Have you ever taken the wrong meds?

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Retired Mom
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   Posted 3/13/2010 8:48 PM (GMT -6)   
OK, so I know many of us take lots of meds and that it's really easy to mix some of them up.  Well I decided that I would split my meds...one week at a time into AM/PM sections in a large color coded and divided med container.  I've felt like I would be less likely to confuse day/night or Monday/Tuesday by using one of these. 

All of this leads up to the day that wouldn't end.  I had a horrible night likely from a not so good reaction to Chinese food, but actually got out of bed much later than normal.  My daughter had a recital of sorts today, so I was to go with my family to enjoy.  As I said, I got up late from a bad night.  I immediately took my meds for the day (prevacid/BP med/Xanaz CR/Vitamin D) and then added the new water pill/BP Pill and my Ultracet.  I started feeling really strange and bad, but I couldn't say why.  I just felt "sick" and was dizzy.  So then I included my Dilaudid and Ultracet again (both as directed, of course).
This evening, after taking my HGH shot, I went to take my regular meds and noticed that there were no meds in the PM section of the box and two days worth of AM pills left.  The pills I actuallly took THIS MORNING were my night meds. (excluding the birth control pill) Those were PB meds, Prevacid, Vitamin D, Aspirin and one and one-half ambien pills.  I guess that explains what kept me so dizzy and out of focus all day.
I feel like an IDIOT!  yeah turn yeah turn yeah  smhair
Formerly PrayingForRealRelief...

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   Posted 3/13/2010 9:25 PM (GMT -6)   
LOL!! Oh my goodness! I don't mean to laugh, but this is soooo why my husband puts my meds together every evening! I just shared your post with him and we got such a kick out of things that have happened like this to all of us. When my daughter-in-love (and law, just my knickname for her) had our little granddaughter, I flew to Virginia where they were stationed at the time. On the way to the airport I realized that I had taken my Ambien! (out of focus and dizzy!) Five hours on a plane by myself, changing planes...oh my! I wasn't worried a bit, in fact all I felt was pretty dingy, it was my hubby that was terrified! That was just for starters on things I've done left to my own devises! Take care and maybe we could all learn a lesson or two!
I'm called Cat, but as there are few other Cat's on here, I put the number of cats I have and combined it to spell out Catz4
DXed-Syringomyelia C-1 to T-1, Hypothyroidism, Diabetes Type II, IBS, Panic Disorder, ICC , Fibromyalgia, Migraines, Bipolar Disorder, Chronic Muscle Spasms, Torn Rotator Cuff in Left Shoulder, Had emergency surgery for ruptured bowel in '05 w/colostomy and takedown in '06.
Too many meds to name/Too many allergic reactions/sensitivities to too many drugs to name. Meds for Panic Disorder, Pain, Bipolar, IBS, Hypothroidism, Diabetes, Insomnia and then some.

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Date Joined Jan 2010
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   Posted 3/13/2010 10:26 PM (GMT -6)   
Can't say for sure I've taken the wrong pills but there's been more than once I've sat and looked at bottles and said to myself, "Oh Crap, did I take that one already" Take care.

Left pelvic CRP due to botched hysterectomy. Right kidney removed due to cancer.

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   Posted 3/13/2010 10:38 PM (GMT -6)   
I'd have to say the same thing JKay did. That's why I now write down every med. when I take it -- well, except when I forget to write it down! LOL So I'm sure I've taken an extra something here or there, but mostly if I can't remember I tend to err on the conservative side and just wait for the next dose. I do have one of the daily pill box things, but I'd have to get at least two of them for everything to fit. Maybe one of these days I will - when I run out of scrap paper for writing things down!


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   Posted 3/13/2010 11:16 PM (GMT -6)   
PALady, they make some REALLY BIG daily pill boxes now! With 4 large compartments for each day of the week! Which is the kind that I have, LOL!

But even with that, I've almost put x medication in the compartment for y medication, just because they look so much alike! I have to really be careful....

Retiredmom, I'm SO glad you're OK! And that you can laugh!

Of course, that goes for the rest of you too! Great story about the conversation with the kitty, Dani!
Lyme Disease, Babesiosis, Ehrlichiosis, AIH, Hashimoto's, lupus, fibro, RA, celiac disease, asthma, psoriasis, Raynaud's, hypertension, osteopenia, sleep apnea, RLS, GERD, DDD, L3-4 and L4-5 radiculopathy -> severe lower back pain, cubital tunnel, tarsal tunnel, Doxycycline, Zithromax, Prednisone, Imuran, Plaquenil, Lyrica, Cymbalta, Levothyroxine, Atenolol, Cozaar, Zyrtec, Fosamax, Albuterol, Prilosec, CPAP


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   Posted 3/13/2010 11:24 PM (GMT -6)   
This is a great topic to bring up, Retiredmom! Thanks for having the courage to admit to something we are all very capable of doing.

I've actually taken the wrong amount of insulin before.... I take 2 at a time in the morning and evening. Picked up one bottle, took the insulin, set bottle back down. With this fibro brain when I looked back at the bottles I had absolutely NO idea which I had taken. Luckily time this it happened ~ I guessed right, but the next time I didn't. So I had way too much insulin in my system and had to balance it with food/carbs/sugar. I do take them in a certain order but this time I really goofed up. Don't need that mistake again!

"Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit, but Wisdom is knowing not to put it in a fruit salad."

(> <) Co-Moderator Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Forums
Fibromyalgia, PTSD, UC, Diabetic on insulin, collapsed disk, arthritis scattered around and a few other delights.

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Date Joined Oct 2005
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   Posted 3/14/2010 4:37 AM (GMT -6)   
I use pill containers with AM and PM compartments.To make a mistake is not worth the risk.

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Date Joined Apr 2009
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   Posted 3/14/2010 5:24 AM (GMT -6)   
I agree, Chutz! This is a great topic.

I have done the same thing as PAlady and JKay--taken my dose and then had no idea that I took it, or couldn't remember.

It can be scary if you're on strong medications. I have my husband give me my dose for the day now every morning, so this doesn't happen.



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   Posted 3/14/2010 6:13 AM (GMT -6)   
Hey reatiredmom , I think your being harsh on yourself your human you get distracted and then the meds are not known to make you more sure of yourself thats for sure and you made a mistake .I haven't done exactly done that but I had it like Jkay said it , not remembering if I took a certain one .You said the chinese food may have made you ill too so maybe it was that , also as I'm sure you know pain meds make you unsure sometimes but you've come thru it so I say good job and thanks for sharing that expierence .I think it wll help others and thats good .
HIV+ also Hep c , need hip replacement surgery on hold because of unknown but cellulitus-like ailment  .most pain from hip condition and cellulitus-like ailment .hands numb may have carpal tunnel syndrome now . Great frustration because doctors unable to diagnos ailment              .Medecines - Oxycontin , percocet ,  Celelbrex , lasix .

Retired Mom
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   Posted 3/14/2010 8:58 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks all. I made it through the night, but I have to admit I'm not up for much today.

I appreciate all of you!
Formerly PrayingForRealRelief...

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   Posted 3/14/2010 1:13 PM (GMT -6)   
Wow, does this ever hit home! I've come close to taking the wrong meds, and last night, I think I took my evening meds twice - way scary!

I am going to pick up one of those weekly day/night med cases. Right now, I just have my meds laid out in the order I take them each morning and night, and then the extra night medicine goes behind them. Not a good system, but I'm pretty consistent for taking them at the proper times so it's mostly worked well.

Good topic of discussion retiredmom...thanks for sharing!

Conditions: Fibromyalgia, Chronic Pelvic Pain, FAI, Reynauds, IBS, Interstitial Cystitis, Surgical Adhesions, Ophthalmic Migraines, Severe Hot Flashes (Surgical Menopause and drug related), plus physically unable to vomit due to Nissen, and I have extremely tiny veins...a joy for blood work or IV's)
Surgeries: Appendix, Uterus, Nissen Fundoplication for GERD, Left Ovary, Gallbladder, Right Ovary, TVT
Medications: Oxycontin, Tramacet, Cymbalta, Flexeril, Clonidine plus Vitamin D and Multi-Vitamin daily

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   Posted 3/14/2010 1:21 PM (GMT -6)   
Wow...I know that we all take many meds throughout the day...I know that I do. I don't use a box, I just keep my pill bottles with me in a lock box...but now that my son takes 6 pills a day I think I'm going to get one of those big boxes with all the days and am and pm and noon and night. and ....oh my, I am confused already....Help...
I have been a spectator for so long..Now it's time to participate.......
Post Lamenectomy Syndrome, Spinal Stenosis, DDD....
1999 Hemi Lamenectomy/2005 Spinal Fusion(L4-S1)
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   Posted 3/14/2010 4:30 PM (GMT -6)   
This has not happened yet to me, but I have missed taking a pill and ended up with a bad stomach ache..and I've had close calls with meds..
I'm allergic to eyrhtromycin and was at the eye doctor's one afternoon and he wanted me on a certain antibotic and I asked his nurse before I
left if it was an eyrthomycin she said no, well i got home and it was eyrthromycin but I had to go back to the eye doctor and it's all
over all my charts, I just wish they would look at my charts.............and I wasted 30. on a med I could not use the pharmacy should've caught this too...
Anyways we live we learn, just be more careful when taking your medicines...
soft hugz...
* Asthma, Allergies, Osteoarthritis, Spinal Stenosis, Degenative Disc (Lower Lumbar S1-L3 and Cervical C5,C6, C8 and T1), Fibromyalgia, Gerd,
Enlarged Pituitary Gland, Sjogren's, Ocular Migraines, mild carpel tunnel, ect.... "Would be nice if we could use the edit button in real life"...


