Ed­mond phar­macy of­fers test that fore­warns of med­i­ca­tion­re­lated com­pli­ca­tions

The Oklahoman (Sunday) - - SUNDAY LIFE - BY HOS­PI­TAL DIS­COUNT PHAR­MACY This ar­ti­cle is spon­sored by Hos­pi­tal Dis­count Phar­macy.

Mariah Carey is the per­fect ex­am­ple. The pop­u­lar singer re­cently re­vealed in a “Peo­ple” mag­a­zine in­ter­view that she has strug­gled for years with bipo­lar dis­or­der. Among her many dif­fi­cul­ties along the way was find­ing the right medicine to treat her con­di­tion.

Carey de­scribed deal­ing with sleepi­ness and other side ef­fects from drugs that were tried while they searched for the right ones. She is not alone.

You may have heard the jokes about physi­cians “prac­tic­ing medicine.” It is re­ally no laugh­ing mat­ter though, when a pa­tient is suf­fer­ing from a ter­ri­ble re­ac­tion to a pre­scrip­tion, or deal­ing with dis­ap­point­ment be­cause it did not achieve the de­sired re­sult.

Un­til re­cently, doc­tors and phar­ma­cists have re­lied on guide­lines based on doc­u­mented out­comes in the gen­eral pop­u­la­tion.

Hos­pi­tal Dis­count Phar­macy in Ed­mond of­fers a new prod­uct that helps pa­tients and their doc­tors to take the guess­work out of pre­scrib­ing medicines.

It is a sim­ple so­lu­tion in­volv­ing a swab of the cheek.

Within one week a pa­tient is pro­vided a wealth of in­for­ma­tion about how they per­son­ally will re­spond to hun­dreds of med­i­ca­tions.

“It ba­si­cally of­fers health care providers a road map show­ing them which di­rec­tion to turn as they seek phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal suc­cess,” said phar­ma­cist Courtney Lun­deen.

Lun­deen added that the in­for­ma­tion pro­vides clues about your ge­netic makeup, and how your body me­tab­o­lizes, or uses those drugs.

Blood thin­ners, pain med­i­ca­tions, an­tide­pres­sants, seizure and blood pres­sure drugs are among the pre­scrip­tions that could be de­coded for your ge­netic makeup. Lun­deen is an ex­pec­tant mother who un­der­stands per­son­ally the value of the in­for­ma­tion re­vealed in the test.

“It told me that I can­not fully process folic acid which is crit­i­cal dur­ing preg­nancy for the baby’s health,” she said.

Lun­deen said she now knows that she has to take a methy­lated, or al­ready bro­ken down ver­sion of that nu­tri­ent.

Phar­ma­cist Lee Munoz has also got­ten a pre­view of what her doc­tor might need to know if she ever re­quires treat­ment for stroke pre­ven­tion. Munoz said one an­ti­clot­ting agent, Clopi­do­grel, will work won­ders for an­other pa­tient, but for her it would be an in­ef­fec­tive treat­ment.

“My ge­netic makeup would never al­low my body to at­tain the proper blood lev­els for suc­cess,” Munoz ex­plained.

The test is called Rx­ight, which is pro­nounced “RIGHT.” Lun­deen and Munoz have been trained to gather the sam­ple and help the pa­tient un­der­stand the out­come. Re­sults are sep­a­rated into three cat­e­gories. The first one, “Con­sider Al­ter­na­tives” means that you most likely will not re­ceive the ex­pected ben­e­fit from any med­i­ca­tions in that col­umn.

In fact, those med­i­ca­tions can po­ten­tially lead to toxic blood lev­els, or to­tally in­ef­fec­tive out­comes, the phar­ma­cists said.

“Use with Cau­tion” in­di­cates to a pa­tient that a med­i­ca­tion is still not the op­ti­mal choice, while the last col­umn, “Stan­dard Pre­cau­tions” of­fers the most di­rect path to the proper treat­ment, mean­ing your body should use these med­i­ca­tions as ex­pected.

The test re­sults are in­ter­preted by the phar­ma­cist, and are pre­sented to the pa­tient in a oneon-one con­sul­ta­tion. That al­lows time for the phar­ma­cist to ad­dress in­di­vid­ual re­sults, and how they might af­fect cur­rent and fu­ture med­i­ca­tion choices. Lun­deen and Munoz en­cour­age pa­tients to ques­tion any­thing that con­cerns them, or hasn’t been ad­e­quately ex­plained.

Lun­deen said pre­scrip­tion in­sur­ance com­pa­nies are start­ing to rec­og­nize the ben­e­fit of this ser­vice, and some will pay for the test. If your in­sur­ance does not help pay for it, the cost is $400.

“That might seem high-priced to you ini­tially,” Munoz said. “But think of the sav­ings in time and money when you elim­i­nate re­peated doc­tor vis­its, and pre­scrip­tions that are dis­carded dur­ing a trial and er­ror process.”

The en­tire process for this test can be done in about a week.

It all be­gins with an au­tho­riza­tion form that the pa­tient’s doc­tor must sign. That form goes to the phar­macy where a claim can be sub­mit­ted to your in­sur­ance com­pany to see if they will pay all, or part of the cost. The phar­ma­cists can guide pa­tients from there.

Visit WWW.RX­IGHT. COM on­line, or call Hos­pi­tal Dis­count Phar­macy at 405-348-1677 to start the process, or just get more in­for­ma­tion about it.


Hos­pi­tal Dis­count Phar­macy now of­fers a test that can alert you to how med­i­ca­tion may af­fect you.

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