How confident are you that you take prescription drugs correctly? The instructions on the bottle’s label may not seem to be hard to follow, but more than 500,000 Americans misinterpret them every year.
We wanted to do a “spot check” and see for ourselves how different drug labels, bottle warnings, and consumer drug information leaflets compared with one another. So Consumer Reports Health staffers filled prescriptions for 5 milligrams of warfarin at five chain pharmacies near our offices in Yonkers, N.Y.: Costco, CVS, Target, Walgreens, and Walmart. The drug warfarin, also known by the brand-name Coumadin, is a commonly used generic blood thinner, which can cause dangerous bleeding if taken incorrectly.
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What I have to say:
This particular problem could be dangerous when you have to take strong medications to keep your immune system under control. If you can’t read the directions, make sure you talk to the pharmacist (or call the doctor’s office.)
Also check your meds before you take them. Make sure the labels are correct and that you are taking the right amounts of the meds. If there is anything strange, take it back to your pharmacy. Even though the meds are prescribed, they are dangerous if taken in the wrong way or the wrong amounts.