A prescription is the written medication order by the doctor, dentist, surgeon, veterinarian or any other registered medical prescriber to the Pharmacist, for the supply of a medicine, dressing or surgical appliance to a patient.
Parts of prescription:
The prescription contains following information.
Date of the Prescription: This is necessary for the prevention of misuse of prescription, especially the ones which contain narcotics and controlled drugs. The Pharmacist should advice the patient to visit the doctor again.
The Patient’s Name, Age, Sex and Address: Patient’s complete name, sex and address should be written to avoid medication error and to take follow ups. For a child the age is also given to help when the pharmacist is checking the dose is one of main parts of prescription.
Superscription: This is the sign Rx which is instruction to the pharmacist. It is derived from R abbreviation for the Latin word recipe, meaning “take thou”, and possibly the letter j-an invocation to Jove (Jupiter) to god of healing.
Inscription: The name and quantities of the medicament to be supplied: The medicament may be prescribed as:
(a): An official (that is British National Formulary, British Pharmaceutical codex or British Pharmacopoeia) preparation, together with quantity required.
(b): A proprietary product, together with quantity required.
(c): A special formula-in which case the quantity of each ingredient will be stated together with a description of the type of preparation, e.g. mixture, lotion and tablets.
Subscription: It is Instructions for the Pharmacist. It may include instruction regarding the flavor of the product, label, quantity to be dispensed, i-e for one week etc is one of major parts of prescription.
Signatura: Instruction for the patient. These may include:
(a) The method of administration and application
(b) The dose if the preparation is for internal dose
(c) The time of administration or application
(d) The diluents (e.g. water) if relevant, or means of application (e.g. brush)
(e) The part of body where the preparation is to be applied, in case of external use
The Prescriber’s Name, Adress and signature:
Prescriptions were written in Latin, partly because this is the language could be understood by pharmacist all over the world and to hide the nature of treatment from the patient partly. In recent years the use of Latin has rapidly declined until today only a few abbreviations and terms persist.