prescription medication bottle

Indiana Doctors and Other Researchers Claim Long-Term Use of Many Common Drugs May Place Patients at Risk for Developing Alzheimer's

About 120,000 people across the State of Indiana are currently suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. According to an Indianapolis physician, some over-the-counter medications taken for long periods of time may increase a patient’s likelihood of developing the debilitating disease. In fact, some doctors believe daily doses of ibuprofen, aspirin, certain antihistamines, and other common drugs may increase a person’s risk for developing Alzheimer’s by more than 50 percent.

A neurologist at the Indiana University Health Aging Brain Clinic stated patients should thoroughly evaluate the potential side effects of any medication, but especially those that might be taken for more than 30 days. He added that individuals should carefully weigh the potential benefits against the risks. For example, being unable to sleep may be a small price to pay when compared with avoiding dementia symptoms.

A recent study that was led by researchers at the University of Washington found that antimuscarinics used to treat bladder issues, certain anti-anxiety medications, and tricyclic antidepressants may also affect patient brain function. As part of the study, investigators analyzed computerized pharmacy dispensing data for more than 3,000 participants aged 65 years or older with no symptoms of dementia to determine the correlation between anticholinergics and Alzheimer’s disease or other brain effects over the course of a decade. According to the researchers, nearly one-fourth of study participants developed dementia and about 80 percent of those patients were diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.

Unfortunately, prescription and over-the-counter medications typically have unwanted side effects. In addition, Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) approval does not mean a drug is safe for everyone to use. To further complicate matters, drug companies frequently market their products for off-label use. This means a drug is sold for a medical purpose that was not evaluated or approved by the FDA. Before you agree to take a prescription or other medication, you should educate yourself about the potential risks and side effects. Patients should also research a new prescription or other drug online and read any information that is enclosed with the product.

Dangerous drugs are those that result in harm to patients who seek a medical solution for their physical pain or other problems. A drug manufacturer’s failure to warn consumers about side effects, misrepresentations, or other types of negligence may provide grounds for a lawsuit. When a significant number of individuals are hurt by the same medication, a mass tort lawsuit may be filed in order to recover damages. An experienced drug defect lawyer can help.

If you were seriously injured or a treasured family member was killed by a defective drug, you may have a claim for financial compensation. To discuss your right to recover damages with a capable and hardworking Merrillville personal injury lawyer, please call Theodoros & Rooth, P.C. at (219) 212-2462 today or contact us online.

Additional Resources:

Study: OTC meds increase risk for Alzheimer’s, by Derrik Thomas and Lauren Lewis,

Cumulative Use of Strong Anticholinergics and Incident Dementia, by Gray, et al., JAMA Internal Medicine