Medication Management

Medicines can treat and cure many health problems.  However, they must be taken properly to ensure safety and effectiveness.  Medicines have powerful ingredients that interact with the human body in different ways.  Diet and lifestyle can sometimes have a significant impact on a drug's ability to work in the body.  Certain foods, beverages, alcohol, caffeine and even cigarettes can interact with medicines.  This may make medicines less effective or may cause dangerous side effects or other problems. 

Times for taking medications are important.  Storage of medications and managing missed doses are also important.  Your nurse will provide this information to you.

When you take medicine, be sure to follow your doctor's instructions carefully to obtain the maximum benefit with the least risk.

Make sure your doctor, pharmacist and home health professionals know about every drug you are taking, including non prescription drugs and any dietary supplements such as vitamins, minerals and herbs. If you have any problems or experience side effects related to medication, call your health care provider right away.

Herbs and natural substances are "REAL" medicines and can carry similar risks.

Conditions Medications Use Caution With
Blood Thinners and Anti-Inflammatory Warfarin (Coumadin)
Aspirin (NSAIDS)
Alfafa                 Cinchona Bark (Quinine)
Clove Oil            Garlic
Ginko                 Ginger              Ginseng
Fever few
 Miscellaneous Decongestants  Dexedrine
Beta 2-atagonists
Guarana            Kola (Gotu Kola)
Ma Huang          St. John's Wort
  Alcohol               Benzodiazepines
Opiods               Antihistamines 
Hawthorn          Skullcap
Kava Kava         Valerian 
Tricyclics             MAO inhibitors
Ginseng             Ma Huang
Passion Flower  St. John's Wort
Diabetes    These may affect control of blood sugar:
Garlic, Ginger, Ginseng, Hawthorn, Ma Huang, Nettle 
High Blood Pressure    Devil's Claw        Ginseng
Goldenseal         Hawthorn
Licorice               Ma Huang
Squill                  Yohimbe 
Depression    Valerian              Kava Kava 

Food & Drug Interactions

Common Medications Food and Drug Interactions

Lotensin        Pinivil        Zestril
Capoten        Cozaar     
Vasotec         Accupril
Monopril        Altace

Monitor potassium (K+); avoid salt substitute; may need to limit high K+
INH (Isoniarid) Avoid histamine.  Special menu required.  No tuna, aged cheese, tomatoes.
Lithium  Low-sodium diet indicated.  Notify Dietary.  Encourage fluids.
MAOIs - Antidepressants 

Marplan         Nardil
Eutonyl          Parnate
Avoid foods with tyramine and dopamine.  Avoid aged, fermented food.  Special menu required.  Caffeine may also cause headache and hypertension in some patients.
Flagyl Avoid alcohol-containing drinks and medicine. 
Dilantin Take on empty stomach.  Hold tube feeding one (1) hour before and after dose. 
Potassium-Sparing Diuretics

Diuretics       Aldactone      Dyazide

Maxide          Midamore
Monitor K+ 
Tetracycline     Theophylline Do not take with meals. (This applies primarily to sustained release dosage forms, not immediate release and/or oral liquid preparations.) Caffeinated beverages may increase side effects.