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Sunday, September 7, 2014

Throw Me a Bone Here

Did you ever feel as if you walked into a conversation midway and you were expected to know what the person was thinking in their head as they started the discussion there? It happens in pharmacy all the time. 

Helpful Spouse: My husband needs his eye drops. 
CP: Okay. 
HS: Can you recommend something? 
CP: Um. What am I missing? 
HS: He is out of his eye drops! What can I get him over the counter that is similar?
CP: Similar to what? What is he using?
HS: I don't know the name of them. 
CP: <knowing how this could go, but asking anyway> What are they for? 
HS: His eyes! 
CP: <yep. saw that one coming> For what purpose? 
HS: To keep him from going blind!
CP: Uh-huh. It sounds like a prescription medication. Let me check his profile. 
HS: I don't know where he got them from. 
CP: Well he hasn't filled any eye drop with us...ever. 
HS: So you can't recommend anything? 
CP: Do you have the old bottle at home? 
HS: No. 
CP: Of course not. You are pressuring me for a recommendation over the counter to help your husband. Is that correct?
HS: Yes. 
CP: You do not know where he got them. You do not know the name of the them. You do not know the correct indication for them. You do not know how long he has used them. The only thing you know is that it's some type of eye drop. Is that correct? 
HS: Yes. What can I do?
CP: Short of having him call his doctor on Monday? 
HS: Yes. 
CP: Buy him a little white cane with a red tip. 


  1. What’s really concerning is the number of people who think there’s nothing wrong with that conversation! These same people also tell you that they take “a white pill”. Then somehow expect you to figure it out based only on that information. One time I couldn’t help myself and exclaimed “Gee thanks lady! That really narrowed it down!!”

  2. Holy cow I had this exact same conversation with a patient and her 'cataract drops'... which don't exist. It's either antibiotics or antiinflammatories... but she wouldn't get it for the whole 20 minutes I was arguing with her. In the end, her prescription was in another province altogether!