Side Effects of Medicines


Did you know that around 66% of American adults take prescription drugs? Prescription medications are a common part of millions of lives today. They are crucial in managing everything from the common cold and alleviating pain to chronic illnesses and treating infections. However, apart from their ability to treat intended ailments, these medications often carry potential side effects ranging from mild inconveniences to severe, life-threatening complications.

There’s even a scientific term for it: Adverse Drug Reactions or ADR. A study reveals that there were over 1.25 million ADR cases reported in 2022, with around 175,000 deaths. Therefore, it’s crucial for patients to be informed about the possible side effects of any medicine that they have been prescribed.

This is particularly true for newer medications like Trepezza, which has been effective in treating thyroid eye disease (TED) but has been associated with severe side effects. Let’s look at the most common medications with dangerous side effects so that patients can make informed decisions about their treatment.

Tepezza (Teprotumumab)

Tepezza or Teprotumumab, was approved by the FDA in 2020 to treat TED, a serious autoimmune condition affecting the eyes. The medicine is used to inhibit the insulin-like growth factor-1 receptor (IGF-1R), which is known for causing the development and progression of TED.

By blocking IGF-1R, Tepezza prevents tissue expansion behind the eyes, reduces inflammation, and helps alleviate TED symptoms like bulging eyes, double vision, etc. However, TorHoerman Law says that the medicine might cause permanent hearing loss.

Those suffering from TED who have been administered Tepezza infusions have experienced conditions like tinnitus, partial or permanent hearing loss, sensorineural hearing loss, increased sound sensitivity, and more.

Those who have experienced the side effects of the medications  have filed the Tepezza lawsuit against the manufacturer, Horizon Therapeutics The lawsuits claim that the company failed to warn patients about potential hearing loss effects adequately.

Antibiotics (Fluoroquinolones)

For the uninitiated, Fluoroquinolones are a class of antibiotics used to treat a range of bacterial infections, including respiratory tract and skin infections. They are broad-spectrum antibiotics, which means they can kill a wide range of bacteria. However, because of their effectiveness, fluoroquinolones have been overprescribed in some cases, and there have been concerns about antibiotic resistance against future infections.

These antibiotics are lifesaving, but they are not without risks. While users might experience nausea and vomiting, diarrhoea, dizziness, and tendon issues after taking Fluoroquinolones, the real concern is far more dangerous. The U.S. FDA has warned people about possibly permanent nerve damage after administering these antibiotics by mouth or through injection.

Due to their potentially serious side effects, Fluoroquinolones should be used only when necessary and cautiously. If necessary, pick an alternative antibiotic to protect your health.

Antidepressants (SSRIs and SNRIs)

Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) and Serotonin-Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors (SNRIs) are common medications to treat a range of mental health issues like depression, anxiety, OCD, PTSD, and more. They increase the levels of certain neurotransmitters, such as serotonin and norepinephrine, in the brand to regulate mood and emotions.

SSRIs and SNRIs are the most widely prescribed antidepressants because of their effectiveness and lower side effect profiles. These medications are meant to be used for short-term treatment, but some individuals may require long-term maintenance therapy to manage their conditions. It’s common to experience nausea, weight change, sexual dysfunction, and insomnia.

However, these medications are also known to cause suicidal thoughts and serotonin syndrome in patients. The latter is a potentially life-threatening condition that causes excessive serotonin levels, causing agitation, confusion, palpitations, and high blood pressure. Due to such severe side effects, close monitoring of individuals on SSRIs and SNRIs is a must. Proactive measures like regular checkups, discussing emerging symptoms, and dose adjustments can help minimize the risk of complications.

Statins (Cholesterol-Lowering Medications)

Statins are widely prescribed by healthcare professionals to manage cholesterol levels, especially low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. These medications work by inhibiting a liver enzyme responsible for producing cholesterol. By reducing cholesterol production and increasing the removal of LDL from the blood, these medications prevent heart attacks, strokes, and other cardiovascular events.

The common side effects include muscle pain, weakness, and elevated liver enzymes. But in some rare cases, statins can also cause Rhabdomyolysis, which is a breakdown of muscle tissue and liver damage. Therefore, it’s a must for patients taking statins to stay on top of monitoring their liver function and muscle health through regular blood tests.

So, these are the potential dangers caused by some commonly prescribed medications by healthcare professionals. These medications might be life-saving but may cause serious long-term harm as well. Therefore, it’s crucial to research medicines prescribed to you and discuss their side effects with your doctor openly.

Pin It