Information on Medications

The InsHeal Content Repository includes numerous articles on medications and drugs. The table below lists several groups of medications (along with a brief description of each group) for which content and articles are available. Clicking on the group name will lead you to the names of individual drugs belonging to the group for which articles are available.

Drug ClassDescription
Antianxiety drugsAntianxiety drugs are medicines that are used to treat anxiety disorders. These disorders are associated with a feeling of constant worry and fear. The antidepressant drugs such as escitalopram, fluoxetine and paroxetine are usually the first choice to treat anxiety disorders. Benzodiazepines such as lorazepam are usually avoided but are used if an immediate effect is needed.
Antibacterials – Amikacin and related aminoglycoside antibacterialsAminoglycosides are antibacterials that are used to treat serious bacterial infections such as blood, lung and heart infections. Some aminoglycosides such as streptomycin are effective in tuberculosis. The drugs are administered via injection, though some preparations are available for local use on the skin, eye or ear.
Antibacterials – Ciprofloxacin and Related Antibacterial DrugsAntibacterials like ciprofloxacin belong to a group called quinolones. They are used for a wide range of infections such as urinary, respiratory and digestive tract infections. Several of these drugs are available for local use in the eye and ear. Drugs like levofloxacin and moxifloxacin are used as second-line alternatives to treat tuberculosis.
Antibacterials – Imipenem and related carbapenemsThe carbapenem antibacterials such as imipenem, meropenem and ertapenem are related to penicillin. These are used to treat serious infections caused by multiple bacteria. They are administered via injection.
Antibacterials – PenicillinPenicillin was the first antibiotic to be discovered. Derivatives of penicillin such as ampicillin and amoxicillin are often combined with drugs like sulbactam and clavulanate to overcome the resistance that bacteria may have developed to them.
Antibacterials – CephalosporinsCephalosporins are antibacterial drugs that are used to treat a variety of infections, ranging from mild to severe. Some cephalosporins are meant for oral use, while others are injected into the body. Since they are chemically related to penicllins, cephalosporins should be avoided in patients allergic to penicillins.
AntidepressantsAntidepressants are drugs used to treat depression, a state of mind marked by a sad mood, reduced interest in daily activities, a constant worry, guilt feeling, poor concentration, sleep disturbance and changes in weight or libido. These symptoms should be present for most days of at least two weeks to qualify for depression. Depression has been associated with reduced levels of the chemicals serotonin and noradrenaline across the nerve terminals of the brain. Therefore, drugs that increase the levels of these chemicals at the junction between nerves relieve the symptoms of depression.
Antifungal drugsFungal infections often occur in people with low immunity due to diseases such as HIV or the intake of medicines such as high-dose steroids. They often affect the skin and mucous membranes, though they may affect internal organs as well. Antifungal drugs are available as topical preparations such as creams and lotions to be applied on the skin and mucous membranes, or tablets and injections to be taken internally.
Antihistamine drugs Antihistamines are drugs that are primarily used to treat allergies. An allergy is the body’s reaction to a trigger which can be anything such as food, medication or even weather. The trigger results in the body releasing several chemicals including histamine into the blood stream. These chemicals result in symptoms which may include a skin rash, itching, sneezing, runny nose and/or watery eyes. The newer antihistamines have the advantage of being less sedative than some of the older drugs.
Antihypertensive drugs – Angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (ACE I)ACE inhibitors are drugs that are often used as the first choice in the treatment of high blood pressure, alone or in combination with other medications. They slow kidney damage in patients with diabetes. They are used to treat patients with heart failure.
Antihypertensive drugs – Angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs)ARBs are drugs that can be used as alternatives to ACE inhibitors to treat conditions such as hypertension and heart failure. They are less likely to result in cough, a side effect associated with ACE inhibitors.
Antihypertensive drugs – Calcium channel blockersCalcium channel blockers are drugs that are commonly used to treat hypertension and angina. They relax blood vessels and improve blood flow through them. Some of these drugs have a predominant effect on the heart and reduce the heart rate and force of contraction. Swelling of the feet is a common side effect with these drugs.
Cholesterol/ Lipid – lowering Medications High cholesterol level in the blood is associated with heart disease and pancreatitis. Cholesterol-lowering medications are chosen depending on the type of cholesterol that is elevated. Statins reduce the LDL-cholesterol levels and are commonly used. Fibric acid derivatives and niacin reduce the triglyceride levels and increase the HDL-cholesterol levels. Ezetimebe is often used as an additional drug to other cholesterol-lowering medications.
Medications for Diabetes Diabetes is a common condition affecting individuals across the world. The treatment of type 1 diabetes with insulin has been simplified and is more pleasant today than it once was. A wide range of insulins are available, that can be injected with patient-friendly pens. Type 2 diabetes is treated with diet control, regular exercise and an array of medications that include tablets as well as injections. A combination of medications may be required for the difficult-to-treat diabetes patients.
Medications for Peptic Ulcers – Proton Pump InhibitorsProton pump inhibitors include drugs such as omeprazole, lansoprazole and rabeprazole that are used to treat conditions arising due to excess acid secretion by the stomach. These conditions include duodenal and stomach ulcers and gastroesophageal reflux disease.
Melatonin and related drugsMelatonin is a naturally-occurring hormone which is often used to prevent jet lag or to treat chronic insomnia. Ramelteon, Tasimelteon and Agomelatine are drugs which act similar to melatonin. Agomelatine is used to treat major depressive disorder due to its additional mechanism of action.
Prokinetic DrugsProkinetic drugs are medicines that increase the movements of the digestive tract. Individual drugs vary in terms of conditions that they are used to treat and side effects.

Disclaimer: The content provided on this site is meant for informational purposes only and not intended to replace the relationship between the doctor and the patient. It should not be used for self-treatment by patients or by doctors to treat patients. Consult your doctor before using any of the above information.