• The following details of Drugs are for information for everyone, and I suggest you keep these in case of future needs. (Although I hope you will not need them)!  Much more to follow!

The details are all taken from medical data, which has taken me hundreds of hours of research for the actual Story plus the Drugs.  In fact I have spent hundreds of days including many 12 hour shifts, and at the beginning of my research I spent one 18 hour day until it was daylight the next day when I had to call a halt to sleep and eat before returning to it, as my research unearthed so much information with one thing leading to another constantly, and my sincerest hope is that it will be useful and used by as many people as possible.

What never fails to amaze is the fact that so much of medical students’ education is taken up with indoctrinating them about drugs, therefore why do they know so little when it comes to applying this knowledge, especially when these same students are ‘let loose’ on patients after doing their theory at University.  It is not rocket science, merely dogged application to research these.  More so when they choose to specialise in one area of medicine, with a set range of drugs, enabling them to work within a slightly smaller perameter (albeit with some crossover such as heart plus arthritic conditions).  In other words they do not have to know the full Mims book by heart, just the main ones used in their speciality.  Someone in a geriatric ward with bronchitis would not be treated for cancer, therefore no requirement to know cancer drugs, as the cancer would be treated in another speciality department. 

  • What I have witnessed in student medics is a cavalier attitude of indifference, which I find disgusting to say the least, but also a zombie – like tiredness which makes me wonder whether this is the root cause of the indifference, or did it come with its own package?  I have also witnessed the same indifferent attitude in nursing staff, along with understaffing, agency nursing staff, and Angels on Night Duty – thankfully, in every Hospital and every night!

As for G.P.’s?  What can one say when they have already ‘qualified’ in medicine?

  • I only wish I had known all of this when my mum was still alive, because you can be certain of one thing she would have been discharged alive, even if she did not last very much longer.  In fact she would not have been on these inhalers to begin with therefore would possibly not have ended up in that Ward in that Hospital!
  • If  Drugs are suggested then Question, Question and Question again until you receive the answers you are satisfied with, and Do Not take No for an answer!    If someone does not know the answers then move on until you find someone who does!  Your body is yours, your loved ones theirs, and for far too long people have been making the error of blindly trusting that you or theirs will be cared for, which tragically is not always the case.  Do Not be intimidated, fearful (get every last fact known about the Drugs) and do not be bullied.  If medics want to bully then let them do it to each other until they also get ‘sick of it’!
  • Both the Drugs and symptoms my mum had are listed in Red.
  • The following are a list of details of the Drugs given to my mum by the G.P.’s and then the Hospital (who gave many more):-

Mum had originally taken Piriton (Chlorpheniramine) (details in Part 1 of this post), Carbamazepine, Symvastatin, and Latanoprost eye drops.

Salbutamol Inhaler:  (Prescription was given to her a couple of months previous but only started using this in January).

  • G.P’s notes made no mention of the fact that mum was taking Salbutamol after trying Piriton.  Her letter to the Hospital only stated the Amoxicillin and Furosemide.

Not exactly giving a comprehensive picture is it?

*N.B. The additional information from the Ambulance Team noted regarding G.P.  ‘Would phone with patient details to Hospital’.  The G.P. sent (either by fax or via an internal computer system, which is more likely?) two sheets of Patient Information from her records.

One of these stated: Seizure free > 12 months, when in fact this had been almost 3 years. These records also showed: ‘recurrent urinary tract infection Freetext: persistent.’  The fact is that mum caught this infection by the use of a Hospital Catheter, and once it cleared she never had it again, so I don’t know where ‘recurrent’ came in, unless this was known at the time (years previously) in that particular hospital and unknown to mum or her daughter?  It also showed ‘Pneumothorax’ in 1995 when part of mum’s lung had collapsed and it was assumed that it was because of her being a smoker (light), when actually she had fallen badly on a concrete square edge outside her local supermarket, and this had caused the deflation.

These cursory notes fail to assist any medical personnel in a comprehensive manner, and are also not kept up to date as illustrated by 12 months > Seizure free!

* Both the receiving Hospital and the one to which she was subsequently transferred, repeatedly stated  ‘No previous notes available’!  All they had to go on were the two sheets from the G.P.

  • Furosemide:
  • Amoxcillin:

I was unaware at that time that Salbutamol ‘is taken by some for the purposes of fat burning’. (the last thing mum needed)!

Caution is advised when using this drug in older adults since they may be more sensitive to its effects, especially the effects on the heart!  In some cases a serious possibly fatal reaction may occur.  Rarely this medication has caused severe, sudden worsening of breathing problems/asthma (paradoxical bronchospasm).  Seek immediate medical attention if you notice……any symptoms……Trouble Breathing? *Call the doctor immediately if you notice any Change in Heartbeat or Pulse while taking Salbutamol.

*G.P. was called and told about change in mum’s heartbeat and she took her pulse!

*Patients who may be predisposed of Glaucoma should be specifically warned to protect their eyes!

