Inactive ingredients are effective, too.

Grandmama told me I should study chemistry and medical things.

The reason? I’m finding chemistry has a lot to do with medications and allergens.

I replied, “I don’t like chemistry,” or something along those lines.

I was given Clindamycin 150mg to help prevent getting an infection after my wisdom teeth removal. The pharmacist told Grandmama it didn’t contain nuts, lactose, milk, eggs or yeast. The chemical name is Methyl 7-chloro-6,7,8-trideoxy-6-(1-methyl-trans-4-propyl-L-2-pyrrolidinecarboxamido)-1-thio-L-threo-α-D-galacto-octopyranoside monohydrochloride, and lactose is an inactive ingredient. Inactive or not, when allergies and intolerances come into play, everything in the ingredients matters. I haven’t taken any since 1am, but I took one for yesterday’s [and today’s] dose and from Thursday evening to Monday after midnight, I was taking two every twelve hours. To spare you the details, I get all the symptoms of a lactose intolerance.1

Galacto is basically a lactose ingredient.

A friend in high school was studying to become a pharmacist2, and one day during lunch, we were on the floor in the hall of N building under the second flight of stairs doing homework. Hers regarded the chemical names for various medications and naming the ingredients (active and inactive) for them and making a note of potential allergies. She said she had to learn them, as well as how to read and write prescriptions’ shorthand. Thus, pharmacists should know the chemical makeup and ingredients of a medication, no? And, if they are ever in doubt, can’t they just look it up instead of just saying, “it’s just clindamycin”?

Back when I took birth control for the ovarian cysts, the inactive ingredients affected me as well — and although both doctors knew about them, they said to “try them anyway”.

Inactive ingredients play a big part and, for some reason, people still aren’t taking me seriously when I mention my allergies and lactose intolerance.

I’m sick until further notice. 😐 I feel like I’m giving birth to an elephant3 a hedgehog while I have the flu.

Note: I actually called and heard back from the dentist’s office this evening (a few hours ago) and received the OK to discontinue taking them.

  1. am also allergic to milk, which is totally different, or so I have been told.
  2. Trinity had various programs that allowed applicable students who knew their majors upon entering the school to begin taking courses for that major, thus giving them a head start.
  3. It’s not that bad.

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Comments on this post

Stephanie’s gravatar

I find chemistry to be quite underwhelming and a bit boring, personally. There’s too much memorizing involved for me to like it. And if you don’t memorize stuff, you just can’t do your job fast enough. Plus, things you learn in basic chemistry or organic chemistry class will not help you understaff how medicines in your body work. The body requires a lot more study, and nobody fully understands it. However, it seems obvious to me that your body reacts to inactive ingredients and I have no idea what was going on those doctors’ heads when they prescribed you lactose intolerant stuff. After all, humans drink milk for the calcium and not the lactose, yet we still react to lactose. Same goes for anything else you put in your body.

Next time, though, you’ll be better armed against any idiot doctors you might come across! I’m also willing to bet that people don’t take you seriously because you have a bit of a baby face. I have no problems getting people to take me seriously when I’m not dressed like a teenage slob, and I’m the same age and gender as you. I wonder if there’s any makeup that you can try. Hopefully, you’re not allergic to makeup. (I don’t care enough about makeup to know what’s in it or use it often.)

Liz’s gravatar

I didn’t go to the pharmacy, though; Grandmama had. The dentist’s office didn’t mean to, and when I first searched for it, I didn’t find anything — but still, the pharmacist should have known when asked.

…I am allergic to all makeup! :p It also makes me look like I’m on the verge of the preteen and teenage ages. 😐

It’s okay, though; I’m getting better (not that it’s not still annoying or anything).

Ella’s gravatar

I have a lot of allergies too, some more serious than others. I’m not quite lactose intolerant though, but I do have some issues with milk and its byproducts. I can relate a bit. I’ve learned over the years that I can’t trust anything or anyone when it comes to my allergies. I can actually recall a time in elementary school when I was selling chocolates for a fundraiser, one of the chocolate-covered almond boxes had a “nut free” logo on it. Like really?

I don’t recall ever reacting to any type of medicine though. I know people who are lactose intolerant but they take these pills that contain the enzyme to breakdown the sugar and can basically eat anything that contains lactose. (Lactaid is a popular brand.) I kind of wish there was a pill that I could take to make me invincible to my allergies. x)

I hope you get well soon! At times like that, plenty of rest and tea are my best friends.

Liz’s gravatar

Ah, I hate it when products (as well as recipes) are labeled incorrectly. 😐 Unfortunately, Lactaid is still a dairy product. :p I’m allergic to all dairy (mold, yeast, milk), but I do have cheese on occasion because 1) I love it too much to let it go, and 2) it has a lot of benefits that can’t be found elsewhere.

