US Pharm. 2015;40(2):5.

Bethesda, MD—According to an analysis from the National Institutes of Health, nearly 42% of U.S. adults who drink also use medications known to interact with alcohol. This rate increases to 78% for those aged >65 years. The main types of alcohol-interactive drugs reported in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey were antihypertensives, sleeping aids, pain relievers, muscle relaxers, antidiabetes agents, cholesterol medications, antidepressants, and antipsychotics. Adverse effects ranged from mild (nausea, headaches, loss of coordination) to severe (heart problems, internal bleeding, difficulty breathing). The researchers recommend that “people talk to their doctor or pharmacist about whether they should avoid alcohol while taking their prescribed medications.”

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