Definition and Usage of Medication

  • Medication is a medicine or chemical compound used to treat or cure illness.
  • Dosage forms of medication can include tablets, capsules, liquids, creams, and patches.
  • Medications can be given in different ways, such as by mouth, infusion into a vein, or drops in the ear or eye.
  • A placebo is a medication used in research studies that does not contain an active ingredient.
  • In Europe, medication is referred to as a medicinal product and is defined by EU law.
  • Among elderly Americans surveyed, 84% took at least one prescription drug.
  • 44% took at least one over-the-counter (OTC) drug.
  • 52% took at least one dietary supplement.
  • In a different survey, the percentages were 88%, 38%, and 64% for prescription drugs, OTC drugs, and dietary supplements, respectively.

Classification of Medication

  • Medications can be classified into traditional small molecule drugs derived from chemical synthesis.
  • Biological medical products include recombinant proteins, vaccines, blood products, gene therapy, and cell therapy.
  • Pharmaceutical drugs are classified into various groups based on their origin and mode of action.
  • The Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical Classification System is widely used for classification.
  • The World Health Organization maintains a list of essential medicines.

Drug Discovery and Development

  • Drug discovery and development are complex and expensive endeavors.
  • They involve pharmaceutical companies, academic scientists, and governments.
  • Partnering has become a standard practice to advance drug candidates.
  • Governments regulate drug marketing, pricing, and disposal.
  • Controversies have arisen over drug pricing and disposal of used drugs.

Regulation of Medication

  • Governments regulate what drugs can be marketed and how they are marketed.
  • Some jurisdictions also regulate drug pricing.
  • Drug pricing and disposal have been subjects of controversy.
  • Drug discovery and development are regulated processes.
  • Different laws and regulations apply to traditional small molecule drugs and biological products.

Medication Data Sources

Reference URL
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