It would be nice if allergies and intolerances didn’t exist at all, really! :p

Sage’s gravatar

Oh I hated chemistry, still do. The thought makes me cringe …
And I thought my allergies of caffeine and certain drugs were bad 🙁 I hope you feel better sooner than later /cookie

Susanne’s gravatar

More medications than we could imagine actually contain lactose. I remember I had a patient once who was lactose intolerant and VERY sensitive to it, so I checked her meds and actually found that almost all of them contained lactose. How weird is that? I’m sure there must be a way to produce tablets without lactose.

Liz’s gravatar

Usually they still wind up containing something I can’t have — yeast, milk, eggs, nuts, molds, etc. — so they still affect me. 😐

Jessie’s gravatar

I’m glad to hear that everything got straightened out…or rather, that…ugh! I honestly don’t know. 🙁 I’m feeling all kinds of lost since my poor CPU went dead, and all of my life is on there. Plus, my head is killing me…I had a cyst removed and I’m starting anxiety meds on Monday, which means no pain pills. 🙁

But I definitely think that they need to come up with meds that people with allergies can take…because I know several people who have similar allergies to yours, and most of them have switched to using holistic medicine and the like.

I apologize for the first part of this comment, as it had absolutely nothing to do with the post. 😛 I’m kind of losing my mind.

Kya’s gravatar

Eh, that is so bad that they would give you something when you obviously have a problem with the ingredients in it. *shakes head* Sometimes people just make no sense. :/

I see that you have stopped it. Is there something else you can take instead?

Christine’s gravatar

That has always made me weary of medicines because I sometimes think that people don’t ALWAYS check the inactive ingredients. When I worked in the daycare, too, parents were ignorant of the difference between Lactose Intolerance and Dairy Allergies. Keith (who is LI) always gets annoyed by people who say…”but you can eat that cheese?” UGH!

I think you would be a great chemist to be honest, especially with your experiences. Still waiting on that allergy free cooking blog. 😛

Liz’s gravatar

I actually dumped it because it was a lot to keep up with. 😡

However, my cousin started her own crunchy blog (crunchy means “organic”), and I have a column there under “Liz”, which is where a lot of my allergy-free posts will go. I’m actually working on getting some recipes and such together to post. 😉 I think it works out better, because more people have read my two posts than people were reading my posts on Allergic Liza. Later on I may try to start it back up again, however, but it would be more organized, and hopefully I’ll be able to cook more things by then. I’m actually wanting to make a cookbook. :p

After I find and purchase the allergy-free alternatives for a few ingredients, there will definitely be a lot of Sunbutter recipes going up on the site — I have a 5lb tub of it.

Tiff’s gravatar

Having studied organic chemistry, that very long IUPAC name for clindamycin is actually something I’d be expected to draw or even recognize. Having said that, I encourage you to study organic chemistry yourself since you’ve got such intense dietary restrictions.

α-D-galacto is not the same as lactose, which is a beta-D-galactopyranosyl. I know you’re probably thinking what the heck is the difference, but lactose forms beta 1,4 glycosidic linkages with other carbohydrates (in lactose’s case, it forms with glucose, a sugar), while α-D-galacto would form alpha linkages with another carbohydrate. This matters because of the way in which the compounds rotate. However, the reactions may be similar, but they’re not the same in everyone hence why lactose in this case is an inactive ingredient. This is one of the reasons why I actually love & hate organic chemistry at the same time. It is so incredibly fascinating, but it’s also such a pain in the butt to study.

There was a case in which chemists synthesized medicine for pregnant women & it had very fatal & harmful effects on their children & their bodies. It was a simple mistake that turned out tragically fatal. I believe the compound was correct in what it needed to do, but when it was added to the human body, it wasn’t in a specific orientation so it had these adverse effects. So you could be staring at a D-glucose & an L-glucose which are exactly the same molecularly, but they rotate differently, which makes a huge difference.

There is a reason why your doctors are still giving you medications that have inactive lactose without second guessing themselves & it’s because it is an inactive ingredient that generally shouldn’t be effective. It’s inactive & shouldn’t cause problems, but there is always that small percentage of the population that is affected & experiences all the side effects on the box. You are more sensitive to these ingredients than others so you should absolutely insist that an alternative medication be prescribed to you. I hope that you call your doctor immediately & tell them of your allergic reactions to the medication so that that at least goes into your medical chart & your doctor will be more careful about it next time.

Pharmacists are required to be very well equipped with knowledge in organic chemistry. Although that chemical name is really long, it can easily be broken down into functional groups & structure. Everything organic has a carbon backbone!

Anyway, I hope this incident stirs up some sort of interest in reading up or even taking a class in organic chemistry, or even just taking a look at a class on drug interactions. I believe those would still require organic chemistry or else you’d be so lost. I also hope you feel better & recover from the side effects. It could’ve been something else that triggered your allergies too, but let’s just hope your doctor can help you out instead of make you worse. 🙂

Biskwit’s gravatar

Not a huge fan of chemistry. I once passed the subject with the help of my classmates, but naaah quit my course.

Anyway I have atopic dermatitis; skin allergies are so irritating and prevent me from doing outdoor activities and other things. Get well soon.