Wednesday, June 27, 2012


This video is worth watching especially for all pharmacy students. Just a recap, Pharmacokinetics is study of what the body does to the drug. It is basically the time course of drugs in the body. Many questions will be answered here such as:
  1. What are the pharmacokinetic parameters?
  2. How each parameters affect pharmacokinetics?
  3. Why do we need to study pharmacokinetics?

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


As pharmacists/pharmacy technician,  we are often handed with prescriptions that have errors. It is our responsibility to fill only the right one. Lately, I received a question from our fellow pharmacist that boils down to the idea of being "the expert"  in reading prescriptions.  We must be very accurate in understanding the written order or we will put the health of the consumer in jeopardy.  Most of us already knew this, but for the purpose of reviewing, allow me to enumerate the kinds of prescription.

1. Simple Prescription or Ordinary Prescription
2. Generic Prescription
3. Complex Prescription ( Use in prescribing medicines for compounding)
4. Dangerous Drug Board Prescription (DDB Form 172/ Yellow Prescription)PTR number. 

Aside from knowing the kinds of prescription, we must ensure that correct details are written on it.  Most of the prescription bears the following information:
1. Header with Doctor's Name, Address, Contact Number sometimes clinic hours. Some prescription do not have these details, in short this is optional. Especially when the prescription was issued from hospital.
2. Patients Information: Name, Age and Address of the patients.
3. Date of the prescription.
4. Superscription: Rx Symbol
5. Inscription/Transcription: Generic Name of the drug written above the brand name, brand name of the drug which is enclosed in a parenthesis),product preparation (dosage, strength and dosage form),  and quantity required.
6. Subscription: This is mostly written in prescription if it has  instruction for pharmacist regarding how certain drug can be compounded. This is commonly written in Complex Prescription.
7. Signa : This is the specific  instructions for patients on how to take or use the medicine.
8. Name of the Prescriber: This bears the name/ initial/ signature of the prescriber (doctor, dentist, veterinary doctor or any other practitioner licensed to prescribe medicines), license number of the prescriber and PTR Number.

Note that in case of yellow prescription, additional information which is the S2 License Number of the prescriber.

In order to avoid failure,  always take the prescription with you when filling them. Medicines lined up on the shelves may create confusion into what is written. Compare the prescription to the actual medicine you are holding. Make sure to scrutinize the prescription carefully considering all the parts written above. Please consider if the drug has drug or food interactions.  Inform the costumer about this if there's any. If there's anything not clear in the prescription, consult another pharmacist present or call the doctor to verify what is written before filling up the said prescription.

There are so many medicines that need prescriptions. As pharmacists, it is our duty to fill the correct prescriptions and also our duty not to sell Rx medicines without proper prescriptions.

Thursday, June 21, 2012


FDA Philippines advised the consumers and even the grocery store/supermarket owners that they must be vigilant in buying/selling milk products.

Last June 13, 2012 in China, infant milk formula manufactured by Inner Mongolia Yili Industrial Group was recalled due to high level of mercury content. The baby formula produced from November 2011 to May 2012 are the batches affected with the said anomaly. The FDA Philippines clearly identified that Yili baby formula (Quan Yu baby formula) is not registered with them; therefore, it must not be available in any store outlets in the Philippines.

It is important to know that high exposure to mercury can damage the brain, kidney, heart, lungs and immune system that can lead to cancer or peripheral neuropathy. The development of a growing child is also affected once expose to high level of mercury.  

FDA Philippines, advised the public to be watchful in buying milk formula in the market. Make sure that the products are properly labelled with Food Registration Number (FR No.), name of the manufacturer, batch number, when it was manufactured and the expiration date. Always buy milk products in their original packaging and refrain from buying re-packed milk formula, especially when the labels  are not understandable.

In the event of seeing the Yili baby formula elsewhere, FDA Philippines directed the public to report by calling (02)807-8275 or 842-5606.

