(WKBN) – With the Food and Drug Administration recently authorizing the use of Pfizer’s Paxlovid antiviral pill to treat COVID-19 at home, there are some risks you may want to take into account.
Taking the pill while on other medications could be dangerous and cause health effects.
“Patients that are on high cholesterol that takes statin medications, certain psychiatric medications, pain medications, steroids, blood thinners, seizure medicine. So there’s a pretty long list of potential targets for drug interactions with the new COVID drug Paxlovid,” said Jeff Covelli, a pharmacist with Hometown Pharmacies.
Covelli says, in some cases, mixing the drugs can slow down the effectiveness of your current medications or cause some health complications.
Certain existing health conditions can also make it risky to take the drug.
“Definitely blood thinners, you definitely have to be monitored. There’s newer generation blood thinners and there’s older generation blood thinners… and there’s other cardiac drugs that are commonly used to control rhythm and rate of the heart, so those types of drugs. You know, you could potentially have a life-threatening arrhythmia, you know, a skip heartbeat, you know. Combining these types of drugs with cardiac drugs. So for sure,” he said.
Although the FDA has also authorized the use of Merck’s pill, Molnupiravir, Covelli says it doesn’t carry the same risks as Paxlovid.
Still, he says no matter which pill you may decide to take, you should consult with your doctor or pharmacist about any potential risk that may come from mixing drugs.