Researching Medications

Whether you are taking multiple medications, getting a new medication, or want to learn about potential medications to treat a condition, researching medications on one or more of these websites can be very helpful.

American Geriatrics Society Beers Criteria

This publication by the American Geriatrics Society provides a list of medications that seniors should avoid or use with caution.


This government website provides information you should review before purchasing medications on-line.  Learn the risks of using on-line pharmacies, and how to identify signs of a fake on-line pharmacy.  The website helps you find a secure, legitimate on-line pharmacy.  Links to each state’s Board of Pharmacy are included.  This FDA website also includes links to other helpful information on medications.


This U.S. Government site provides thorough, up-to-date information on medications.  Enter the name of the medication and view a report which includes: description, clinical pharmacology, indications (when/why it is prescribed), contraindications (when it should not be used), a series of warnings and precautions, including drug interaction information and adverse reactions (side effects), dosage, storage information and more.

Drug Information Portal

This comprehensive site, run by the US National Institutes of Health, offers information on more than 73,000 drugs. Search for drugs by name or category (condition). The site provides basic information and links to information from a multitude of other agencies and sources. Information is provided in an easy to understand format, but also includes links to in-depth research findings, including clinical trials.

This site offers free information on more than 24,000 prescriptions, over-the-counter and natural products. It provides independent, up-to-date information for patients and healthcare professionals. Search for medications by name, condition or class. Find information on side effects, FDA consumer updates. Other sources of information include a drug interactions checker and a pill identifier. Join the free MedNotes and get detailed reports on each of your medications, including drug interactions, historical news, FDA alerts, and warnings on possible food, allergy and medical condition interactions. Receive free e-mail notifications with new medication warnings and information on new drugs “in the pipelines”. You can ask a medical professional a question, participate in forum-discussion boards and/or join any of the many on-line support groups which are categorized by medication or medical condition. Sign up for a free monthly e-newsletter. Some of the information is available on-line in Spanish.


This free site allows patients to understand possible medication interactions.  Enter all medications used (prescription and OTC) as well as basic health information.  The site screens for possible drug-drug interactions as well as drug-disease interactions.  You can register (free) to receive email alerts and updates on the safety information for the medications in your profile.  Note: Do not stop medications based on information provided on this website – if you are alerted to a possible interaction, notify your doctor(s).

Medline Plus

This site is a service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health. This site provides information on prescription and over-the-counter medications, including side effects, dosage, and special precautions to note. Information on effectiveness, dosage and possible drug interactions is provided for herbs and supplements. Information is available on-line in Spanish.

National Library of Medicine (NLM) Drug Portal

This site, run by the US government, allows you to look up a medicine by either the brand name or the generic name.  Find information on consumer health, clinical trials, related articles in scientific journals, and more.

Patients Like Me

This free health information sharing website collects information from users on side effects of medications and treatments which are then reviewed by a team that includes doctors.  Look up information provided from over 350,000 members regarding side effects of treatments of more than 2,500 conditions.

This consumer website, operated by the Physicians’ Desk Reference, provides information on prescription and non-prescription medications. Information includes active ingredients, common brand names, dosage and indications, possible adverse reactions, drug interactions with other medications, warnings and precautions, and storage requirements.


WebMD owns and operates this site. The site provides detailed and current information on brand and generic medications, as well as on vitamins, herbs and dietary supplements. In 1995, pharmacists created this site which now includes articles by pharmacists and doctors, and data from sources such as the FDA. Medications can be looked up by brand or generic name. Use the pill identification tool if you need to determine which medications you have. Information is also available on a variety of diseases and conditions.

U.S. Food & Drug Administration

This government website allows you to find information on medications, recalls and safety alerts.  Additionally, you can find helpful information on a variety of topics, including tips on buying and using medications safely.

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