Swallowing pills together is OK, usually

There is usually no harm in swallowing multiple pills at once, provided there aren't combinations that harmful if mixed, Dr. Keith Roach notes. It's best to ask your pharmacist first in all instances.



November 1, 2022 - 2:27 PM

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DEAR DR. ROACH: I have always wondered if it matters if you swallow a bunch of pills in one swallow or if it would be better to space them out. I take a bunch, like Eliquis, dicyclomine, gabapentin, etc. — B.A.

ANSWER: With most pills, it’s OK to take them as a bunch together, if you can tolerate doing so (I’ve known people who have a tough time taking multiple pills at the same time due to gagging). There are a few combinations of pills that shouldn’t be taken together, such as tetracyclines and calcium, but these should be labelled clearly on your bottle. A few medicines, like alendronate (Fosamax), can’t be taken with any other medicines. Some medicines, including all the ones you mentioned, can cause sedation, which can be worse if taken together.

As always, your pharmacist is your best friend for questions about medication interactions.

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