Health

Articles and advice for patients around conditions and their treatment.

  • Use of beta=blockers for anxiety, summary.
    Health

    Beta-blockers for anxiety: WHICH beta-blocker to use?

    World Health Organisation (WHO) defines anxiety disorders as a group of mental conditions characterised by a feeling of fear and anxiety (WHO, 2017). Some common forms of anxiety include generalised anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Pharmacological management of anxiety disorders involves the use of antidepressants, such as a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) or a serotonin–noradrenaline reuptake inhibitor (SNRI). NICE guidelines on the management of generalised anxiety disorder and panic disorder in adults does not mention the use of beta-blockers, although it is known that beta-blockers may elevate the symptoms of anxiety. In this post, I will discuss the use of beta-blockers for anxiety,…

  • Options for liquid antihistamines for children and toddlers
    Children's health,  Health

    Liquid antihistamines for children and toddlers

    There are plenty of choices when it comes to the management of hayfever symptoms and allergic skin reactions in children and toddlers. Most antihistamines available for an adult population exist in liquid form. In this post, I will review liquid antihistamines for kids, which are available in the UK, focusing on: Restrictions on the availability of liquid antihistamines (pharmacy-only products vs. general sale products) Age restrictions for each liquid antihistamine Dosage for treatment of hayfever Common-side effects, particularly review of drowsiness

  • Sodium Cromoglicate Eye Drops for for management of hayfever symptoms
    Health

    What Sodium Cromoglicate Eye Drops are?

    Symptomatic management of hayfever involves the use of antihistamine drugs alone or in combination with steroid nasal sprays and eye drops such as sodium cromoglicate eye drops. In this post, I will describe the use of sodium cromoglicate for the management of hayfever symptoms such as itchy and watery eyes. I will discuss: How sodium cromoglicate works Licensing restrictions (age restrictions) Use of sodium cromoglicate eye drops in pregnancy and when breastfeeding Recommended use Possible side effects associated with the use of drops Availability of different brands of sodium cromoglicate eye drops Examples of sodium cromoglicate drops available to buy online

  • Ibuprofen and coronavirus: NHS, WHO advice
    Health

    Ibuprofen & coronavirus: NHS, WHO advice

    The last few days proved to be a manic time not only in all supermarkets but also pharmacies. The situation is surreal. Pharmacy teams have been under enormous pressure from the workload. People also buy an excessive amount of over the counter medications due to coronavirus (covid-19) pandemic. A few days ago, a French Health Minister Olivier Véran and a qualified doctor Tweeted: “Taking anti-inflammatory drugs (ibuprofen, cortisone) could be an aggravating factor for the infection. If you have a fever, take paracetamol”. With paracetamol going in and out of stock, many patients are left in ‘limbo’. Every day, I am asked several times, ‘Can I take ibuprofen for management…

  • Nasal sprays for hayfever
    Health

    Nasal sprays for hayfever: treatment choice

    Symptomatic management of hayfever involves the use of different over the counter antihistamines and nasal sprays. There is plenty of option when it comes to nasal sprays. In this post, I will list common nasal sprays for hayfever available over the counter from pharmacies and larger shops. I will briefly divide nasal sprays into two categories: steroids nasal sprays and non-steroid nasal sprays. I will also summarise: Possible side effects associated with their use Any important, relevant information Use of nasal sprays in pregnancy

  • Antibiotics for UTI when pregnant
    Health,  Women's health

    Antibiotics for UTI when pregnant: recommendations

    Urinary-tract infection (UTI) is a common condition experienced in pregnancy. Physiological changes to the urinary tract during the pregnancy, such as dilation of the urethra and decreased bladder capacity, increase the risk of urinary infections (Hebak, 2019). UTI is an umbrella term which defines infection of the bladder (cystitis), kidneys, or urethra. In this post, I am looking at recommended antibiotics in UTI when a pregnant patient is affected by this condition. 

  • Type 2 diabetes medications
    Health

    Type 2 Diabetes Medications Guide

    Type 2 diabetes is a common condition affecting around 3.5 mln people in the UK (Diabetes UK, 2019). In this post, I will discuss the most common type 2 diabetes medications used in the UK, reflecting current guidelines in the management of this condition. In relation to each drug, I will focus mainly on: Mechanism of action Common side effects Any essential and relevant information about the drug The following type 2 diabetes medications will be discussed: Metformin Sulphonylurea Gliptins (DPP-4 inhibitors) SGLT2 inhibitors GLP-1 mimetics (Incretin mimetics) Pioglitazone GLP-1 mimetics In the final part of this post, I listed the most common type 2 diabetes drugs prescribed in the…

  • Tesco sildenafil: a cheap erectile dysfunction service
    Health,  Men's health

    Tesco sildenafil: how to get a cheap “Viagra”?

    Update: on 01/04/2020 Tesco dysfunction service was discontinued.  There are many ways of getting sildenafil. Sildenafil can be prescribed on NHS or private prescription, it can be purchased from a pharmacy or online pharmacies, or patients can use different private erectile dysfunction services widely provided by online pharmacies / online doctors. Since 2018 sildenafil became available over the counter from pharmacies without a prescription, under a branded name as Viagra Connect. In 2020, we saw a launch of Aronix, another brand of sildenafil available over the counter without a prescription and priced much more competitively. Today I am going to write about one of the cheapest ways of getting sildenafil…

  • Over the counter laxatives UK: the best list
    Health

    The Best Over the Counter Laxatives UK

    Most over the counter laxatives in the UK are available without a prescription. There are four main classes of laxatives which patients can use to manage constipation effectively and fast. Over the counter laxatives (UK) are licensed as General Sale List Products (GSL), available in any retail outlet including pharmacies, and Pharmacy Only medicines (P), which can only be purchased from registered pharmacies, including online pharmacies under a supervision of a pharmacist. Within each class, over the counter laxatives have specific licensed age restrictions with some available for children only on prescription.   In this post, I will discuss over the counter laxatives commonly used in the UK. I relation to…