Compliance Tips

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Do I need to finish an antibiotic prescription?

Antibiotics

If you receive a prescription for an antibiotic it is important that you finish the entire course of pills even if you begin to feel better. If you stop taking antibiotics before the course is through, the infection may still be present. You then run the risk of developing another infection. This second infection is usually harder to treat and may have developed some resistance to the antibiotic.

   
Do I need to take my pain medication on a schedule?

Pain medications

In general, pain medications should be taken on an "as needed" basis, as opposed to taking "a course" of medication. However, if you are post-op or have just had a procedure, most doctors recommend taking a pill even if you are not in pain yet, and to take it on a schedule for the first day to ward off any discomfort.

   
How often do I take my medication?

General

If the prescription states how many times per day to take it, divide that number by 24 (hours in a day) to determine the hourly interval between doses. For example: If the prescription says to take 1 pill 4 times a day, you will take 1 pill (24/4)= every 6 hours. In general you do not have to take medication around the clock unless your physician has intructed you to do so.

   
Do I need to finish my maintenance medication?

Blood pressure pills and other maintenance medications

If you are on "maintenance " medications, in other words, medications that you'll need to take for the rest of your life, you should take them daily without interruption unless instructed otherwise by your physician. Be sure to order your refills well enough in advance so that you do not run out of pills. A good rule of thumb is to order a refill when you have a weeks worth left of pills.

   
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