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Addition to Prescription Drugs among the Elderly: A Right under Physician Monitoring - Research Paper Example

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The paper argues that adding medicine or therapies to prescription drugs is a right of the elderly who possess diverse cultural and personal values and who have autonomy in their health care. However, physicians must closely monitor these practices for toxicity and other effectiveness concerns…
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Addition to Prescription Drugs among the Elderly: A Right under Physician Monitoring
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Download file to see previous pages The popularity of Western medicine has different effects on traditional medicine use, although some individuals are merging prescription and traditional medicine to cure their illnesses or improve well-being. The use of traditional, also called alternative, medicine, is not new to the elderly who mix it with their prescription drugs from physicians, but findings of several sources show that drug-drug interactions should not be overlooked when using multiple drugs and nutritional supplements. Drug-drug interactions (DDIs) refer to the impacts of mixing several drugs to the health of patients, particularly the interference of one drug on the presumed effect of another drug that a patient already uses (Johnell & Klarin, 2007, p.912). Adding to prescription drugs is a right of the elderly who have different cultural and personal beliefs and who have autonomy on their treatment course, but this practice must be closely monitored by their physicians because of the DDIs of additional prescription and non-prescription drugs, while the government must regulate herbal supplement and alternative medicine for their potential negative effects on consumers.

To understand the context more of using numerous kinds of drugs, its background deserves further description and analysis. Many corporations are now selling different supplements and “traditional” or “organic” medicine that attracts many people who are tired of the side effects and ineffectiveness of Western medicine. Some of the elderly who are familiar with traditional treatment, or who are open to its use, access traditional medicine for treatment or health promotion purposes (Costello, Leser, & Coates, 2009, p.554). Polypharmacy or polyherbal are terms used to describe the use of multiple drugs or medications, although polyherbal applies more to the use of two or more herbal products (Loya, González-Stuart, & Rivera, 2009, p.423). Loya et al. (2009) noted that estimates of polypharmacy vary, although national surveys reported that one-fourth to one-half of older U.S. citizens ingest five or more medications every day (p.424). ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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