Welcome to the MEDList section!

This section provides lists of common medications for different conditions. For more information about each medication, click on the generic/chemical name provided below. Please remember that this is not an exhaustive list of all medications within these classes of medications, rather the most common that you will encounter. Have a certain condition you would like to see covered? Email us at


February 2017: Serotonin and Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors

Serotonin and Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors (SNRIs) are a class of medications that are effective in treating depression and sometimes used to treat other conditions, such as anxiety disorders and long-term (chronic) pain; especially nerve pain.

SNRIs work to ease depression by impacting chemical messengers (neurotransmitters) used to communicate between brain cells. Like most antidepressants, SNRIs work by ultimately effecting changes in brain chemistry and communication in brain nerve cell circuitry known to regulate mood to help relieve depression.

SNRIs block the reabsorption of the neurotransmitters serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain.
Brand NameGeneric/Chemical Name


October 2016: Adrenal Corticosteroids

When adrenal glands are functioning properly they synthesize and excrete various corticosteroids. These corticosteroids have several functions, including: promoting normal metabolism; increasing resistance to stress by raising plasma glucose levels to increase energy; altering blood cell levels in plasma (move lymphocytes to lymph tissue and increase hemoglobin, erythrocytes and platelets); reduce inflammatory response and suppress immunity and; help in controlling water volume and electrolyte balance.

Semisynthetic derivatives of glucocorticoids vary in their anti-inflammatory potency, the degree to which they cause sodium retention and their duration of action.

They are prescribed for various reasons including:
• Replacement therapy for primary adrenocortical insufficiency (Addison’s disease)
• Secondary or tertiary adrenocortical insufficiency
• Replacement therapy for congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH)
• Relief of inflammatory symptoms (such as found in arthritis, Crohn’s, lupus, asthma, psoriasis)
• Treatment of allergies
Brand NameGeneric/Chemical NameClass
Cortef, Solu-cortef, HydrocortoneHydrocortisoneShort acting glucocorticoid (8-12 hrs)
CortefCortisoneShort acting glucocorticoid (8-12 hrs)
Prednisone Intensol, RayosPrednisoneIntermediate-acting glucocorticoid (18-36 hrs)
PMS-prednisolonePrednisoloneIntermediate-acting glucocorticoid (18-36 hrs)
Medrol, Solu-medrolMethylprednisoloneIntermediate-acting glucocorticoid (18-36 hrs)
Betacort, Betnovate, Celestoderm, Ectosone, MetadermBetamethasoneLong-acting glucocorticoid (1-3 days)
DecadronDexamethasoneLong-acting glucocorticoid (1-3 days)


May 2016: Antihypertensives

Lifestyle modification is the first recommendation for managing hypertension. Medications are prescribed with consideration given to causes, contraindications and comorbidities and may include:

• Diuretics: Loss of excess salt and water from the body by the kidneys with resulting drop in preload, stroke volume, and eventually peripheral vascular resistance.
• Beta Blockers: Decrease cardiac output and inhibit renin-angiotension-aldosterone system that raises blood pressure through sodium and water retention.
• Angiotensin Receptor Blockers (ARB): Blocks renin-angiotensin-aldosterone (as above).
• Calcium Channel Blockers (CCB): Reduce peripheral vascular resistance by inhibiting the contractility of vascular smooth muscle. (Sanders, p.365-8)

The specific medication prescribed varies depending on underlying comorbiditiies:

• Heart Failure: diurteic, beta-blocker, ACE inhibitor, ARB, aldosteron antagonist
• Post-Myocardial Infarction: beta-blocker, ACE inhibitor, aldosterone antagonist
• Coronary Artery Disease risk: diuretic, beta-blocker, ACE inhibitor, CCB
• Diabetes: diurtetic, beta-blocker, ACE inhibitor, ARB, CCB
• Chronic Kidney Disease: ACE inhibitor, ARB
• Recurrent Stroke Prevention: diuretic, ACE inhibitor
Brand NameGeneric/Chemical NameClass
MicrozideHydrochlorothiazideThiazide diuretic
LasixFurosemideLoop diuretic
CaptorilCaptoprilACE inhibitor
AltaceRamiprilACE inhibitor
VasotecEnalaprilACE inhibitor
Prinivil, ZestrilLisinoprilACE inhibitor
AccuprilQuinaprilACE inhibitor
CozaarLoasartanAngiotensin receteptor blocker
DiovanValsartanAngiotensin receteptor blocker
TenorminAtenololBeta-blocker, beta-1 selective
LopressorMetoprolalBeta-blocker, beta-1 selective
InderalPropranololAnti-dysrhythmic, beta-blocker, antianginal, anti-migraine
MonocorBispoprolalBeta-blocker, beta-1 selective
TrandateLabetolalBeta-blocker, alpha-activity
SectrolAcebutololAnti-dysrhythmic, beta-blocker, intrinsic sympathomimetic
Procardia AdalatNifedipineCalcium channel blocker
NorvascAmlodipineCalcium channel blocker, antianginal
CardizemDiltiazemAnti-dysrhythmic, Calcium channel blocker
Isoptin, Covera HSVerapamilAnti-dysrhythmic, Calcium channel blocker
AldactoneSpironolactoneAldosterone antogonist, potassium sparing diuretic
MinipressPrazosinAlpha-blocker, antihypertensive
Multiple ExamplesCombined PreparationsAntihypertensive combinations