Source:DOH-FDA Advisory June 20, 2012

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Normal Sleep Requirement

Sleep requirements vary from one person to another and it change throughout the life cycle. Here's a list to remind as the normal range of sleep base on age:
  • Up to 18 hours is a significant amount of sleep for newborns.
  • Adolescents require a total of 9.5 hours of sleep.
  • 7 to 8 hours of sleep is needed by adults to restore their energy. But it is reducing as we age.
Through the use of Polysomnography, the main tool to distinguish sleep physiology, the essential stages of sleep were identified. It is subdivided into REM (Rapid eye movement) sleep and Non-REM sleep. Each stage is a sequence into a deeper sleep. Stages 1 to 4 are under the Non-REM sleep. In aging, Stage 3 and 4, known as deep, restorative sleep, are diminished causing them to have a poor quality of sleep. REM sleep consists of stage 5 in which most dreaming happens. It is said that if you wake up while in REM sleep, you may clearly describe your dreams. Between six and seven hours is the minimum hour our body needs in order to experience these stages.  Sleep fewer than six hours a night will have an effect on our cognitive performance.

What can we do to have a good night sleep?
  1. Go to bed before you feel tired.
  2. Avoid serious discussion before bed time. It is very hard to switch off when something bothers you. I am sure most of you will agree with me on this.
  3. Don’t stay up late doing things around the house.
  4. Put away food. Eating late at night can cause confusion on our digestive system preventing us to sleep.
  5. Avoid drinking coffee or tea. Try some chamomile herbal drink which is best known on its soothing and calming properties.
  6. Keep away from sleeping pills as well as alcohol. They will just worsen your morning by feeling tired. This will also prevents you from experiencing the stages of sleep.
  7. Avoid activities that will increase brainwaves like television and computer before bedtime.
  8. Put away electrical equipment in your bedroom, unplug them if possible. Electromagnetic activity would impede with sleep.
 Sleep well everyone!!!

Read the Labels

We often head to shop without even paying attention to the labels. We certainly need to watch out on what these foods could offer us. Be careful, you are not only adding yummy looking foods to your basket but worst, you are adding extra few pounds to your belly. Before you know it, your size eight trousers will no longer fit you. And that sucks.

Always have keen eyes to five things on food labels.
  • The Sugar content

Sucrose is the common word linked to sugar. But there are other forms present in the food we usually see in the market including glucose, fructose, dextrose, maltose and lactose.  
In the nutrition information panel on the label, we can find figures which we need to be familiar with. In every 100g of the product, sugar between 2g and 10 g per is said to be moderate amount of sugar. 2 g or less per is small amount of sugar while 10 g or more is too much amount of sugar.  This is very vital especially when you are a diabetic person.
  • The Sodium Content

Too much sodium can cause us a lot of trouble. Choose foods with less sodium or salt. In every 100g of food product, 0.1 g or less sodium is small amount while 0.5g or more sodium is too much. Every day we need to consider the salt intake.
  • The Saturated Fat Content

With the increase consumption of saturated fat, bad cholesterol also increases; therefore increasing the risk of heart diseases. Saturated fats are readily available in processed foods. So again, read the labels. In every 100g of food product, 5g or more of saturated fat is too much. 1 g or less of saturates is a small fat while saturate content between 1g and 5g is moderate amount of saturated fat.
  • No-added Sugar Label

This is not true all the time. Products may have artificial sweeteners.  Naturally, sugar can be present in food like fruits and milk. So be extra careful with that.
  • Less Trans Fat

Like saturated fat, trans fat raises the levels of bad cholesterol which increases chance of heart problems. Trans fat are formed by partially hydrogenating plants. So choose food with less trans fat. Watch out for hydrogenating oils on labels of your spreads, biscuits, and other pastry foods.
Nutritional Information are made available to us by food manufacturers to read and be aware of what we intend to offer our bodies. Just spend time in scrutinizing the figures to avoid the unwanted effects of too much of something.

Cups of Coffee a Day, Keeps Dementia Away

In recent study conducted in Florida USA tells us that high level of caffeine in blood (1200ng/ml) of patients suffering from minor cognitive impairment (MCI) avoided progression to dementia. The amount of coffee needed to attain such threshold is 3 to 5 cups daily having 5 cups or 500 mg caffeine as target. 

Photo Courtesy of  Julius Schorzman
Coffee, as we all know, is rich in caffeine and also has anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that may contribute in reducing risk for Alzheimer's Disease.

