fall, in that during the spring it is reproducing, and during the winter it is dormant.  Once it goes through all the stages it begins again at the beginning and cycles through again.  Chemotherapy targets cancer cells that are in certain stages of the life cycle, specifically the spring stage where they are reproducing, but not all cells (cancer cells included) are in the same stage at the same time.  So a medication that may kill the cancer cells that are in the spring stage will do nothing to kill the cancer cells that are in the winter stage, etc.  This is why chemotherapy is only able to kill a percentage of the cancer cells present. 

Cancer is a very scary diagnosis, but arming yourself with factual knowledge about the disease is the first step in becoming an advocate for yourself and your life.  Do not be afraid to ask questions, and to find out factual reputable information.   Look to those people who have spent their lives trying to combat cancer for your information and you won’t go wrong.

Amy Sharify

         Student Pharmacist, PharmD Candidate Class of 2014


 Sources: 

Johns Hopkins Medicine:  “Cancer Update.” Available at: http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/kimmel_cancer_center/news_events/featured/cancer_update_email_it_is_a_hoax.html  Accessed June 17th, 2013.


   Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

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  Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

                                         Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397

Cholesterol: What is it, and why should we care?

If television commercials can be believed, cholesterol is to be avoided at all costs.  Products, touting themselves to be low in cholesterol, are promoted widely with the promise that using them will improve your health and well-being.  But what exactly is cholesterol?  And why should anyone care about how much cholesterol they get in their diet?

Cholesterol is considered a lipid, which is a fancy way of saying, a fat molecule.  Our body uses cholesterol for a number of different things.  One very important use of cholesterol is in the maintenance of the membrane of our cells. 

The human body is made up of about 100 trillion cells.  Each one of those cells is enclosed in a membrane.  To understand what a human cell is like imagine a filled water balloon.   The rubber water balloon is like our cell membrane, in that it keeps everything contained inside. 

In the cell membrane, cholesterol works to make the membrane more rugged, and it helps the cell to keep its shape.  If the body has too little cholesterol, the cell would be very loose, and the important contents inside our cells would not be protected.

Another important use for cholesterol is in the production of certain hormones that are necessary for proper body function.   Some of these necessary hormones are the sex hormones estrogen and progesterone for women, and testosterone for men. 

Other important hormones that require cholesterol include cortisol, which helps maintain blood-sugar levels,  and aldosterone, that controls the retention of salt and water in the body.  Additionally, cholesterol is necessary to make bile, the fluid that is made by the liver and stored in the gallbladder.  Bile is used by the body to break down and better digest fat.   

While all of these bodily functions require cholesterol, the truth is that too much cholesterol can be harmful to the body.  When excess unused cholesterol remains in the bloodstream it can cause atherosclerosis, a condition whereby the cholesterol begins to deposit into the walls of the arteries.  These deposits are called plaques, and can cause the normally flexible and pliable vessels to become stiff and hardened.  Once this happens, the vessels are not able to respond to the changes in the pressure of blood flowing through them.  As a result, the increased pressure puts excessive force on the heart and heart disease can occur.  Also, there is the chance that a piece of the plaque can break off and block a blood vessel, possibly causing a heart attack or stroke.

To understand cholesterol, and the lab results that you may receive from a visit with your doctor, it is first important to know a little bit about how cholesterol is categorized.

When you receive lab results from a cholesterol screening you are most likely to see results for your total cholesterol, as well as, readings for the different subtypes of cholesterol such as: LDL, HDL, and Triglycerides.  The total cholesterol reading should be less than 200mg/dL, while readings between 200-239mg/dL are considered on the borderline of high, with readings above 240mg/dL being labeled as high.

LDL cholesterol readings, which can be remembered by thinking of it as the Lousy Cholesterol,  should optimally be below 70mg/dL for people who are considered “at high risk” for developing heart disease, while readings between 70-100mg/dL are best for those who are considered “at risk” for developing heart disease.  For those with no heart disease risk, LDL readings of 100-129mg/dL are preferred, while readings between 130-159mg/dL are considered on the borderline of high, with readings between 160-189mg/dL being considered high.  LDL readings which are 190mg/dL or above are considered to be very high.  For LDL cholesterol, higher numbers are considered more concerning, because this is the type of cholesterol usually involved in the creation of plaques.

  HDL cholesterol readings, which can be remembered by thinking of it as the Happy Cholesterol, should optimally be 60mg/dL or above, while readings between 50-59mg/dL for women and 40-49mg/dL for men are considered low, with readings below 50mg/dL for women and below 40mg/dL for men being considered very low.  For HDL cholesterol, lower numbers are considered more concerning because this is the type of cholesterol usually involved in transporting cholesterol away from the cells and back to the liver to be broken down.

Triglyceride readings should optimally be below 150mg/dL, while readings between 150-199mg/dL are considered on the borderline of high, with readings between 200-499mg/dL being considered high.  Triglyceride readings which are 500mg/dL or above are considered to be very high.  For triglycerides, higher numbers are considered more concerning.  Often triglycerides are associated with higher consumption of sweets and / or alcohol.

Fortunately, there are a number of ways to lower your risk of having poor cholesterol numbers and increased heart disease risks.  Eating a well balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables, participating in a program of regular aerobic exercise at least 3-5 times a week for a total duration of 150 minutes per week, and having your cholesterol checked by your doctor periodically will allow you to stay on top of your cholesterol health.

If you have already been diagnosed with dyslipidemia, the medical term for high cholesterol, do not be alarmed.  There are a large number of very effective medications that have been developed and used for several decades in the treatment of dyslipidemia.  As a result, a great deal is known about these medications and their effectiveness.  Some of the medications you may hear about to treat dyslipidemia include:

• Lipitor / Atorvastatin 10mg
• Lipitor / Atorvastatin 20mg
• Lipitor / Atorvastatin 40mg
• Lipitor / Atorvastatin 80mg
 
• Zocor / Simvastatin  5mg
• Zocor / Simvastatin 10mg
• Zocor / Simvastatin 20mg
• Zocor / Simvastatin 40mg
• Zocor / Simvastatin 80mg

• Crestor / Rousvastatin  5mg
• Crestor / Rousvastatin 10mg
• Crestor / Rousvastatin 20mg
• Crestor / Rousvastatin 40mg
• Crestor / Rousvastatin 80mg

• Zetia / Ezetimibe 10mg

• Tricor /  Fenofibrate / Antara  48mg
• Tricor /  Fenofibrate / Antara 154mg

• Lopid / Gemfibrozil 600mg

At your next visit, take the time to speak with your pharmacist or doctor about your cholesterol readings, and how to maintain optimal heart health.  Your heart will thank you!

