Edmond pharmacy offers test that forewarns of medicationrelated complications
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.