Related Articles:
Supplementary Data
Coffee May Ward Off Progression of Dementia

Journal of Alzheimer's Disease
Virtual Institute of Pharmacy Technology

The information and reference materials contained here are intended solely for the general information of the reader and NOT intended to replace the advice of a doctor. The owner of this site disclaims any responsibility for the decisions you make based on this information. If you have any health-related questions, persistent health condition or before taking any medication, please consult your health care provider.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Career Opportunity at UnitedHealth Group Philippines

Courtesy of UnitedHealth Group


UnitedHealth Group is working to create the health care system of tomorrow.  

"Already Fortune 25, we are totally focused on innovation and change.  We work a little harder. We aim a little higher. We expect more from ourselves and each other. And at the end of the day, we’re doing a lot of good.

Through our family of businesses and a lot of inspired individuals, we’re building a high-performance health care system that works better for more people in more ways than ever. Now we’re looking to reinforce our team with people who are decisive, brilliant – and built for speed." - UnitedHealth Group


• Analyze benefit requests and secure all necessary data to ensure appropriate. implementation based on applied logic of RxCLAIM (by SXC) pharmacy claim adjudication system. 
• Work with Client Management to implement new and maintain existing benefit plans and client pricing in the pharmacy claim adjudication system. 
• Work with Clinical Pharmacy to implement formulary updates and clinical programs in the pharmacy claim adjudication system. 
• Work with Pharmacy Network Management to implement pharmacy rate changes and network additions in the pharmacy claim adjudication system. 
• Ensure timely communication of any issues and/or information needed to complete a plan request. 
• Develop client specific implementation plans and manage implementation processes in accordance with department protocol. 
• Run queries out of the RxCLAIM adjudication system to secure all necessary information to implement plan requests. 
• Develop and run macros in RxCLAIM to implement plan requests. 
• Perform claim testing to ensure accurate claim adjudication. 
• Maintain acceptable and appropriate quality levels and production turn around times 
• Adhere to all documentation standards within the department. 
• Assist with the development of process improvements for the department. 
• Research and respond to all claims processing inquiries from Client Management, Clinical, and other internal department. 
• Participate in team meetings. 
• May be assigned to work on special projects and business initiatives.


• Bachelor's Degree in Pharmacy Graduate
• Registered Pharmacist
• Any related experience, BPO preferred
• Good communication skills, verbal and written.
• Experience in using MS Windows based PC skills (Word, Excel, Outlook)
• Understanding of basic medical terminology.

For interested applicants, please email your resume to Dearden Santiago (Recruiter) at or you can walk in at UHG Science Hub Tower 1, Campus Avenue corner Turin Street, McKinley, Taguig CIty every Mondays and Wednesdays 10 am to 5 pm. You may also call the contact person at (+632)588-3286.

Source: UnitedHealth Group

Applicants and employers must ensure the integrity and credibility of each other by requesting references or by asking any additional information. site owners and editors are not responsible for safety, salaries, working conditions or any other matters concerning employment.

(+632) 588-328

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Truvada ®: Part of Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy (HAART) for HIV

HIV ATTACHMENT courtesy of Sanao

Truvada ® (manufactured by Gilead Sciences) is indicated for treatment of HIV-1 infection in adults and children 12 yeas of age and older, provided it is given with other anti-retroviral agents. It is a pill composed of two anti-HIV drugs such as Emtriva ® (emtricitabine 200 mg) and Viread ® (tenofovir disoproxil fumarate 300 mg).  This drug is said to be taken once a day with or without food.

Truvada ® is a type of medicine called HIV-1 nucleoside analog reverse transcriptase inhibitor meaning it helps block the enzyme (HIV-1 reverse transcriptase) needed in multiplying the HIV-1. HIV infection makes the immune system weak by destroying the CD4*T cells. But with the help of this drug,  HIV-1 in the blood is reduced and number of CD4*T cells is increased; therefore, the chance of infections or death due to weak immune system (opportunistic infection) is reduced.

Please note that Truvada ® is not a cure for HIV-1 infection or AIDS. Chances of not passing the HIV-1 to other people by sexual contact, sharing needles , or being exposed to blood is not reduced when using this drug. Truvada ® should only be taken with other anti-HIV drugs.

