Anti-Malarials without prescription...

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Anti-Malarials without prescription…

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Someone’s probably already mentioned this, but I couldn’t be arsed to trawl through everything.

TravelPharm appear to be offering Doxy without prescription, they just ask you to fill in a questionnaire online to make sure the tablets are right for you and or trip.
I didn’t actually think this was possible, especially considering i’m going to ask for over 100 pills. Even though they sell Doxy at 19p a pill, if buying online from them saves me the £15 prescription fee, then that’s definitely the cheapest way to go.

Thoughts anyone??

I didn’t actually realise you can also get Malarone for 28days or less without a prescription from your GP/Nurse. I went to Tesco Pharmacy today and she said they’d give me 28days supply without one. Is this general knowledge already, am i being really slow here? I genuinely thought it was gospel that anti-malarials had to always be prescribed privately through your GP or a travel clinic. Maybe things are changing?

     
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Actually, I’ve just seen at the bottom that it says after your ‘online consultation’ that they’ll issue a prescription where appropriate. Hmm. Guess it saves me a trip back to the doctors. Hoping this online consultation is free!

     
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The consultation fee is £10 and if the pills don’t suit you (e.g. medical issue or whatever) then it wouldn’t be refundable.

Interesting about not needing a prescription about Malarone. A colleague of mine said the same thing and I was sure she had been given the wrong advice. Maybe it’s because so many people can’t be bothered to get malaria prophylaxis arranged so they’re making it easier to get hold of.

     
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Yeh i thought the same, the pharmacist said only if it’s 28 days or less, and only for Malarone. Any other anti-malarial or having malarona for longer (which isn’t really possible anyway) has to be with prescription. Good for those wanting the drugs for a summer holiday, that’s probably the market they’re aiming for. Makes it cheaper and easier, it’s too expensive otherwise.

I’ve already asked my nurse about which ones to take, and to be honest she was useless (although she’s nice enough, just no real advice) She said Doxy is fine, it should be fine for me, and generally fine for everywhere. Nice and vague, like always. I’ll get my prescription asap and stick a weeks extra on and try them before we leave, just in case they don’t agree with me. Good idea on your other posts about the bottle, must remember to request that!

     
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Alex, how many spare tablets would you suggest taking? I’ve just counted out for my trip I need 122 including the 28 days afterwards…Do you people normally add on like a weeks spare or something to account for dropping/losing a few? Not really something i’ve considered until now i need to ask for the prescription? I guess you always run the risk of losing a few…

     
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I can’t really say how many extras you might need, you’ll have to judge that for yourself based on your travel plans and how likely you are to lose any (this is why ideally you’re better off seeing your travel nurse than guessing!).

It’s probably worth having a few spare I guess - I threw up a few when I took them on an empty stomach (stupid thing to do) so it was handy to have a few spares in that case. It would also probably be handy just in case you extend your stay/change your route etc.

Doxy tends to come in boxes of 50 capsules so most GPs will just prescribe you a round number closest to what you need. But do definitely ask them to put them in a pharmacy bottle rather than blister packs to save space on packing.

I assume you are taking the tablets for 94 days constantly and not having any gaps in non-malarial areas for longer than 28 days in that period?

I’m sure you know this, but for anyone else reading the thread, if you are taking Doxycycline and you have a gap in between visiting malarial areas you still need to take them for 28 days afterwards leaving the malarial region to prevent you getting sick.

For example I took Doxy for a few months in Asia and then had a 2 months ‘off’ (i.e. malaria free) in Japan, Korea, North America and Caribbean but I was still taking the pills for 28 days into that ‘off’ period to finish the course.

I then started up a new course again once I was about to enter a risk area in Central America. A course of Doxy is currently prescribed as one capsule a day for 2 days before entering a risk area (or 7 days if you’ve never had them before), one a day during the time in the risk area and one a day for 28 days after.

When there are malaria free gaps of less than 28 days you might as well just keep taking them throughout that period because it overlaps anyway. You can take Doxy for up to 5 years I think without any reported problems.

Back to the point this sort of thing really should be discussed with your GP because it’s so easy to make mistakes on how many you need, and your health isn’t worth gambling on. Having said that, I told my nurse exactly how many I needed and she just took my word for it (she’s the dippiest woman in the world).

Doxycycline is a very common antibiotic so assuming you go to a reputable pharmacy, you can always top up when you’re travelling.

Hope that helps in some way!
Lexi

Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional, I have no training in anything medical at all (apart from Outdoor/Expedition First Aid - ooh, get me!). If you read the above and decide to trust what I have said without seeking advice from a medical professional you are doing so at your own risk and I take no responsibility for anything that may happen to you as a result. Oh, and Gapyear.com aren’t liable either. smile

     
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Where are you going? We spent almost 70 dollars on 2 months supply of Doxycycline in Singapore, and then arrived in India to find identical tablets for 3 dollars. Yes, for the same number of tablets.

Also, we have had zero side effects from the Doxy, and I met a group of guys who managed to grab 5 tablets for almost nothing in their home country and tested them before they went. Maybe something to think about? Malarone would have cost us in the region of 700 dollars.

Food for thought. You do NOT need a prescription in India, Nepal or Thailand (only places I’ve bought them, could be true for others too) for antibiotics. Also, if you are Singapore so long as you are leaving the country within 24 hours (you need an air ticket) they are allowed to sell you Doxy without prescription, but it is up to the pharmacist. Some of them don’t feel comfortable parting with a hundred antibiotics. Again, something I’ve done.

As above, I claim no responsibility, am not a medical professional (except, hey! I did that Outdoor First Aid course too! :D) and if you go and overdose on doxy it isn’t my fault. See Alexandra’s post for a more sensible disclaimer.

Seth