Shelf Life of Meds-Expiration Dates

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Shelf Life of Meds-Expiration Dates

Post by ReadyMom on Fri Oct 26, 2018 11:28 am

Drugs may outlast label date

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/05150/512789-114.stm

Billions may be discarded due to makers' expiration time

Monday, May 30, 2005
By Michael Woods, Post-Gazette National Bureau

With a migraine headache threatening, reach for Imitrex, the prescription drug that brings these debilitating headaches to a screeching halt. The pharmacy label warns: "Discard after February 2005." Those tiny tablets cost $16 each, almost their weight in gold.

Can you still take it in May? Ask the same questions for scores of other prescription drugs, which cost people in the United States more than $160 billion annually.

The expiration dates on jugs of milk and cartons of yogurt tell consumers when a product goes bad. That may not always be true with the labels on prescription drugs, according to research that includes a little-known government testing program.

Government tests have found that some drugs stay fresh for years longer, enabling the military to save millions of dollars in replacing "expired" drugs. While the American Medical Association has urged the pharmaceutical industry to see if consumers are wasting money by pitching drugs that are still safe and effective, nothing has been done.

The research raises questions about how seriously consumers should take expiration dates on some medicines but leaves them without key information to make decisions, according to Dr. Stephen R. Byrn, an expert on drug stability at Purdue University.

"A consumer really needs to know what they are doing to take a drug that has expired," Byrn said. "In most cases the data to support using drugs past their expiration date is not available, so, of course, consumers would not be able to get this information."

In dispensing pills, pharmacists use the manufacturer's expiration date to ...   ---CONTINUED---

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Re: Shelf Life of Meds-Expiration Dates

Post by ReadyMom on Fri Oct 26, 2018 11:29 am

Expired, or Not Expired… That is the Question
https://tracemypreps.wordpress.com/2011/11/02/expired-or-not-expired-that-is-the-question/

What medications* do we keep in our preps? We store: 1) over-the-counter (OTC) drugs: ibuprofen (Motrin), acetaminophen (Tylenol), aspirin, diphenhydramine (Benadryl), pseudoephedrine (Sudafed), loratadine (Claritin), guaifenesin (Mucinex), and 2) antibiotics (that I recently posted about): amoxicillin, cephalexin, ciprofloxacin, doxycycline, metronidazole.

How long can they be stored? They have expiration dates, does that mean they go bad?

Let’s start with ---CONTINUED---

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Re: Shelf Life of Meds-Expiration Dates

Post by ReadyMom on Fri Oct 26, 2018 11:31 am

Exclamation Exclamation RECOMMENDED READING Exclamation Exclamation Invaluable information regarding expiration dates of medicines!

The Truth About Expiration Dates
http://www.doomandbloom.net/the-truth-about-expiration-dates-2/

As a physician, I get a lot of questions about expiration dates on medications and whether medications should be thrown out once they hit that date. Those of us in the preparedness community accumulate medicines for use in an uncertain future. Part of the uncertainty is if and when a collapse situation will descend on our society. Even government agencies wonder if their medical supplies will still be effective; it’s time to clear the air about what an expiration date really means.

Expiration dates have been mandated for medications since 1979. This is what they mean: The expiration date is the last date that the pharmaceutical company will guarantee that the drug is at 100% full potency. There is nothing, except in very rare cases, that suggests ... --- CONTINUED---

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Re: Shelf Life of Meds-Expiration Dates

Post by ReadyMom on Fri Oct 26, 2018 11:38 am

The Myth of Drug Expiration Dates
https://www.propublica.org/article/the-myth-of-drug-expiration-dates

Hospitals and pharmacies are required to toss expired drugs, no matter how expensive or vital. Meanwhile the FDA has long known that many remain safe and potent for years longer.

by Marshall Allen July 18, 2017, 5 a.m. EDT

(Snip): The age of the drugs might have been bizarre, but the question the researchers wanted to answer wasn’t. Pharmacies across the country — in major medical centers and in neighborhood strip malls — routinely toss out tons of scarce and potentially valuable prescription drugs when they hit their expiration dates.

Gerona and Cantrell, a pharmacist and toxicologist, knew that the term “expiration date” was a misnomer. The dates on drug labels are simply the point up to which the Food and Drug Administration and pharmaceutical companies guarantee their effectiveness, typically at two or three years. But the dates don’t necessarily mean they’re ineffective immediately after they “expire” — just that there’s no incentive for drugmakers to study whether they could still be usable. ... ---CONTINUED---

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Re: Shelf Life of Meds-Expiration Dates

Post by ReadyMom on Fri Oct 26, 2018 11:40 am

Investigative Report: Do Antibiotic Expiration Dates Matter?
http://thesurvivaldoctor.com/2015/08/05/expired-antibiotics/

The expiration date is not a magic number. This is one of the first things preppers (preparedness-minded people) learn when they start stockpiling. Shelf-stable products tend not to suddenly go rancid on the stamped date. Sometimes they last a long time after that.

Their quality, however, may begin to decrease. A can of vegetables that’s a while past its date may not taste as good. A supplement may be less potent. An antibiotic may not work as well.

The first two situations won’t necessarily kill you. That last one? It could. If the antibiotic doesn’t pull its weight, you’re at the mercy of the infection—which, thanks to that weak medicine you just took, has likely mutated into an antibiotic-resistant strain. Whoops.

So as a prepper, if you store antibiotics, should you immediately replace them when they’re expired? ---CONTINUED---

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