Prescription medication in Peru?

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chikita1
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Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby chikita1 » Mon Jul 26, 2010 9:08 pm

I have lived in Peru before for a total of 5 months but rarely bought meds since I brought them with me. [I did one time, but they didn't ask me for an rx for anitbiotics or pain meds as it was an emergency.]

This time I am going on very short notice (1 week) and do not have enough time to see a doctor before. I am going for about 6 months.

Will I need a prescription for:
My asthma inhaler (in case mine runs out)
Birth control
Ritalin
Zoloft (do they even sell this one? it's for anxiety)

Or should I go to a doctor first? I speak Spanish.

Thanks!!!


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zarjoe
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby zarjoe » Mon Jul 26, 2010 10:17 pm

Here in Peru the prescription business is an interesting one... without a Rx you can pretty much count on getting anything you might be able to ask for outside of things that are psychoactive or narcotic... some of your meds seem to straddle the line...

Your asmtha inhaler and birth control should be quite simple... my daughter and wife (in that order.. ehhemm..) have received both ambuterol (asthma) and yaz (birth control) by asking for them.... but make sure you know the chemical or generic names to make it easier... your spanish will certainly help.

As for things that are borderline... zoloft is straightforward (... and goes by the same brand name... I have asked for it and got it previously) but Ritalin may be more difficult....

Other posters have asked about adderal and other amphetamine based Rx`s for ADD and received mixed reviews. Most have said that without a local MD Rx that you can`t receive them... others have said they have had some success. My overall impression is that amphetamine type Rx`s are relatively controlled and therefore tough to get without an Rx... similar to narcotics... even moderate narcotics like Trazadone... not to mention stronger scripts like Xanax or hydrocodone....

Good luck and let us know what you find out....
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby scott » Mon Jul 26, 2010 11:34 pm

You should be able to get all the meds you mentioned with the possible exception of Ritalin, not so sure about it, but check out the http://www.minsa.gob.pe/. That's the ministry of health website.

I traveled a lot for work before moving to Peru and never had an issue with getting prescriptions filled in as little as 48 hours, since I already had existing prescriptions with my doctor. You should make a call to your DR, I think you would be a lot better off than just coming here without all those meds.


Other posters have asked about adderal and other amphetamine based Rx`s for ADD and received mixed reviews. Most have said that without a local MD Rx that you can`t receive them... others have said they have had some success. My overall impression is that amphetamine type Rx`s are relatively controlled and therefore tough to get without an Rx... similar to narcotics... even moderate narcotics like Trazadone... not to mention stronger scripts like Xanax or hydrocodone....



I think you are confusing benzodiazepine(xanax), anti-depressant(trazadone) and narcotic like Vicodin(hydrocodone). Benzodiazepines are easy to get. Xanax is available as the generic Alprazolam. You do need a prescription to get it.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby Polaron » Tue Jul 27, 2010 1:01 am

You will want to avoid shopping at Wong Pharmacy and some others that strictly follow a prescription-only policy for certain meds. On the other hand, Metro, which is part of the same Chilean company as Wong, has a pharmacy that is much more flexible.

You will want to ask for Zoloft under its generic name - Sertralina in Peru - to save costs. I am not certain about the name here for Ritalin, though I suspect it will be something along the lines of Methilfenidato. The best way to find out is to call or write to one of the major pharmacies here.

E-mail may not be responded to, but a quick phone call will work and is a low-cost way to find out if you'll be able to get the things you need. Just log on to the website of one of the major pharmacies here, and you should find a telephone number.

Call one of the local pharmacies and ask. Bear in mind that as often as not, you will probably receive incomplete and possibly even incorrect information when dealing with retailers in the developing world. Still, it will give you some idea.

If the idea of paying international long distance charges does not appeal to you, I suggest you get a VoIP account, which gives you long distance for a fraction of the cost. I use Yahoo and Skype for VoIP and occasionally make a $10 deposit to one of those accounts. It lets me call the USA from my computer in Peru for about two cents per minute. I can talk to Mexico for about a nickel. It may be the best ten dollars you have ever spent.

Hopefully you'll feel confident enough in Spanish to communicate with people on the phone here. Good luck.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby Remigius » Sun Aug 01, 2010 4:31 pm

Nowadays, pharmacies do not sell antibiotics without prescription. I'm not sure about other medicines, but I wasn't asked for any prescription for the inhaler of my daughter.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby cuymagico » Thu Aug 05, 2010 6:35 pm

Actually, a pharmacist just gave me Amoxicillan (antibiotic) without a prescription, or me even asking for it, or him even telling me it was amoxicillan. I asked for something for throat phlegm without cough, he said he'd give me an expectorant, and once I was home I checked the label and saw it was Amoxicillan plus expectorant. This was at Incafarma.

