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THE PROBLEM WITH DRUG NAMES

Posted by Tim Bryce on April 8, 2015

BRYCE ON LIFE

– They certainly do not give us a clue about their purpose or use.

(Click for AUDIO VERSION)
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

I visited my doctor’s office recently. I find it interesting the posters on the walls describing the latest drugs. They all have strange names which makes you think they are Latin based, but few are. Most simply have a marketing spin which is to catch your ear and hopefully plant it in your memory. Personally, I have trouble with the drug names which border on quackery as far as I’m concerned. Of course, I’m of an older generation who is more familiar with simpler cures such as Aspirin, Laxatives, Castor Oil, Cod Liver Oil, and Man & Beast Salve. Quite often a good slug of Coca Cola and a deep belch can work miracles. Maybe this is what they mean by “The pause that refreshes.”

You also see several drugs on prime time television, particularly during the news hour, where they frequently mention both Over the Counter (OTC) and prescription drugs. The pharmaceutical firms literally spend billions of dollars on advertising their products, which is why drug names are so important to them. I must confess though, I haven’t a clue where they get their names from, but they certainly do not give you an inkling as to their purpose. For example, I recently saw an ad for “Eliquis” which I presumed was to improve your vocabulary. In reality, it is to reduce the risk of stroke and blood clots in people who have atrial fibrillation (AFib), a type of irregular heartbeat,

I do not believe I am the only one confused by the names of the drugs. Consider the list of drugs below and try to determine their true purpose. You might get a couple right, but most people will flunk this quiz, I know I did, and I wrote it. (The answers are on the bottom.)

1. Aricept

A – To improve strength in hand grip due to arthritis.
B – Natural laxative.
C – To treat the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease.
D – To treat erratic breathing.

2. Astelin

A – To treat hemorrhoid inflammation.
B – To treat symptoms of hay fever.
C – To cleanse tongue and improve pallor.
D – To treat baldness due to chemotherapy.

3. Celebrex

A – Treats pain, including pain caused by arthritis.
B – Treats pain due to gun shot.
C – Stimulant for PMS mood swing.
D – Depressant for excessive alcohol.

4. Chantix

A – To treat throat and adenoids due to excessive use.
B – To treat alcohol addiction.
C – Nutritional supplement.
D – To treat nicotine addiction.

5. Cymbalta

A – Treats disorders of the inner ear.
B – Treats depression, anxiety.
C – A natural placebo.
D – Treats pain due to cataract surgery.

6. Detrol LA

A – To treat urinary incontinence (bladder control).
B – Plant food.
C – Treats depression in middle aged people.
D – Poisonous spray to control rodents.

7. Latuda

A – Treats the symptoms of motion sickness.
B – Natural laxative for people over 60.
C – Treats schizophrenia.
D – Non-addictive hallucinogenic to treat depression.

8. Levitra

A – A vegetable oil obtained by pressing the seeds of the Levit plant.
B – Common pill for the treatment of air sickness.
C – Treats arthritis in pet dogs and cats.
D – Treats erectile dysfunction.

9. Lipitor

A – Lowers high cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
B – Treats the symptoms of Herpes.
C – Balm for the treatment of cold sores.
D – Regulates pace makers.

10. Lunesta

A – Treats depression.
B – Treats insomnia (sleep disorder).
C – Non-addictive drug used mainly as an entheogen and recreational drug.
D – Reduces pain caused by female menstruation.

11. Nexium

A – Cause pupil dilation, reduced appetite, and wakefulness.
B – Medicinal drug used as part of religious or spiritual rites.
C – Treats anxiety while waiting in line or in crowds.
D – Treats heartburn, gastroesophageal reflux disease, stomach ulcers, and a damaged esophagus.

12. Omnaris

A – To treat asthma and nasal allergies.
B – Used in the treatment of Syphilis.
C – Chewable resin to treat nicotine addiction.
D – The world’s most widely consumed psychoactive drug.

13. Plavix

A – To treat bladder control in seniors.
B – Used in the treatment of constipation.
C – A blood thinner used to help prevent stroke, heart attack, and other heart problems.
D – Treats memory loss due to Dimentia.

14. Prilosec OTC

A – Formerly known as Nicoret.
B – Treats hay fever and other allergies.
C – To treat heartburn.
D – Ointment used to treat scratches, cuts and other wounds.

15. Restasis

A – Treats insomnia (sleep disorder).
B – Stimulant used for circulation.
C – Used as a prelude to a frontal lobotomy.
D – To treats chronic dry eye disease.

