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How do I breastfeed by baby?

The first time breastfeeding raises many doubts. This is normal as both mother and child must learn, it is a new experience for both.
There are different positions, the midwife or the gynecologist will advise you, but it is up to you to decide which is best for your situation.

-Position one: the mother, leaning backwards with the back supported, the baby is placed on the mother’s breast and it is the baby that finds the nipple naturally.
-Position two: the mother holds the baby in one arm and offers the opposite breast, meaning that if the baby is held in the left arm, the right breast is offered, if held in the right arm, the left is offered.
-Position three: the mother holds the baby with one arm and places the nose in front of the nipple. The baby -feeds from the same side as the arm that holds them.
-Position four: the mother lies on the bed with the baby at their side. The mother can help the baby stay in the right position with their arm. This can be useful after a cesarean.

The main problem that occurs while breastfeeding can be the appearance of cracks on the nipple. To avoid this it is recommended to:
➢ Moisturise from the first months of pregnancy
➢ Maintain a good breastfeeding position
➢ Removing the baby from the breast should be gentle (try inserting the tip of your finger into the baby’s mouth, slowly, so that the mouth opens and doesn’t pull on the nipple when coming off).
➢ Monitor the wetness of the area (excess dampness can cause cracks and other problems)
➢ It is not recommended to wash the breast before every feed as it eliminates the area’s natural skin protection, showering once a day is enough.
We hope, with this advice, you find it easy to feed your baby and you do not suffer with painful cracks, making each feed a time to connect and enjoyable for both of you.

Text: Diana Olmedilla Sanz

English translation: Nicola McGrath.

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ADHD: Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder

In recent years, we have heard a lot about ADHD, Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder, especially in children. But, what is it exactly? Is it a fashion or a way for laboratories to sell more medication to deal with children that used to be labelled as “lively”?
Firstly, from an anatomical point of view, there are physical differences in the structure of the brain compared to other children; some areas are seen to be smaller (corpus callosum, caudate nucleus, etc.), but this may correct itself over time.

It has also been observed that less is released of two neurotransmitters, the two related to attention and motor regulation; noradrenaline and dopamine. For this reason neurotransmission is not the same and the working memory, how alert one is and attention span are affected.

The consequences in childhood can cause academic problems, changes to behaviour, problems with social interaction and low self-esteem. In adolescence, added to these issues, it can also be cause for criminal behaviour and aggression. Hence, detecting ADHD early on is imperative. Unfortunately, this is not easy as the diagnosis can currently take from 3 to 5 years.

The three basic symptoms of ADHD are: hyperactivity, impulsiveness and lack of attention. In reality, there are 3 types of ADHD, despite the common belief that we are always talking about “lively” children:
● The inattentive /distractible type (scatty, cannot pay attention to detail, poor organisational skills, forgetful, etc.)
● the hyperactive / impulsive type (finds it difficult to stay seated, seems to be constantly moving, has difficulty waiting their turn, etc.)
● The combined type, showing symptoms of both.
It is currently believed that ADHD is genetically predisposed, and considered to be up to 76% hereditary. For this reason, it is fairly common that when a child is diagnosed, one of their parents is also found to have ADHD. Once diagnosed, it is easier to understand why some aspects of life seem more complicated for them than for others and they can be given tools to help them manage these aspects more easily.

Treatment for ADHD can be psychological, psycho pedagogical and only in cases where considered necessary, pharmacological.

If you would like more information, or you have concerns about this topic, please contact the author of this article in order to help you take or eliminate measures that you think may help your child, such as referring you to your pediatrician so they can investigate further.

Text: Victoria Gonzalez de Buitrago


English translation: Nicola McGrath.

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Our furry friends and us


Did you know that in our pharmacy they have always part of the team? Years ago, we had two furry friends on the payroll: Bosa and Monty who protected us against those who tried to steal from us or threatened us. They were clean, affectionate and well-trained, if you saw them in the street you knew where they worked.

We miss not having them around, however neither the law nor the space allows it at the moment. That’s not to say that we don’t love it when one comes to visit us with you when you pick up your medication.

The veterinary aspect is becoming more and more important in the health sector, not only regarding what we eat but also having animals as household pets. Dogs, cats, birds, fish....they all require certain care regimes in order to safeguard their health and well-being, and also that of those around them.

For this reason, this year with have decided to improve both our veterinary training and widen the range of products we have at your disposal: pipettes, anti-parasite treatments and other products, as well as the usual veterinary medication that we always have available. As you probably know, the only place authorised to sell veterinary medication is pharmacies because of the effect they can have on our health. If subjected to a health inspection, pharmacies are in the unique position of meeting all the requirements necessary to be able to provide medication to patients (in this case your pet) that have been kept in appropriate storage conditions, whereas a vet can only provide one day’s medication in isolated cases.

