Sunday, 27 September 2015

How to: Become a Pharmacist

Easy! Just develop a serious condition that requires a range of medications to offset the side effects of the treatment you receive. In my case my Mum was the main 'pharmacist', and at the peak she was giving me 40 tablets a day.
These have included: Lactulose (although this didn't really do anything), Movicol, Prednisolone, Domperidone, Granisetron, Norethisterone, Paracetamol, Gabapentin, Sevredol, Fentanyl patches and slow release Morphine. I've had a range of different chemo drugs too, that we had to learn the name of so that we knew how long we were going to be at QMC as they took different amounts of time on different days: Vincristine (bleugh!), Etoposide, Doxorubicin, Cyclophosamide and Dacarbazine.
We were given a lot of different leaflets, but none prepared us for the amount of baffling names of drugs. Also, dealing with that many tablets under stress that a mistake could cause problems and under the initial shock of the diagnosis makes the job much harder. Help with that, such as organisation or writing out a plan etc., I think could reduce this stress.
Now I'm coming off painkillers also means that the amount of certain tablets changes between morning, lunchtime and evening. Again, this must be done carefully and slowly to ensure no withdrawal symptoms, and this is a balancing act in itself - however there has been much more help with this.
Despite the stressful situation, she did a great job. Thanks Mum :)

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