Having to take medication is bad enough… without the possibility of the drug itself making you ill. Unfortunately, some drug manufacturers use gluten as a filler in their products, which affects Celiacs and those with gluten intolerance/sensitivity. Very few drug products are actually labelled ‘gluten-free.’
If the gluten-free status of a drug product is not clearly labelled, your best bet is to contact the manufacturer directly to inquire about the inactive ingredients or excipients. Some pharmacists may be willing to help, either by contacting the company on your behalf, or by providing the contact information to you. If they are not able to provide the contact information, it can usually be found on the manufacturers’ website. It is important to verify the GF status each time you re-fill your medication, as manufacturing processes may change over time.
As a starting point to help you determine gluten-free medications, a comprehensive list has been comprised by the clinical pharmacist behind glutenfreedrugs.com. This informational site lists drug products both by therapeutic category and alphabetically, and also offers additional links, including food links of interest, and a list that explains what some of the drug fillers are. Medications and Celiac Disease – Tips From a Pharmacist (January 2007) is also a valuable source of information on this topic.