- Reviewed by Christopher P. Cannon, MD, Editor in Chief, Harvard Heart Letter; Editorial Advisory Board Member, Harvard Health Publishing
Several factors beyond your control, such as your age and genetic makeup, can affect how your body reacts to different medications. And sometimes, things you ingest — including certain prescription and over-the-counter medicines, dietary supplements, or foods — change how medications work in your body. Known as drug-drug or drug-nutrient interactions, these influences can occur at any point of the drug’s "life cycle": absorption, metabolism, or excretion.
Pharmacies routinely use computer systems that automatically flag prescription drug interactions. However, that doesn’t mean people must always avoid taking drugs with known interactions, says pharmacist Lina Matta, director of ambulatory pharmacy at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
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About the Author
Julie Corliss, Executive Editor, Harvard Heart Letter
About the Reviewer
Christopher P. Cannon, MD, Editor in Chief, Harvard Heart Letter; Editorial Advisory Board Member, Harvard Health Publishing
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