My mother is diabetic is on a few medications. I asked her if she knew exactly what medications she was on and she only knew the name of metformin. She is also on a station (atorvastatin) but didn’t know the name besides calling it “the cholesterol pill”. Also, she mentioned that she is taking a little, long blue pill. This pill is glimepiride. So, I then (even thought I’ve been through this with her before) had to go through why she was on a cholesterol pill even though she doesnt have cholesterol issues per se. This is for cardiac risk that comes for diabetes.
My dad a handful of years back suffered from a gastric ulcer. I asked him if he knew what medications he was recommended to stay away from. He just knew that he had to stay away from Advil. I asked him if he knew the generic name in case pain medications in the house weren’t labeled brand name. He didn’t so I had to tell him it is ibuprofen. He said he just knew he could take acetaminophen so he knew to always check for that at least. I also let him know aspirin is not recommended.
In the hospital we commonly experience patients not knowing the names or exact purpose of medications. It’s more common to hear them call their pills by color or shape. I think this is a useful stepping stone for education.