If you have any doubts, don’t hesitate to ask us. Your health and that of your furry friends are invaluable and we are here to help you look after both.
Text: Victoria González de Buitrago.
English translation: Nicola McGrath.

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Heavy legs syndrome. How can we make the symptoms better?


Summer is here, the temperature has risen and more and more often our patients come to the pharmacy asking for advice about pain, heaviness, tiredness and even cramps they feel in their legs. This is what is known as HEAVY LEGS SYNDROME which between 20 and 30 percent of the adult population suffer from at some point in their lives. It can appear for different reasons such as thyroid or hormonal problems, vascular illnesses, consumption of pharmaceuticals, arthritis, kidney failure, menstruation, but in most cases it is due to CHRONIC VENOUS INSUFFICIENCY (CVI).

Although not a health risk, it can affect your quality of life. Apart from the pharmacological treatments (if needed), there are some basic health and dietary habits that are recommendable, for example:
-Lose weight: avoid or try to lose excess weight (diet, walk for 1 hour a day and drink 2 litres of water a day).
-Prolonged sitting or standing: avoid prolonged periods of staying still in the same position. If this is unavoidable, wear compression socks and carry out circular movements with your ankles and stretch and flex your legs, here are some examples:
- Footwear and clothing: avoid tight clothing as they impede the return of blood flow to the heart. Comfortable and light footwear is recommended with a heel of less than 3 cm (for flat feet use orthopaedic insoles).
-Avoid constipation as any excess abdominal pressures may cause IVC to develop. Eat a balanced diet, increasing the amount of food high in fibre.
-Temperature: legs exposed to excess heat may experience cutaneous vasodilation, making them feel swollen.
-Rest, keeping inferior limbs elevated higher than the heart for 15-30 minutes, a few times a day to lessen the symptoms and oedema, accompanied by massages in an upward motion.
-When resting at night, raise your legs between 20 and 25 cm to reduce oedema, which in turn will make putting on elastic compression stockings easier.
-Hydrotherapy: showers and massages with cold water or alternating between cold and warm water, stimulate blood flow. Just walking in water is enough to improve the return of blood flow to the heart.
-Physical exercise (swimming, cycling, walking): 30 minutes a day stimulates the muscle pump system which improves the return of blood flow to the heart.
-Keep skin well moisturised to avoid cracks and itchiness developing: scratching can damage the surface of the skin. Choose soaps/cleansers carefully and use moisturising vegetable oils.

As well as these measures, treatments are available either in the form of gels, sprays and massage oils for the skin or in the form of capsules, tablets, and oleo capsules containing active ingredients from natural sources which aid microcirculation and blood flow.

If you suffer from this syndrome, don’t hesitate to come by the pharmacy. We are here to help improve your quality of life and make sure this syndrome doesn’t get in the way of you fully enjoying the summer.
Text: Nuria Pérez
Nicola McGrath.

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Cellulite, can anything be done?


More and more patients, mainly women, come to the pharmacy asking about the effectiveness of anti cellulite creams and if capsules or syrups can be taken for those “dimples” appearing on their thighs and buttocks as they just can't get rid of them. The answer is yes, they are effective, both the creams and oral treatments, but as a complement to certain hygiene and dietary measures discussed here below.
From a medical point of view, cellulitis is the inflammation of the connective tissue under the skin, normally caused by a bacterial infection. As far as the skin is concerned, cellulitis is a localised subcutaneous tissue disorder that initially affects the subcutis and in more advanced cases the dermis. In this affliction, dimples form from fatty tissue, water and toxins, causing a change to the surface of the skin known as “orange peel skin”. It is more common in women as the female hormones, oestrogen and progesterone, favour liquid retention and fat accumulation.
Different types of cellulitis exist (hard, flaccid and edematous) with varying degrees of severity. For all types, there are basic hygiene and dietary measures to be taken; do physical exercise, maintain a balanced diet, moderate the salt and additives intake, avoid refined or processed food, have the correct intake of minerals (Ca and Mg), drink plenty of liquids, do not smoke (this worsens circulation and generates free radicals), avoid alcohol ( this increases lipogenesis), control coffee and coca-cola intake, avoid tight clothing and ill fitting footwear, avoid excessive heat, frequently change your posture to avoid stagnation and sleep 8 hours a day.
Complementary to these basic measures, various treatments are used on the skin (always massaging upwards) that contain essential oils (cedar EO, rosemary ct camphor EO, cypress EO...) and thrombolytic substances (caffeine, theophylline, theobromine, carnitine...). It is essential to apply these treatments correctly and consistently. Oral treatments usually contain active ingredients with lipolytic action (caffeine, mucopolysaccharides , L-carnitine, fucus...) and those that promote drainage (meadowsweet, horsetail, dandelion, artichoke.....)
Given the different types of cellulitis and treatments that exist, don’t hesitate to come by the pharmacy so we can recommend the most suitable treatment for you. Remember, we are here to look after you.
Text: Nuria Perez

