Learning more about the side effects of your medicines

Is it old age or could it be your medicines?

Some medicines can cause side effects…what to look out for.

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What medicine am I taking?

Being medicinewise will help you make better health decisions and get the most benefit from your medicines, safely.

This resource hub is updated regularly with articles and resources on how to be medicinewise.

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Why am I taking this medicine?

A medicines review involves you, your doctor and a specially trained pharmacist making sure your medicines are safe and working well for you.

Find out how a medicines review can help you get the most from your medicines.

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Could my medicines be causing my symptoms?

Ask your doctor these 5 questions if you are experiencing any symptoms, even if they’re mild.

Your doctor can find out what’s causing the symptoms. If it’s your medicines, they can suggest ways to manage or decrease these side effects.

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What are my goals of care?

Making changes to your medicines should be a shared decision between you and your doctor.

Use this decision aid with your doctor to better understand your options, including how you feel about the possible benefits and harms of changing or not changing your medicines.

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What can I do about my side effects?

You and your doctor have decided to change a medicine that may be causing certain side effects like forgetfulness or feeling unsteady.

Use this action plan to help you and your doctor:

  • plan any medicine changes
  • keep track of how you are feeling.
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Are there other ways to manage my condition?

Your lifestyle can directly affect your health.

Changes to the way you live may help you avoid illness or let you and your doctor reduce the dose and/or the number of medicines that you take.

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Translated resources in community languages

  • Side effects from your medicines? 5 questions to ask is available in Arabic, Chinese simplified, Chinese traditional, English, Farsi, Greek, Hindi, Italian, Macedonian, Punjabi, Serbian, Spanish, Swahili and Vietnamese.
  • Home medicines review factsheets are also available in English, Arabic, Chinese simplified, Chinese traditional, Farsi, Greek, Hindi, Italian, Macedonian, Punjabi, Serbian, Swahili and Vietnamese.
  • Medicines lists for download are available in English, Arabic, Chinese simplified, Chinese traditional, Croatian, Greek, Italian, Korean, Macedonian, Spanish and Vietnamese.
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Resources for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

At NPS MedicineWise, we acknowledge the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the traditional owners of the lands across Australia. We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.

These resources have been developed in partnership with the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO):

More information and support

Where can I find more information and support?

What medicine am I taking?

Could my medicines be causing my symptoms?

Why am I taking this medicine?

What are my goals of care?

What can I do about my side effects?

Are there other ways to manage my condition?

How can I access information and ask the right questions to get the most out of medicines?

5 most important questions to ask your doctor: Choosing Wisely Australia

Choosing Wisely Australia helps healthcare providers and consumers have important conversations about improving the quality of health care by reducing unnecessary and sometimes harmful tests, treatments, and procedures.

Led by Australia’s colleges, societies and associations and facilitated by NPS MedicineWise, Choosing Wisely Australia challenges the way we think about health care, questioning the notion 'more is always better'.

5 questions to ask your doctor or other healthcare provider is a resource that can help patients ensure they end up with the right amount of care.

Translated resources available here.

MedicineWise App

The MedicineWise app is NPS MedicineWise’s free health and medicines management app.

The MedicineWise app can:

  • keep track of your medicines and remind you when your medicine doses and appointments are due
  • store your information such as your health conditions and allergies
  • allow you to share your health information with your health professionals and people who may be caring for you
  • provide you with trusted, relevant and up-to-date information relating to your medicines and health conditions.
Download MedicineWise App on iPhone or iPad

Get MedicineWise App on GooglePlay for Android devices