How to Identify Prescription Drugs

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Identifying prescription drugs is best done by looking at the label on the bottle, but single pills can also be identified by consulting the Physician's Desk Reference, which illustrates the color, shape and size of pills. Never take or keep unmarked pills outside of their original bottle with information from the CEO of a pharmacy company in this free video on medicine.

Part of the Video Series: Prescription Drugs & Side Effects
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Video Transcript

This is Lois Adams, President and CEO of the Freedom Pharmacy and Wellness Centers in Orlando, Florida. The segment today is how to identify prescription drugs. The easiest way to identify the drug is the label on the bottle. There are may online sources for you to also take a look at. You can google the drug by name. You can go to pill id wizard, pill identifier at That's an excellent one. There is the RX list and of course which has the best pictures of any of them in my judgment. They have not only the size and shape but also any kind of markings that are on that. The Physician's Desk Reference put out by various manufacturers has the color and shape and size of the pill as well. It is really difficult to identify unmarked pills. You should throw them away in the toilet and certainly don't take something from someone who just gives you a pill that doesn't have any markings or anything like that and something that you don't know anything about. Keep your prescription drugs in their proper bottles. One of the things that really concerns me is when people divide them up and put them in different type of bottles. It is very difficult to tell what's in there and certainly difficult to have anyone help you to identify and take your medicine. Ask your pharmacist to help you identify each pill by the color and any markings. Don't share your prescription drugs with anyone and take only those that are prescribed by you and this is our segment on how to identify prescription drugs.


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