 Amy Sharify

Student Pharmacist, PharmD Candidate Class of 2014

 Sources:

  1.  Discovery Fit & Health:  “How the Body Uses Cholesterol.” Available at: http://health.howstuffworks.com/diseases-conditions/cardiovascular/cholesterol/how-the-body-uses-cholesterol.htm  Accessed June 10, 2013.
  2. Science Blogs:  “How many cells are there in the human body.” Available at: http://scienceblogs.com/gregladen/2011/11/28/how-many-cells-are-there-in-th/ Accessed June 10, 2013.
  3. Livestrong:  “Why is Cholesterol considered a lipid.” Available at: http://www.livestrong.com/article/420740-why-is-cholesterol-considered-a-lipid/ Accessed June 10, 2013.
  4. Mayo Clinic:  “Cholesterol level: What Number Should You Aim For.” Available at: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/cholesterol-levels/CL00001 Accessed June 10, 2013.


Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders! 

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

                                                  Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397

Arthritis Aches and Pains

About 27 million Americans have osteoarthritis (OA), which is the most common type of arthritis in older people.1,2 Hands and weight-bearing joints such as knees, hips, and lower back often take the biggest hit.1,2 

            OA develops when the cushioning tissue in joints (cartilage) breaks down. Then bone may rub on bone, causing inflammation, stiffness, and pain. When arthritis is advanced, you may hear grinding noises or your joint may become enlarged.3

            What's the cause of osteoarthritis? It could be a combination of things. Joints can simply lose their cushioning with repeated wear and tear over time. And an injury can hasten this process. Extra pounds can also harm your joints. Sometimes OA runs in families, too.2

            You can learn better ways to move to protect your joints. Your doctor may even recommend physical or occupational therapy.1 If you need a cane, make sure a professional fits it for you. You can also buy a brace or knee sleeve or special devices to help open jars or do other challenging tasks.2,4 Don't overlook our store's resources.

            When pain flares up, it may be tempting to curl up in a ball and try to ignore it. That may be exactly the wrong thing to do. Although rest is important, moving may also help ease your pain. Some types of exercise can relieve stiffness and improve flexibility, while others promote strength or endurance. It may also help to switch to less weight-bearing activities, for example, swimming or cycling instead of running.4

            If you've put on some extra weight, do your best to lose it. Did you know that with every pound you gain, your knees must handle four more pounds and your hips six more pounds of pressure? And, obesity may add insult to injury. That's because body fat may release chemicals that also cause joint damage.1

            What else can you do? Heat or cold may help ease the pain of arthritis. And pain medications may be essential as well. Stop by, and I can help you sort out the differences between the types of medications used for arthritis. Some require prescriptions; others do not, such as aspirin, acetaminophen, and ibuprofen.2,4

            NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) can also be effective in treating symptoms. That's because, with arthritis, fluid builds up when the body tries to compensate for lost cartilage. The resulting inflammation can cause pain and warmth around the joint.3

            In more severe cases, you may need other types of treatment such as injections, splinting, or surgery such as a joint replacement.

            As for alternative remedies, recent studies show that acupuncture may bring relief for some people. The oral supplements glucosamine and chondroitin may help with moderate to severe osteoarthritis pain. But studies in the knee show these don't appear to improve cartilage changes.2 Whatever you do, steer clear of unproven supplements. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has warned the public about certain products marketed as "natural" dietary supplements for conditions such as arthritis. If you're not sure about a certain product, please ask me.5





Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders! 

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

                                         Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397



Nothing herein constitutes medical advice, diagnosis or treatment, or is a substitute for professional advice.  You should always seek the advice of your physician or other medical professional if you have questions or concerns about a medical condition.

 

Sources

1.                  Arthritis Foundation: "Arthritis." Available at: http://www.arthritis.org/conditions-treatments/disease-center/osteoarthritis/ Accessed March 6, 2013.

2.                  National Institute on Aging: "Arthritis Advice." Available at: http://www.nia.nih.gov/health/publication/arthritis-advice Accessed March 6, 2013.

3.                  AAOS: "Arthritis of the Hand." Available at: http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00224 Accessed March 6, 2013.

4.                  AAOS: "Arthritis of the Knee." Available at: http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00212

5.                  FDA: "Dangerous Supplement Now Sold as 'WOW'." Available at: http://www.fda.gov/ForConsumers/ConsumerUpdates/ucm333188.htm Accessed March 6, 2013.

Hypothyroidism Diagnosis and Treatment

What is Hypothyroidism?

Hypothyroidism is a condition in which your thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroxine, a hormone important in metabolism, energy, and development.  It is more common in women over the age of 60.  If untreated, hypothyroidism can cause numerous health problems, such as heart disease, obesity, joint pain, and infertility.

What are the symptoms of Hypothyroidism?

The symptoms of hypothyroidism will vary depending on the severity of the disease.  Some of the more common symptoms include:

  • Fatigue
  • Dry skin
  • Constipation
  • Depression
  • Joint pain
  • Muscle weakness
  • Increased sensitivity to cold temperatures
  • Puffy face
  • Weight gain

How is Hypothyroidism diagnosed?

Hypothyroidism is based on presence of symptoms and blood tests that measure TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) and thyroxine.  An elevated level of TSH and a low level of thyroxine would indicate hypothyroidism

What treatments are available for Hypothyroidism?

Medications are available to help control hypothyroidism.  These medications are synthetic thyroid hormones (levothyroxine) and will help to increase blood levels of thyroxine and decrease levels of TSH.  This medication is available generically in the following strengths:

  • Levothyroxine/Synthroid/ Levoxyl 25 mcg
  • Levothyroxine/Synthroid/ Levoxyl 50 mcg
  • Levothyroxine/Synthroid/ Levoxyl 75 mcg
  • Levothyroxine/Synthroid/ Levoxyl 88 mcg
  • Levothyroxine/Synthroid/ Levoxyl 100 mcg
  • Levothyroxine/Synthroid/ Levoxyl 112 mcg
  • Levothyroxine/Synthroid/ Levoxyl 125 mcg
  • Levothyroxine/Synthroid/ Levoxyl 137 mcg
  • Levothyroxine/Synthroid/ Levoxyl 150 mcg
  • Levothyroxine/Synthroid/ Levoxyl 175 mcg
  • Levothyroxine/Synthroid/ Levoxyl 200 mcg
  • Levothyroxine/Synthroid/ Levoxyl 300 mcg

Treatment is usually life-long and doses may change depending on symptoms and thyroid blood levels. 

What are the side-effects of levothyroxine?

If given in proper amounts, levothyroxine is generally very safe.  Some side-effects which indicate excess amounts of levothyroxine include:

  • Irregular heart beats
  • Insomnia
  • Increased appetite
  • Tremors/Shakiness

When on levothyroxine treatment, it is important to closely monitor for these side-effects and also get annual blood tests to ensure your dose of medication is appropriate.  For more information on hypothyroidism and its treatment, talk to your pharmacist today! 





