Eng Esp Fra

Be active about your own health and well being

Telling your doctor about possible side effects will lead to safer drugs and better health for all.

Listen to the Take & Tell song

What are side effects?

Side effects, or adverse drug reactions, happen when a treatment goes beyond the desired effect and causes a problem.

What is pharmacovigilance?

Monitoring, assessing and understanding adverse effects, or other drug-related problems, is known as pharmacovigilance, and is essential as long as a medicine remains on the market.

Why does it matter to me?

Reporting suspected adverse reactions offers the opportunity to identify and further investigate unknown or poorly described side effects. It also encourages dialogue between you and your health care professional.

The Take & Tell steps

Take your medication
Note down possible side effects
Tell your doctor about them

What to do?

Next time you take your medicine, pay attention to the possible side effects. If you suspect that you have experienced an adverse drug reaction, write it down and talk to your doctor about the symptoms. It is very important that you together discuss about the measures that you should take. You can get started by downloading the Take & Tell application

Download the Take & Tell application

Take & Tell application helps you keep track of any possible side effects to medicines. It’s also a good tool for sharing the information with your doctor.

VigiAccess

Explore the global data base of adverse drug reactions

VigiAccess™ is a user-friendly interface that allows you to search VigiBase® ,the WHO global database of reported suspected adverse reactions, and retrieves statistical data on the suspected side effects of medicines reported to the WHO Programme for International Drug Monitoring. VigiBase has over 10 million reports from all over the world and offers you information going back to 1968.

Frequently Asked Questions

Monitoring, assessing and understanding adverse effects, or other drug-related problems, is known as pharmacovigilance, and is essential as long as a medicine remains on the market. You can contribute to better drug safety by noting down possible side effects – known also as adverse drug reactions - of drugs and reporting them to your health care provider. Only the most common adverse drug reactions can be detected during drug development and all medicines need to be monitored for as long as they are in use.
Side effects, or adverse drug reactions, happen when a treatment goes beyond the desired effect and causes a problem. It can be mild, serious and in some cases lead to death. Experts say that side effects vary for each patient, and depend largely on their general health, the state of their disease, age, weight, and gender.
Side effects are a common cause for patients to stop following the doctor's instructions. They might not continue taking a medication which could lead to further problems. All drugs on the market have been tested, and the reactions have been monitored on a small scale. When a new drug enters the market, the population using it is much larger and diverse than in the trials. Because the range of reactions will be higher, continued monitoring and identification of adverse drug reactions is necessary. Reporting suspected adverse reactions offers the opportunity to identify and further investigate unknown or poorly described side effects; it also encourages dialogue between patients and health care professionals. This is of paramount importance to help ensure the safe use of medicines.

Also, low quality and falsified medicines can also cause serious side effects. Telling your doctor about side effects will make drug use safer for everyone. The information you provide contributes to improving the quality of medicines and protecting health.
Next time you take your medicine, pay attention to the possible side effects. If you suspect that you have experienced an adverse drug reaction, write it down and talk to your doctor about the symptoms. It is very important that you together discuss about the measures that you should take. You can get started by downloading the Take & Tell application.
If you are experiencing side effects, get in touch with your health care provider. Your doctor has the responsibility to report adverse reactions to your country’s national pharmacovigilance centre as part of the WHO Programme for International Drug Monitoring. In many countries, patients and consumers are encouraged to report adverse drug reactions directly. Visit the website of the National Regulatory Authority for Medicines or the National Centre for Pharmacovigilance for more information, or ask you healthcare provider.
The national centre for pharmacovigilance evaluates the report to identify potential risks. Together with the relevant authority, it can then take measures to minimize this risk if deemed appropriate. Countries participating in the WHO Programme for International Drug Monitoring then forward the reports to VigiBase®, the WHO global database of reported suspected adverse reactions and maintained by Uppsala Monitoring Centre (UMC) since 1978. VigiBase is an important reference source with over 10 million reports which go back to 1968. It contains reports of suspected relationships between drugs and adverse reactions but it is crucial to understand that no causal relation has been confirmed. Also, not all side effects are reported since many countries face enormous public health challenges with little awareness of adverse drug reactions among the population, or mechanisms in place to support a more active reporting role.

All reports are anonymous; the patients, healthcare professionals or institutions involved cannot be identified in VigiBase. UMC regularly screens the uploaded data to better identify, characterize and understand the potential risks of the medicine. It then shares the findings with national centres, the WHO and the public via various channels.

About us

Inspire. Engage. Transform

Uppsala Monitoring Centre advances the science of pharmacovigilance and inspires patient safety initiatives all over the world. As an independent, non-profit foundation, we engage stakeholders who share our vision and collaborate to build a global patient safety culture. As a leader in the research and development of new scientific methods, we explore the benefits and risks of medicines to help minimize harm to patients, and offer products and services used by health authorities and life-science companies worldwide. Our unique expertise makes us an organisation with the capacity to transform patient safety from an ambition into a reality. For almost 40 years, we have provided scientific leadership and operational support to the WHO Programme for International Drug Monitoring, expanding the global pharmacovigilance network to reach more than 95% of world’s population.