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Fruth Pharmacy, MD Labs team up to prevent drug interactions, reactions

Imagine being able to know exactly which medications and/or doses work or don’t work for you based on your DNA before even beginning to take them.

Fruth Pharmacy has recently made that a reality thanks to a partnership with MD Labs, who are currently offering Rxight, the broadest, most comprehensive pharmacognetic program, at every Fruth Pharmacy location.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 82 percent of American adults take at least one medication, and 29 percent take five or more. The CDC also reports more than 2 million adverse drug reactions each year lead to emergency room visits, with an estimated 100,000 deaths annually.

The partnership between Fruth Pharmacy and MD Labs to offer the Rxight pharmacognetic program is a direct response to this issue, and covers more than 200 prescription and over-the-counter medications in more than 50 therapeutic classes, including blood pressure, cholesterol, blood thinners, heart issues, ADHD, anxiety, depression, diabetes, pain, ED, acid reflux, oncology and more.

“This helps explain why some people wind up in an emergency room for taking a drug while others do fine on the same medication. Until recently, drugs have been prescribed hoping that each drug works pretty much the same in everybody, but knowing they don’t,” Lynne Fruth, president of Fruth Pharmacy, said. “Pharmacognetics information challenges the one size fits all approach, and opens the door to more personalized approaches to prescribing and using medication.”

Pharmacognetics uses information about a person’s genetic profile to help choose the medication and drug doses that are likely to work best for them, helping to avoid ineffective or potentially dangerous drug reactions.

Lynne Fruth said that Fruth Pharmacy has been in contact with MD Labs for about a year before making the partnership official and offering Rxight at each of its locations.

She added that she herself took the test before undergoing a heart procedure last year to know which medications would or would not be good for her to take.

“This is very cutting edge and the next stage of personalized medicine,” she said. “The areas of the most interest have been cardiac areas and people who are on behavioral or mental medications. In the past, people with heart issues didn’t find out that things didn’t work until they had a heart attack, or if people with some degree of mental or behavioral illness weren’t stabilized or managed well with their medications, it often leads to a lot of fall out. Being able to get these people on the right medications and/or doses sooner will really help the families out.”

After a person’s physician has authorized the lab test, the patient visits a Fruth Pharmacy for a simple cheek swab and to purchase the Rxight test. The Fruth pharmacist then receives the results within 5-7 days, followed by each patient receiving their results during a Personalized Medication Review with a Fruth pharmacist trained in pharmacognetics. The Fruth pharmacist will then coordinate care with the patient’s prescribing physician.

Medications that show up as green are a good match for a patient’s DNA, yellow means that they should use with caution, and red indicates medications that should be avoided.

“We’re thrilled to be launching Rxight with Fruth Pharmacy,” Matthew Rutledge, co-founder of MD Labs, said. “Together we will help physicians make more informed prescribing decisions to help their patients avoid medications that may be ineffective or inadvertently cause adverse drug reactions or catastrophic events. The key question is, just like a deadly allergy, do you want to know before or after you take the medication?”

MD Labs is a leading high-complexity CLIA certified laboratory specializing in clinical lab testing.

Founded in 2011, MD Labs serves healthcare providers across the United States and employs state-of-the-art technology and testing for a wide array of analytes.

Fruth Pharmacy has been a family-owned pharmacy for more than 63 years, with 29 locations in Ohio, West Virginia and Kentucky.

The Rxight test is a one-time test that costs $399, however, Lynne Fruth said the pharmacy offers discounts once in a while. Since the test is based from a person’s DNA, new medications that just hit the market are added to the list and will indicate them of their results with those medications as well.

Patient’s results are maintained within the pharmacy’s dispensing software, so all future prescriptions are double-checked to ensure they are the best choice for that individual.

She added that several insurance companies are now starting to pay for the test, so check with your insurance provider if interested. Rxight is also FSA and HAS eligible if people have those through their employers.

“We’ve had about 80 or 90 people take the Rxight test so far,” she said.

For more information on the Rxight program, visit www.Rxight.com.