Raj Mishra


Student Pharmacist, PharmD Candidate Class of 2013

 

 
Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders! 

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

                                                  Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397


References

Melatonin for Migraine Headaches

What is Melatonin?

Melatonin is a hormone produced in the brain.  Melatonin release is stimulated by darkness and suppressed by light.  It regulates many diverse body functions, most notably sleep patterns.  It is often used as a sleep aid.  Small amounts of Melatonin are found in foods such as meats, grains, fruits, and vegetables.  It can also be bought as a supplement. 

How is Melatonin supplied?

Melatonin is available as an over-the-counter supplement in the following strengths:

Melatonin 300 mcg tablet

Melatonin 1 mg tablet

Melatonin 3 mg tablet

Melatonin 5 mg tablet

Melatonin 10 mg tablet

Can Melatonin be used for Migraine treatment?

One recent study looked at using over-the-counter Melatonin for migraine headache prevention.  The study demonstrated that 3 mg of Melatonin was more effective than placebo and was similar to 25 mg of Amitriptyline for migraine headache prevention.  Melatonin was also better tolerated than Amitriptyline, with lower rates of daytime sleepiness and no weight gain. 

The study looked at 178 men and women who suffered from 2-8 migraine attacks per month.  Participants were then randomly assigned to receive 3 mg Melatonin, 25 mg Amitriptyline, or placebo for 3 months.  The mean reduction in headache frequency was 2.7 in the Melatonin group, 2.18 in the Amitriptyline group, and 1.18 in the placebo group. 

“Melatonin 3 mg was significantly better than placebo with no difference compared to Amitriptyline with respect to migraine prevention," principal investigator Mario Peres, MD, PhD, told delegates at the American Academy of Neurology 65th Meeting. 

What are the possible side-effects of Melatonin?

  • Daytime Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Irritability
  • Headache
  • Stomach aches

Should I consider taking Melatonin for migraine headache prevention?

This study showed that taking 3 mg of Melatonin at bedtime was as effective as prescription Amitriptyline and was also better tolerated.  Talk to your doctor about whether Melatonin for migraine headache prevention may be right for you. 

 


                                                             Raj Mishra

Student Pharmacist, PharmD Candidate Class of 2013

 

 
Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders! 

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

                                                  Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397


References

http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/781465

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/melatonin/NS_patient-melatonin

http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/tc/melatonin-overview

Insomnia Treatment and Prevention Tips

What is insomnia?

Insomnia is a common disorder where individuals have trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, or both.  With insomnia, you may awake feeling unrefreshed and with low energy.  If not properly treated, insomnia may result in decreased immune function, poor work or school performance, delayed reaction time, increased blood pressure, or psychiatric problems. 

What are the types of insomnia and their causes?

Insomnia may be acute (lasting up to several days) or chronic (continuous) in nature. Acute insomnia is often caused by a stressful situation or traumatic event.  Chronic insomnia, on the other hand, is often secondary to another medical condition.  Depression, anxiety, attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD), sleep apnea, substance abuse, or uncontrolled pain may all result in chronic insomnia.  Primary insomnia, in contrast, is its own disorder and not caused by another condition.  It may have a genetic link or result from ongoing emotional stress.  Medications may also cause insomnia due to their side-effects.  Some of these medications include antidepressants (fluoxetine, bupropion), theophylline, lamotrigine, felbamate, beta blockers, or beta agonists. 

How is insomnia treated?

Most healthcare providers agree that lifestyle changes are the first line treatment for insomnia. 

Lifestyle Tips:

  • Establish strict sleep schedule every day of the week
  • Avoid fluids before bedtime, especially caffeine or alcohol
  • Use the bed for sleep only, not for reading, eating, or watching tv
  • Exercise before dinner; a low point in energy will result a few hours post-exercise
  • Take a hot bath 2 hours before bedtime
  • Avoid naps during the day
  • Relaxation training and behavioral therapy is also available under the supervision of a trained professional

In addition to lifestyle changes, your doctor may also prescribe medication.  Common prescription sleep medications include zolpidem (Ambien), eszopiclone (Lunesta), zaleplon (Sonata) or ramelteon (Rozerem).  Some common side-effects of these medications include excessive drowsiness, impaired thinking, agitation, or unusual changes in behavior.  If you have underlining depression and trouble sleeping, your doctor may prescribe you an antidepressant with sedative effect, such as trazadone or mirtazapine.

Over-the-counter sleep aids contain antihistamines (e.g. Benadryl) which can make you drowsy.  However, these drugs may diminish the quality of your sleep and also cause dry mouth, constipation, urinary retention, blurry vision, and confusion.  These effects may be worse in the elderly. 



 Raj Mishra

Student Pharmacist, PharmD Candidate Class of 2013

 

 
Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders! 

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

                                                  Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397

References

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/insomnia/DS00187

http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/inso/

http://www.umm.edu/patiented/articles/what_behavioral_other_non-drug_treatments_insomnia_000027_7.htm

Preventing an Asthma Attack

What is Asthma?

Asthma is a chronic disease that affects your breathing.  It is very common among children.  Asthma is caused by inflammation of the airways and extra mucus production.  The condition can range in severity from person to person.  Asthma affects 22 million Americans; about 6 million of these are children under age 18.

What causes Asthma?

Although the exact cause is unclear, asthma is likely the result of a combination of genetic and environmental factors.  Environmental factors include cockroaches, dust, air pollution, and other environmental triggers.  In asthmatic patients, the bands of muscle that surround the airways tighten and make the airways narrow.  The lining of the airways become inflamed and produce excess mucus.  This results in difficulty breathing.

Is there a cure for Asthma?

While there is no definite cure, the symptoms of asthma can be controlled with proper management.  This requires continuous and close monitoring from your healthcare providers.

What is an Asthma Attack?

An asthma attack is when your body’s airways narrow and do not effectively transport oxygen.  This results in severe coughing, chest tightness, wheezing, and trouble breathing. 

What are the triggers that may cause an attack?

It is important to recognize what might trigger your asthma attacks.  Triggers vary from person to person and should be avoided.  Here are some of the more common triggers:

  • Dust
  • Air pollution
  • Cockroaches
  • Pet hair
  • Mold
  • Tobacco Smoke
  • Outdoor allergies

What medications may help prevent an attack?

