Are There More Specific Questions I Should Ask About My Medications?

When you have a prescription medication filled, or select an over-the-counter medication, here is a more detailed list of questions you might want to ask your pharmacist.

  1. What am I taking this medicine for?
  2. What is the brand name and the generic name of this medicine?
  3. Can I take a generic version of this medicine?
  4. Does this new prescription mean I should stop taking any other medicines?
  5. How much of the medicine should I take and how often do I take it?
  6. Do I need to take it all, or should I stop when I feel better?
  7. How long will I take this medicine? Can I get a refill? How often can I get a refill?
  8. How should I store my medication? Do I need to keep it in the refrigerator?
  9. Are there any tests I need while I am on this medicine?
  10. When should the medicine start working? How can I tell if it is working?
  11. Are there certain foods, drinks (including alcohol), other medicine, or activities to avoid while I'm taking this medicine?
  12. What are the side effects? When should I tell the doctor about a problem or a side effect?
  13. What should I do if I have a side effect?
  14. What should I do if I miss a dose?
  15. What printed information can you give me about this medicine?

Here is a link to a form you can download and take with you to the pharmacy when you pick up a prescription medication: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality – Questions to Before Taking Medications