Difference between expiration date and expiration date

The expiration date is the date that the pharmacy will mark the compound medicine prepared for it on the prescription and indicate when the prescription should no longer be used. It usually says “discard after…” or “don’t use after…”

How to determine the no longer use date

This date is determined by the pharmacy when preparing the compound prescription based on various factors, including:

  • The type of drug and its degradation rate
  • Dosage of the drug
  • Type of container used
  • Expected storage conditions of the drug
  • How long does it take to take the medicine
  • How likely is any contamination during dispensing

Is overdue use different from overdue?

The expiration date is different from the expiration date of the drug.

The expiration date is a point set by the manufacturer, at which point they can no longer guarantee the strength or safety of the drug.Since the expiration date is determined by testing the drug under specific conditions related to the storage container, lighting, temperature, etc., according to the regulations of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), changing any of these conditions will damage the date. This includes transferring the medication to a different container, which is normal practice in pharmacies.

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Expired date

  • The date when the compound is no longer used

  • Determined by the pharmacy at the time of dispensing

  • According to drug type, degradation rate, dosage, container type, storage conditions, prescription length, possibility of contamination


  • The date when the manufacturer can no longer guarantee the strength or safety of the drug

  • Determined by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration

  • Based on testing drugs under specific conditions related to storage containers, lighting, temperature, etc.

The importance of expiration dates

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration stated that taking drugs after the expiration date is dangerous because they may not be as effective, their chemical composition may have changed, or they may have deteriorated to the point where harmful bacteria may grow.

Especially for antibiotics, it is important to pay attention to the expiration date, because the use of expired antibiotics means that it may not be enough to completely treat your infection, putting you at a more serious risk of infection.

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Most importantly, it is best not to use expired medications, as there is no guarantee that they will work as expected and may even make you worse.

How to store medicines safely

Medicines need to be stored safely to help keep their chemical composition intact and prevent them from becoming breeding grounds for bacteria. Keep them properly until they expire to ensure their safety and maximum effectiveness.

  • Make sure to store the medicine according to the instructions. If the prescription says to store it in the refrigerator, be sure to do so. If it says not to expose it to high temperatures, please do not store it next to the stove.
  • Store most medicines in a cool, dry place.Although the bathroom medicine cabinet is a popular place to store medicines, it is not a good idea because of the accumulation of heat and steam during the shower. This may cause your medicine to become less effective or even dangerous before the expiration date.
  • Consider locking them up.The abuse of prescription drugs is at the highest level in history. When children or pets take drugs, accidental overdose and poisoning do occur. A locked box may be a wise solution.
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