There are two general classes of asthma medications, control medications and rescue medications.  Control medications are for long-term use and are taken on a daily basis.  These medications can be inhaled (e.g. Flovent, Advair) or taken orally (Singulair).  While there are a wide variety of medications available, here is a list of the common dosage forms of control medications:

Flovent (fluticasone): An inhaled corticosteroid commonly available in Diskus (inhaled dry powder) and HFA (inhaled aerosol) formulations:

  • Flovent Diskus
    • Flovent 50 mcg/actuation
    • Flovent 100 mcg/actuation
  • Flovent HFA
    • Flovent 44 mcg/actuation
    • Flovent 110 mcg/actuation
    • Flovent 220 mcg/actuation

Advair (fluticasone/salmeterol): A combination corticosteroid and long-acting bronchodilator also available in Diskus and HFA formulations:

  • Advair Diskus
    • Advair 100/50
    • Advair 250/50
    • Advair 500/50
  • Advair HFA
    • Advair 21mcg-45mcg/actuation
    • Advair 21mcg-115mcg/actuation
    • Advair 21mcg-230mcg/actuation

Singulair (Monteleukast): A leukotriene inhibitor available in tablet and packet formulations:

  • Singulair tablet
    • Singulair 10 mg tablet
    • Singulair 4 mg chewable tablet
    • Singulair 5 mg chewable tablet
  • Singulair packet
    • Singulair 4mg/packet

Rescue medications are short-acting and should only be used to treat the rapid symptoms of an asthma attack.  These medications may also be used before exercise if recommended by your doctor.  Here is a list of some of the more common dosage forms of rescue medications:

  • Albuterol (a short-acting bronchodilator)
    • Proair HFA 0.09 mg/actuation
    • Proventil HFA 0.09 mg/actuation
    • Ventolin HFA 0.09 mg/actuation


                                  

 Raj Mishra

Student Pharmacist, PharmD Candidate Class of 2013

 

 
Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders! 

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

                                                  Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397


References

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/asthma/DS00021/DSECTION=treatments-and-drugs

http://www.cdc.gov/asthma/faqs.htm

http://my.clevelandclinic.org/disorders/asthma/hic_medications_for_treating_asthma.aspx

8 Tips for Speeding Recovery from Childbirth

It's not unusual to feel really tired and a bit anxious or blue in the weeks after giving birth.1 With the sleepless nights, extra responsibilities, and physical changes—who wouldn't be on a bit of a roller coaster?  Remember: This won't last forever. Plus, you can ease your recovery by taking steps like these:

            1. Sleep when baby sleeps. Sneak a quick nap when you can. Shut the blinds and silence your phone, television, and all other electronic devices.

            2. Nix household chores. Right now, your main job is to take good care of yourself and your baby. No one really cares about those lurking dust bunnies. If it really bothers you and your budget allows, then hire some temporary help. Also, remember to share parenting tasks such as diaper changes and feedings when possible.

            3. Limit visitors. But ask any guests to help out. If not now, when? Swallow your pride and ask for a hand with the dishes, laundry, or shopping. Or take advantage of a visitor to watch your baby while you nap.

            4. Eat healthy. Healthy food choices can give you more energy. But planning and cooking meals may be a challenge right now. Ask friends and family to help with this. Don't forget to drink at least 8 to 10 glasses of water a day. But avoid caffeine and sugary drinks.2

            5. Be active—within limits. Exercise can also increase your energy and reduce constipation.  Get clearance from your doctor before you:

  • Take the stairs or lift objects.
  • Drive, although this is usually okay when you can wear a seat belt comfortably and are able to make sudden movements.
  • Hit the gym or become really active.
  • Have sex. Your doctor may ask you to wait several weeks after birth.2

            6. Get emotional support. You might be surprised by feeling irritable, sad, or anxious right now. But many new moms experience a wide range of feelings in the days following delivery. Part of this is related to changing hormones or fatigue and part of it is simply a response to a major life transition. These baby blues will subside soon.

            If you have extreme feelings that really last, seek professional help, especially if you have a history of depression. You may be experiencing postpartum depression. Up to one in seven new moms go through this—but no one should go through it alone. Some women need therapy or medication.3

            7. Set aside time to relax. Chances are no one will put this on the calendar for you, so you'll need to do it for yourself. Listen to some relaxing music, read a book, or meditate. Even just a few minutes can make a difference. And try to carve out a few minutes each day to touch base with your partner or husband.2

            8. Seek out other new moms. There's nothing like sharing tips and support with people who are going through similar life changes. Maybe you can even start up an informal support group in your neighborhood or among your friends.2

            Your doctor and I are good resources for answering your questions. Some say it takes a village to raise a child—just think of us as your well-informed neighbors.

Nothing herein constitutes medical advice, diagnosis or treatment, or is a substitute for professional advice.  You should always seek the advice of your physician or other medical professional if you have questions or concerns about a medical condition.



Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders!

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

Phone (312) 624 ~ 939


Sources

  1. March of Dimes: "Your body after baby." Available at: www.marchofdimes.com/pregnancy/afterbaby_fatigue.html Accessed March 6, 2013.
  2. Nemours Foundation: "Recovering From Delivery." Available at: kidshealth.org/parent/pregnancy_center/childbirth/recovering_delivery.html?tracking=P_RelatedArticle Accessed March 6, 2013.
  3. Wisner K, et al. JAMA Psychiatry. 2013;()1–9. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2013.87. Available at: archpsyc.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=1666651 Accessed March 24, 2013.


Type 2 Diabetes: 6 Tips for Newly Diagnosed

Not me. Those may be the first words that come to mind if you're diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. It isn't news anyone wants to hear. It's true—you will need to make some changes, but your life sure isn't over. And, with so many diabetes resources online and in your community, you don't have to go it alone.

          First, it may help to get a little clearer about what diabetes is. Your body needs insulin to break down sugar (glucose) into energy. If you have type 2 diabetes, your body either doesn't have enough insulin or doesn't use it well. So glucose stays in your blood, causing problems.1

          There isn't a cure for type 2 diabetes. But you can learn to manage it well. You can keep your blood glucose in a safe range by balancing the food you eat with exercise—and medicine, if your doctor prescribes it. Be sure to make all your doctor appointments. You may also need to learn how to check your blood glucose.2

          Here are six tips to get you started taking better care of yourself.

Get clear about the roles of your diabetes care team
: This may include your doctor, nurse, dietitian, diabetes educator, and me, of course—your pharmacist.1 You can also ask your doctor to refer you to a diabetes education program.2 

Learn about healthy eating
. Diabetes diets aren't as restrictive as they once were. The key thing is to eat a variety of healthy foods—not too much and not too much of one type of food. Don't skip meals, and space your meals throughout the day.3 

Try the "Plate Method" for planning your meals
. Divide your plate in half, and then divide one side in half again. Fill the largest section with non-starchy vegetables. In one small section, put starchy foods such as whole-grain breads, rice, potatoes, or cereal. In the other small section, put meat or meat substitutes. Add eight ounces of nonfat or low-fat milk and a piece of fruit.4

Look for ways to be active throughout the day
. Need to make phone calls? Get up and move around while talking. Taking the bus? Get off a stop early and walk. Ask your doctor how much aerobic activity you need daily. This can help your insulin work better. If you need to lose weight, try for more than 30 minutes a day of aerobic activity.5 Dropping just 10 or 15 pounds makes a big difference.6 

Has your doctor prescribed medication to keep your blood glucose in a healthy range?
If so, get clear about how many to take and how often. Also, learn how to prevent side effects and what to do if you have any. 7 

Learn how to check your blood glucose at home if your doctor asks you to.
Your doctor or diabetes educator can help you select a meter that works well for you and is covered by your insurance.8

          Remember: I'm part of your diabetes care team. You can think of me as your "go-to" person for answering any questions you have about your diabetes medications.

