New drugs made available in 2013

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Dear Readers: Here are interesting prescription (Rx) and over-the-counter (OTC) items that became available in 2013. Please note: Some don't have working websites yet.

FluNada (nasal/throat spray) homeopathic, OTC: This new natural remedy contains a homeopathic blend of mint, wintergreen, eucalyptus and elderberry to stop cold and flu-like symptoms. Spray it in your mouth and nasal passages, right where the bugs try to enter your body. The kill rate of FluNada was tested by two independent labs and found to be 99.9 percent. FluNada.com

Vizamyl (flutemetamol) injection, Rx: Can this compound detect Alzheimer's disease at an earlier stage? Think of it as a contrast dye used for PET imaging. It attaches to beta amyloid plaques in the brain, which dementia patients often have.

Fetzima (levomilnacipran) extended release capsules, Rx: This is what pharmacists call a "me too" drug because it works like other SNRI (serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor) drugs. Older ones include Effexor, Pristiq, Cymbalta and Savella. They improve levels of two key brain neurotransmitters involved in major depression, as well as in fibromyalgia, ADHD, obsessive-compulsive disorder and anxiety. Fetzima.com

Adempas (riociguat) tablets, Rx: Last year brought approvals for several lung drugs, among them Adempas for pulmonary hypertension. The other brand-new medication that works similarly is Opsumut (macitentan). Adempas.com

Anoro Ellipta (umeclidinium and vilanterol) inhalation powder, Rx: Inhale it once daily; it helps with asthma, bronchitis and other lung disorders. Don't confuse it with Breo Ellipta, which has similar benefits to breathing but different active ingredients.

Clinolipid (soybean and olive oils) injection, Rx: Would you ever think to inject yourself with olive or soybean oil? This drug is used to support nutrition in adults, and it's given intravenously. It provides calories and essential fatty acids. You can't get it if you are allergic to eggs, soybean and olive oil.

Zubsolv (buprenorphine and naloxone) sublingual tablets, Rx: This helps people who are dependent on painkiller drugs such as opiates (hydrocodone, oxycodone, morphine). The drug is intended as part of a bigger program to treat drug addiction, including counseling and psychosocial support. The makers of Zubsolv have simultaneously launched an around-the-clock support program online, designed with input from patients in recovery. Rise-us.com

Zephrex-D (pseudoephedrine) tablets, OTC: Helps unstuff your nose and relieve sinus headache. It's the first meth-resistant pseudoephedrine tablet, designed to keep people from turning cold medicine into speed! Decongestants are often messed with, but it's impossible with Zephrex-D because the makers invested in new technology that locks the drug in place. Zephrex-d.com

Sovaldi (sofosbuvir) tablets, Rx: For chronic hepatitis C virus, without the need for interferon. This drug blocks a specific protein needed by the virus for replication. Sovaldi.com

This is not intended to treat, cure or diagnose your condition. Go to DearPharmacist.com.

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