A senior places bills in a pill box.

Learn why it’s important to talk to your doctor before starting a new medication.

Reaction time: Be alert—drugs don’t always get along

A new prescription led to a trip to the emergency room for Humana member Elizabeth F., of Ravenna, Ohio. “My regular asthma drug reacted badly with a new drug,” she said. Only after her doctor reviewed all of her medicines did he find the cause. Changing the new medicine stopped the problem.

More medicines may mean closer vigilance

14 prescription medicines. That’s the average number taken in a single year by people between the ages of 65 and 69. It’s even higher—18—for those between the ages of 80 and 84.1

That’s a lot of doses—and a lot of chances for dangerous mistakes, drug interactions and side effects.


1. “12 Incredible Polypharmacy Statistics”, Polypharmacy Statistics, last accessed February 21, 2019, http://healthresearchfunding.org/polypharmacy-statistics/ , opens new window