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Drug Side Effects - Adverse Reactions

It is important to know the potential side effects associated with your arthritis medication. If you experience any problems, notify your doctor.
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  11. A - Z: Over-the-Counter
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  14. A - Z: Sleeping Aids
  15. A - Z: Topicals
  16. Biologics / BRMs
  17. Dietary Supplements
  18. Prescription Drug Abuse

Arthritis Medication Side Effects - What You Should Know
Arthritis medication side effects are a possibility. Be aware of arthritis medication side effects and call your doctor if a persistent or potentially serious problem develops.

What Are Drug Side Effects?
Drug side effects are unintended, adverse effects that can develop with medication use. Some may be mild while others may require immediate medical attention.

What Causes And Heals Mouth Sores?
Mouth sores are not uncommon in arthritis patients. They can be related to medication use.

9 Ways to Reduce Your Risk of Bleeding Ulcers from NSAID Use
Bleeding ulcers are just one of the side effects that are associated with NSAID (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) use. Learn how to reduce the risk of bleeding ulcers from NSAIDs.

Gastrointestinal Bleeding - Don't Ignore Your Symptoms
Arthritis patients take several medications that increase the risk of gastrointestinal bleeding. If you have taken one of these medications for a long time, you may be lulled into a false sense of security that all is well. It's critical that you know the signs of gastrointestinal bleeding -- it can quickly become an emergency.

Driving Safely When You Take Medications
Is it possible to take medications and drive safely?

The Prednisone Quiz - True or False?
Prednisone is a potent medication which is used to treat many inflammatory conditions including rheumatoid arthritis. It is important to know the proper use of the drug and be aware of the potential serious side effects. Consult your doctor if you have questions. How much do you know about prednisone? Take the quiz.

Is It Possible To Decrease The Risk Of An Allergic Reaction To Remicade?
Dr. Zashin explains what can be done to decrease the chance of having an allergic reaction to Remicade.

Arthritis Medicines - How To Reduce The Risks Of Using Arthritis Medicines
All medicines have risks. To reduce the risks related to using arthritis medicines and to get the maximum benefit, you need to play an active role on your health care team.

Side Effects Of Enbrel, Remicade, and Humira - Weighing The Risk vs. Benefits
Arthritis patients sometimes fear the side effects of the TNF blockers Enbrel, Remicade, and Humira. Should they be afraid and avoid these drugs?

Are Some Arthritis Patients Unsuitable Candidates For Biologic Drugs?
Biologic drugs are appropriate for some arthritis patients, but not all.

Pain Relievers - Use Caution With Over-the-Counter Pain Relievers
All over-the-counter pain relievers should be taken with care to avoid serious problems that can occur with misuse. Certain factors can increase the risk of liver toxicity from products containing acetaminophen and the risk of GI bleeding from the use of products containing NSAIDs.

Nexium Reduces Risk Of Ulcers For Long-term NSAID Users
The potential development of ulcers in regular users of NSAIDS (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) is well known. A new study suggests the infamous "Purple Pill", otherwise known as Nexium, might make a difference.

Pomegranate Juice Interacts With Medications
The pomegranate, once considered exotic, is now immensely popular. Pomegranate juice is found in almost every grocery store in North America. A published report suggests that we don't know enough about how pomegranate interacts with common medications.

How to Avoid Medication Errors
A list of tips and precautionary measures to help avoid medication errors.

How to Take Liquid Medications
Tips on liquid medication administration.

Drug allergies
Drug allergies are a group of symptoms caused by allergic reaction to a drug (medication).

Drug-induced erectile dysfunction - Drugs may cause impotence
Drugs may cause impotence. Various medications and drugs can have an affect on sexual arousal and sexual performance. It should be noted that what causes impotency in one man may cause an erection in another.

Acute adrenal crisis
Acute adrenal crisis is a life-threatening state caused by insufficient levels of cortisol. Risk factors for adrenal crisis include physical stress such as infection, trauma or surgery, adrenal gland or pituitary gland injury, and premature termination of treatment with steroids such as prednisone or hydrocortisone.

Allergic Reactions
Allergic reactions are sensitivities to a specific substance, called an allergen, that is contacted through the skin, inhaled into the lungs, swallowed, or injected. Substances that don't bother most of us (such as venom from bee stings and various foods, medications, and pollens) can trigger allergic reactions in some people.

Allergic vasculitis
Allergic vasculitis is hypersensitivity to a drug or foreign agent that leads to inflammation and damage to blood vessels of the skin.

Angioedema
Angioedema is a swelling similar to urticaria (hives), but the swelling is beneath the skin rather than on the surface. Angioedema involves the development of large welts below the surface of the skin, especially around the eyes and lips. The welts may also affect the hands, feet, and throat.

Drug-induced pulmonary disease
Drug-induced pulmonary disease is a lung disease caused by an adverse reaction to a medication.

Drug-induced hypertension
Hypertension (high blood pressure) can be caused by using a chemical substance, drug, or medication. It can also be caused by stopping a drug or medication.

Drug-induced cholestasis
Blockage of the flow of bile from the liver, caused by medication.

Drug-induced hepatitis
Drug-induced hepatitis involves inflammation of the liver caused by medication. Analgesics and antipyretics that contain acetaminophen are a common cause of liver inflammation. If you use these over-the-counter medications, never increase the dose beyond what is recommended on the bottle.

Drug-induced diarrhea
Diarrhea can have many causes, including medications. Diarrhea is a common side effect of medications through a variety of mechanisms.

