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When to Toss Out a Med
May 16, 2004


I am an adult caregiver for a male relative who has HIV-1. I help him keep organized on alot of things, but we are not sure which date on a med is more important: the expiration date recommended by the pharmacy or the one created by the med manufacturer. My common sense tells me that who would know better than the people who MADE the med to begin with! Please email advice. Thankyou

Response from Dr. Sherer

I agree with you, I would rely on the information in the package insert as the most reliable source of information.

In addition, for most HIV medications there is a website in which you can ask specific questions like this one about a certain medications. Sometimes the recommended shelf-lives change with growing experience with a drug. I would advise taking advantage of these sites in the event of a striking mismatch between what your pharmacist is advising and the labeling in the package insert. There may be new information that your pharmacist has access to on shelf-life, as there is a growing global need for longer shelf-lives of ART.

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