Moan about ignorant medics

I am just going to tell you my medication saga but before I do I apologise to all the peeps who have much more to put up with. I just need to tell somebody who will understand my frustration!

Earlier in the year I was prescribed 240mgs of diltiazem. The pharmacist provided Adizem. I hated it, felt awful and had some weird symptoms. I asked my GP if I could have a lower dose. NO!

After a few months I found my pharmacist had provided Slozem instead. I was concerned because I had seen on s couple of websites that it is bad to change your make of diltiazem because they have different formulations. It was too late to complain so I shrugged and took the Slozem. I was delighted to find it suited me much better so I asked the duty pharmacist if I could always have Slozem. NO, you get what I have in stock. You'll have to ask your doctor to specify it.

I phoned the prescription lady. NO, you have to ask the doctor.

I phoned the doctor. NO, I did not prescribe any of these fancy things, I prescribed generic diltiazem. What is he playing at? Why don't you go to the Medical centre pharmacy? ( inconvenient and they never stock enough of my tablets so it is inconvenient twice over) Tell the pharmacist what I said and tell me what he said, I want to know! (Abridged version....)

Phoned pharmacist. Nice lady this time. NO, slow release diltiazem is not available as a generic in that strength, but it is bad to change makes so I will flag you up for Slozem.

Chickened out of speaking to doctor again and left message with prescription lady......

11 Replies

  • Had exactly the same. I was put on Arythmol for two years, fine, worked well, except affected my sense of time, it was a bit weird. Ten years later tried again on the generic drug Propafenone, but instead of Arythmol, I was given Accord. I became severely depressed within days, took myself off it, felt fine, back on and within two days going downhill fast. I insisted on being prescribed Arythmol which was like trying to get blood out of a stone. I was even insulted out loud at the GP dispensary, so I changed GP practice.

    I don't call that health care.


    PS. So I understand your predicament and hope you manage to get the drug you need instead of one that causes harm.

  • Thank you! Good news, I collected my new batch of meds today and all is well, 10 gold stars to lady pharmacist :)

  • I just had something very similar, luckily with no ill results but intend to talk to my doctor about it. My pills Mycophenolate come in a foil packs in a box. 4/5 packs were the generic form and 1 pack was the trademark form Cellcept. The latter seemed much more potent to me.

    It seems that the NHS will only supply generic form of meds because of cost but the pharmacist sometimes will substitute trademark names when stocks are low. When it makes such a big difference as in your case it should be flagged up and I would encourage you to talk to your GP next time you see him as it he/she who will be paying the bill for your meds and is the only one who can make the decision,

  • In this case my doctor had prescribed something which the pharmacist said was not available as a generic ie slow release diltiazem 240mg. I'm just hoping she doesn't decide to change the prescription to 'ordinary' diltiazem because I am hopeless at taking tablets regularly.....

  • What a frustration for you Buffafly, luckily common sense wins again. Well done that pharmacist!

  • My meds have been wrong many times. I even have to remind the G.P. which ones don't go well together, which ones I can't take because of other medical conditions e.t.c. to be fair the G.P. is happy for me to remind him but it wouldn't be so great. If I was less with it!

    I have learned never to take anything for granted and assume nothing! X

  • Yes, having same problem with different manufacturers of my meds, I was quite happily taking one that was white, with no colour, then prescribed same drug, different make, that was pink (3 different added colours), this had a bad effect on me, so I don't want to take it. No one has the white one available.

    Also, the pink is same colour & very similar size to my warfarin, so I once took the wrong pill at wrong time. People who are confused in any way would find this extra challenging I would have thought. Why cant the same drug with different makers at least look the same?

  • Koll, are you sure it was 10 years later. You said it affected your sense of time !!

    Sorry i couldn't help myself ;-)

  • Sounds like a minefield to me. I remember when tablets and capsules were all of a standard shape and colour - but now (as Purple finds) my drugs come in all ever changing shapes and colours and I find it confusing. How confusing must it be for someone who isn't so well tuned in? I now keep my warfarin tablets separate from the rest, as sometimes, Lisiniprol looks very like some warfarin and the only visual difference between 2.5mg bisop and bendroflumethiazide is a halving slot on one side.

    Stay alert folks!

  • Untuned people have to have a carer coming in to give them their medications, explains why my daughter drives like a racing driver!

  • It's maddening when you know something disagrees with you but you still get the run-around... I can never work out if it's ignorance or just that they aren't interested - bit of both, probably. Thank goodness and three cheers for your lady pharmacist!


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