January 05, 2007

Top 20 general medicines

I am not allopathic fan and avoids as much as possible. But (therefore) when time comes I don't get name of any medicine. Here is one great article (which disappeared therefore can't add link) which discusses top 20 medicines.... added here as an handy reference...


1. Claritin

One dose helps halt hay fever and other sinus allergies for up to 24 hours, compared with 4 to 6 hours for other antihistamines. Claritin is also the first OTC antihistamine that's truly nonsedating, which means you can finally operate heavy machinery (or just drive your car). One caution: Claritin-D also contains a decongesting stimulant, so take it at least 4 hours before bedtime.


2. Benadryl

Whether it's the burning of a bee sting or the itching of poison ivy, skin reactions involve more histamine—the body's allergy-causing chemical—than sinus flare-ups do. As a result, Claritin may not cut it.

Maximize it: Mix Benadryl with Tagamet, an OTC antacid.


3. Lamisil AT

Lamisil AT inhibits an essential component of the fungal cell membrane.


4. Solarcaine

It uses the king of the 'caines: benzocaine. In addition to being a powerful painkiller, benzocaine may be safer than other anesthetics, such as lidocaine, which can cause side effects, such as blurry vision and dizziness..

Maximize it: Before you reach for the benzocaine fire extinguisher, run your scorched skin under cool water to prevent blistering (don't use cold water, because the drastic temperature change can aggravate your epidermis).


5. Zilactin Cold Sore Gel

It leads a double life at the drugstore. Though Zilactin is marketed as a cold-sore medication, pharmacists chose it for canker sores because it contains benzyl alcohol. Like a liquid bandage, benzyl alcohol temporarily seals off the sore, protecting it from the irritation caused by eating. Minimize the irritation and you'll maximize the healing.


6. Ecotrin

It may save your life and your stomach, thanks to a special, slow-disintegration coating. "Ecotrin is dissolved and absorbed in the intestines, so it lessens the risk of stomach irritation that can occur with regular aspirin. A study in the journal Circulation determined that taking less than 100 mg aspirin daily offers the greatest level of cardiovascular protection, and that higher doses may actually increase the risk of heart trouble.

Maximize it: Don't take Ecotrin and drop an antacid at the same time. The antacid will cause the special coating to dissolve too quickly, turning Ecotrin into reg-ular aspirin.


7. Abreva

Since cold sores are caused by the herpes virus, the only way to knock the disease back into dormancy is with an antiviral medication. Abreva is presently the only topical antiviral treatment available over the counter.


8. Sudafed

It's like nasal Drano. While most other decongestants only reduce sinus swelling, Sudafed also loosens the mucus, thanks to the inclusion of the expectorant guaifenesin. Pharmacists also point out that when Sudafed is combined with a spray decongestant, such as Afrin, it can prevent a person's ears from clogging up during air travel.

Maximize it: Add ibuprofen to your decongestion regimen. A new study published in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology showed that stuffed-up subjects who took ibuprofen with pseudoephedrine—the main ingredient in Sudafed—had 22 percent less congestion than those who took pseudoephedrine by itself.


9. Robitussin

This cough remedy edges ahead for what it doesn't contain as much as for what it does. Whether you choose Robitussin Guaifenesin to loosen the mucus in a congested chest or Robitussin DM to also help quiet a cough, neither formula contains alcohol. Alcohol swells bronchial tissues, which could make the cough worse.


10. Neosporin

Why it won, three reasons: bacitracin, neomycin, and polymyxin.


11. Imodium A-D

Imodium A-D puts the reins on the runs by slowing down the movement of your intestines, whereas other products focus only on decreasing "fluid production." However, if the cause of your distress is payback from a certain Aztec emperor, reach for a bottle of Pepto-Bismol instead: The active ingredient, bismuth subsalicylate, can help kill off stomach bugs.

Maximize it: Drink a milk chaser. "Calcium increases your body's ability to slow the intestines,"


12. Gas-X

Gas-X contains the ingredient proven to stop explosive gas leaks fast: simethicone.


13. Regular Strength Tylenol

Tylenol held a slight edge in a clinical cage match with Aleve.

Take medication early and you can stop the spasm from reaching its worst level.


14. Excedrin Migraine

In addition to acetaminophen, it also has the proven pain-busters aspirin and caffeine.

Migraine sufferers who received two weekly 30-minute head massages reported decreases in headache pain.


15. Mylanta

Mylanta combines two balms for the burn: aluminum hydroxide and magnesium hydroxide. "They work immediately, but their duration is short.

Stick with liquid Mylanta.


16. Prilosec OTC

It contains omeprazole, a chemical that can slow your stomach's acid pumps. Just one pill can decrease acid production, but a 2-week course is necessary for lasting relief.


17. Preparation H

Hemorrhoids are just dilated blood vessels, which are best treated by chemicals called vasoconstrictors. Preparation H contains a vasoconstrictor—phenylephrine—while other brands have only anesthetics.


18. Lotrimin AF

The fungus in your Fruit of the Looms needs to be treated differently than the type between your toes. The combination of the warm, moist environment in your underwear and the ease with which you can scratch the itch ups the odds of a bacterial infection. Enter Lotrimin AF.


19. Advil

Advil owes it all to ibuprofen.


20. Cortaid

Why won? - steroid. The Jason Giambi variety, but a topical steroid called hydrocortisone, which helps relieve both the itching and the inflammation that are caused by an ivy attack. Other topical creams, such as Benadryl and Caladryl, work only to soothe the itch.

Maximize it: Soak in oats. Before you rub on the Cortaid, immerse your itch-afflicted area in a mix of warm water and colloidal oatmeal for at least 15 minutes. One Australian study showed that patients who were treated with colloidal oatmeal for minor burns reported less itching and needed less medicine than those treated with another anti-itch ointment.

Generic equivalent: Hydrocortisone, 1 percent