Drug-induced immune hemolytic anemia
Drug-induced immune hemolytic anemia is an acquired form of hemolytic anemia caused by interaction of certain drugs with the immune system. The result is the production of antibodies against the red blood cells and premature red blood cell destruction.

Drug-induced tremor
Drug-induced tremor is shaking (tremor) that occurs when an affected person is moving or trying to move, is not associated with other symptoms, and is caused by use of a medication.

Drug-induced nonimmune thrombocytopenia
Drug-induced nonimmune thrombocytopenia is a reduction in normally functioning platelets that can be caused by certain drugs.

Drug-induced hypothyroidism
Drug-induced hypothyroidism involves decreased activity of the thyroid gland caused by an adverse reaction to a medication.

Interstitial nephritis
Interstitial nephritis is a kidney disorder caused by inflammation of the tubules. It is one of the lesions associated with analgesic nephropathy, and can also occur with allergic reaction to a drug or as a side effect of medications including antibiotics, sulfonamides, nonsteroidal anti inflammatory drugs, furosemide, and thiazide diuretics.

Folate-deficiency anemia
Folate-deficiency anemia is a decrease in red blood cells (anemia) caused by folate deficiency. Causes of the anemia are poor dietary intake of folic acid and certain medications.

An In-Depth Report: Peptic Ulcers
An in-depth report on the causes, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of stomach and GI ulcers.

Peptic ulcer
Ulcers are erosions in the lining of the stomach or duodenum (the first part of the small intestines). The most common cause of such damage is a bacterium called Helicobacter pylori. Other factors can make it more likely for you to get an ulcer, including using aspirin, ibuprofen, or naproxen.

Gastric ulcer
Gastric ulcer is a break in the normal tissue lining the stomach. Benign gastric ulcers are caused by an imbalance between the secretion of acid and an enzyme called pepsin and the defenses of the stomach mucosal lining. This leads to inflammation and may be precipitated by aspirin and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) such as ibruprofen.

Gastritis - chronic
Chronic gastritis is an inflammation of the lining of the stomach that occurs gradually and persisits for a prolonged time. Chronic gastritis may be caused by prolonged irritation from the use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs.

Gastritis - acute
Acute gastritis is a sudden inflammation of the lining of the stomach. Risk factors include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug use (NSAIDs), recent heavy alcohol use, and physiological stress.

Cushing's syndrome
Cushing's syndrome is a disease caused by increased production of cortisol or by excessive use of cortisol or other steroid hormones. Cushing's syndrome can be caused by a tumor or by long-term use of corticosteroids (drugs commonly used to treat conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis).

Fecal Impaction
A fecal impaction is a large mass of dry, hard stool that can develop in the rectum due to chronic constipation. This mass may be so hard that it cannot be excreted. Watery stool from higher in the bowel may move around the mass and leak out. Patients at risk include those who take any type of narcotic pain medication.

Exogenous adrenal insufficiency (drug-induced adrenal insufficiency)
Steroids such as betamethasone, cortisone, dexamethasone, hydrocortisone, methylprednisolone, prednisolone and prednisone are similar to hormones produced by the adrenal glands and are used to treat arthritis. If steroids are stopped or decreased too quickly, the adrenal glands cannot begin making their own hormones again fast enough and symptoms of adrenal insufficiency result.

Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G-6-PD) deficiency
Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G-6-PD) deficiency is a hereditary, sex-linked enzyme defect that results in the breakdown of red blood cells when the person is exposed to the stress of infection or certain drugs.

Hives
Hives are raised, often itchy red welts on the surface of the skin. They are usually an allergic reaction to food or medicine.

Megaloblastic anemia
Megaloblastic anemia is a blood disorder characterized by anemia, with red blood cells that are larger than normal. Deficiencies of vitamin B-12 and folic acid are the most common causes, others causes are certain hereditary disorders and drugs that affect DNA synthesis such as chemotherapy agents (methotrexate).

Neuropathy Secondary To Drugs
Neuropathy secondary to drugs is a condition where there is a loss of sensation (or movement) in a part of the body. It is associated with use of a medication that can damage nerves. Many medications can be associated with the development of neuropathy.

Opioid intoxication
Opium and its derivatives (which include morphine, oxycodone, and the synthetic opioid narcotics) generate an abnormal mental state, generally characterized by excessive sleepiness or unconsciousness (depending on the degree of intoxication), and usually associated with respiratory depression and small pupils.

Opiate withdrawal
Opiate withdrawal is caused by stopping or greatly reducing use of an opiate after heavy and prolonged use. Opiates include morphine, codeine, Oxycontin, and others. When stopped, the body needs time to recover, and withdrawal symptoms result. Withdrawal from opiates can occur when use is discontinued.

Acquired platelet function defect
Acquired platelet function defects are non-hereditary diseases or associated conditions that cause the platelets to not function properly. Disorders of platelet function can be caused by congenital diseases or acquired conditions and medications such as aspirin and other anti-inflammatory medications, penicillins, phenothiazines and prednisone.

Von Willebrands disease
Von Willebrand's disease is a hereditary bleeding disorder caused by a deficiency of von Willebrand factor. The disease is very common, affecting at least 1% of the population. A family history of a bleeding disorder is the primary risk factor. The condition is worsened by the use of aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).

Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatments Do Not Increase Breast Cancer Risk
Research shows no evidence to date that rheumatoid arthritis treatments, particularly the newest medications, increases the risk of breast cancer.

Alcohol-Medication Interactions
Many medications can interact with alcohol, leading to increased risk of illness, injury, or death. For example, it is estimated that alcohol-medication interactions may be a factor in at least 25 percent of all emergency room admissions.

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