          You can do this!  Nothing herein constitutes medical advice, diagnosis or treatment, or is a substitute for professional advice.  You should always seek the advice of your physician or other medical professional if you have questions or concerns about a medical condition.

 

 


Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders! 

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397

Sources

"Getting Started with Diabetes." ADA. Available at: http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/recently-diagnosed/where-do-i-begin/getting-started-with-diabetes.html Accessed January 28, 2013.

"Taking Care of Your Diabetes." ADA. Available at:  http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/recently-diagnosed/where-do-i-begin/taking-care-of-your-diabetes.html Accessed January 28, 2013.

"Choosing What, How Much, and When to Eat." ADA. Available at: http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/recently-diagnosed/where-do-i-begin/choosing-what-to-eat.html Accessed January 28, 2013.

"Create Your Plate." ADA. Available at: http://www.diabetes.org/food-and-fitness/food/planning-meals/create-your-plate/?loc=ContentPage-lwt2d-public-choosingwhattoeat Accessed January 28, 2013.

"Aerobic Activity." ADA. Available at: http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/recently-diagnosed/where-do-i-begin/aerobic-activity.html?loc=ContentPage-wheredoibegin-public-aerobic Accessed January 28, 2013.

"Weight Loss." ADA. Available at: http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/recently-diagnosed/where-do-i-begin/weight-loss.html Accessed January 28, 2013.

"Medicines." ADA. Available at: http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/recently-diagnosed/where-do-i-begin/medicines.html Accessed January 28, 2013.

"Checking Blood Glucose." ADA. Available at: http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/recently-diagnosed/where-do-i-begin/checking-blood-glucose.html Accessed January 28, 2013.

The Importance of Exercise

Patients come into the pharmacy all the time picking up medications for hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, and type II diabetes. Sometimes these same patients ask questions about what they can do to lower their dose and eventually get off of their current medications. While there are times when this may not be possible due to specific medical conditions, there are other times when it may be a possibility.

No matter what the age of the patient or what type of medications they are on, exercise should be the backbone of their course of therapy. Why is that??

Exercise is a way to build our bodies to be stronger and more fit in order to fight off threats of disease, infection, and advanced age. Dr. Jonny Bowden of Huffington Post recently wrote an article about fitness in the American population and stated, “I think exercise is the greatest anti-aging activity on the planet. And the data are clear: Exercise can help with depression, lower the risk for heart disease and cancer, and reduce the risk and complications of diabetes. It can even grow new brain cells.” While you may not know who Dr. Jonny Bowden is, the main point to understand is that exercise is and has been an area of science where a significant amount of research has taken place. So while exercise may not seem like a great thing to do at the end of the day after work or after taking care of the family, it can significantly influence a person’s mood, physical appearance, and energy level.

Often times, patients fail to exercise due to barriers that seem impossible to overcome but may simply require a re-organization of scheduling. Another common reason why people fail to exercise is due to access to “the right equipment” or not belonging to a formal fitness club. This article is to provide you with options and ways to exercise that require little or no equipment and are suitable for children, adults, and seniors.

The American Heart Association currently recommends that patients of all age groups exercise at least 150 minutes per week at a moderate intensity or 75 minutes per week at a vigorous level of intensity. Many people will break this down into 30 minutes of exercise at least 5 days weekly. Even if the patient can not handle 30 minutes at once, breaking the routine into 2 or 3 segments of 10-15 minutes is also acceptable.

What we hope to provide you are several definitions and guidelines of possible exercise routines for the various age ranges of patients: children and adults.

1. The guidelines of Physical Activity from the American Heart Association define physical activity as anything that makes you move your body and burn calories, such as climbing stairs or playing sports. Aerobic exercises such as walking, jogging, swimming, or biking benefit your heart. Strength and stretching exercises are best for overall stamina and flexibility.

2. Walking has long been considered one of the best exercises anyone can do for themselves and for the longevity of their health. Nearly all age groups can make themselves a part of a good walking program.

3. 30 minute rule: Above we stated that 30 minutes of exercise is highly recommended but even that is hard for some patients to fit into their schedule. At the end of the day it is important to understand that some exercise is better than no exercise. Do what you can and try to keep a consistent schedule.

4. Children: Exercise should consist of three main categories for children

          a. Aerobic Activity: Run, walk, jog

          b. Muscle Strengthening: Gymnastics, push-ups, organized athletic activity

          c. Bone Strengthening: Jumping rope, run

5. Adults: Mix both aerobic and muscle strengthening activities to fulfill the 150 minute weekly time allotment.

          a. Aerobic examples: Walk fast, complete water aerobics, ride bike (with hills), play tennis, push a lawnmower, run, swim laps, play basketball

          b. Muscle-strengthening examples: Lift weights, work with resistance bands, heavy gardening, yoga, push-ups

Exercising can be a fun activity and should be a part of everyone’s routine (even if it takes time to create it). Medication doses can be decreased and even eliminated from therapy regimens and one way to help any patient get there is through exercise.

Neil Schultz

 Student Pharmacist, PharmD Candidate 2013

 

 
Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders! 

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397

 

  http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/GettingHealthy/PhysicalActivity/StartWalking/American-Heart-Association-Guidelines_UCM_307976_Article.jsp

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-jonny-bowden/exercise-benefits_b_1777630.html

http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/guidelines/adults.html

The American Heart Association Physical Activity Guidelines 2012

 

Shining Light on Vitamin D

If you feel like you have been hearing more and more about the benefits of vitamin D in the news over the past few years, you’re not alone. The benefits of vitamin D in bone health are well-established, but new reports of its use in everything from cancer to hepatitis C have surfaced as well.  The method by which these benefits occur is still not well understood, but an increasing number of people are turning to vitamin D supplementation in the quest to cure what ails them.

 So what is vitamin D, how much do you need, where can you get it, and how could it help you?

