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How Older People Can Head Off Dangerous Drug Interactions
Taking multiple medications and supplements could cause serious problems, FDA warns
-- Mary Elizabeth Dallas
SATURDAY, Sept. 24, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Potentially serious drug interactions are a daily threat to older people who take multiple medications and supplements, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
One drug can affect the effectiveness of other drugs and how your body uses them. For example, your kidney and liver may not work as well, which affects how drugs are broken down and leave your body, the FDA said.
"There is no question that physiology changes as we age. Many chronic medical conditions don't even appear until our later years," Dr. Sandra Kweder, an FDA medical officer, said in an agency news release. "It's not that people are falling to pieces; some changes are just part of the normal aging process."
The FDA says these safety tips will help prevent harmful drug interactions or side effects:
"As a society, we have become reliant on pharmaceuticals to help us attain a longer and higher-quality life. It's a wonderful success of Western medicine," Kweder said. "The goal should be for each of us to access that benefit but respect that medicines are serious business. To get the most out of them, you should take them with great care and according to directions."
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more about medication safety.
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