DoctorSolve August 2010 Healthletter Edition                                                 (If you cannot read this, click here)
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Hi again,


We hope you're all enjoying the summer! Here at DoctorSolve, we know that staying informed about health is important to our own and our family's quality of life. In this issue of our Healthletter, we bring you relevant information on topics that we hope will help to improve that quality.

Please feel free to forward this healthletter to your friends and colleagues who might benefit from or be interested in some of the information provided. You can also submit any feedback you may have to [email protected]

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Generic vs. Brand Name Drugs

Many patients do not truly understand what a generic drug is. They assume that the generic is not as good as its corresponding brand name drug. However, generic drugs have been available for a relatively long time and are now available for approximately 50% of all drugs on the market.

The assumption that a brand name drug is better than a generic tends to be made as a result of the large difference in price. Often what people think is that the lower price of a generic drug is due to a sacrifice in either the quality or the safety of the drug. However, this is not the case and is in fact an opportunity to save a lot of money.

When a drug is first discovered and developed a large amount of money goes into creating the drug and acquiring a patent. After about 20 years the patent expires and other companies are allowed to create the drug at low prices as the research and marketing have already been done. These drugs that are later created are called generics.

A generic drug is essentially the same as a brand name drug, aside from its fillers. They are used for the same reasons, have the same side effects, superior quality, and safety. Generic drugs have the exact same active ingredients as their brand name correspondents. The only difference is that a generic drug is required to look different from its corresponding brand name drug.

After a patent expires, many companies start to make the generic. It is especially true if it is a popular drug. Competition is created as a result of all these companies now creating the drug. Competition between the brand name and generic also plays a role.

In some cases, the manufacturers that have created the brand name drug also create a generic version after the patent expires. What most people don’t know is that approximately 50% of the generic drugs that are made are made by brand name companies.

Despite the availability of generic drugs, many people stay loyal to the brand name. It’s a personal choice that everyone needs to make. However, if you know the facts and are aware of your choices you may be able to have a more cost effective treatment.

Visit DoctorSolve.com to find brand and generic forms of your medications.

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Add Eye Examinations to Your Back to School List

During the month of August, caring for your child will usually include buying school supplies and adjusting their sleeping schedule to make mornings easier, in order to promote your child's success before the beginning of the new school year. And while both of these actions do benefit your child's learning, there's one more thing that you can't overlook before your child starts school – an eye exam.

It is estimated that close to eighty-six percent of children start school each September without ever having their vision tested. Vision is one of the most critical tools in learning, especially because in the early schooling years, eighty percent of all learning is conducted visually. In fact, most children that have problems with learning will have underlying vision problems, which, in some cases, are misdiagnosed as attention deficit disorder or attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

Although children are usually screened within their schools once or twice throughout their education, the American Optometric Association recommends that all children should have their vision checked by an optometry professional when they are six months old, again when they are three years old, and once every two years after that. A professionally conducted eye exam will test for depth perception, peripheral vision and astigmatism, in comparison to a subjective school testing that only requires children to distinguish letters and numbers.

Throughout the school year, your child may demonstrate symptoms of visual impairment that may include a lack of attention or concentration, day dreaming, complaint of frequent headaches, poor handwriting, skipping words while reading, using a finger to follow the words while reading, excessive clumsiness, turning or tilting heads when looking at something, itchy eyes, dry eyes, frequent blinking, or squinting when looking at objects too far or too close to them. Because family history can contribute to vision problems; if one of your children experiences vision impairment, you may want to watch for signs of vision troubles in their siblings as well.

If you notice that your child is having vision problems, schedule an appointment with your optometrist for an examination.

Sun Sensitive Drugs

Sun Sensitive Drugs

Certain medications can cause your skin to become more sensitive to sunlight – you may have noticed this in your medication's drug description, or alternatively experienced this first hand. Although these drugs will not directly increase the risk of skin cancer, the sensitivity caused by these medicines can lead to severe sunburns, which are associated with a higher risk of developing skin cancer later in life. Medications that cause sunlight sensitivity do so in two ways:

Phototoxic Skin Reaction – Phototoxic reactions account for approximately ninety five percent of all sun sensitivities related to drugs. In phototoxic reactions, individuals will exhibit symptoms of redness to severe blistering of the skin within twenty-four hours of sun exposure, which occurs as the drug molecules absorb the energy of the UV rays, and produce an exothermic reaction that damages the surrounding tissue. Phototoxic skin reactions will often appear as extremely red and tender sunburns and the skin will generally resolve these skin changes by peeling off over several days.

Photoallergenic Skin Reactions – A photoallergenic reaction is typically caused by the reaction of a topical medication, such as a lotion or ointment, with the UV radiation that is emitted by the sun. Photoallergenic reactions will often occur much later than phototoxic reactions; symptoms of photoallergenic reactions including itching, redness and swelling may occur up to ten days after the initial sun exposure.

Many different kinds of drugs are associated with sun sensitivity; phototoxic reactions may be caused by a variety of drugs that include antihistamines, antibiotics, diuretics, painkillers, skin medications, cardiac drugs, chemotherapy medications and diabetic drugs. Photoallergenic reactions are less common, but may be caused by a number of different kinds of medications including sunscreens, anti-microbials, fragrances, chemotherapy drugs and painkillers. It's important to be aware whether or not the drugs that you are currently taking are known to cause photosensitivity, in order to effectively protect your skin from both phototoxic and photoallergenic skin reactions. If you are currently taking a medication that causes skin sensitivity to sunlight, you can protect yourself from sun exposure by wearing protective clothing and an effective sunscreen.

Try these products to help product yourself from exposure to the sun:
Ombrelle, Heliocare, Coppertone.

ADHD in Adults

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) has been known to occur in children for many, many years. Recently it had been found that ADHD can also affect adults as in most cases ADHD continues into adulthood. ADHD is a condition involving the nervous system and has symptoms such as inattention, restlessness, and impulsiveness.

In the past, ADHD was not recognized as a legitimate medical disorder. Some people believed that ADHD was simply an excuse for the type of behavior displayed. On the other hand, some thought that ADHD was being recognized so that doctors could make money curing this “so called” disease.  In fact, it was only in 1998 that it was officially recognized as a medical condition by the U.S. government. ADHD in Adults

Symptoms of ADHD include:
  • Inability to pay attention
  • Hyperactivity
  • Constantly distracted
  • Procrastination
  • Impulsiveness
  • Forgetfulness
  • Mood swings

ADHD needs to be diagnosed by a doctor. Many of the symptoms of ADHD could simply be because of day to day life and the stresses that come with it.

Approximately 2-4% of American adults are affected by ADHD. For those that are unaware of the fact have an even harder time with everyday life. As a child ADHD can be controlled because of all the people around the child. For example, their parents, teachers, and other loved ones are able to help them through it. If ADHD has gone undetected, that child will face many obstacles in the future.

As an adult, one has any responsibilities. An adult with ADHD will not be able to manage the responsibilities of managing a home, a job, and children. Therefore, it can worsen relationships that adults with ADHD have and even their professional lives. These people often get labeled as lazy and unsuccessful people.  Treatment becomes extremely important.