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Legend Drug

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What Is A Legend Drug?

A legend drug is a pharmaceutical medicine that cannot be obtained legally without a prescription from a licensed health care provider.

Deeper Definition

A popular name for legend drug is a prescription drug. It is a drug that requires a medical prescription from a medical doctor or other licensed practitioners to be dispensed. Legend drugs differ from over-the-counter drugs in the sense that the latter can be obtained without a prescription.

A ”legend,” is an inscription of some sort. Legend drugs often come with caution on their pack that informs medical practitioners and users that the law forbids the dispensing of the drug without a prescription. Another way to identify legend drugs is to check if the symbol “Rx” is on the pack. It means “prescription.”

The misuse of legend drugs can cause severe damage to the health of a patient. A prescription from a licensed health care provider is required to gain access to them. Furthermore, legend drugs often come with a Patient Information Leaflet (PIL). PIL is simply a leaflet that describes what the drug does and how to take it.

A drug may exist both as a legend drug and an over-the-counter drug that does not require a prescription. A notable example of this situation is ibuprofen. The OTC version of ibuprofen can relieve mild and some severe pains. If the OTC version fails to relieve severe pain, the patient needs the prescription version of the drug which is four times stronger than the OTC.

Legend Drug Example

Drugs, substances, and certain chemicals are classified into five schedules depending on their abuse rate:

Schedule I: Substances in these categories are not drugs. They are simply illegal. They include heroin, LSD, etc.

Schedule II: These are drugs with a high potential for abuse. Legend drugs fall into this category. An example is morphine.

Schedule III: Drugs, substances, or chemicals with a moderate to low potential for physical and psychological dependence. Examples are products that contain less than 90 milligrams of codeine.

Schedule IV: Drugs, substances, or chemicals with a low potential for abuse and low risk of dependence.

Schedule V: Drugs that use limited quantities of narcotics. Examples are cough syrups that contain codeine.

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