Q: What should I expect to be told about any newly prescribed
A: When it comes to medication, what you don’t know can definitely
hurt you. Almost half of all Americans regularly take at least one prescription
drug, and half of older patients take three or more, according to a report
released in by the National Center on Health Statistics. But doctors don’t
always communicate critical information about the drugs they prescribe. And
prescription drug misuse is a growing problem, contributing to thousands of
deaths each year.
A good day for registered pharmacist Michelle Kasperowitz, 37, is when she's
peppered with questions. They can range from which blood pressure monitor to
buy to whether a rash is poison ivy. And, because she works in a supermarket,
she gets lots of food-related inquiries as well. "One man came up to me
recently, waving a bag of broccoli," says Kasperowitz, who works at the
ShopRite Pharmacy in Woodbridge, N.J. "He's on a blood thinner, and he
wanted to know if he could eat it."