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Prescription medication

Old Aug 9th 2011, 8:36 am
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Post Prescription medication

I've been on prescription medication for a few years, one for PMS and one for chronic back pain. I've read the healthcare wiki, which is really really helpful as far as explaining the US system.

I'm aware that strong painkillers/opiates are a hot topic in the US and any doctor is unlikely to be happy with me just staying on regular strong painkillers without looking at some other solution. Is that the case?

As for my other medication are they likely to be happy to continue prescribing it to me as it works fantastically well or will they be more likely to want a total review?

Anyone have experience with chronic conditions requiring medication?

As a precaution I'm planning to make sure I have a couple of months supply of my medication when we move, as even in the best case I can just continue to get the same or similar pills it's likely to be a couple of months at least of wrangling with health insurance and finding a doctor.
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Old Aug 9th 2011, 12:25 pm
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Default Re: Prescription medication

Originally Posted by MummyKitty View Post
I've been on prescription medication for a few years, one for PMS and one for chronic back pain. I've read the healthcare wiki, which is really really helpful as far as explaining the US system.

I'm aware that strong painkillers/opiates are a hot topic in the US and any doctor is unlikely to be happy with me just staying on regular strong painkillers without looking at some other solution. Is that the case?

As for my other medication are they likely to be happy to continue prescribing it to me as it works fantastically well or will they be more likely to want a total review?

Anyone have experience with chronic conditions requiring medication?

As a precaution I'm planning to make sure I have a couple of months supply of my medication when we move, as even in the best case I can just continue to get the same or similar pills it's likely to be a couple of months at least of wrangling with health insurance and finding a doctor.
Initially, they may continue the same medication (what exactly is it, as some pain medications available in the UK are not available here, or at least NOT in the same doses) just so you don't have any withdrawal issues. However, expect to be sent to a Pain Clinic where you will be treated by an anesthesiologist. Strict DEA regulations discourage physicians from prescribing narcotic pain medication in a chronic situation.

I have no idea about the PMS. Do you mean meds for pain or anxiety or both? Benzos should be fine, prozac will require a reassessment by your FP, pain meds will have the same issue as the back pain situation if they are narcotic.
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Old Aug 9th 2011, 2:19 pm
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Default Re: Prescription medication

Thank you for the help. Yes it's Prozac (fluoxetine) and I'm on 30mg codeine/500mg paracetamol as needed.
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Old Aug 9th 2011, 2:48 pm
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Default Re: Prescription medication

Originally Posted by MummyKitty View Post
Thank you for the help. Yes it's Prozac (fluoxetine) and I'm on 30mg codeine/500mg paracetamol as needed.
There shouldn't be any problem getting either of those drugs in the US with a slight variation for the codeine prescription. Some doctors (very few) may not want to prescribe Prozac because they dislike all SSRIs but there isn't any laws against prescribing SSRIs in any quantity desired (up to the maximum dosage allowed).

Acetaminophen-Codeine is a schedule III drug so that is not regulated either. Pure codeine is not available by prescription. Acetaminophen-Codeine greater than 300 mg/60 mg is not available in the US by prescription and then you will need to be prescribed a schedule II drug if something stronger is needed. I suppose that if you wanted to take exactly the same dosage as the UK, you could always take a Tylenol tablet (non prescription) with the prescription but that is not recommended since too much Tylenol can cause stomach problems.

If a drug is listed at drugstore.com, that means it is an unregulated drug (not a schedule II drug) and you can easily get them from any doctor.

http://www.drugstore.com/pharmacy/dr...HCl&trx=1Z5007
http://www.drugstore.com/acetaminoph...qxn00406048501

The following is a list of restricted schedule II drugs.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...e_II_drugs_(US)

Last edited by Michael; Aug 9th 2011 at 4:07 pm.
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Old Aug 9th 2011, 3:28 pm
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Default Re: Prescription medication

Originally Posted by MummyKitty View Post
As a precaution I'm planning to make sure I have a couple of months supply of my medication when we move, as even in the best case I can just continue to get the same or similar pills it's likely to be a couple of months at least of wrangling with health insurance and finding a doctor.
I'm not sure if it'll be a problem or not, but do make sure you've got a doctors note for the codeine, just in case...
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Old Aug 9th 2011, 4:25 pm
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Default Re: Prescription medication

Originally Posted by Michael View Post
Acetaminophen-Codeine is a schedule III drug so that is not regulated either. Pure codeine is not available by prescription. Acetaminophen-Codeine greater than 300 mg/60 mg is not available in the US by prescription and then you will need to be prescribed a schedule II drug if something stronger is needed. I suppose that if you wanted to take exactly the same dosage as the UK, you could always take a Tylenol tablet (non prescription) with the prescription but that is not recommended since too much Tylenol can cause stomach problems.

