For this week, think about the implications of polypharmacy. Polypharmacy refers to the concurrent use of a number of drugs, both prescription and non-prescription.
Interview someone who takes multiple medications- someone with a chronic illness or the elderly are good choices.
List the medications taken, along with their indicated uses.
Does the patient know why he/she is taking each of the medications?
Are all the medications being taken for their prescribed purpose? (Example- Benadryl is often given for itching associated with allergic reaction, but it is very sedating. Therefore, some people take it to help them sleep)
What are the major adverse effects of each medication?
How can we decrease patient risks associated with polypharmacy?