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New Health Challenges 1: Multiple Chemical Sensitivity Syndrome


This year we are focussing on some of the health challenges that society is faced with, especially western societies.
Multiple chemical sensitivity syndrome was recognised as an illness in Spain, in 2014, after already being recognised in other countries (Germany in 2000, Austria en 2001, Japan in 2009, Switzerland in 2010 and Denmark in 2012).
In Spain, this illness has been underdiagnosed due to the amplitude of the different ways it can manifest itself; it is sometimes related to or labelled as an allergy making it difficult to know how widespread it is. However, based on studies by the Ministry of Health in 2015, when including those with allergy symptoms, the prevalence could be as high as 19%. To date, 300,000 people have been officially diagnosed. This would tally with data from the United States where figures are estimated to be between 5 and 15% of the population.
In the course of this illness, the patient’s tolerance to chemical substances in the atmosphere decreases and substances that wouldn’t normally affect them or anyone else before, now do. Some of the trigger products are smoke, cleaning products, air fresheners, tarmac, glue, cosmetics, paint, medicines, and hair dye. Other agents found in the atmosphere, such as electromagnetic or sound waves (microwaves, WiFi etc), can also be a trigger.
Some of the usual symptoms are:
● generally feeling unwell
● dizziness, vertigo or imbalance
● nasal discomfort; dryness, itching, sneezing
● dry mouth, dry cough, itchiness or phlegm in the throat
● headaches, heaviness or tension in the head
● anxiety, nausea
● heart palpitations
● eye discomfort
Apart from how incapacitating these symptoms can be, and the progress of the illness, which is chronic (a simple visit to the cinema can be a challenge due to the type of cleaning products used, not to mention hotels), patients are more likely to develop thyroid related immunity diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus or multiple sclerosis.
There is currently no cure for this illness, hence it is essential to avoid any trigger agents.
In the next few years, undeniably, there will be a debate about how to combine modern living with health issues. To give an example, Brussels is the first large city to limit 5G technology due to its effects on our health. Likewise, some small towns in California have made the same decision for the same reasons.
To finish, the following link is to a documentary by Televisión Española (Spanish Television), which talks about how the lives of those that suffer with this illness are affected.

Text: Victoria González de Buitrago

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Nutrition and youngsters: the power of food advertising


Over the last few years, experts have underlined what the risk of changing dietary habits means for children and adolescents. As it has been said recently, crisps have replaced oranges, despite the malnutrition risk implications.
One of the most interesting aspects is the change of habits due to advertising; bearing in mind that on average, each child in Spain spends 7 hours a week in front of the TV, they are exposed to between 7,000 and 10,000 TV adverts for food and drink a year. In other words, an average of 25 adverts a day. Furthermore, we are talking about a high risk group: from the age of two, children recognise a logo, but until they reach 8 they do not understand the objective of advertising and it is only when they reach 12 that they begin to understand the intention of persuasion.
One of the most direct and automatic effects this type of advertising has on children is that they immediately feel like eating something, even if they are not hungry at the time and do not necessarily eat the product advertised. Besides this, the emotional impact that adverts have (product association with positive emotions: children with friends, playing and having a good time), generate an emotional pattern in a child that prevails, even when their parents offer them a healthier alternative. What’s more, this impact is known to last for at least 5 years due to the impressionability of the infant brain, and therefore continues into adolescence.
In addition, based on a study published in 2015, about half of the adverts aimed at children, do not comply with the PAOS regulations that refer to advertising food products directed at children. Alongside this, campaigns like those carried out in the past by the Minister of Agriculture, “Mediterranean diet, our diet, our legacy”, promoting natural products, have not continued.
Another aspect to consider is that parents tend to buy products that are high in saturated fats, trans fatty acids, sugar or salt, when an athlete promotes it or it claims to provide some nutritional value, as they perceive these products to be healthier than they really are.
Given that in Spain, approximately 40% of children are either overweight or obese, it is advisable to follow 3 important guidelines:
1. Minimize exposure time to television, not only because of the body passivity it entails, but also because of the impact of advertising.
2. Keep in mind the comments from last month’s article and question the nutritional benefits claimed (remember that in 2012 the number of those that did not comply with advertising legislation was higher than in 2008).
3. Question the benefits of a food product if it is advertised by a famous person.
Victoria González de Buitrago
English translation: Nicola McGrath.