I've always been told by doctors Tylenol is easy on the stomach and not likely to cause stomach problems, I have stomach issues and tylenol is what doctors always tell me to take, but it can be hard on the liver.
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Old Aug 9th 2011, 4:45 pm
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Default Re: Prescription medication

Originally Posted by MummyKitty View Post
I've been on prescription medication for a few years, one for PMS and one for chronic back pain. I've read the healthcare wiki, which is really really helpful as far as explaining the US system.

I'm aware that strong painkillers/opiates are a hot topic in the US and any doctor is unlikely to be happy with me just staying on regular strong painkillers without looking at some other solution. Is that the case?

As for my other medication are they likely to be happy to continue prescribing it to me as it works fantastically well or will they be more likely to want a total review?

Anyone have experience with chronic conditions requiring medication?

As a precaution I'm planning to make sure I have a couple of months supply of my medication when we move, as even in the best case I can just continue to get the same or similar pills it's likely to be a couple of months at least of wrangling with health insurance and finding a doctor.
You need to check what meds can legally be brought into the US...start here.
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Old Aug 9th 2011, 5:19 pm
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Default Re: Prescription medication

Originally Posted by Jsmth321 View Post
I've always been told by doctors Tylenol is easy on the stomach and not likely to cause stomach problems, I have stomach issues and tylenol is what doctors always tell me to take, but it can be hard on the liver.
Maybe it is the liver. I just know that very high dosages of Tylenol is not good to take and that is why the maximum codeine/tylenol combination prescription has less tylenol in the US than in the UK.
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Old Aug 9th 2011, 5:34 pm
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Default Re: Prescription medication

Originally Posted by Michael View Post
There shouldn't be any problem getting either of those drugs in the US with a slight variation for the codeine prescription. Some doctors (very few) may not want to prescribe Prozac because they dislike all SSRIs but there isn't any laws against prescribing SSRIs in any quantity desired (up to the maximum dosage allowed).

Acetaminophen-Codeine is a schedule III drug so that is not regulated either. Pure codeine is not available by prescription. Acetaminophen-Codeine greater than 300 mg/60 mg is not available in the US by prescription and then you will need to be prescribed a schedule II drug if something stronger is needed. I suppose that if you wanted to take exactly the same dosage as the UK, you could always take a Tylenol tablet (non prescription) with the prescription but that is not recommended since too much Tylenol can cause stomach problems.

If a drug is listed at drugstore.com, that means it is an unregulated drug (not a schedule II drug) and you can easily get them from any doctor.

http://www.drugstore.com/pharmacy/dr...HCl&trx=1Z5007
http://www.drugstore.com/acetaminoph...qxn00406048501

The following is a list of restricted schedule II drugs.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...e_II_drugs_(US)
Well, Tylenol 3 (acet+codeine) is a controlled drug. At least it is here in Mass., and federally as well. You will need a prescription. Most doctors will be very hesitant to prescribe it for any extended period of time. We mostly prescribe it post surgery for a period not usually exceeding 2 weeks. BRING a prescription with you if you are coming into the US. Just in case.

