I went to visit my doctor last week and he put me on yet another prescription medication! I am already on several, and adding another one to my daily routine is not only overwhelming to keep track of, but also nerve wracking because of all of the new potential side effects I may experience. He assured me that the prescription drugs I am taking do not interfere negatively with each other and have very few side effects, but I was still concerned.
He decided to get me set up with MedWatcher. MedWatchers is a side effect tracking application which offers users comprehensive information on nearly every prescription drug available, and even has a place to report a undocumented side effect. My doctor helped me to create a log in ID and walked me through the website. He showed me how to research all of the prescription drugs that I am taking and learn about all of the potential side effects. He also walked me through the process of reporting a side effect. You see, many side effects are documented after clinical trials or if the drug has been on the market for years, but every once in awhile, someone has a reaction which is undocumented by the FDA. MedSeeker allows these people the opportunity to report this side effect. First, you log into the application. Once you are logged in, you are asked a series of questions about the medication you are taking. They will want to know the name, the dose, why you take it, what time of day you take it, if you take it with food, etc. Once they have all of that information, you will answer a series of questions about your own health, to help them determine why you experienced this particular side effect. Once you finish filling out these questions, the form will be submitted to the FDA within just a few short days. Not only will this report be sent to the correct FDA office, but it will also be shared with the MedWatcher community so others can hear about your experience. This is one part of the application I particularly liked.
That evening, I went home and began my research. I read about all of the prescription drugs I was taking and even did research on my new one. It was great to read all of the information about side effects and information from the FDA on the safety of the drugs. I found it particularly interesting to read other people’s experiences through the reports of various side effects. Many of the side effects were ones I was aware of, but some were ones I did not know could be a side effect from my medication, so I now know to look out for them.
Now that I’m taking so many medications, it is great to have a place where I can go to research my side effects to see whether or not they are serious. I feel much better now that I have MedWatcher to help me keep track of my medications!