Getting medication by mail could be dangerous in record heat - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Getting medication by mail could be dangerous in record heat

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LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -

Extremely hot temperatures could deactivate the medicine you take.

Many medications have specific warning labels about temperature specifying that they stay at room temperature, which is about 74 degrees. One expert with Texas Tech's pharmacy school says it the heat can be very dangerous for medications like Insulin.

"Most medications sitting in the heat won't cause you harm, but they just won't work," Pharmacy Regional Dean Charles Seifert said.

Amie Blaszczyk of Texas Tech Pharmacy School says, "I would definitely encourage people who are receiving these medicines to inspect their medicines as much as possible."

"What happens is the degradation of the product or drug is accelerated in the heat. Insulin and Nitroglycerin are two drugs you definitely want to keep out of 105 degree temperatures," Siefert said.

Beatrice Hernandez is a diabetic and she is one of the millions of Americans who receive their medicine by mail. "My insulin is delivered to my home every 3 months but usually I am not home to get it," Hernandez said.

"Insulin is one where its going to degrade really really fast in the heat, so you don't want to leave it outside for long periods," Dr. Seifert said.

Several medicines can deactivate in the heat if they are left out for long periods of time. "Something that might be a creme or something you use topically, oil based med's, absolutely the heats going to destroy that," Dr. Seifert explained.

Expert say you should get your prescriptions the minute they hit your mailbox or see if you can pick up your medicine directly from the pharmacy.

Copyright 2011.  KCBD NewsChannel 11.

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