15 Questions to Ask When Your Doctor Prescribes a Drug
March 08

As you probably know by now, I am a huge proponent of becoming an active participant in your healthcare. This can begin with asking the following questions when your doctor recommends a drug:

  1. What does this medication do?
  2. How, when and for how long should I take it?
  3. Is this drug intended to cure my underlying condition or is it intended to give me relief from my symptoms?
  4. What are the side effects? Are they minor or major? Common or rare?
  5. Is it safe take while pregnant or breastfeeding? (If appropriate to you.)
  6. Have long-term studies been done on this drug? Have studies been done for this drug on the elderly or women? (If appropriate to you.) Ask this especially if you are going to take the drug long-term.
  7. Do the benefits outweigh the risks?
  8. Is this dosage individualized for me, or is this a one-dose-fits-all dosage?
  9. Would it be possible to start me at a lower dose and adjust it according to my response?
  10. What herbs, supplements, foods, drinks, or activities should I avoid while taking this medication?
  11. Is it safe for me to take this medication with other drugs or supplements I am taking?
  12. Will any tests be necessary while I am taking this medication?
  13. What should I do if I miss a dose of this medication? Take it immediately when I remember, or wait until my next regularly scheduled dose?
  14. Is there a generic version of the medication?
  15. What are my non-drug alternatives?

Get Our Top 25 Wellness Tips — Sign up for Dr. Lipman’s Free Newsletter

  • Cass McLaughlin

    Why not start with question number 15 and also ask how might I treat with nutrition?

  • http://twitter.com/HormoneSoup Sonya

    That’s exactly what I thought Cass – I always start with Question 15. In my experience, many doctors wouldn’t know the answer unless they practise functional medicine and/or as amazing as Dr. Lipman. A naturopath might know the answer too!

    Otherwise a good list!