advertisement
Loading
Workout Finder


PROMOTIONS
65x65-northface201405.jpg Win a voucher from THE NORTH FACE worth $50!
65x65-vivobarefoot-may2014.jpg Win a pair of VIVOBAREFOOT dharma worth $169!
65x65-thomas-d-may2014.png Win a Brazilian Wax Voucher From THOMAS D'ESTHETIQUE worth $120!
65x65-apr2014-nutrition.jpg Win a set of PROSTAR Whey Sample Pack + NUTRITION PARK's Super Shaker + ZANFIT Elite Abstrimmer worth $60.50 in total!
65x65-subscribe-may2014.jpg Subscribe to Men's Health and receive a LIFETRAK Move C300 worth $99!
hsbc_mh.jpg Enjoy 15% off Men's Health Singapore subscription rate





Ask Men's Health
   

Q:
I've unwittingly been taking pain medication that expired last year. Is this dangerous?

advertisement

Most likely not. But you're probably feeling more pain than you should. The expiration date on any medication is the point at which the active ingredient has lost 10 per cent of its effectiveness — and efficacy continues to wane as weeks and months pass.

Whether this is dangerous depends on the medication. In some cases, as the active chemical breaks down, other ingredients can change into new agents that can be dangerous, but studies have yet to confirm this, says Maureen Donovan, PhD, a professor of pharmaceutics at the University of Iowa.

Her advice: Give your expired meds a sniff test, as some drugs smell different when they go bad. Aspirin, for example, reacts with moisture in the air to create acetic acid (vinegar). And when gelatin casing on gelcaps starts to oxidise, it releases a stomach-turning odour you'd be crazy to ignore.

To keep your meds at full strength, Donovan advises against storing them in the medicine cabinet in your steamy bathroom — or in your car. "Store them in a dry, dark place, like a hall closet," she says.

 



READER COMMENTS
(Comments may take up to 15minutes to appear)

No comment has been posted yet!

Leave a Comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd>

More information about formatting options

CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
advertisement
RELATED CONTENT
What Your Urine Says About Your Sexual Health
Worried about that strange burning sensation when you pee? Do something about it.
9 Hawker Dishes Worth Running The Extra Mile For
These delicious local dishes are worth all the endurance running you’re going to have to do to burn them off.
Does alcohol actually decrease my sexual performance?
Yes. Alcohol may rob you of your ability to achieve or maintain an erection...


Copyright © 2014 SPH Magazines Pte Ltd. Co. Regn. No. 196900476M. All rights reserved.
About Us | Career | Privacy Statement | Conditions of Access | SPH Magazines Network | Advertise with Men's Health
Men's Health® is a registered trademark of Rodale Inc. © 2014 Rodale Inc. All rights reserved.
Published under license from Rodale Inc.