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Smoking: Illness or habit?


This is a question I’ve asked many times to patients that come into the pharmacy on a daily basis as well as those I’ve done courses with. After an initial silence and a gesture of reflexion the answer is usually the same; “Habit”. So, what do you think? This issue, from a health point of view, is something that creates a lot of confusion among the general population.
Smoking is an addictive, chronic and recurring illness, which starts before the age of 18 in 80% of cases. It is a double-edged sword: on the one hand it contains nicotine which creates the addiction phenomenon due to the effect it has on the nicotinic receptor in the ventral tegmental area in our brain, while on the other hand and at the same time, we inhale toxic substances such as those shown in the following diagram.
The most prominent clinical signs of illness are: cardiovascular conditions, respiratory problems and the appearance of tumors in different areas of the body. It is highly prevalent and varies in different countries according to social, economic and cultural criteria. Smoking is the number one cause of premature and avoidable deaths in developed countries.
The W.H.O. estimates that 4.9 million people die every year due to smoking and predicts that if the current trend continues, by the year 2030 there will be 10 million deaths of those people that currently smoke.
This is bad news, however, we also have some good news; in OUR PHARMACY we are going beyond the brief intervention at the counter telling you to “give up smoking”, and we have introduced OUR SERVICE OF INDEPENDENCE FROM SMOKING. This new service involves an initial medical assessment and follow up visits for the following year, to accompany you during this process that will change your life and set you “free”.
In order to set up this service, conducted alongside primary care physicians, we have been trained by medical and pharmaceutical scientific societies and we continue to be trained because in our pharmacy we are always making progress for you and for your health.

Nuria Pérez


English translation: Nicola McGrath

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Health education for type I diabetes patients


The objective of these tips is to control blood sugar levels and above all to avoid This month we have a series of tips for patients with type 1 diabetes that need insulin on a spikes (highs and lows of glucose levels) as these are what can cause diabetes-related health problems: retinopathy , nephropathy, problems with digestion, feet, the mouth etc...
● It is important to eat five times a day, restricting the consumption of food containing sugar, fat and salt and introducing into your diet food that is high in fibre; fish, fruit and vegetables.
● We recommend avoiding mass produced cakes and pastries due to their high content of fat that produce a delayed increase in blood sugar levels
● It’s important to learn to estimate how much insulin you need and the quantity of carbohydrates you should ingest in order to have more control over diabetes.
● Control your weight and do physical exercise regularly, measure your blood sugar before doing exercise in case you need to take some form of glucose supplement before starting.
● Carry something sugary with you (snacks specifically prepared and sold in pharmacies) in case of hypoglycemia (< 70 mg/dl that can come about without any symptoms or can produce sweating, shaking, tachycardia) and keep glucagon (a hormone secreted by the liver which stimulates the production of glucose, increasing blood sugar levels) in the fridge.
● Moderate your alcohol intake
● If you are a smoker, we recommend the service we provide in the pharmacy for giving up smoking.
● When travelling, there are special fridges available for transporting insulin so that it loses none of its properties.
● Be aware of how much insulin you have left so that you don’t run out.
● Ask for the flu vaccine (annually) and for the pneumococcal vaccine (a single dosis).
As well as remembering these tips, we recommend the following link if you wish to further your knowledge on this matter:

Paloma Corbï Gallego

English translation: Nicola McGrath

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Marketing, nutrition and health


Living in the media filled society that we do, healthcare professionals are faced with two health-related challenges: advertising and nutrition.
There are two major concerns: firstly, the supposed nutritional benefits of eating certain products that, on occasion, are no more than a publicity stunt to trick the public into buying them. Secondly, the impact that advertising is having on children and young adults, giving false information about the nutritional value of the food they eat or that their parents buy.
The first concern refers to products targeting the general public that guarantee to help keep health parameters under control as they are enriched with particular vitamins, minerals or technological advances such as looking after your cholesterol levels, intestinal flora, blood pressure or possible food intolerances.
We would like to point out that while food technology offers many useful features, there are some advertising tools that leave out important information. For example, how many yoghurts would you have to eat to recover from diarrhea caused by taking antibiotics? What would the calorific impact be? And what about the glycaemic effect? This is why we don’t realise until later that we find it difficult to lose weight or that our blood sugar level has changed. 90% of the population suffer with some kind of lactose intolerance but to varying degrees, so which product is the best one for you? Do you know what the CFU (colony forming units) are for each product? What their purpose is?
Even if we understand that all food products have nutritional value, it is important to be clear about what our main objective is and the best means to help reach that goal. For this reason, we suggest the following steps:
1- Identify what your health priority is. Are you worried about cholesterol, blood pressure, losing weight, controlling diabetes, something else?

