Contact Us

January 30, 2012

5 Things to Look For in a Prescription Medication Label

5 Things to Look For in a Prescription Medication Label

According to a 2006 Institute of Medicine report, about 1.5 million preventable medication errors are made each year.


Prescription drugs are a double-edge sword. They can treat and manage diseases, making it possible to lead a better life. But if you take them incorrectly, forget to take them, or take them with other drugs that could diminish or exaggerate their effect, there could be serious and dangerous consequences. More than 500,000 Americans misinterpret instructions on a prescription drug label every year, leading to millions of needless hospital admissions and emergency room visits.

Details of what is on the label, other than the patient’s name and dosage instructions, vary by state. You may be sent home with pages upon pages of instructions and warnings about the drug you are taking. This is helpful information if you read it, but the print may too small or the language too technical to interpret, so most people rely solely on the information printed on the label.

That’s why it’s helpful to have easy-to-read and easy-to-understand labels. Some pharmacies have tried to help consumers. For example, triangular containers that stand on their caps leave a wide area on the front and back for information in large typeface, including multiple warnings and instructions. There may also be a color-coded system that makes it easier for family members to distinguish one person’s medication from another’s.

How can you protect yourself against errors? Here are some Things to Look For in a Prescription Medication Label, from some authorities that set standards for prescription medications – the U.S. Pharmacopeia and the Institute for Safe Medicine Practices. You may be able to find a pharmacy that adheres to some of their suggestions.

  1. Drug information is typed in easy-to-read 12-point type, about the size of which you see here. Your name, drug name, and drug instructions should be included in the largest type.
  2. Warnings typed directly onto patient labels in large typeface. The colorful warning stickers that sometimes appear on the sides of the bottle are read by fewer than 10 percent of people, according to research.
  3. Both the generic and brand name of the drug need to be listed.  This will help you know if you have been prescribed the same drug from two different doctors; one who prescribed the brand name and one who prescribed the generic version.
  4. Images or physical descriptions of the pills in the container. It’s easy to spot a mistake if you see a picture of a round white pill, but inside the bottle you see an oval-shaped blue one.
  5. No extra zeroes. This means that 5 mg of a medication should not be written as “5.0.” This could lead to a patient mistakenly remembering the dosage as 50 mg instead of 5 mg.

Reading and understanding your medication labels can help you successfully manage your health.


cialis 5mg online said:

Top Online Pills Fluink – when will cialis be generic Icocaissar viagra imagenes hadync Cialis Alibiore Vrai Viagra Pas Cher


cheap cialis online said:

Achat Baclofene En Ligne Fluink – cialis pills Icocaissar cialis viagra combo hadync Cialis Alibiore Prohair Propecia


deemichaick said:

free online slots free casino slot games slots free big fish casino


ekuqacoxazu said: – Amoxicillin 500mg Capsules Amoxicillin No Prescription


oocezmos said: – Buy Amoxicillin Online Amoxicillin 500mg


esuvigal said: – Amoxicillin Amoxicillin


apiritazol said: – Buy Amoxicillin Online Amoxicillin Online


onotomugu said: – Amoxicillin 500mg Buy Amoxicillin


ushunoijaqn said: – Buy Amoxicillin Amoxicillin Without Prescription


buy aralen said:

how does chloroquine work chloroquine hydrochloride malaria drug chloroquine


how much alprostadil pellets cost said:

alprostadil cream cost bremelanotide vs alprostadil


sildenafil citrate women said:

sildenafil nz sildenafil for sale canada


what is tadalafil said:

tadalafil tablets 40 mg tadalafil


vardenafil- vardenafil tablet, film coated said:

vardenafil levitra vardenafil how to take


buy tadalafil said:

tadalafil pills tadalafil pills


viagra canada by mail said:

ordering viagra from canada how much is viagra in canada


where can i get zithromax said:

what type of antibiotic is zithromax zithromax 500 mg side effects


buy vardenafil over the counter online said:

buy generic vardenafil over the counter with no pres. online buy vardenafil online without presciption


video of transurethral alprostadil admimistering said:

erection injection medication alprostadil cream cost


generic viagra sildenafil said:

cheap sildenafil canada sildenafil 50 mg canada


canada online viagra said:

generic viagra canada free shipping viagra canada pharmarcy


plaquenil generic name said:

erectile creams walmart erectile remedies for men


avana said:

avanafil vs cialis avanafil


dapoxetine said:

dapoxetine for sale priligy dapoxetine


chloroquine hcl said:

chloroquin side effects chloroquine tablets amazon

Leave a comment