Harvard Heart Letter

Leftover drugs pose prescription for trouble

Few programs exist for environmentally safe drug disposal. Flushing them is a no-no.

This year, you've resolved, will be the year you finally clean out your medicine cabinet. No more half-full vials of blood pressure pills dating back to the 1990s. Out with the crusted tubes of salve, bottles of crystallizing cough syrup, and assorted containers of mystery medicine.

It's a good idea. Hanging onto a slew of unused medications can increase the chances of taking the wrong one, and old drugs can lose their potency.

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