2- Secondly, identify products, preferably local, in season and natural that can help with your strategy. If in any doubt about how to reach your goal, don’t forget that our pharmacy offers a nutritionist service and part of their role is to help you adapt your diet according to your health requirements.
3- When you have a clear idea about what you need and you find a product that could help you, check the reliability of the information. To do this we suggest comparing the amount you need to consume each day to reach your goal with what the product is offering. Also check that the substances used are backed by scientific research and the number of tests it has undergone.
4- If in any doubt, you can always ask a qualified health care worker: pharmacists, doctors etc. Make sure you’re satisfied with the answer they give you and that it’s reasonable and justified; health is an art but looking after it is a science.
Next month we will look into advertising surrounding nutrition for children.
Victoria González de Buitrago
English translation: Nicola McGrath

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One in ten people suffer with plantar fasciitis


In other words, it’s best to know what it is and how to treat it, wouldn’t you say?
The plantar fascia acts as a support cushion for the arch of your foot. When the area is subjected to a lot of pressure, small tears can occur. If this happens over and over again, it can cause inflammation. As a result, you get a sharp pain on the sole of the foot and close to the heel. This pain is more likely to happen if you are standing or sitting for long periods of time, when you get up in the morning or after doing sport.
The condition is more common amongst those aged 40 to 60. Factors such as long-distance running, excess weight, inappropriate footwear, jobs where you are on your feet all day, flat feet, very high arched feet or a bad walking posture, can increase the risk.
The most common treatments include painkillers, exercise with a physiotherapist and the use of arch supports. Regarding the supports there are two types; those for night-time which keep the foot at a 90º angle while you sleep and those for daywear that provide compression, support and cushioning. If you’d like to find out more, click on the following link:

Diana Olmedilla Sanz

English translation: Nicola McGrath

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So, what’s a pharmacy for?


Let’s see, what exactly does a Pharmacist do? They just seem to be a nice, friendly person that puts your prescription through the computer and cuts out the seal from your medication.
The truth is, the main criteria to identify whether or not a pharmacist is completely professional is to notice if, for example, they ask you various basic questions; Is the medication for you? Why did the doctor prescribe it? Do you feel any better since you started taking it? Have you noticed anything out of the ordinary?
The pharmacist is an expert in medicine, they supplement the doctor’s knowledge (the expert in illnesses) and monitor the medical prescription. The pharmacist is a safety net in the sense that they know the way medication reacts and how the use of various medications at the same time can affect someone or indeed a particular patient due to their situation (family history, illnesses, circumstances, etc.).
As well as being the doctor’s safety net and suggesting alternatives to the doctor, be they medicinal or dietary supplements to ensure the patient’s best possible state of health, the pharmacist has other functions, such as the security, custody and general responsibility of the medicine.
This sounds very bureaucratic, what does it mean? It means that we are responsible for providing you with medicine that meets certain health conditions (temperature, state, expiry date), or refusing to provide you with said medicine if you are unable to provide a prescription from a doctor that takes responsibility for ensuring that the medication is suitable for you.
Another role we have is to collaborate with health campaigns to prevent illnesses. As you may have noticed, we rarely dispense medicine without making some kind of observation in order to help you stay in good health or recover sooner. On top of this we are planning to make these even more insightful in the future.
Our role includes additional responsibilities, however these are the three most important ones (pharmacological monitoring, the custody of medicine and being a representative of health awareness). No robot or digital platform would be able to carry out these functions adequately. Not to state the obvious, but there is the most important part of all: the human side of medical matters.
For these reasons, don’t settle for less: demand a pharmaceutical service that values your health, wherever you are, the same as you would for any other type of health service. And, when you receive said service, appreciate it as behind these acts lie many hours of study and work to give you the best possible service.

