Posts Tagged ‘drugs’

Mylicon Infant Gas Drops Recalled

Some Mylicon Infant Gas Drops have been recalled due to metal fragments being found in the product. Two lots are affected. Click here to go to the Johnson & Johnson page with all the recall information.

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Doctors urge FDA to restrict cold and cough medications for children under 6

Last year the FDA recommended children’s cough and cold medicines not be given to children under 2 because it posed significant health risks. All cough and cold medications with dosage for the under 2 category were recalled. Additionally last year an outside panel of FDA experts said these medicines should not be given to children under 6. However, at the time no action was taken to further restrict product labeling.

Now doctors are expressing their concern and urging the FDA to reconsider and further limit companies from providing cough and cold medicines for the under 6 age group.

Over the past few years, stories have hit the mainstream about infants and young children having serious complications with OTC cough and cold medicines. A few have resulted in death. Also, many of these parents were following instructions from their pediatricians. Granted some administered improper dosages, but not all did, which raises concern.

Not surprisingly, the drug industry is maintaining the cough and cold medicines are safe for children over the age of 2. (I am sure they don’t want to lose anymore money, even at the expense of our children’s health.)

More and more doctors are advising against the use of OTC cough and cold medicines. And let’s be honest, we all know there is no cure for the common cold anyway. These doctors are pressuring the FDA to reevaluate and raise the age limit for which they can provide dosing instructions on their packaging.

Parents however do hate to see their child miserable with a cold and unable to sleep due to a cough. There are some safe and natural things you can do to make your child more comfortable, without the use of OTC medication. This is what I have done in the past – this includes for myself as well! (Disclaimer: I am not doling out medical advice. I am not a doctor.)
1. Use a humidifier – the moist air will your child breathe easier and keep him from coughing as much.
2. Put baby Vicks on his feet and cover with socks – sounds odd, but it works let me tell you!
3. Keep your child well-hydrated. Water is best.
4. It may help to put a little lotion on his face, especially the nose area, to keep it from getting dry and cracked.
5. If your child is old enough, they can sleep on an extra pillow, if not, place a rolled up towel or a pillow under the mattress to help elevate their head and allow the nose to drain so they can breathe easier.
6. I have also used some of Hyland’s products, like the C-plus cold tablets and Honey Cough Syrup. (Remember NEVER give honey to a child under the age of 1).
7. NEVER, EVER give your child a cold medicine made for adults.
8. If you do feel your child needs medication, ALWAYS call your pediatrician prior to administering any OTC medications. They can ensure you can safely give a medicine to your child and confirm the correct dosage amount for your child’s age and size.
9. And certainly, and most importantly, call the pediatrician and speak to the nurse or make an appointment if you feel this is more than the sniffles or you need reassurance.

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What a trip: Drugs in US drinking water

A five month investigation by the Associated Press has discovered that small quantities of drugs, including antibiotics, sex hormones, and anti-seizure compounds, have been found in public drinking water supplied to over 40 million Americans across the US.

While the concentrations are so small they have to be measured in parts per billion or even parts per trillion, and water companies insist these levels are within safety limits, the AP said the long term effects on people’s health of so many prescription drugs and over the counter medicines such as acetaminophen (paracetamol) and ibuprofen, even in tiny amounts, are starting to worry scientists.

Drugs and their derivatives get into the drinking water supply because when people on medication go to the toilet they excrete whatever the body does not absorb and any matabolized byproducts. Water companies treat the waste before discharging it into rivers, lakes and reservoirs, and then treat it again before it enters the drinking water system. However, the various treatments don’t remove all traces of drugs.

For five months, the AP National Investigative Team visited treatment plants, interviewed over 200 scientists, officials and academics, analyzed federal databases and reviewed hundreds of scientific reports. Read the entire article at Medical News Today.

CNN also reported on this topic.

It’s distrurbing, but not at all surprising. It does stress the importance of safely discarding medicines. The best way is to put the old medicine in a plastic bag with some old coffee grounds (or other item that is displeasing to animals and humans) and putting it in the trash. Of course, once the bag is opened or punctured, the drugs can still be washed away into steams, lakes and eventually back into drinking water. Some states have come up with a drug recycling program, but those are rare and are limited in what they can take back.

As we see male fish developing female traits it’s obvious this is a situation to take seriously. And it’s not just drugs for humans that are causing these issues, it’s also drugs given to domestic pets and antibiotics given to stockyard animals raised for food.

Americans and our animals are way over-medicated.

A Safe Way to Discard Old Medicines

Wow, I had never really thought about what happens when I toss out old medication. But it does make sense that it could get into the wrong hands or could be ingested by animals. Thankfully, someone smarter than me has realized the issue and started a drug-take back program.

Group Health in Washington state has several pharmacies that have implemented the program with great success. They have been working closely with government and environmental agencies to ensure the drugs are properly disposed of. The program is limited, but legislation is in the works to change this. It would also include the ability to take back prescription narcodics, like codeine. Currently federal law does not allow consumers to give narcodics to anyone other than a law enforcement official. Until then, it is suggested to mix these drugs with something unappetizing to animals such as coffee grounds or kitty litter.

Here is a link to the full story. I found it very facinating and eye-opening. I will certainly take greater care when disposing of OTC and prescription drugs in the future.

http://www.ahiphiwire.org/News/Default.aspx?doc_id=148710&page=2