 Vitamin D is a steroid-like compound that is considered both a nutrient and a hormone. It helps the body absorb calcium and aids in regulating the amount of calcium and phosphorus in the bloodstream.  Because your body uses calcium and phosphorus to form bones, adequate levels of these minerals in the body is essential to bone health in both children and adults. As a result, vitamin D deficiency can lead to osteoporosis in adults and rickets in children. Recent studies estimate that approximately 1 billion people worldwide have inadequate levels of vitamin D in their blood (usually defined as <30 ng/mL). Current guidelines recommend that those under one year of age obtain 400 International Units (IU) per day, those ages 1-70 obtain 600 IU, and those over 70 years old obtain 800 IU per day.

 Where is the best place to get vitamin D? Unfortunately, very few foods naturally contain vitamin D. Fatty fish (such as salmon and tuna) and eggs are good sources, and some foods such as dairy products and breakfast cereals have been fortified with vitamin D to make the recommended daily amounts easier to obtain. By far the easiest way to get an adequate dose, however, is simply to step outside on a sunny day. Your body naturally makes vitamin D via synthesis in skin that is exposed to sunlight. If you’ve heard vitamin D referred to as the “sunshine vitamin”, this is why. As little as 10 minutes of sunlight exposure per day is generally considered to be adequate enough to prevent deficiencies. Other factors can influence how efficiently this process occurs, however, with those who are older, overweight, or those with a darker skin tone likely needing more exposure or alternative vitamin D sources to obtain adequate daily amounts. Additionally, the use of sunscreen impairs our ability to produce vitamin D in the skin by more than 90 percent.

 It can be difficult to sort out fact from fiction when reading headlines and overhearing anecdotes related to the benefits of vitamin D, but those at risk for the following conditions may have reason to inquire further about what vitamin D could do for them:

 Heart Disease: Observational studies have suggested that those with low vitamin D levels are twice as likely to have a heart attack, and are also at an increased risk of stroke, heart failure, and sudden cardiac death.

 Cancer: Numerous studies have suggested an association between low vitamin D levels and an increased risk of cancer, particularly colon cancer.

 Multiple Sclerosis (MS): One study found that white men and women who had the highest levels of vitamin D had a 62% lower risk of developing MS than those with the lowest vitamin D levels. MS also appears to be much more prevalent far north and south of the equator where there is less sunlight than near the equator.

 Type 1 Diabetes: A large observational study showed that children who were supplemented with vitamin D during their infancy had a 90% lower risk of developing type 1 diabetes than those who were not supplemented

 The Flu: One randomized, controlled trial in Japanese school children showed that those receiving 1200 IU of vitamin D daily had a 40% lower incidence of contracting influenza Type A than those receiving placebo.

 While the research to determine the concrete benefits of vitamin D is still ongoing, there appears to be great promise. If you are concerned about whether or not you are getting enough vitamin D, consult your physician to see if you should be tested for a deficiency and stop by Halsted Health Mart Pharmacy to learn about the supplementation options we have to offer.

Patrick Zueger

Student Pharmacist, PharmD Candidate 2013




Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders!

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397


http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/vitamin-d/NS_patient-vitamind

http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminD-HealthProfessional/

http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/vitamin-d/

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/002405.htm


Better Health Through Better Sleep

Getting a good night’s sleep may be one of the most important, and most overlooked, components of optimal health.  It is during sleep that the body “rejuvenates” itself, and with a lack of sleep, nearly every organ system is adversely affected.  Sleep deprivation weakens our immune system, impairs memory and physical performance, and can even harm those around us. Studies have shown that sleep-deprived drivers are just as, or even more, dangerous than those driving while intoxicated.  Additionally, extended sleep deprivation can lead to mood swings and even hallucinations.  

Most adults need 7-8 hours of sleep per night to function optimally, with certain populations such as young children and pregnant women needing significantly more. Currently, over 60 million Americans suffer from chronic or intermittent sleeping problems, accounting for medical costs of about $16 billion annually. The causes of sleep disorders vary, ranging from asthma to mental disorders to poor sleep hygiene. The prevalence of sleep disorders also appears to increase with age, with about half of those over 65 frequently experience sleeping difficulties.

It may not always be possible to control every factor in your life that disrupts sleep, but there are steps you can take to promote a restful  and restorative night’s sleep. If you find yourself consistently irritable, worn out, and nodding off during the day, you may benefit by trying one or more of the following:

Create a sleeping schedule:  Try to go to bed at the same time every night and wake up at the same time every morning. Even if you only sleep in on the weekends, it can be enough to disrupt your sleep-wake cycle during the week.

Avoid caffeine and alcohol:  Food and drinks such as coffee, black and green tea, cola, and chocolate contain caffeine, which can take up to 8 hours to fully wear off and keep you up at night. Alcohol, which may initially help you fall asleep, can cause middle of the night wakening, impairment in breathing, and a decrease in the amount of time the body is in a deep, restorative sleep state.

Avoid lying awake in bed: Insomnia can be worsened by the anxiety that can result from being unable to fall asleep. If you find yourself unable to fall asleep, get up and do something else until you become tired, such as read or listen to soft music.

Exercise: Twenty to 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise daily can help you sleep. However, try not to exercise within a few hours of going to bed as this can actually exacerbate sleeping problems and make it more difficult to fall asleep.

Create sleeping rituals and an environment that promotes sleep:  By doing the same things each night before bed, your body will begin to associate those activities with sleep and may make it easier for you to get a full night’s rest. Avoid loud noises, bright lights, and temperature extremes in the time before bed and area where you plan to sleep. Minimize use of electronic devices such as TV’s, computers, and cell phones as well. There is evidence that too much exposure to the blue light from such devices suppresses production of melatonin, a hormone that is crucial in maintaining your body’s sleep-wake cycle.

See a healthcare professional:  If you have good sleep hygiene habits and still have difficulty falling asleep at night or staying awake during the day, a sleeping disorder may be the culprit. Make an appointment with your physician or visit your local pharmacist for an assessment and to learn about treatment strategies for the sleep disorder that may be affecting you.


Patrick Zueger

Student Pharmacist, PharmD Candidate 2013



Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders! 

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397


http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/brain_basics/understanding_sleep.htm

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/sleep/HQ01387

http://www.clevelandclinicwellness.com/mind/BetterSleep/Pages/introduction.aspx

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/magazine/issues/summer12/articles/summer12pg16.html

Yuck!!! This medication tastes bad!!

Proper ways to successfully administer medication to children


 A frazzled mother entered the pharmacy a few weeks ago trying to remedy a stressful situation. At home her 2 year old was recently diagnosed with pneumonia and just initiated her course of antibiotics. The mother was worried because she left the medication on her kitchen counter for overnight, when it was supposed to remain refrigerated. After we remedied her situation and obtained a new prescription from her on-call pediatrician, we were tasked with another problem. “How can I get my child to take this medication, she has not taken the full dose yet.”


 Parents across the country come to pharmacists on a consistent basis asking for tips and suggestions to mask the taste of “icky” medication. We would like to offer some tips and expertise as to ensuring all children take their therapies as directed.


