By Dr. Brian McDonoughSponsored By Blue Cross

KYW’s Medical Reports Sponsored By Independence Blue Cross

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — It is part of the business of medicine.

A new drug is developed and for years it is sold as a prescription medication until the patent wears out and generics are developed.

But some prescription drugs have a second life in a lowered or altered form and sold over the counter.

In some cases, it makes the drugs cheaper for people paying cash, but there is no doubt it is more expensive for people who have prescription plans as part of their insurance.

There are medical ramifications as well.

When a drug is over-the-counter, people don’t always get medical advice and they may not take side effects of the drug or interaction seriously, stating the drug must be safe.

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