Questions to Ask About Your Medicines - Topic Overview
It's important to know as much as possible about the
medicines you're taking. Here are some examples of questions you might ask your
doctor or pharmacist:
What can you tell me about this medicine?
- How will I know that this medicine is working?
How long will it take before I notice anything?
- Will I need any
tests while I'm on this medicine?
- Is an older or less expensive
generic version available? Will it work for me?
Why am I taking it?
- Why is this the right medicine for me?
- Is there something I can do instead of taking this medicine?
- Is there a medicine that could be better for someone my age? For a
man or woman?
When and how do I take it?
- How long will I have to take it? What if I
begin to feel better?
- When do I take it (early, late, morning,
evening, before bed, once a day, other instructions)?
- What if I
miss a dose? Do I take two doses the next time? Do I take the missed dose right
What about food and drink?
- Do I take this medicine with or without food or
water? Can I use grapefruit juice? Should I avoid any food or drink when I take
- How long before or after eating do I take it? Does it matter?
- Is it okay to drink alcohol while I'm taking this medicine?
What about side effects and interactions?
- What side effects can I expect, and how soon
might they appear?
- Will they go away on their own? How long will
it take? Can I do anything to prevent or manage them?
- When should
I call about side effects?
- Do any of my medicines cause a bad
reaction with another one?
What else do I need to know?
- Can I take this medicine at the same time as
- How do I store this medicine? Do I need to put it
in the refrigerator?
- If I have trouble swallowing, can I split the
pill or crush it in food or drink?
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
July 06, 2011
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor.
Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this
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Questions to Ask About Your Medicines Topics