  1.    Take as directed. Please remember to give medications as instructed from the physician or the medication bottle. It is important to understand how to measure the correct dose and when to give it. Sometimes physicians and pharmacists have different directions so it is imperative to ensure all health professionals are aware of information the physician has provided.

2.    Ask the pharmacist for an accurate administration device. All pharmacies keep an inventory of accurate oral syringes, spoons, and administration tools to ensure precise measurement for children (and even adults). Using spoons or measuring cups from home have proven to waste medication and be inconsistent.

3.    Understand the specifics. Most pediatric formulations require special directions or storage instructions depending on the type and class of medication. Remember to always ask the pharmacist how to store your child’s medication at home.

4.    Flavoring is key. The most significant administration technique any parent can provide their child is not only correct dosage and timing, but also the completion of the course of therapy. All large chain and independent pharmacies have ways to flavor your child’s medication that will aid in completion of therapy. FlavorRx is the largest provider of flavoring vehicles for all any type of liquid medication; ask your pharmacist for more information

5.    Do not be afraid, just ask. Asking questions is not a bad thing when it comes to your child’s health; remember that the pharmacist or other allied health professionals are there to help you understand your medication needs. Many parents fail to ask simple questions and because of it mistakes occur. Information like allergies, doses, and administration are key and will provide parents piece of mind.


 Medication Administration Tools complements of Pfizer Inc

  •  Dosage cups are for children who can drink from a cup without spilling. Look closely at the numbers on the side; measure out the liquid with the cup at eye level on a flat surface.

  •  Cylindrical dosing spoons are for children who can drink from a cup but are still prone to spill. These devices look like a wide straw with a little spoon at the top. Measure the liquid in the spoon at eye level, and have the child sip the medicine from the spoon. 

  •  Droppers are for children who can't drink from a cup. Put the medicine into the dropper and measure at eye level; give to the child quickly before the medicine drips out.

  •  Syringes are another option for children who can't drink from a cup, allowing you to squirt the medicine into the back of the child's mouth. If a syringe comes with a cap to keep medicine from leaking out, remove and discard the cap (a choking hazard) before giving the medicine. For some medicines, a syringe may be filled with the right dose and left, capped, for a caregiver to give to your child later. (Tell the caregiver to remove the cap first and discard it.) Use only clean syringes specially made for giving medicines to children. Be sure to store the filled syringe at the right temperature and never leave it where children or pets may get it.


 The mother from the beginning of this post probably wished she understood or asked the pharmacist about the specific storage instructions or flavoring possibilities before she left the pharmacy (the first time). However, after the second course of therapy was dispensed (with enhanced flavoring) the child completed her antibiotics and successfully overcame pneumonia.


 The purpose of this post is to understand that questions are important, especially when it comes to the health of children. While many of these tips seem to be trivial, they are all based on experiences that happen in pharmacies throughout the country on a daily basis. Administering medications are no different that conducting any other task, it requires the correct tools, plan, and execution to be successful.


 Neil Schultz

 Student Pharmacist, PharmD Candidate 2013


                                                                         


Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders! 

Halsted HealthMart
 Pharmacy
Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397

 

 http://flavorx.com/2013/01/14/for-children-with-the-flu-a-little-flavor-goes-a-long-way/

 http://baystatehealth.com/Baystate/Main+Nav/About+Us/Newsroom/Baystate+He ath+News

/Pediatrician+cautions+against+antibiotic+overuse

 Wicker AM and Labruzzo BA. Recommendations for the Use of OTC Cough and Cold Medications in Children. US Pharmacist. 2009;34(3):33-36. 

 http://www.pfizer.com/files/health/medicine_safety/4-5_Med_Safety_for_Children.pdf

 

Get A Flu Shot!!

Why should you get the Flu Shot…To protect those around you.


Working at a pharmacy is an experience that exposes not only the workers, but also the customers and visitors to a variety of airborne diseases, specifically the seasonal influenza bug. We all hear about the importance of getting a Flu Shot starting each year toward the end of summer and beginning of Fall. While the commercials, signs, and public awareness grows each year, many still do not feel the need to follow through with an immunization. However, what most individuals fail to understand that while much of the public awareness occurs throughout the Fall months, according to the Center of Disease Control (CDC), the influenza season peak is during January and February.


The 2012-2013 flu season has been what some public citizens would consider a late blooming one.  Most patrons of pharmacies believe that they do not need a flu shot or that once January hits, the probability of becoming infected are minimal. This season is a prime example as to why both of these commonly accepted theories are false. Currently, the Flu season is just starting to pick-up with 47 states reporting widespread infection and most recently, some areas naming public health states of emergencies (Boston). 


Why should an individual get a Flu Shot?


1.    Influenza is a seasonal virus that changes on a yearly basis; whether received in the past, an annual flu shot is necessary to remain protected.


2.    It’s never too late to protect yourself and those around you. Whether given in September or January, getting a flu shot will help protect you.


3.    Herd Immunity: theory in which proves that the greater percentage of individuals who obtain protection from a disease through vaccination, the small percentage of those who are not protected will become infected.


-      REMEMBER…If you are not doing it for yourself, DO it for the person next to you!!


 


4.  Getting a flu shot will NOT contract you with the disease; it is NOTpossible. A flu shot is an inactive (dead) form of the virus. 


5. It’s free…Most insurance plans pay for beneficiaries to get the vaccination; if no insurance many large chain pharmacies and medical clinics offer free vaccinations for anyone who asks.

-      Free flu shot locations: http://www.cityofchicago.org/city/en/depts/cdph/iframe/scc_app.html


Remember influenza is a bug that can affect anyone in the population from newborns to adults, it is important to remain protected. If you do not do it for yourself because you feel it is not necessary, do it for the children, pregnant mothers, or seniors in your life. January and February are the peak months of the current flu season, NOW is the best time to get a flu shot.


 Neil Schultz

 Student Pharmacist, PharmD Candidate 2013





Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders! 

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397


 

References

http://www.flu.gov/about_the_flu/current_flu/index.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/01/12/flu-season-2013_n_2465036.html

http://www.wjla.com/articles/2013/01/flu-season-boston-s-mayor-declares-public-health-emergency-83904.html

John TJ, Samuel R (2000). "Herd immunity and herd effect: new insights and definitions". Eur. J. Epidemiol. 16 (7): 601–6. doi:10.1023/A:1007626510002. PMID 11078115.

http://news.menshealth.com/flu-shot-myths/2013/01/11/

Pneumococcal Vaccination: What is It, Who Should Get It, and Why?

Pneumococcal infections can cause pneumonia (infection of the lungs), bacteremia (infection of the blood), and meningitis (infection of the covering of the brain).  The CDC estimates that there are fifty thousand deaths and 1.1 million hospitalizations annually from pneumonia in the United States, approximately half of which can be prevented by the pneumonia vaccine.  It is a preventable and treatable disease which is why the pneumonia vaccination is an important immunization to keep up to date.