Originally Posted by Michael View Post
Maybe it is the liver. I just know that very high dosages of Tylenol is not good to take and that is why the maximum codeine/tylenol combination prescription has less tylenol in the US than in the UK.
Yes, it is definitely the liver that is most harmed with tylenol. I know of a patient who had irreversible liver failure and subsequently needed a transplant after consuming 2 tylenol 1s and 0.5 can of beer. A deadly combo.
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Old Aug 9th 2011, 7:53 pm
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Default Re: Prescription medication

Originally Posted by BILDER View Post
Well, Tylenol 3 (acet+codeine) is a controlled drug. At least it is here in Mass., and federally as well. You will need a prescription. Most doctors will be very hesitant to prescribe it for any extended period of time. We mostly prescribe it post surgery for a period not usually exceeding 2 weeks. BRING a prescription with you if you are coming into the US. Just in case.
I said it was a prescription schedule III drug which doesn't have any restrictions for a doctor prescribing the drug. It is not a controlled drug (schedule II drugs).
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Old Aug 9th 2011, 8:10 pm
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Default Re: Prescription medication

Originally Posted by Michael View Post
I said it was a prescription schedule III drug which doesn't have any restrictions for a doctor prescribing the drug. It is not a controlled drug (schedule II drugs).
Do you know if prescription codeine meds can be brought into the US...I know non prescription meds can't as codeine is a class III drug?

You can't take prescription codeine meds into some countries...don't know if the US is one.
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Old Aug 9th 2011, 8:52 pm
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Default Re: Prescription medication

Originally Posted by Jerseygirl View Post
Do you know if prescription codeine meds can be brought into the US...I know non prescription meds can't as codeine is a class III drug?

You can't take prescription codeine meds into some countries...don't know if the US is one.
Pure codeine such as Contrin time released drugs are sold as schedule III prescription drugs and non prescription cough syrups are sold with a small amounts of codeine. So a 90 day supply of either of those drugs should be allowed to be brought into the US.

http://www.enotes.com/drugs-substanc...ia/codeine/law

The law seems to indicate that all schedule II, III, IV, and V drugs for personal use that are prescribed by a physician are allowed to be brought into the US.

http://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/21...ad-426992.html
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Old Aug 9th 2011, 8:56 pm
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Default Re: Prescription medication

Originally Posted by Michael View Post
Pure codeine such as Contrin time released drugs are sold as schedule III prescription drugs and non prescription cough syrups are sold with a small amounts of codeine. So a 90 day supply of either of those drugs should be allowed to be brought into the US.

http://www.enotes.com/drugs-substanc...ia/codeine/law

The law seems to indicate that all schedule II, III, IV, and V drugs for personal use that are prescribed by a physician are allowed to be brought into the US.

http://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/21...ad-426992.html
OK thanks Michael.
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Old Aug 9th 2011, 9:49 pm
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Default Re: Prescription medication

Originally Posted by Michael View Post
Pure codeine such as Contrin time released drugs are sold as schedule III prescription drugs and non prescription cough syrups are sold with a small amounts of codeine. So a 90 day supply of either of those drugs should be allowed to be brought into the US.

http://www.enotes.com/drugs-substanc...ia/codeine/law
Wow. That's interesting. My husband and I, when we travel to either Australia or the UK, buy Solpadeine Plus or Nurofen Plus to bring back with us. I know that it's restricted over there too (the UK always asks for ID and notes it down somehow in a database) but I had no idea of the penalties for bringing it into the US without a prescription. My husband typically uses it for back pain or for when he's played rugby; I guess I'll have to rethink that strategy.
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Old Aug 10th 2011, 2:54 am
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Default Re: Prescription medication

Originally Posted by MummyKitty View Post
I've been on prescription medication for a few years, one for PMS and one for chronic back pain. I've read the healthcare wiki, which is really really helpful as far as explaining the US system.

I'm aware that strong painkillers/opiates are a hot topic in the US and any doctor is unlikely to be happy with me just staying on regular strong painkillers without looking at some other solution. Is that the case?

As for my other medication are they likely to be happy to continue prescribing it to me as it works fantastically well or will they be more likely to want a total review?

Anyone have experience with chronic conditions requiring medication?

As a precaution I'm planning to make sure I have a couple of months supply of my medication when we move, as even in the best case I can just continue to get the same or similar pills it's likely to be a couple of months at least of wrangling with health insurance and finding a doctor.
I will say that you may get a few weeks supply.......but because this is a sue crazy society your US doc will want to do a complete physical and perhaps a psychiatric opinion to continue with your prescriptions ( just to keep himself safe) It is the right approach IMO. Good luck!
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