• Madhur, M.S. (2014).  Hypertension.  Retrieved from
• Sanders, M. (2007).  Mosby’s Paramedic Textbook Revised Third Edition.  Missouri: Elselvier.


March 2016: Anti-Anxiety

Anxiety may influence a person’s life in various and sometimes coexisting forms such as phobia, social anxiety disorder, generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Individuals living with anxiety may have concurrent challenges with addiction, stigmatization and marginalization which can further undermine effective self-advocacy.

Approaches to managing anxiety may include short term strategies like using benzodiazepines for immediate crisis management and longer term strategies like prescription of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and cognitive behavior therapy.

Benzodiazepines (examples below) lower neural excitability in the CNS causing anxiolysis, sedation/hypnosis, anticonvulsant effects and muscle relaxation (Mycek, 1997). They can provide a short-term fix for anxiety however they bring risks of addiction, altered affect and respiratory depression. Because benzodiazepines may be prescribed for use during crises there is an inherent risk (carefully weighed by prescriber) of intentional or accidental overdose. Sedation and respiratory depression are the key components of a benzo overdose.

SSRIs (examples below) inhibit serotonin reuptake which allows an accumulation of and functional increase in the amount of serotonin at the presynaptic nerve terminals in the brain (Mycek, 1997). SSRIs generally take 4-6 weeks of daily use to reveal their intended effects, and may be prescribed for anxiety, depression or both, or for other conditions. SSRIs have a wide therapeutic window but overdose can have a lethal outcome either through serotonin syndrome, serotonin toxicity or due to co-ingestion of other agents. Signs and symptoms of an SSRI overdose are confusion, agitation, ataxia, fever, tremor, muscle rigidity and vitals may reveal hypertension, hyperthermia, tachycardia +/- wide QT, diaphoresis and pupil dilation. Care is supportive with an emphasis on consideration of co-ingestions, and the concurrent management/reversal of those effects prn (Cushing, 2015).
Brand NameGeneric/Chemical NameClass
ProzacFluoxetineSSRI: Anti-Anxiety, Anti-Depressant
ZoloftMirztazapineSSRI Alpha-2 Antagonist

• Cushing, T. (2015). Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor Toxicity Clinical Presentation. Medscape. Retrieved from
• Gresham, C. (2015).  Benzodiazepine Toxicity Treatment & Management. Medscape. Retrieved from
• Mycek, M.J., Harvey, R.A., Champe, P.C. (1997).  Lippincott’s Illustrated Reviews: Pharmacology, 2nd ed. Lippincott-Raven: Philadelphia.Yates, W.R. et al (2015) Anxiety Disorders Treatment & Management. Retrieved from


January 2016: Statins

Statins are medications used to lower low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol (the bad cholesterol), and have modest triglyceride-lowering and high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol raising effects at higher doses. Here are the most common statins you’ll see in the prehospital setting.
Brand NameGeneric/Chemical Name


November 2015: Your Autoimmune Disease Patient

Often when we respond to sick patients, we're provided with a 'bag of meds'. Here is what you might find in that bag if your patient suffers from an autoimmune condition such as Chrohn's Disease, Rheumatoid Arthritis, etc.
Brand NameGeneric/Chemical NameClass
PrednisonePrednisoneImmunosuppressant Steroid/Anti-Inflammatory
Immunosuppressant Steroid/Anti-Inflammatory
Immunosuppressant Steroid/ Antirheumatic Agent
Immunosuppressant/ Antineoplastic
Immunosuppressant/ Antineoplastic