English translation: Nicola McGrath

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Parkinson’s disease


Parkinson’s disease is a progressive, chronic disease which affects movement. Neurons in the black matter of the brain degenerate and do not produce enough dopamine (the neurotransmitter of the brain whose purpose it is to transmit information to control body movement correctly).
The first signs are:
Tremors in the hand, arms, legs, jaw and face.
Stiffness in arms, legs and torso.
Loss of balance and slowness of movement.
This illness is spoken of in terms of ON / OFF during the day. The ON period is when the symptoms are positively under control and it can be said that motor skills are normal. The OFF period is when motor skills are impaired.
The aim of treatment is to maintain the ON period for the most part of the day. It is useful to make a note of the different ON/OFF phases and share this with the doctor. He/she can then adjust the treatment accordingly and explain why it is so important to follow the treatment in order to attain positive control of the symptoms.
It is also important for the patient to have good nutrition for which we would recommend following the most balanced diet possible, high in fibre and hydration.
Last and not least, we would encourage patients to join support groups or associations as they are of great help. They know better than anyone about the disease and they understand the emotional situation.
We found the following links interesting and suggest taking a look:

Text: Paloma Corbí Gallego
English translation: Nicola McGrath

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Making it easier for you to control your health: a new range of tests are available in our pharmacy


Did you know that for a while now, we have tests available in our pharmacy which have served us to help you enjoy better health? We started earnestly with our food intolerance test which has given us a lot of help and good news this year; identifying why you couldn’t lose weight, why you were feeling bloated or had adverse skin reactions. We also introduced the fat profile and glycated haemoglobin tests...fundamental tools to prevent a cardiac arrest or stroke and to detect diabetes.
We are now offering a new range of tests, aimed at supplying you with fast and scientific results regarding some of your health concerns. Although it will not give you a diagnosis (this can only be given by your doctor), it can help to guide you to choose the right specialist or doctor, saving you time compared to following the usual protocol.
We have a range of eight tests which identify different blood markers, with the results available in a week:
Sports test: involves tests that can be used in your training to help you reach your objectives.
Advanced heart health test: cholesterol, LDL, HDL, homocysteine, high-sensitivity cardiac Troponin 1 and triglycerides.
Sexually transmitted disease tests: hepatitis B, hepatitis C and HIV
Drug screening tests: abuse related to benzodiazepines, barbiturates, tricyclics, opiates, methadone, amphetamines, methamphetamines, marihuana, extasy and cocaine.
Thyroid tests: changes to the thyroid gland, for example TSH and free T4
Metabolic tests: glucose, cholesterol, creatine, total bilirubin test, AST, ALT, albumin, uric acid, sodium, potassium and calcium.
Female fertility tests: related to the anti-Mullerian hormone – the best marker of ovarian reserves which only change with age or ovarian pathologies.
Cancer screening tests: 6 tumoral markers related to breast, ovarian, prostate, liver, stomach and blood.
These tests are scientifically based and have been designed in the Polytechnic University of Valencia. Prices vary between 35 and 65 Euros. Just come to the Pharmacy and ask us if you have any doubts.
We want to provide a solution to your problems and support you in leading a fuller life.
Text: Victoria González de Buitrago Martínez
English translation: Nicola McGrath

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Patients with dermatological problems: looking after the skin and the fingertip unit


In light of any type of skin problem (psoriasis, atopic skin, itchiness etc), it is key to establish a skincare routine to avoid irritating it further. Do not use rough sponges or anything that irritates the skin and take quick showers making sure the water is not too hot as this makes the skin drier. Pat the skin dry softly, especially in the most sensitive areas.

We can help you to find the most suitable product for your specific skin type and as such improve the effectiveness of the treatment (be it lotions, creams, gel-creams).

For sensitive skin types, emollients with a minimum number of ingredients that are perfume-free should be used. Soaps and shower gels that are soap-free and those that respect your skin’s PH are also recommendable.
When a doctor prescribes a cortisone cream, the emollient cream is applied first and after a few minutes the cortisone cream.

To better understand the quantity of medicated cream that should be used on the skin, we refer to fingertip units (FTU). This is the quantity of cream that can be squeezed from a tube with a 5mm opening onto the fingertip between the last joint and the tip of the finger (equivalent to 0.5g).

Please see the following 2 tables: one for adults and one for children

 Area of skin to be treated with cortisone ADULTS:

nº of FTU/ dosage (in grams) 
 Face and neck  2.5 (1.25 grams)
 Torso (front or back)  7 (3.5 grams)
 Arm  3 (1.5 grams)
 Hand (palm or back)  0.5 (0.25 grams)
 Leg  6 (3 grams)
 Foot  2(1 gram)


 Area of skin to be treated with cortisone              


Babies 3-6 months old

Nº of FTU/dosage (grams) 

Children aged 1-2

Nº of FTU/dosage (grams)  

Children aged 3-5

Nº of FTU/dosage (grams)  

