Tips for Managing Medications

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This blog post is sponsored by Walgreens via ApsireIQ.

My daughter Adeline Belle has a rare disease called Short Bowel Syndrome. Short Bowel Syndrome (SBS or Short Gut) is a complex disease that occurs due to the physical loss of function of a portion of the small and/or large intestine. People with SBS often have a reduced ability to absorb nutrients (malabsorption) and the symptoms and serverity of short bowel syndrome can vary from one person to another. It can lead to malnutrition, weight loss, and lack of growth due to loss of vitamins and minerals. Short bowel can be caused by the physical removal of portion of the intestine or can result from injury or disease that hinders the proper function of the bowel. It’s an invisible disease and there is no cure.

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Adeline has short gut as a result of being premature, contracting a terrible infection called Necrotizing Enterocolitis.  NEC is a devastating disease that affects mostly the intestine of premature infants. The wall of the intestine is invaded by bacteria, which cause local infection and inflammation that can ultimately destroy the wall of the bowel (intestine). In addition to that, she had Intestinal Malrotation and Volvulus. Intestinal malrotation is a birth defect involving a malformation of the intestinal tract. Intestinal malrotation is an abnormality that occurs while a fetus is forming in its mother's uterus. Malrotation occurs when the intestine does not make the turns as it should. A volvulus is a problem that can occur after birth as a result of intestinal malrotation. The intestine becomes twisted, causing an intestinal blockage. This twisting can also cut off the blood flow to the intestine, and the intestine can be damaged.

Adeline has struggled with handling food and growing since birth. Until 3 years old, she was fed via feeding tube and TPN (IV nutrition) and she spent most of the first two years of her life in the hospital. She has had 12 surgeries in the 3.5 years of life and currently receives all her nutrition via feeding tube. As time goes on she keeps getting better and better, she is spending less time in the hospital, and this fall she started a typical preschool.

Having a medically complex toddler with special needs can be a lot to manage. There are doctor’s appointments, therapy, home visits, ordering and managing medical supplies, and taking care of prescription medication. I am going to share why medication management is so important and how we make it easier using by using Walgreens.

Why medication management is important

Adeline has over 7 medications she takes daily, 3 medications as needed, 3 different schedules in which they need be administered, and various schedules in which they need to be refilled. Some medications need to be refilled every 10 days, some every 15 days, and some need 24-48 hours notice. It’s a lot to keep track of.

For Adeline, taking her medication on time as prescribed is essential to her quality of life. If she does not get all of her medication she needs regularly she starts having increased GI issues. Medication adherence means we are helping her reach her full potential, ensures she is living her life to the fullest. Many of her medications help keep her intestines functioning, they help with motility, reflux, stomach emptying, etc. When she misses one, it messes up the entire system. If her motility is slow, it can cause an increase in vomiting, food intolerance, and even lead to hospitalizations. For us, proper medication management is essential to our life!

Walgreens app for Medication Management

We use Walgreens for all our prescription medications and I am going to share how using their app helps keep us organized!

  1. Refill Prescriptions by just scanning prescription label. Everyone loves being able to do thing electronically, especially Moms!

  2. Check refill status quickly No matter how busy you are, the app can help you stay on top of your medications by checking status.

  3. Be notified when it’s ready for pickup The app will alert you when your medication is ready!

  4. Set pill reminders for all your medications This is my favorite feature and it can remind you of when it’s time to take certain medications.

  5. Consult a doctor or pharmacist in a live chat.* If you’re ever confused about medication, you don’t have to wait until morning to get answers. The Walgreens 24/7 Pharmacy Chat is always available to help.

  6. One less thing you need to keep track of!! Let the app take care of keeping track of all things prescription medications so you have more time to be a Mama!

☎️Download the app Now! ☎️

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