There are several different types of pneumonia which all present with similar symptoms, but have different treatments: community-acquired pneumonia, healthcare-associated pneumonia, hospital-acquired pneumonia, and ventilator-associated pneumonia. 

Symptoms

Common Symptoms

Cough

 Fever

Chills

Shortness of breath

Atypical Symptoms

 Confusion

Profuse sweating

 Headache

 Loss of appetite

 Sharp chest pain

Prevention

 Hand Washing

 Coughing/sneezing into a tissue or elbow/sleeve

 Decrease cigarette smoke exposure

Treat/prevent chronic conditions like diabetes and HIV/AIDS

Pneumococcal Vaccination

Vaccination

There are two types of pneumococcal vaccines: the PCV13, which is the conjugate vaccine, and the PPSV23, the polysaccharide vaccine.  Infants are given the PCV13 in a series of 4 doses as a routine childhood immunization.  Children ages 2 through 5 and 6 through 18 are given additional doses in special circumstances.  Speak to a healthcare provider to find out if your child is up to date.

A single additional dose is recommended for those aged 65 and older who got their first dose when they were under 65 (if 5 or more years have passed since that dose).  A single additional dose is also recommended in adults 19 years of age and older if they have certain medical conditions such as: cerebrospinal fluid leaks, cochlear implants, sickle cell disease, asplenia, immunodeficiencies, chronic renal failure, nephritic syndrome, leukemia, Hodgkin disease, long-term immunosuppressive therapy, solid organ transplant, or multiple myeloma.



Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders!

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397

 

References

http://www.cdc.gov/Features/Pneumonia/

http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vpd-vac/pneumo/in-short-both.htm

http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/vis/downloads/vis-pcv.pdf

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/pneumonia/DS00135

A Review of Infertility

Infertility is defined as one year of unprotected coitus without conception.  It is estimated that about 10-20% of American couples seek treatment for infertility issues. There is an equal ratio between male and female for fertility abnormalities.  For males, it can be due to several reasons such as: low sperm count, lack of sperm motility, blocked passage ways, or physical abnormalities that result in decreased sperm production.  In females, there is a 40% rate of tubal blockage and a 40% rate for the failure to ovulate.  The other 10% is due to various uncommon conditions.

When couples first seek treatment, the goal is to determine the cause. Depending on the underlying issue and how far along the infertility issue has been going on, the first treatment to be recommended will always be non-medicinal.  These methods vary from male to female:

Males:

 Avoid alcohol

 Avoid thermal exposure

 Recommend wearing loose fitting pants/underwear


Females:

 Avoid excess dieting/weight loss

 Avoid excess exercise

 Eat a well-balanced diet


Males & Females:

 Avoid recreational drugs

 Avoid tobacco smoke

 Avoid caffeine

 Avoid vaginal lubricants

 Avoid certain medications

Lifestyle changes to increase the chances of conception are a great route for couples where initial tests show no signs of infertility abnormalities.  There are also many fertility awareness methods for a couple to incorporate into their attempts for a successful conception.

                            Ovulation Prediction Kits

o   These kits predict when a female is about to ovulate which signifies the time for the highest chance of conception.

 Calendar Method

o   This method is suitable only for women that have regular menses.  The first days of menses are recorded on a calendar and ovulation days can be calculated.  Ovulation occurs 14 days prior to the first day of menses.

 Basal Body Temperature

o   Body temperatures are recorded daily (by a thermometer that measures 1/100 degree) morning, before bed, and before eating/drinking.  A body temperature decrease followed by a rise of about 1 degree signifies the start of ovulation.

If non-medicinal methods fail and if you are one of the 10-20% of American couples having trouble with conception, talk to a healthcare professional to determine what the underlying cause is and the best method for a successful outcome. 


Peace of Mind with Every Prescription

ALWAYS FREE Delivery from Our Door to Yours on ALL Orders!

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy

Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397

 

 

References

http://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/infertility/

http://www.womenshealth.gov/pregnancy/before-you-get-pregnant/trying-to-conceive.cfm

http://www.mayoclinic.org/infertility/

http://www.womenshealth.gov/mens-health/sexual-health-for-men/male-infertility.cfm

Welcome!


1460 North Halsted Street
Suite 101, Chicago, IL 60642

Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397
Fax (312) 624 ~ 8826
Email us at:
 info(at)halstedpharmacy(dot com)
 
Mon-Fri: 9:00AM~6:30PM
Sat: 9:00AM~3:00PM
(Central Time Zone)


Welcome and thank you for visiting Halsted HealthMart Pharmacys online newsletter website. It is our goal to provide a wealth of both prescription and non-prescription drug news and information in a conversational style that you can use and is easy to understand. 

We welcome and are interested in your personal stories, experiences and feedback on our publication as well so feel free to participate by leaving your comments in the comment section at the end of any article.  If in fact along the way, you decide to make us your pharmacy of choice, we would be delighted to help you manage
your drug needs!



HealthMart Pharmacies are independent, locally-owned community pharmacies.  Yes, the local, independent pharmacy still exists and is growing in numbers across the country every day. 

At Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy  we offer custom flavoring for those less than desirable tasting liquids and compounding of many medications (for you, your family and your pets) not commercially available by drug manufacturers.  We also keep in stock expensive and difficult to find medications and injectable drugs you may have struggled to locate locally before.

Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy accepts most all prescription drug insurance plans, and as an insured member, you pay the same co-pay (or less at our store) than you would at other big-box national
chain pharmacy stores.

 

We guarantee the lowest drug prices and pride ourselves on maintaining a current and comprehensive library of co-pay assistance card programs (an example pictured above) that we will automatically enroll you in to instantly save you MORE money on your out-of-pocket
prescription co-pays!

If you are uninsured and paying cash, no need to shop around for the lowest price, you'll find
it with us!



Don't live anywhere near our Chicago location?  No problem at all! We ALWAYS offer FREE next-day Fed Ex shipping NATIONWIDE and delivery to your door (or a door of choice) always at no additional charge to you! 

If you do live near us, fantastic, pay us a visit and come in to experience the fastest and friendliest service you have ever had at a pharmacy!  Or take advantage of our always FREE SAME-DAY delivery anywhere in the city of Chicago Monday through Saturday.



My name is Renny Kurup and I am a Doctor of Pharmacy and all of our Pharmacy Technicians are Certified and we look forward to serving you and making your management of medications as simple and easy as possible.

For more information, contact us directly and we will be happy to assist you and answer any questions you may have.  Thank you and best wishes from your Halsted HealthMart Pharmacy team!

Phone (312) 624 ~ 9397

 



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