For the OP: you could probably get all those without prescription except Ritalin, which is arguably a bigger deal here than in North America. But if you call the pharmacy and ask they'll tell you you need a prescription for everything. In my case, the most they've ever done is ask if I had a prescription, they don't actually ask to see it.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby Kelly » Thu Aug 05, 2010 7:51 pm

That drives me nuts - my son had H1N1 last year, and I sent my husband to pick it up some medicine, something for fever, something for his cough. They sold him antibiotics. I took it right back and made them exchange it - the girl tried to insist that if he had a fever, he had an infection = needs antibiotics. A viral infection does NOT need antibiotics. Grrr.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby Remigius » Fri Aug 06, 2010 11:40 am

It's a bad mentality and habit here that people take antibiotics as soon as they feel a soar throat. The word "antibiotic" means "against life", therefore should never be taken if not necessary. If a pharmacy sells antibiotics without prescription, they are violating the law.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby Ron » Fri Aug 06, 2010 12:01 pm

Inhalers do not need a script. Any pharmacy will ask you if you want Ventolin or the generic equal. Both are cheap. I get the Ventolin, the generic one has a "funny" taste to it.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby americorps » Fri Aug 06, 2010 12:41 pm

well, to suggest someone who takes anti-biotics is against life is extreme to say the least.

There are some times when anti-biotics are needed and save lives, though I agree that probably 75% of the time they are used, they are not needed. It is rare I take anti-biotics, but they once kept me from going deaf, and another time brought my grandfather back from the brink of death, so I can not call that anti-life.

Further, the law against selling all antibiotics without a prescription in Peru does not go into effect until August 25th of this month. Until then, there are some antibiotics that are still legal over the counter, so calling that breaking the law is not accurate, just yet.

I realize people get emotional and I am not one to advocate antibiotics, but perhaps we should take a more even handed control to the debate.

There is plenty of evidence that shows very clearly that abuse of antibiotics is very dangerous and is creating superbugs that are antibiotic resistance that could some day kill us all.

There are, however, studies showing that especially in some third world applications where people do not have access to medical care, there is little choice but to self medicate and lack of antibiotics could kill them if they have to wait a month or travel hundreds of miles to get a prescription. There is evidence that some people with chronic infections, like chronic UTI or ear infections are actually better in the long run if they can self medicate at first sign of problem without spending the time and money to go to a doctor to get a prescription.

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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby Ron » Fri Aug 06, 2010 4:30 pm

I think what Remigius meant was this:

Anti = against

Bio = life

ic = pertaining to

It is a classification of drugs, not a title to be taken literally.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby Remigius » Fri Aug 06, 2010 4:40 pm

americorps wrote:well, to suggest someone who takes anti-biotics is against life is extreme to say the least.

I guess that must have been me, but I didn't say that someone who takes antibiotic is against life. The word "antibiotic" means "against life", because not only does it kill the bad, it also kills the good and, like you say, creates this issue about bacteria becoming more and more resistant.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby PTTurboe » Fri Aug 13, 2010 10:49 am

Well, I had chronic Lyme disease and I took antibiotics for 18 months to get cured.

From that I became an expert on antibiotics.

What you are saying is not true.

The medical community in the US has been brainwashed into an antibiotic hysteria.

Also, low level doxy (20mg) per day will prevent heart attacks in 80% of people.

Do some research...
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby americorps » Fri Aug 13, 2010 11:21 am

quite honestly, we have done research.

Your comments that the US is scared of antibiotics is ...interesting as they prescribe more antibiotics than any other western nation.

The research is pretty clear...over-use of anti-biotics is as dangerous as not using them when indicated.

The research is pretty clear... Self medicating is dangerous and lay medical advice is ill advised.

As a result of over-use of antibiotics, use other than indicated and self medication, a growing number of antibiotic resistant bacteria are ever increasing and kill more and more people every year.

I do agree that antibiotic information is scattered and tainted. For example, my grandfather went under an intensive antibiotic treatment at the Mayo Clinic for his arthritis and it significantly helped him.

Your assertion that antibiotics may help prevent heart attacks based on a 1999 study was largely disproven in a 2005 study.

I stand with Kelly, medical advice over the internet from lay people is dangerous and ill advised. That does NOT mean I think the doctors have it right, nor does it mean we can not question medicine, it means that we just must be more vested in the source of science behind our advice.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby Remigius » Fri Aug 13, 2010 12:03 pm

PTTurboe wrote:Well, I had chronic Lyme disease and I took antibiotics for 18 months to get cured.

From that I became an expert on antibiotics.

What you are saying is not true.


