Save Money in this Sunday's paper

Q: I had no end of trouble with cheilitis for several years. Eventually, a very practical allergist suspected the benzones in lip sunblocks could be causing the irritation of my lips.

The FDA recently noted that two generic formulations of Concerta (methylphenidate ER) might not work as well as the brand-name medicine.

Q: As a retired industrial hygienist, I take issue with your response to a question about aluminum and Alzheimer’s disease. No link has been established between Al (aluminum) and dementia.

Q: I am a healthy, 53-year-old man with high cholesterol. I take atorvastatin to keep it under control.

Q: For years, I was plagued with at least two annual bouts of cold sores. One outbreak occurred during a visit to New Zealand. I went to a pharmacy for Zovirax, since it was available there without a prescription.

Q: I switched to a mineral salts deodorant crystal to try to get away from aluminum. Now I read that it DOES have aluminum (it’s marked“ammonium alum”).

In 2005, the Food and Drug Administration issued a stern warning that “NSAIDs may cause an increased risk of serious cardiovascular thrombotic events – blood clots, myocardial infarction, heart attack and stroke, which can be fatal.”

Joe and Terry Graedon answer readers’ questions in People’s Pharmacy.

Q: Yesterday, my next-door neighbor, a nurse, vented about doctors she witnesses moving from patient to patient without washing their hands or wearing gloves. According to her, MRSA and C. diff infections are rampant at this hospital. When nurses have suggested hand-washing or gloves to these doctors, there have been disciplinary comments placed in their personnel records.

Q: I have two daughters, ages 6 and 11. My oldest daughter brought home head lice, and it was a nightmare. Over-the-counter lice shampoos did nothing.

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Joe and Terry Graedon
Joe and Terry Graedon are authors of The People's Pharmacy book and host an award-winning health talk show on public radio.