Drug Interactions:
  • Didanosine: Didanosine concentrations is increased by Tenofovir disoproxil fumarate
  • Atazanavir: When taken together with Truvada ®,  atazanavir concentrations decrease and tenofovir concentrations increase.
  • Lopinavir/ritonavir: When taken together with Truvada ®, tenofovir concentrations increase.
Truvada ® should not be taken when already taking drugs with the same composition or active ingredients. These medicines are the following:
  • Atripla ® (efavirenz 600mg/emtricitabine 200mg/tenofovir disoproxil fumarate 300mg)
  • Viread ® (tenofovir disoproxil fumarate 300mg)
  • Emtriva ® (emtricitabine 200mg)
  • Combivir ® (lamivudine/zidovudine)
  • Epivir or Epivir-HBV ® (lamivudine)
  • Epzicom ® (abacavir sulfate/lamivudine)
  • Trizivir ® (abacavir sulfate/lamivudine/zidovudine)

FDA US first approved this drug in the year 2004 for Combination treatment of HIV.  Starting 2010, results of studies and researches lead Truvada ® to the headlines. Government researchers found out that it could actually prevent the infection. Gilead Sciences is awaiting for FDA's decision whether Truvada ® can be classified as first drug to prevent HIV. After submitting all additional materials and documentations, it will take three more months to review its application for the claim.


Note: Truvada ® is available in US only.


The information and reference materials contained here are intended solely for the general information of the reader and NOT intended to replace the advice of a doctor. The owner of this site disclaims any responsibility for the decisions you make based on this information. If you have any health-related questions, persistent health condition or before taking any medication, please consult your health care provider.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Announcement: July 4-5, 2012 Pharmacists Licensure Examination

Photo Courtesy of Dmgerman 

To all pharmacy graduates who intend to take the Pharmacists Licensue Examination in Manila, Baguio, Cebu, and Davao on July 4 & 5, 2012, please be informed that the deadline in filing is June 14, 2012

General Instructions:
  1. PRC will post school/building assignment at PRC premises 1 or 2 days before the examination. Notice of admission is needed in verifying this.
  2. Be at your school/building assignment before 6:30 am on the first day.
  3. Examinees are required to wear school uniform.
  4. Bring the following on examination days:
         - Notice of Admission
          - Official Receipt
          - One piece metered-stamped window mailing envelope
          - 2 or more pencils (No. 2)
          - Ballpens with black ink only
          - One piece long brown envelope
          - One piece long transparent/plastic envelope (for keeping of allowed items and valuables)
     5.  Make sure not to bring PROHIBITED items such as books, notes, review materials containing    coded data, programmable calculators, mobile phones and other similar devices, any kind of bag and other things not listed in the program.

For more details about the upcoming Pharmacists Licensure Examination, please view the program below.

Source: PRC

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Counterfeit Adderall Purchased Online Contains Wrong Active Ingredients, FDA Warns

"Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is warning consumers and health care providers about a counterfeit version of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries’ Adderall® 30 mg tablets that is being purchased on the Internet."  source: NABP read more

Wednesday, June 6, 2012


Senate Bill No. 3140, PHILIPPINE PHARMACY ACT OF 2012a substitution of Senate Bills 746 and 2163.

The following is the link to the Senate Bill No. 3140, 

Committee Report No. 129 
Scope: National
Legislative status: Pending Second Reading, Specal Order (2/28/2012)

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Caution in Using Benzocaine with Babies

Benzocaine is a composition of a drug intended to use for sore throat and sore gums. It is basically use as analgesia and anesthesia to soothe pain in mouth and throat. But the use of benzocaine for such conditions can lead to a more serious case called methemoglobinemia. It is a condition in which the oxygen level present in blood stream are reduced and may result to death.

Because of that, the use of OTC benzocaine is not advisable as relief for sore gums of babies under 2 years old unless prescribed by a doctor. Cases about methemoglobinemia were reported by Pharmacists in US.

Read more...Benzocaine and Babies: Not a Good Mix

Source: FDA US 

The information contained here are intended solely for the general information of the reader and NOT intended to replace the advice of a doctor. The owner of this site disclaims any responsibility for the decisions you make based on this information. If you have any health-related questions, persistent health condition or before taking any medication, please consult your health care provider.