person looking at prescription bottle

It is important to keep your cancer care team informed about any medicines you are taking. Ask questions about how different medicines can interact with one another. Use the practical tips below to better understand your medicines.

Tips for Understanding Your Medicine

Be ready with questions. Write down as many questions as you can before seeing your cancer care team. Be sure to have all your questions about your medicines answered during your appointments. Questions to ask about your medicines include:

  • Have any medicines been added, stopped or changed, and why?
  • What medicine do I need to continue and why?
  • How do I take my medicine and for how long?
  • What side effects should I watch out for?
  • How will I know if my medicine is working?

Use the My Medicines worksheet to list your prescription and non-prescription medicines. Include:

  • Prescription medicines (medicines ordered by a doctor)
  • Over-the-counter medicines (medicines you can buy in a pharmacy or drug store without a prescription)
  • Vitamins, minerals and herbals
  • Eye, ear and nose drops
  • Patches
  • Inhalers
  • Sprays
  • Cannabis

Tell your doctors, nurses and pharmacists about any medicines you take and if you have any allergies.

Update your doctors, nurses and pharmacists about any changes to medicines you take. This includes telling them if you have stopped taking a medicine and why. Tell them how and when you are taking your medicines.

If you get your medicines from your local pharmacy, give your cancer care team the local pharmacy's contact information.

About the MedsCheck Program

The MedsCheck Program allows you to schedule a free 20- to 30-minute one-to-one meeting with a pharmacist at Princess Margaret or with your local pharmacist. MedsCheck will make sure you are taking your medicines well. Think of it as a complete medication review.

The MedsCheck appointment is your chance to:

  • Ask what your medications are for
  • Check that you are taking your medications properly
  • Discuss any problems you may have with your current medications
  • Get advice about taking your medications properly
  • Discuss how your prescription, over-the-counter and complementary medications may affect your cancer treatments

For further details, speak with any pharmacist. Take all your medications and your OHIP card with you to your MedsCheck appointment.

Learn more about UHN's MedsCheck Program »​
Last reviewed: 5/5/2022
Last modified: 11/1/2023 5:42 AM
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