Exactly what is not true? Don't tell me that during your 18-month treatment you were never told to drink yoghurt or take supplements to prevent side effects and to strengthen you immune system. Misuse (with clear emphasis on 'misuse') of antibiotics is harmful. It's a fact. Any misuse of any medicine is plain wrong. If it wasn't prescribed by a doctor, you should not be taking it. As for you "low level doxy" example: it's flawed. It was suggested for those who have a heart disease and to whom it is prescribed. That doesn't mean that any healthy person should be taking it to "prevent" a heart attack. The same goes for aspirins. Do some research yourself before accusing someone of not doing it.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby Ian Hawkes » Sat Aug 14, 2010 1:53 pm

Prescription - what Prescription?

I found you can get as up or down as you wish. Although they were getting stricter the last time I was there.

If one has a sensible head on you could always hit a doctor and they will give you a prescription.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby cuymagico » Mon Aug 16, 2010 10:19 pm

Ian Hawkes wrote:Prescription - what Prescription?

I found you can get as up or down as you wish. Although they were getting stricter the last time I was there.



For Ritalin? It's a controlled substance. Don't they have prescription controls for those?
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby Remigius » Mon Aug 16, 2010 10:49 pm

Peru wants to control self-medication. Every strong medicine will have to go along with a prescription. I'm sure that some B-class pharmacists will sell you whatever you want and if you have a doctor in the family, you'd be able to score your fix, but I have been many times to Inkafarma where they kept on asking me for the prescription.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby swell0 » Tue Sep 21, 2010 6:01 pm

zarjoe wrote: Your asmtha inhaler and birth control should be quite simple... my daughter and wife (in that order.. ehhemm..) have received both ambuterol (asthma) and yaz (birth control) by asking for them.... but make sure you know the chemical or generic names to make it easier... your spanish will certainly help.


I'm also looking to get on birth control here in Peru. When you say you're wife and daughter got their meds "by asking for them", do you mean they just went into a pharmacy and asked? And, if so, do you know which pharmacy or what kind? I guess I just need to ask around more but I'm trying to determine if I can get birth control in one of the little boticas here in Ollantaytambo or if I need to go to a bigger pharmacy in Cusco.

Also, anyone know what the difference between a "public" and "private" pharmacy is here, or examples of either category? I've heard you can get an emergency contraceptive at a "private" one but not public. Which is which?
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby scott » Tue Sep 21, 2010 6:30 pm

Kelly posted this link in another thread: http://observatorio.digemid.minsa.gob.pe/

Just type in the med and it will show you if it is available in Peru along with a suggested price. Whether you need a prescription or not seems to be rather subjective. When I go to Inkafarm they NEVER ask for my prescription. If my wife goes, they won't give it to her without a copy of the prescription.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby PTTurboe » Wed Sep 22, 2010 9:08 am

americorps wrote:quite honestly, we have done research.

Your assertion that antibiotics may help prevent heart attacks based on a 1999 study was largely disproven in a 2005 study.



Show me those "studies". My "study" has been going on for 25 years. I have a drawer full of facts on heart attacks and bacterial infections.

Do you even know what a CRP is?

What do you think plaque is? It is a reaction to infection in your blood.

Did you know that 80% of people with heart disease have low level bacterial infections. 20mg of doxy is not going to hurt anyone.

Medicine has been hijacked by TPTB. About everything you hear is upside down. They do not want you to be well. They want to sell expensive medicines to the slaves.

PS: You call the pharmacy and they deliver. Have the maid answer the door. No need for a script...
Last edited by PTTurboe on Wed Sep 22, 2010 5:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby americorps » Wed Sep 22, 2010 9:30 am

Yes, I realize that there are many conspiracy theories and I also know full well, from working at Public Citizen, that the Big Drug Companies are not to be trusted.

For years people swore certain immunizations caused some forms of austims, but now that has been totally disproven.

At the same time, many claims of safe drugs and preferred treatments from the big drug companies have proven to be profit driven and unsafe.

The bottom line for me is, it is fine to question big medicine, but I have yet to find a substitute that is at all trustworthy for science. Science does not back up your claim.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby PTTurboe » Wed Sep 22, 2010 5:03 pm

Are you in the medical field?

If not then no more discussion....
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby americorps » Wed Sep 22, 2010 5:29 pm

that is an interesting approach. I stuck with the science, you decide who can and can not have an opinion and laugh at me because I disagree with you.

That does not change the science, the studies that link heart attack with infection have been largely disproved. Free and clear of passion, I stick with the facts.
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Re: Prescription medication in Peru?

Postby Kelly » Wed Sep 22, 2010 6:17 pm

Once again, let's try to keep the topic on the actual topic, which is about the availability of prescription medications in Peru.

Please remember -

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