What happens if I take an expired medicine?

a 42% of the population A Spanish woman over the age of 18 takes medications prescribed by a doctor with a high or moderate frequency, according to the WIN World Survey 2019 study, which the DYM Institute carried out in our country in collaboration with WIN International. A number that is increasing year after year. For this reason, it is common for drugs to accumulate in homes over time and expire. This is where the big question arises: can we eat them even if the date has passed?
The expiration of drugs is a crucial aspect when deciding whether the drug in question is sure for your use and if it will work as expected, according to the pharmacist Cinfa. It is the manufacturer who determines this date after the so-called stability studies, in which the drugs are subjected to extreme environmental conditions for between 6 and 12 months. That is why each medicine can have a different expiration date, which ranges between 12 and 60 months.
As warned by the Government of Catalonia on your website, special care should be taken with liquid forms, such as syrups, eye drops or injectables, since they present more stability problems. Likewise, they warn that insulin or rescue inhalers must be within the best before date, since they are used daily.

Tips for storing drugs

One of the keys to keeping medicines in good condition, at least until their expiration date, is knowing where and how to store them. It is recommended to do it in a fresh and dry place where the sun does not shine directly. In addition, there are some drugs that, following his instructions, will have to be kept in the refrigerator, since at room temperature they can spoil.

In the case of syrups or eye drops, it is advisable to read the prospectus carefully to determine its validity, since once opened will last less time than in the case of some pills.

In conclusion, it depends on the drug in question, but if you take an expired one, what will most likely happen is that do not take effect. As Gencat says, it is highly unlikely that the intake of an expired medicine will have toxic effects on health. Even so, it is not recommended to take medications outside the recommended period.

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