We tend to turn to our doctors for advice on health issues, and that is a good thing, but there is another person in your medical orbit that may have more answers—a pharmacist. The Organic Remedies team has more than 220 years of collective experience with medicinal products. In fact, most of the leadership team is made-up of pharmacists. They have varied backgrounds with many having held positions in traditional pharmacy as well as medical marijuana. Some have held executive level leadership positions in one of the largest drug chains in the United States for several years. When you choose your medicinal marijuana products, you can count on the advice of a pharmacist at Organic Remedies.
An Organic Remedies Pharmacist Knows More than just Medical Cannabis
Pharmacists may be an under-utilized resource. It seems these days, we are all paying closer attention to what goes into our bodies. Having the back-up of medical training behind any advice you receive is priceless. If you are adding a medical cannabis regimen to your health plan, asking a pharmacist about other medicines you take and how often, can make your experience with medical cannabis successful in improving your overall quality of life.
Pharmacists bridge the gap between doctor and patient, providing another level of health security to your well-being. Organic Remedies Pharmacist Nick Signorella says, “With new patients, it may take some time to really tune in to a proper dosage. Generally, we want instant gratification, especially out of our medication, and get disappointed when we do not see results immediately. This is not to say that we won’t see a relatively quick improvement, but especially with the oral forms of this medication, it can take time to build up in the body and see results. So, it may take a little bit of time, and we may have to make some adjustments, but we have plenty of options to work with to achieve positive health outcomes.”
It Matters What Else You Take
Many of our patients at Organic Remedies are dealing with more than one health issue and with that comes—in many cases—more medications. So, the first question you may have when becoming a patient is “how will this new therapy affect my current regimen?” For an answer you can trust, you can always turn to one of our pharmacists.
Organic Remedies pharmacist, Andrew Stehley says, “Drug interactions are important to consider, especially for patients who are on multiple medications. It is important that patients let their doctors and pharmacists know their complete list of medications so that they can look out for potential interactions.”
Signorella adds, “When it comes to pain and anxiety medications, many patients are coming into the dispensary to ideally get off these medications. One of my main concerns when combining medical marijuana with these types of medications is the potential for increased drowsiness and sedation, especially among older patients.”
There’s More in Your Medications Than You May Realize
We tend to focus on the main ingredient in our medications, whether it is medical cannabis or another prescription, but there is more to consider. Pharmacists study how medications are made into pills, patches, vapes, flower—basically any type of delivery system.
Signorella says, “One of the most important considerations with inactive ingredients relates to allergies and or sensitivities patients may have. For example, coconut oil can be irritating for some, so understanding which capsules have coconut oil as a base, or olive oil as a base, can be another tool we use to determine which product will have the greatest chance of comfort and success.”
Stehley agrees and adds allergies can be a serious concern, “Although inactive ingredients are not commonly thought of when selecting products by most patients, they can be important under certain situations.”
Our Pharmacists Help Manage Interactions
Pharmacists also specialize in tracking your medications, including knowing and understanding the side effects.
For example, if you are prescribed an anti-depressant or cholesterol-lowering medication, you may experience some side effects (for example a loss of sex drive while taking antidepressants or stomach pains from high cholesterol medications). Your Organic Remedies pharmacist studies how medications interact with other drugs and conditions—called pharmacodynamics. It basically means, our pharmacists are experts at managing multiple medications and understanding how medical marijuana may impact these side effects or in some cases, even help manage them
Signorella says it’s important to look at the patient as a whole, “The biggest concerns I have when dispensing medical cannabis to patients with comorbidities are drug interactions and increased heart rate. Most medications do not have strong interactions with marijuana so it is not a large concern, however, many patients with these comorbidities may be on anticoagulants which is something to monitor.”
Pharmacists Know Your History
Every time a patient visits an Organic Remedies dispensary, a pharmacist must sign off on every order. They track your medical marijuana regimen along with your other prescriptions, which will help you maximize your therapeutic treatment.
Both Signorella and Stehley agree, there are a lot of questions around the use of medical marijuana which illustrates the importance of pharmacist consultations. They say the patient interaction is what drives their desire to help. “Whenever a patient tells me that I have changed their life for the better, especially when they say I got them off a pain medication, it really makes my day,” says Signorella. “That’s the main reason I’m here, to help people and make a difference. I’m glad to say that I have had multiple instances of this happening, and every time it does, it reminds me of the great importance to our work.”
We look forward to answering all your medical marijuana questions at any Organic Remedies dispensary. See you soon and say hello to your pharmacist. They care!