Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Expired Medications: Drugs past the "best before date" may lose potency, but how soon?

Medications past best before date may lose potency, but how soon? | Canadian Healthcare Network - Pharmacists

Excerpt of key points from the article:

"Suggesting it’s better to be safe than sorry, Emberley [Phil Emberley, director of pharmacy innovation at the Canadian Pharmacists Association] advises consumers to cull any out-of-date drugs from their medicine cabinets and take them to a pharmacy to be destroyed.
Dr. David Juurlink, head of clinical pharmacology and toxicology at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto, said concerns about diminished potency depends on the drug and how much time has elapsed since the best-before date.
“For most drugs, the passage of a short amount of time after the expiry date is really of little clinical consequence,” he said. “In general, something that’s six to 12 months past the expiry date, with rare exceptions, is not going to be a problem at all. They’re not going to be dangerous.”

A 2012 study of a small number of drugs—some of them bottled or packaged 40 years earlier—found that active ingredients did degrade over time, but some more than others. For instance, researchers found ASA pills dropped in strength from 200 milligrams to two milligrams, while codeine barely lost any of its chemical constituents.

“It’s not like milk, and it’s not as though something magical happened on the expiry date and the drug loses all of its potency,” Juurlink said. “With most, but not all, it’s probably safe to take drugs that have expired recently. But the more time that has elapsed from the expiry date, the less advisable it becomes.”

Link to full article: click here


Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Opioid Tapering Guidelines

McMaster University > Michael G. DeGroote National Pain Centre > Canadian Guideline for Opioid Use for Pain — Appendix B-12: Opioid Tapering:

"Rate of the Taper
The rate of the taper can vary from 10% of the total daily dose every day, to 10% of the total daily dose every 1–2 weeks.

  • Slower tapers are recommended for patients who are anxious about tapering, may be psychologically dependent on opioids, have co-morbid cardio-respiratory conditions, or express a preference for a slow taper. 
  • Once one-third of the original dose is reached, slow the taper to one-half or less of the previous rate.
  • Hold [or increase] the dose when appropriate: 
  • The dose should be held or increased if the patient experiences severe withdrawal symptoms, a significant worsening of pain or mood, or reduced function during the taper."
Click here for link to the article


eLearning: Lancet Oncology Podcasts

Lancet Oncology produces podcasts - the frequency looks to be about every 2 to 4 weeks.

Click here for the link and learn while you're on the go.

Please share in the comments section below any oncology or palliative related podcasts that you find helpful or Tweet me @OncoPRN.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

About Onco-PRN

Welcome and thanks for visiting Onco-P.R.N. - The oncology website with a focus on all things oncology pharmacy/pain/palliative care-related. It is intended to be an information resource for those pharmacist and relevant health care professionals involved in whatever fashion with cancer and palliative care. Stay tuned for the latest and greatest links and information with respect to: oncology medications, continuing education, pharmaceutical care initiatives, pain and symptom control, supportive care topics, and whatever else that might fit into the theme.

*Note: This website is not affiliated with Alberta Health Services (AHS) or CAPhO and the opinions expressed herewithin are that of the author(s).

Pharmacy History

"The earliest known compilation of medicinal substances was ARIANA the Sushruta Samhita, an Indian Ayurvedic treatise attributed to Sushruta in the 6th century BC. However, the earliest text as preserved dates to the 3rd or 4th century AD.
Many Sumerian (late 6th millennium BC - early 2nd millennium BC) cuneiform clay tablets record prescriptions for medicine.[3]

Ancient Egyptian pharmacological knowledge was recorded in various papyri such as the Ebers Papyrus of 1550 BC, and the Edwin Smith Papyrus of the 16th century BC.

The earliest known Chinese manual on materia medica is the Shennong Bencao Jing (The Divine Farmer's Herb-Root Classic), dating back to the 1st century AD. It was compiled during the Han dynasty and was attributed to the mythical Shennong. Earlier literature included lists of prescriptions for specific ailments, exemplified by a manuscript "Recipes for 52 Ailments", found in the Mawangdui tomb, sealed in 168 BC. Further details on Chinese pharmacy can be found in the Pharmacy in China article."

From Wikipedia:

Journal of Palliative Medicine - Table of Contents

  © Blogger templates Newspaper III by 2008

Back to TOP