Going Beyond Dispensing Drugs With MTM
Medication Therapy Management (MTM) is a range of services provided by pharmacists and other medical practitioners. These services aim to ensure patients receive maximum results from prescriptions and therapies. MTM consists of the following concepts:
- Medication review
- Personal medication record
- A personalized action plan
- Interventions, referrals, and changing
- Documentation and follow-up
With MTM, pharmacists go beyond dispensing drugs to achieve the best possible outcomes. This strategy is beneficial for patients who need to know when to stop a prescription.
Are you planning to stop your prescription drugs?
Despite the provisions by pharmacies and even states, the cost of prescription drugs is still quite expensive. For some, the price and unwanted side effects make patients stop prescriptions. MTM helps pharmacists and patients determine the best time to stop a medication. Failing to continue medicines or stop correctly has several consequences.
Beware of the rebound effect
Stopping a prescription early can make the condition reappear. Some infections or diseases can even come back worse than before. This issue is called the rebound effect. Rebound effects are common with pain medication and antibiotics. Patients stop taking medication as soon as the condition subsides without using the entire course of treatment. The best time to stop a prescription is when the prescribed course of medication is over to avoid rebounding. The doctor and patient can then discuss the treatment results and gradually formulate a plan to stop the medicine.
Medicine withdrawals are possible.
Some patients have been using a particular drug for an extended period and have become overly dependent. These patients can experience withdrawal symptoms ranging from simple headaches, fatigue, and anxiety to depression, seizures, and hallucinations. Withdrawal symptoms are commonly experienced with antidepressants, opioid painkillers, benzodiazepines, and steroids, and patients should never stop these abruptly. The best time to stop a prescription to avoid withdrawals is based on the individual and must be carefully monitored.
Discuss with your doctor and pharmacist
Finding the exact time to stop a prescription is difficult. There is no one-size-fits-all approach since the rebound and withdrawal effects can vary. The medication therapy management will review if stopping the drug is necessary. The medication review between doctor, pharmacist, and patient is essential to start a discontinuation plan. Discontinuing some prescriptions may mean a gentle taper, switching medication, or constant monitoring for side effects.
Manage your prescriptions with MTM
If a patient wants to stop, switch drugs, reduce the dose, or anything in between, consult a pharmacist and doctor first. The medical team will use medication management to determine the root cause of stopping. MTM can change medication, find cheaper alternatives, or even consider compounding. If the patient is now disease-free and wants to stop the medicine, this can happen using a gradual approach.