16. Rozerem

A – Treats allergies due to flora and fauna.
B – Treats insomnia (sleep disorder).
C – An analgesic to relieve minor aches and pains.
D – An effervescent antacid and pain reliever.

17. Valtrex

A – Treats a wide range of conditions, including anxiety, panic attacks, insomnia, and seizures.
B – Treats herpes virus infections, including shingles.
C – Used to slow heart palpitations.
D – Treats gastro digestive ailments, such as diarrhea.

18. VeramystA – Treats excessive development of mucous.
B – Marital aid.
C – Breathalyzer used to relieve asthma suffering.
D – Treats nasal allergy symptoms such as congestion, sneezing, and runny nose.

19. Vytorin

A – Lowers high cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
B – Dietary supplement, includes several vitamin complexes plus iron or multimineral products.
C – Stimulant for use during exercise.
D – Used in the treatment of ear wax.

20. Zyrtec

A – Used to clean water pipes.
B – Treats nail fungus, both hands and feet.
C – Treats hay fever and allergy symptoms, hives, and itching.
D – Pet nutritional additive.

The possible side effects from using these drugs can be extensive; vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, insomnia, cramping, anorexia, constipation, headache, heart attack, stroke, seizures, liver problems, skin reactions, abdominal pain, and, of course, Death! This certainly does not encourage me to run out and buy it. No wonder they want you to call your doctor before taking these drugs, they do not truly know whether it will help you or hurt you. Frankly, I do not know how doctors keep track of all these drugs. There are obviously a lot more, which is why pharmaceutical firms spend billions in marketing their products, to create general awareness. However, the more they spend on marketing, the greater the unit cost for the medication, which leads to our last drug: KOWABUNGATHOL – a stimulant that waves a red flag in front of people telling them to wake up and let the doctor order the medication, not the patient.

ANSWERS: 1-C, 2-B, 3-A, 4-D, 5-B, 6-A, 7-C, 8-D, 9-A, 10-B, 11-D, 12-A, 13-C, 14-C, 15-D, 16-B, 17-B, 18-D, 19-A, 20-C

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:  timbryce.com

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Copyright © 2015 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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Listen to Tim on WJTN-AM (News Talk 1240) “The Town Square” with host John Siggins (Mon, Wed, Fri, 12:30-3:00pm Eastern); WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; and KIT-AM 1280 in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube.

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5 Responses to “THE PROBLEM WITH DRUG NAMES”

  1. […] THE PROBLEM WITH DRUG NAMES […]

    Like

    • I enjoyed your post, especially the quiz about what the drugs were prescribed for what ailment. I did get one answer wrong out of the 20 . Which makes your opinion valid; we do depend on drugs too much and doctors seem to want to give them to us. By the way the correct answer to Latuda is not schizophrenia but bi polar disorder. Thanks for making us aware about the drug names and what illness they are supposed to treat.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Tim Bryce said

    A W.A. of the Dominican Republic wrote…

    “And, unfortunately Tim, they charge an arm and a leg for these, even with co-pay. For instance, my son has severe pain going down his leg from a disc problem. Doc prescribed Lyrica and when he went to get it, the pharmacist said $295 for a month supply. My son then said he had insurance and wanted to know what the co-pay was. The pharmacist said that was the price after the co-pay. So here is the rub. Lyrica is nothing more than 150 milligrams of Pregabalina. I buy it here by just walking into a pharmacy and asking for Pregabalina, which I need do to having pain in my ankle after surgery on 5 discs. Cost for a month supply: $40. Sooo…. one can see how the drug companies are totally ripping off the American public and it has become worse since Obamacare. I guess having a tricky name allows them to rape the American public for their fancy drug products. “

    Like

  3. Kick your “I don’t know how doctors keep track…” up even a few more notches, due to their having to also know the formulary names for the meds (Plavix, for example, is “clopidogrel bisulfate”). They also have to keep track of updates that relate to new research or advisories on each drug, lest they prescribe it in a case where that particular patient might have problems. Again, choosing Plavix at random from your list, I found an advisory against prescribing it to patients who are “CYP2C19 poor metabolizers” because patients “with acute coronary syndrome or undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention treated with Plavix at recommended doses exhibit higher cardiovascular event rates than do patients with normal CYP2C19 function.”

    Well…of course!

    Can’t tell you how many times I’ve listened to the warnings and possible side-effects, during a TV ad for some of these meds, and asked “Why the hell would you want to take that?!?”

    Liked by 1 person

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