Categories: Health & Fitness

Medicines: 3 out of 10 French people adjust the dose themselves

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“Medicines are not ordinary products, do not take them lightly.” With this slogan, the National Medicines Safety Agency (ANSM) unveils this Wednesday, June 7 its awareness campaign on the proper use of drugs. As the ANSM reminds us, it is necessary to respect each condition of use related to drugs in order to ensure efficacy and safety. “Misuse of drugs can have serious consequences by leading to more adverse effects, ineffective treatment, or even worsening of the disease,” warns the drug agency.

“The proper use of medicines is a major public health issue that concerns us all, from healthcare professionals to patients. Everyone has a role to play, at each stage, to promote the proper use of medicines. Based on everyday situations, this campaign aims to question us about the use of our medicines”, emphasizes Dr Christine Ratignier-Carbonneil, Director General of the ANSM.

According to a recent study conducted for the ANSM, many French people do not respect the rules for the proper use of medicines. Thus, they are three out of ten to adapt by themselves, the dose or the duration of the drugs which have been prescribed to them. In addition, one in five respondents takes higher doses or take several medications at the same time to relieve symptoms more quickly. “Taken together without the advice of a health professional, drugs can interact and have serious health consequences,” recalls the drug specialist.

Good practices

Another result of this study, nearly one in two French people give medication to a loved one because they have the same symptoms. A bad habit because medications may be useless or dangerous for some people. Finally, 34% of respondents consider it rather safe or not at all risky to take an expired medicine. However, once expired or poorly stored, they can lose their effectiveness or become contaminated with bacteria.

So, for a risk-free intake, it is recommended to respect the prescription, to use only medicines recommended by a health professional, not to take several at the same time without medical advice and to pay attention to the conservation at the the duration of the conversation.

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