Children aged 6-10

Nº of FTU/dosage (grams)   
 Face and neck  1 (0.5 g)   1½ (0.75 g)   1½ (0.75 g)   2(1 g) 
 Torso (front)  1 (0.5 g)   

2 (1 g) 

 3 (1.5 g)   3½ (1.75 g) 
 Torso (back)  1½ (0.75 g)   3 (1.5 g)   3½ (1.75 g)   5 (2.5 g) 
 Arm and hand  1 (0.5 g)   1½ (0.75 g)   2 (1 g)   2½ (1.25 g) 
 Leg and foot  1½ (0.75 g)   2 (1 g)   3 (1.5 g)   4½ (2.25 g) 


Text: Paloma Corbí Gallego

English translation: Nicola McGrath

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How long do you want to enjoy good health for in the future?


We all know that we’re living longer and longer, the challenge is to look after our bodies so that they reach old age in the best condition possible.
Until now, we would only cure an illness once we had it, but wouldn’t it be wonderful if we didn’t get ill in the first place and we could get ahead of the game? This is now possible with our new service. No, we don’t have a fortune-teller in our midst, let us explain...
We are now offering a new prevention service. It combines both diet and physique. It comprises of two analysers: one which analyses the condition of your body (fat, water, etc.) and another based on your energy field using the Quantum analyser.
The Quantum analyser is based on quantum physics and helps us to detect potential imbalances our body could suffer from. It is equipped with a scanner that has electrodes which stimulate the cells painlessly. By measuring the stimulation levels, we will know which cells are working properly and which are not.
In the presence of potential tendencies observed from the analysis, we have the necessary means to correct such variances. And, don’t worry, our monitoring is consistent and the results are checked periodically.
So, it is through body analysis, quantum analysis, diet, supplements and modifying habits, that we can figure out what to do so that your body is in perfect condition. What’s more, there’s a free app which gives you all the information about your analysis and progress.
This service is only available in two pharmacies in Valencia. It costs 26€ per session to cover the time spent with a medical professional and the use of the equipment. We can assure you that it will provide you with quality of health. Come and ask us about this service whenever you like... we look forward to seeing you.
Text: Diana Olmedilla Sanz
English translation: Nicola McGrath

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Organizations that focus on humanization:The pharmacy


Do you feel like you are treated well when using our services? Do you feel listened to? Are you asked about your beliefs, preferences or values when offered any kind of health treatment?

The W.H.O. (World Health Organisation) stated that integrated health services focussing on people were a fundamental strategy in the health sector. This means putting people and communities (not illnesses) first in health centres and empowering them to participate and be responsible for decisions that affect their own health instead of being mere passive recipients of services and treatments.
This strategy involves different elements: empathy with patients, the capacity to make yourself understood, the design of the space (in such a way that it facilitates contact with or the feeling of nature), colours, sounds, smells, orthopaedic design, the design of medication..... All areas / productive processes or services that could possibly come into contact with a person suffering from an illness should, at any given moment, be equipped to meet these parameters. Of course this includes pharmacies, who take the initiative to work on these terms, training staff at their own cost for purely vocational and caring reasons.
More importantly, we believe that all patients should demand to be treated with respect and always in accordance with law. That their treatment, from start to finish, should be humane, dignified and empathetic. Patients should be made to feel they can trust in the process rather than have it generate worry and wariness.
Unfortunately, this is not always the case as some professionals discredit others due to their own ideological reasons instead of recognising when a procedure (be it in the private or public sector) is appropriate, or offering an alternative procedure backed up with medical reasons. This would be an example of a lack of humanization and respect towards the patient. The patient and their wellbeing should always be at the centre of each consultation. For this reason, we ask those of you that follow us on the internet to be aware of these basic rules of humanization and if they are not met; at times professional egos and prejudices are being put before your wellbeing and you should take appropriate action.

One of our very own pharmacists has been chosen to teach in the first Masters in Spain on the Humanization of Healthcare which is why if any of our followers wish to delve deeper into this topic further, they should contact us with their questions via email  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call to arrange an appointment in person.

We thank Paula Lopez-Berges and Fundación Curarte for the pictures in this article.

Text: Victoria González de Buitrago
English translation: Nicola McGrath

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How do I get rid of mucus?


At this time of year, this is a common question and everyone wants to know the answer.
In order to know what to do, you must first ask yourself the following:

  • Where is the mucus? Chest, throat, nose....?
  • What does it look like? Is it green, brown, transparent, thick, fluid.......?
  • How long has it been there for?
  • Have I got any other symptoms?

