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"Do not drink alcohol while using this medicine"

(21 Posts)
PrettyCandles Fri 30-Sep-11 20:48:06

Short of experimenting, how do I find out what would happen and why?

BlueKangaroo22 Fri 30-Sep-11 20:50:11

It can exaggerate the side effects of some medicines i think...i wouldn't advise it! smile

marianhalcombe Fri 30-Sep-11 20:50:59

Ask the pharmacist?

I have some medicine that says 'It is recommended that you don't drink alcohol when taking this' which I find very confusing indeed. It sounds like I maybe could drink wine if I really really fancied a glass but I probably shouldn't really.

HuwEdwards Fri 30-Sep-11 20:51:03

what is it? Sometimes, the effect of the drug can be enhanced, sometimes it can diminish and depending on the drug might make you vomit.

Have you googled it?

HuwEdwards Fri 30-Sep-11 20:51:52

actually 'enhanced' is the wrong word, sounds almost positive. BKs 'exaggerated' is much better

JarethTheGoblinKing Fri 30-Sep-11 20:53:55

It depends on the drug. It could be one of many things, could make you vomit, stop the drug working properly, exacerbate original symptoms or side-effects

BlueKangaroo22 Fri 30-Sep-11 20:55:46

I've just asked DP, he says it is because it can make you absorb the medicine faster than you should? Not sure how accurate this is. I just wouldn't take the risk and ask a pharmacist for advice as marian suggested.

southeastastra Fri 30-Sep-11 21:06:18

could make you really sick, depends on what it is

boxoftricks Fri 30-Sep-11 21:12:45

what are you taking?
eg, Taking metronidazole with alcohol is believed to have the ability to block the body's breakdown of the alcohol, leading to an accumulation of a substance called acetaldehyde in the bloodstream. - taken from netdoctor!

rosycheeksandasmile Fri 30-Sep-11 21:28:00

I drank alcohol when I was taking a type of antibiotics not having read the details - I felt very drunk after one glass - odd experience!

AtYourCervix Fri 30-Sep-11 21:29:05

it will make you puke.

AuntieMaggie Fri 30-Sep-11 21:44:56

Depends what medicine it is as to what effect it will have - either make you puke, drowsy, or just not work.

Metalhead Fri 30-Sep-11 21:52:06

If it says 'do not drink' then I wouldn't risk it. Like others have said, could stop the drug from working or make side effects worse.

However, I've had medicines in the past that said 'it's recommended you avoid alcohol while taking these' and had a couple of glasses of wine and not noticed any ill effects. That's just my personal experience though.

PrettyCandles Fri 30-Sep-11 22:11:42

Oh I'm not going to take any risks! Just curious.

Grumpystiltskin Sat 01-Oct-11 10:01:56

Metronidazole with alcohol will make you feel exceptionally ill. It's similar to what they give to alcoholics to stop them drinking. Other drugs (like barbiturates) will help to depress respiratory function, which if drunk and asleep can be particularly dangerous.

SardineQueen Sat 01-Oct-11 10:15:14

General rule is if it says "you must not drink" and the pharmacist has pointed this out when you pick the medication up, then don't drink. It will prob make you hurl or something bad.

If it's a recommended not to drink then it's fine to have the odd one, but don't overdo it, as this will interfere with the efficacy of the medicine.

This is what my dad told me and he's a GP and following these rules has never caused me any problems!

SardineQueen Sat 01-Oct-11 10:17:42

Having said that and reading grumpy's post, he probably wasn't thinking about things like barbiturates, more antibiotics and painkillers and stuff.

I am on drugs at the moment which are recommended not to drink and I had one last night and seem to have survived!

Avenged Sat 01-Oct-11 22:12:04

Depends what you're taking OP. One thing I will say is don't drink while taking cocodamol because it will make you feel ill.

I had drunk 1/2 glass of wine with my dinner while I had just started taking the cocodamol (started taking them that morning so there was very little in my system) and the next day I was throwing up literally every half hour throughout the day. I also had the most horrendous headache and felt like my head was going to explode. I literally couldn't move without throwing up, but luckily my legs got me to the toilet quicker than the vomit came up.

So that's what drinking and cocodamol can do to a person, although not every one will have the same reaction.

EdithWeston Sat 01-Oct-11 22:19:29

It could mean two things - one is that it will interfere with the action of the medicine (which rather negates taking the medicine). The other is that the medicine will interfere with how your body processes alcohol, which can lead to all sorts of unpleasant side effects.

Avenged Sun 02-Oct-11 15:13:27

Meant to say, when it says not to take alcohol when taking particular meds, you can either lay of the alcohol or speak to your GP to find out why.

whereismywine Sun 02-Oct-11 19:06:02

If it's metronidazole don't do it! I was shit faced after one pint of cider the day after I finished a course of them with vomiting and memory loss. Not my finest hour!

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