Drug expiration dating

Certain meds should never be used beyond their expiration dates: oral nitroglycerin (for chest pain), insulin, inhalers and Epi Pens.Other drugs you should ensure are full strength include anticonvulsants, warfarin, digoxin and thyroid preparations.In the late 1970s, the FDA first began requiring expiration dates on both prescription and over-the-counter medications.“To assure that a drug product meets applicable standards of identity, strength, quality, and purity at the time of use, it shall bear an expiration date determined by appropriate stability testing,” reads the agency’s regulation.The FDA permits “reasonable variation,” meaning manufacturers are given a little leeway, so long as the any medication marketed in the United States contain between 90 percent to 110 percent of the amount of the active ingredient claimed on the label.“Just having the slight variation of 90 to 110 percent, well, it would be very difficult, from a manufacturing standpoint, to hone it down even more than that,” Dr.This expensive process includes costs for planning, proper storage, and also reeplacing expired drugs.Since the latter cost eats up a significant portion of the Air Force budget, the Shelf Life Extension Program (SLEP) was proposed and undertaken by the FDA in 1985 to determine the actual shelf life of stockpiled drugs. In its inaugural 1985 run, the program tested 56 drugs and found it was possible to extend the shelflife of 80 percent of them (and 84 percent of the tested lots) With lots of dollars saved, the program naturally didn’t end there.Herbal supplements can interact with certain prescription medications, causing dangerous side effects.Alex Luli, outpatient pharmacist at the Cleveland Clinic, recommends being especially cautious with these: Do now: Bring a comprehensive list, or a bag filled with your medications and herbal and vitamin supplements, to your doctor or pharmacist, who can evaluate them for side effects and potentially dangerous interactions.

Store opioids in a locked box or small safe to avoid theft and exposing children to these potentially addictive drugs.Do it yourself Mix medications with used coffee grounds, dirt or kitty litter.

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