*No mention of this was given in the Hospital!

Common Reactions:  Cough, Palpitations!

Serious Adverse Reactions:  Seizures, Bronchitis!

Before using tell your doctor all prescription/non-prescriptions you use.        e.g. Furosemide.

Furosemide: (Diuretic) Blocks Sodium and Chloride Reabsorption.   Think of Potassium and Sodium at opposite ends of a see-saw.  As Potassium increases Sodium declines leading to a reduction in Blood Pressure.

Can you deduce what happens as Potassium declines and Sodium increases?

20% of patients on commonly prescribed diuretics have abnormal Sodium and Potassium levels.

In those patients taking diuretics, often a small amount of Oral Potassium may be prescribed.  Since the loss will continue as long as the medication is prescribed!

Patients on Furosemide experiencing dehydration and weakness may have their electrolyes tested in order to discover if the body’s Potassium losses may need replacing.  A severe drop in the level of Potassium  (Hypokalaemia) causes profound muscle weakness and  *may stop the heart!

Side Effects:  Shortness of breath, dry mouth, drowsiness, hunger, confusion or changes in thinking, weight loss, irregular or fast hearbeat, looking pale, headache and much, much more……

N.B. Furosemide is also used to prevent horses from bleeding during races!

  • Piriton (Chlorpheniramine):

Warnings/Precautions:  Do Not take this product if you have a breathing problem such as Chronic Bronchitis (A past history of) or Glaucoma (history in family) or Epilepsy (Cerebral haemorrage/Stroke).

It also Causes Confusion.  It enters the brain in sufficient quantities and is called a Sedating antihystamine.   Aplastic anaemia, fast pulse/rapid heart rate.

Side Effects:  Urinary Retention.  Awareness of your heartbeat (Heart palpitations) Dizziness, Wheezing or Difficulty in Breathing.

  • Piriton uptake inhibits noradrenaline.
  • Furosemide and Piriton together Can Cause Death and speed up mental impairment in elderly people.
  • Mum was on Furosemide and Piriton together!

Telegraph 24.6.11:

  • *A scientific study found that the most dangerous drugs used in combination included the antihistamine chlorphenamine (used in Piriton) a high risk antihystamine and low risk eye drops – had a 20% chance of dying within two years, compared with over 65’s who took nothing.

Other drugs used in combination include Furosemide, common bladder medications, heart drugs, and asthma treatments.

All the drugs work by blocking a key chemical in the nervous system called Acetylcholine.

  • The study also identified the risk in a far greater range of drugs than had previously been documented, meaning that G.P.’s may have been prescribing pills to patients without knowing the potentially deadly side-effects of combining medication.  Incidentally this does not wash with me, but this is my own opinion!  Medics and Nurses and Pharmacists are taught about drug combination, and as far as I am concerned it is their duty to know or to find out – before dispensing any drug whatsoever.   Peoples health and lives are at stake here.   Let’s get with the program!
  • Ian Maident, one of  the researchers and a pharmacist at Kent University.  ‘It is not just the obvious medicines, it is things like heart drugs and antihistamines, and lots of doctors and nurses and pharmacists may not be aware that these medicines have this problem.’  

I ask, ‘Why are they not aware of this problem?’  This is tantamount to manslaughter by neglect.  Yet they continue to practice on people without the necessary up to date knowledge on all these lethal potentiates in pharmaceutical drugs which they continue to prescribe to people!

If, on the other hand, University’s etc. are paid grants to investigate medical matters then why has it taken them such a long time (and many, many deaths meantime) before discovering these things?  How many years have drugs been dispensed and are we only now discovering about these types of combinations?  

  • Latanoprost: (Eye Drops)

Adverse Reactions:  Respiratory: Upper Respiratory Tract Infection, cold, flu.

Imagine giving any elderly person an eye drop which could give any of the above, and encourage them to get their flu jabs! Just in case they caught flu!

To quote a superb Daily Mail journalist, Richard Littlejohn, ‘You couldn’t make it up’!

So mum was on Piriton (a high risk antihystamine) and Latanoprost (hopefully  a low risk eye drop) in combination therefore according to the* scientific study she had a 20% chance of dying within two years.  All this as well as the facts of these drugs and others?

No worries then!

  • Salbutamol: (Ventolin Inhaler) Rapid Heart Beat, Reactive Bronchospasm.

Warnings:  Immediate hypersensitivity reactions may occur.  Angioedema, Bronchospasm, Anaphylaxis.

Salbutamol Sulphate can produce a clinically significant Cardiovascular effect in some patients, as measured by pulse rate, blood pressure, and/or other symptoms.

Really?  Yet the G.P. mentioned nothing of this?  After all this is not a combination factor.

Salbutamol should be used with caution in patients with convulsive disorders.

*Absolutely no mention whatsoever about this factor to mum or I  from the G.P.’s

N.B. A Stroke is classed as a convulsive disorder!

