Who knows your WHOLE regimen of medicine?

Pharmacy 005 copy
Let your doctors and pharmacist know your WHOLE regimen.

Which of your providers or pharmacists knows your WHOLE regimen of your medicines? When you go to your doctor you are likely asked about the medications you take. Some practices will ask you to include that information on a piece of paper on a clipboard in the waiting room. Some will hand you a computer with a list of questions that include your medicines. Still others will have the person checking you in ask you about your medications.

Do you take a list of all of your medications with you to the doctor?

Your doctor needs to know the names, the strength, the dose, and exactly how you take each medication.

Rather than try to memorize and remember all of this, make a list before you leave home.

  • Some people take pictures of each medication label and keep them in their phone.
  • Some people use the ‘Medical ID’ app on their smartphone.
  • Some people keep a list printed and in their wallet where it can be easily found by emergency personnel if needed.

Do you include all medicines prescribed by all doctors?

Many of the people I meet think their doctors talk to one another and coordinate their care. Although this is the desire of your doctors, it often does not happen. Your doctors and other providers find it hard to catch up with one another. Even if they work for the same health-system, important details and explanations are often not shared.

  • Include all medications coming from all of your doctors on your list.
  • Don’t assume one doctor explained the latest changes to the other doctors.

Do you include all of the medicines and other substances you take?

All of the substances you take have the potential to interact with each other. This means they can be dangerous when combined. If no one knows each substance you take, then those interactions cannot be checked.  It is important to have a thorough screen of your WHOLE regimen.

Include these items even if you only take them once in awhile.

I highly encourage you to include all of these on your written list.

  • Over-the-counter pain medicine (e.g. Tylenol, ibuprofen, Aleve, aspirin)
  • Stomach ache or acid reflux medicine
  • Headache medicine
  • Allergy medication
  • Eye drops
  • Nose sprays
  • Cold, flu, congestion medicines
  • Constipation or diarrhea medicines
  • Medicated creams or ointments
  • Vitamins
  • Supplements
  • Herbal therapies
  • Marijuana
  • Illicit drugs (at least tell your doctor about these)

I am finding that the people who make the decisions about your prescription medicines do not know all of these important facts. The over-the-counter, herbal, vitamin, and other substances can have side effects, cause problems, and interact just as prescription medications can.

Consider all of these to be MEDICATIONS! Let your doctors and pharmacist know your entire list – your whole regimen!

For more information about the importance of your complete medication list, or for a detailed review of your medication list, please contact us at www.medsmash.com.


Just as there are a variety of medications that may be needed for overall health, there are a variety of things we need to include in our lives for our spiritual health. What are the components of your spiritual life?

In what ways do you acknowledge, praise, worship, study, talk with, share, enjoy, and spend time with God?

I liken the prescription medications from your primary doctor to Sunday worship and owning a Bible.

The specialist medications are like the Bible study, Sunday School, and other special short term studies.

What about the components that you choose for yourself from the smorgasbord of options? Do you include prayer, worship music, contemporary Christian music, daily devotions, meditation, accountability partners, online resources, or other choices?

Do you select a wide variety of options?

Do you stick to one or two?

Do you limit yourself to the Sunday morning selections?

Colossians 3:12-17 (MSG) gives several ideas about the many ways you can keep God active in your life.

So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you: compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, discipline. Be even-tempered, content with second place, quick to forgive an offense. Forgive as quickly and completely as the Master forgave you. And regardless of what else you put on, wear love. It’s your basic, all-purpose garment. Never be without it.

Let the peace of Christ keep you in tune with each other, in step with each other. None of this going off and doing your own thing. And cultivate thankfulness. Let the Word of Christ—the Message—have the run of the house. Give it plenty of room in your lives. Instruct and direct one another using good common sense. And sing, sing your hearts out to God! Let every detail in your lives—words, actions, whatever—be done in the name of the Master, Jesus, thanking God the Father every step of the way.

There are so many ways you can get to know God better. Even if you have been studying and worshipping for decades, there is more to learn and more love to experience.

Then there is prayer. There is real power in prayer.

James 5:13-16 (ESV)

Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise. Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.

Prayer that acknowledges God and His will and timing can do great things. Never overlook the power of prayer.

It is my hope this has inspired you to add some more elements to your daily walk with God. The God who created the Universe and who loves you beyond measure looks forward to each and every remedy you select to stay close to Him and know Him better.




When repetition causes pain – osteoarthritis

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Late stage hand osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a very common and painful condition. One way to explain it is that the cushion, or cartilage, lining bones wears away leaving bone to wear on bone.

Some of the most common causes of osteoarthritis are:

  • Injury to the joint– e.g. sports or motor vehicle accident
  • Repetitive use of a joint
    • In your job
    • In hobbies
    • In sports
  • Being overweight

Currently, there is not a way to rebuild the cartilage that wears away. So, the goals of treatment are:

  • to maintain what cartilage is left,
  • avoid making it worse,
  • keep you doing what you need to do during your day
  • control pain

Occupational and physical therapists can help.  They are experts in helping you find new ways to perform tasks without making the joint worse. There are many tools that can help support painful joints such as knee braces and thumb splints.

Ways to manage osteoarthritis pain without medication include:

  • heat application to the painful joint
  • lose weight if overweight (especially helpful for foot, knee, and hip arthritis)
  • swim – less wear on the joint than land-based exercise
  • find new ways to do tasks that don’t wear on the joint


The number one, gold-standard therapy for OA is acetaminophen. (A common brand name is Tylenol). Acetaminophen can help manage the pain. It is most effective if it is taken regularly (two extra strength 500mg tablets three times daily). This works better than waiting for pain to get really bad then taking a dose.

Note, be sure to check with your doctor to make sure your liver is healthy. And, limit or avoid alcohol to further protect your liver while taking acetaminophen.

The other medications commonly used for OA are nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen (brand names such as Motrin and Advil) and naproxen (brand name Aleve). These are also good for reducing arthritis pain. They can raise blood pressure, so avoid them if you have high blood pressure, heart failure, or a strong family history of heart attack. They can worsen kidney function, so talk with your doctor to be sure your kidneys are healthy. They can irritate your stomach, so always take them with food. Another option in this class of medicine is celecoxib (brand name Celebrex) that has less stomach irritation.  There are also topical versions that avoid some of the side effects.  You rub these onto the joint area that is in pain.

So, first and foremost, stop doing repetitive activities that are hurting your joint(s). Second, take steps to preserve the joint function you still have. Third, medication can help with the pain association with osteoarthritis. Be sure to discuss the pros and cons of the medication options with your doctor and/or with us.

For more information about osteoarthritis and treatment, contact us at www.medsmash.com.


Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Albert Einstein

Just as repetitive movement can worsen osteoarthritis, repetitive approaches to anything can ultimately lead to harm if those approaches are not productive.

  • In your spiritual life, how responsive are you to God’s call?
  • How much do you vary your Bible study?
  • What types of worship have you experienced?
  • How does your prayer life vary in the seasons of your life?

It is so easy to fall in to a rut. You are busy; daily tasks use up all of your time. Prayer becomes relegated to particular times or left out completely. Sunday worship becomes your primary connection to God. Fellowship with other believers only occurs walking in and out of church.

Paul has some ideas about the many ways to worship in his letter to the Colossians:

Colossians 3:14-17 ESV

And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

I encourage you to get creative and deliberate in your spiritual life. God has so much to share with you as you let Him in. His joy, peace, and love can change everything!



Image Source:  National Library of Medicine; National Institutes of Health; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services