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Medicine Overuse Tests
Most of us have at some time or the other taken pills or medicines without a prescription, sometimes a painkiller for a headache or an antacid after an unusually heavy meal or some medication for nausea if you have motion sickness. OTC or over-the- counter medications are medicines that can be bought without a prescription from the doctor, most OTC medicines are relatively safe and can be used for treating minor health issues, however, and excessive use of these medicines can have some serious impact on a person's health. If you are someone who self-medicates regularly then it is highly advisable to get a Medicine Overuse Test done to assess the damage it might have caused to your body.
A Medicine Overuse Test includes tests that help in determining the damage to various functions and organs in the body, that abuse of medicines may be causing; these include tests like Complete Blood Test, Kidney Function Test, Liver Function Test, Urine Test, etc. In the Medicine Overuse Test, a sample is taken by the phlebotomist and sent to the lab to perform specific tests.
Why Medicine Overuse Test is important?
Medicines while essential in treating a variety of ailments and restoring health can also have a lot of different effects. Medicines are formulated using many types of ingredients, many of which are very powerful and cause a lot of health complications if taken in excess.
Most people tend to self-diagnose and medicate for a host of reasons like health issues that seem too minor to warrant a visit to the doctor, time constraints and long wait times at clinics, saving money, etc. But, it is important to understand that self-medication can lead to serious health problems which might require extensive clinical intervention later.
Some commonly overused medicines include:
- Cough and cold medicines
- Motion sickness pills
- Fever medications
Some common side effects of medicines are:
- Dry Mouth
If you regularly take medications or self-medicate for small health issues then it is extremely important to get a Medicine Overuse Test done to understand the impact. The most vulnerable groups to side effects of medicines are infants, pregnant women, lactating mothers, elderly people or people with comorbidities. Side effects from medications range from barely noticeable to life threatening; also the impact is quite different in case of long term overuse. In most cases of long term excessive use of medications, the impact can be on the kidney, liver, brain etc.
How Medicine Overuse Test is performed?
While there is no one specific Medicine Overuse Test that looks for the signs of damage due to abuse of medications, there are many tests that a doctor may recommend, determining where and how extensive the damage is. Generally, a Medicine Overuse Test would include a complete blood test, a Kidney Function Test, a Liver Function Test, a Urine Test, etc. and others as recommended by the doctor.