  • Amoxicillin:  An association between Antibiotic exposure and Asthma
  • Is accepted both by the Medical Profession and the Department of Social Security in the U.K.  and the Health Department in Australia.

‘However, General Practitioners and the general public are either apparently unaware of this association or have not drawn from it that exposure to certain or all antibiotics for medicinal purposes, may actually cause asthma.  Antibiotics are known to have side-effects, ‘allergic’ reactions to antibiotics such as Penicillin have been documented in medical literature for over 40 years.  The severity of these side-effects which also have the symptom of an asthmatic attack, may range from a simple rash to anaphylaxis.  It is now time to reconsider whether the side-effects of antibiotics should any longer be described as ‘allergies’, implying that the problem lies with the patient rather than with the drug.  It is time that we acknowledge that drugs producing an ‘allergic’ response are toxic and in fact producing side-effects which are in many cases symptomatic of poisoning.’   ‘Some antibiotics which have been reported in the Medical Literature as causing asthma in certain individuals include Penicillin, Amoxycillin, Cephalosporins etc.’

Employees of a Pharmaceutical Company producing Amoxycillin suffered from Rhinitis and Asthma Workers in the Pharmaceutical Industry developed Asthma after exposure to 7-aminocephalosporanic acid, an intermediate used in the production of Cephalosporine.

Individuals who had Anaphylactic Reactions following oral or intramuscular exposure to Penicillin.  Laboratory studies using blood samples from these individuals showed the release of Histamine (an enzyme that causes local dilation of the blood vessels and increased permeability of the blood vessel walls) by Leucocytes (white blood cells which are primarily responsible for fighting infection and foreign substances).  Lisa Landymore-Lim.

  • Comments from:   Medical Research Council Epidemiologist (U.K.)
  • ‘Your results look most interesting & suggestive.’

That’s it?’

Smacks of Real Concern, don’t you think?

Other Drugs mum was taking on prescription are:

  • Symvastatin:  A Scientific study confirms that the use of Statins may deplete the body’s supplies of Co-enzyme Q10 which helps to keep the heart healthy. These drugs have been linked to decreased heart muscle function and increased risk of Stroke.

There are over 900 studies showing the risks of Statin Drugs, which include – Anaemia, Cataracts, Pancreatic Dysfunction, Hepatic Dysfunction (due to the potential increase in liver enzymes patients must be monitored for normal liver function), along with Cognitive loss, plus Immune System Suppression.

*Neither mum nor I were ever told about any of this!

Now let’s see.  Monitoring her for Anaemia, monitoring her Liver Function, even a mention of Co-Q10?  Nope!

The other G.P. in the surgery noted in mum’s medical records:

N.B. Carbamazepine increases risk of Hyponatraemia if given with diuretic.      Is Furosemide not a diuretic?

 Guess what?  Was mum told?  You guessed right!  Nope!

  • Carbamazepine:  May decrease the number of white blood cells, red blood cells or platelets in the blood! In rare cases the loss of platelets can become Life-Threatening.. This occurs commonly enough that a doctor may recommend frequent blood tests during first few months of use, followed by three or four tests per year for established patients.  In the U.K. testing is usually done typically once per year.

Can cause Aplastic Anaemia.  Call your doctor immediately if -sore throat, or other signs of infection.  Feeling tired/drowsiness  (told to various G.P.’s).     Retention of water in the body tissues. (Slight swelling in  foot?).

Now for the best bit.

Use with Caution in Elderly people, raised pressure in the eye (Glaucoma).

Mum had a family history of this but only attended the Hospital eye department during the last and penultimate years.

If  Carbamazepine is taken with diuretics such as Furosemide there may be an increased chance of a fall in the level of Sodium in the blood.

Serious Reactions:  Pulmonary Hypersensitivity, Arrhythmias, Seizure Exacerbation, Thrombocytopaenia, Water Intoxication.

Pulmonary Symptoms of Overdose:  may include Seizures, Unsteadiness, Rapid or Pounding Heartbeat.

G.P.  Knew mum was taking Carbamazepine, which had the above Serious Reactions which included Rapid Heartbeat – Arrhythmias, and even diagnosed that she could have ‘super added cardiac failure’?

Was any mention of this Drug told to either of us?  Nope!

Side Effects:  Cardiovascular System Congestive Heart Failure, Aggravation of Hypertension/Hypotension, Arrhythmias, Thromboembolism etc.

How’s that for a Timebomb waiting to happen?

More to the point, is this all that the Medical Profession have to offer?

If so, then they have not Truly come as far as they pride themselves, and they really, really need to get back to the drawing board, because no-one would voluntarily take something which could cause themselves to have Congestive heart failure, High blood pressure or a Thrombosis if they had a much safer alternative.  Hey, and just think, this is only one Drug! 

It is like trading one threat to Life with another.   It’s not Truly much of a choice is it? 

What is it that they cannot see or understand?

  • Heads you Lose – Tails you Cannot win!
  • Act Two Coming Soon.