Whatever the case, you can come to us and ask for advice, if necessary, we’ll send you to the doctor. Remember to always ask us, especially if you take medication on a regular basis or have any kind of illness such as asthma.
In the meantime, we can give you some general advice:
If you have mucus in your nose, we can administer you with a solution to help get rid of it. If it is in your chest, throat or sinuses, you’ll need a good expectorant.
If it is thick or green you might have to go to your GP and if it is transparent and fluid we can help you with a syrup, tablets or a spray to help alleviate that uncomfortable “gunk”.
If it gets worse, you should always consult your doctor as it could be sign of something more serious.
When asking our advice, we need you to give us as much information as possible. If this symptom is accompanied by others, please tell us so that we can give you the best solution available to your winter problem.

Text: Diana Olmedilla Sanz
English translation: Nicola McGrath

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Merry Christmas and a happy 2019!


2018 is ending and 2019 beginning. Christmas. The month where everything is done to excess: emotions, visits, food, spending, all in gigantic proportions.

Firstly, we would like to thank you for the year we have had together: in January we began our new opening hours to give you more time to access our services; in February Paco had a serious accident (the first in his working life) which forced us to rethink the metal shutters for the shop front (the butt of a joke for many of you). It was quite a challenge for a group of feminine and feminist women such as ourselves. In April, May and June you suffered the refurbishment with us. Noise, doors that appeared and disappeared from one day to the next...crazy times. In June we opened our new and improved pharmacy (with fish and mechanical toy dog included) and a new dermo cosmetic service which has taught us that the use of creams is also necessary for health reasons. Knowing that we are going to live for many more years, we need to look healthy whatever our age.

At the end of summer, we celebrated our 40th anniversary with you. You made us realise that, despite the rain, you still wanted to celebrate our many years together, that you love us and appreciate all the training, time and dedication that is behind every pharmaceutical piece of advice we give you. And, in November, a very important member of our team took part-time early retirement. Our colleague, Paco, an important pillar of our pharmacy, now spends less time with us but is still here even if you don’t see him. Finally, in December, after our talk on the excesses of Christmas so that you don’t come crying to us in January, let us say that we are very excited about 2019 as we are going to introduce new ways to improve your health.

After this brief summary, all that is left is to thank you for this wonderful 2018 that we have had together and wish you a happy end to 2018, to spend Christmas with people you love and that 2019 bring us love, health and money, in that order.

Much love to all of you and thank you for your loyalty.

Text: Victoria González de Buitrago
English translation: Nicola McGrath

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HIV and AIDS affect us all


Aren’t HIV and AIDS the same thing? This is the way a lot of people think

To make it clear: having the virus does not mean that you have AIDS, which is to say that being infected with HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) can lead to AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome). Let us also be clear that HIV is when someone is infected with the virus and treatments do exist that nowadays allow people to lead a fairly normal life. AIDS is when the immune system has reached a stage where it can no longer fight the virus: this tends to happen if there is no treatment. 

HIV infects cells in the immune system, namely the T Helper cells, which help to regulate the immune system. Less T Helper cells means reduced immunity and results in the body being more susceptible to developing infections that can be lethal.

It is also important to note that the virus can be transmitted by having vaginal, anal or oral sex with a person that carries the virus, as well as via contaminated blood transfusions, sharing needles and syringes or other skin piercing instruments.

HIV and AIDS have had a large impact on society. Not only the illness but also the prevention of it (for example, using a condom); social discrimination (especially the prejudice against homosexuals or men that have sex with other men (MSM)). It is true that there are more homosexuals infected than heterosexuals. According to a report by the Minister of Health Social Services and Equality published in 2017, 83.9% of newly diagnosed HIV patients in Spain were male and the patient’s average age was 36 (based on data from 2016).

One problem is getting access to the antiviral treatment: there are various effective substances and treatments available to fight the virus, however the problem is that the majority of people infected live in Africa where the necessary treatment is not always available.

Nevertheless, there is still work to be done. At the moment there is no cure for AIDS, although one is being developed. All we can do for the time being is take precautions and in the case of infection, turn to antiviral treatment to reduce levels of the virus in the blood and have a better quality of life.

Today, December 1st, is World AIDS Day, an important day as there are almost 40 million people living with this virus in the world.

Text: Esther Luhmann
English translation: Nicola McGrath

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“Victoria González de Buitrago Martínez ha sido beneficiaria del Fondo Europeo de Desarrollo Regional cuyo objetivo es mejorar la competitividad de las Pymes y gracias al cual ha puesto en marcha un Plan de Internacionalización con el objetivo de mejorar su posicionamiento competitivo en el exterior durante el año 2018-2019. Para ello ha contado con el apoyo del Programa XPANDE de la Cámara de Comercio de Valencia.”

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