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   Posted 3/14/2010 8:30 PM (GMT -6)   
IT seemds like several times a week I always forget if I took my Cymbalta at night, and I know I'm not taking my pain meds right cause I always end up with too many left over when it's due for a refill, like this week I had 2 and half days left over, which manes I've missed 5 doses. But I'm always worried about the Cymbalta cause if I miss a dose, I'll start feeling sick very fast. I've tried those medication containers to remind me when and if I took myh meds but they're always a pain. I got this really cute round one from avon a few years back, but everytime I pressed the button to change the days the meds would get stuck and any capsule med would get ruined, and of course I cant take any slow release meds that have been crushed or ruined, so that was a waste of time and money. I also tried the bingo cards one, and I liked those but buying the refills started to get spendy, and when I found them for cheap at this one store, they ran out and didnt get anymore in stock. SO for now I'm just trusting my mind but even that is not very reliable with my fibro as I forget everything 10 seconds later.

And for taking the wrong meds, I cant think at the moment if I've ever had that happen, all my meds look very diffrent from each other so their's no problem there with confusing them.

But this post reminds me of a movie I just saw the other day called "Old Dogs" and it had that part where the kids mix up the 2 guy's medication, that was really really funny, and the ending where it happened again and they all had that huge smile in the picture.


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Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 1176
   Posted 3/15/2010 1:21 AM (GMT -6)   
Well....I did it! I screwed up with my pills today!! sad

But this thread helped me catch my mistake! :-)

Every Sunday I carefully fill all 28 boxes (4 boxes per day for 7 days) with my morning meds in the yellow boxes, my noon meds in the pink boxes, my dinner meds in the blue boxes and my bedtime meds in the purple boxes. But I usually do this the very first thing in the morning on Sunday, which may be a bad thing, because I'm not completely awake and I haven't had coffee, because I have just taken my Fosamax pill for that week and I'm not allowed to drink anything but water for 1/2 hour afterwards. So my brain is foggy.

Somehow I got confused this morning with one of my meds and put a morning med (Zyrtec) in the bedtime boxes. I discovered it because I looked carefully at the handful of pills I took from Sunday's purple bedtime box and spotted the little Zyrtec amongst the two antibiotics, the Lyrica, and the Cozaar.

I don't usually check before I gulp the whole handful....I "trust" myself to get it right. But clearly I should NOT trust myself to load the boxes correctly and should check the contents over each time before I blindly grab pills from a box and swallow.

This mistake wouldn't have killed me....it probably wouldn't even have caused me any problems other than maybe making me a bit wakeful at bedtime. I'm taking this as a warning that I could make a serious mistake, though.

Anyway, I wanted to say "Thanks" again to retired mom for starting this thread!! yeah

Lyme Disease, Babesiosis, Ehrlichiosis, AIH, Hashimoto's, lupus, fibro, RA, celiac disease, asthma, psoriasis, Raynaud's, hypertension, osteopenia, sleep apnea, RLS, GERD, DDD, L3-4 and L4-5 radiculopathy -> severe lower back pain, cubital tunnel, tarsal tunnel, Doxycycline, Zithromax, Prednisone, Imuran, Plaquenil, Lyrica, Cymbalta, Levothyroxine, Atenolol, Cozaar, Zyrtec, Fosamax, Albuterol, Prilosec, CPAP


Post Edited (nasalady) : 3/15/2010 12:27:38 AM (GMT-6)

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   Posted 3/15/2010 3:10 PM (GMT -6)   
OMG I have done this exact thing....well not exact but pretty darn close LOL!!!! Okay three nights ago, woke up at 3 am really in gobs of pain. A 11 on my own scale! So I reached for my new pain med and fell right back to sleep about 30 min later. Next morning...man I thought that pain pill worked really well the night before right? So I went to fill my tray and discovered that instead of the Oxycodone that I had been taking for BT pain I accidenty took another Lunesta!!! Talk about feeling stupid!!
I live to "Tame My Pain!" 

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Date Joined Mar 2010
Total Posts : 132
   Posted 3/15/2010 3:25 PM (GMT -6)   
One day, I was getting ready for the day, and my husband asked me to get out his vitamins for him. I got out his 2 vitamins, and I already had my pills (blood pressure and birth control) on the counter. I realized I didn't have anything to drink, so I walked out of the room. When I walked back in my pills were missing, and his vitamins were still there. I gave him a hard time about taking my meds instead of his vitamins, but didn't think it would be that big of a deal. A couple of hours later, I'm driving on the interstate, and hubby is asleep in the passenger seat. I couldn't wake him up, so I quickly exited. The action of slowing down woke him up. I made him drink a Big Gulp of something caffeinated and make him stay awake the rest of the trip. Just a little scary.

As for me... my pills (so far) look too different for me to mistake them for one another.

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   Posted 3/17/2010 10:54 AM (GMT -6)   
I got sort of a chuckle out of reading this post because I was saying "Yep, done that and done that and that!" Just because you have a pillbox doesn't mean you can't make mistakes. For instance, I take approximately 20-22 pills a day and was relying on my pillbox to keep me on track. I woke up one morning last year (my birthday no less) with nausea and horrible stabbing pulsing type pain in my stomach. I went out that night to celebrate and I just felt worse and worse. So I called it an early night. The next day I was still feeling kind of bad but I refilled my pillbox (which I do on a weekly basis) and I felt shocked to realize that for the entire previous week I have forgotten to add my Prilosec for my acid reflux and gastritis! I literally thumped my forehead because of my DUH moment!
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