January 18, 2012

Adverse Events – Prescription Safety Information

Adverse Events is a web-application with tools that patients and their doctors can use to find up-to-date information on more than 4,000 FDA-approved prescription medications. The application itself is powered by RxFilter, a special algorithm that analyzes FDA drug safety data and tracks the adverse side effects associated with certain medications.

If you’re at all concerned about the medications your physician has prescribed, then it pays to log on to the Adverse Events website and have a look around. Without becoming a subscriber, you can search for information about any drug, medical condition, or prescription side effect. If you’re interested in the possible side effects of a pill you’ve recently been prescribed, then you’ll want to enter the name of the medication in the Adverse Events search bar. Find the correct result on the next page, and browse through a list of the most frequently reported side effects of this medication. You can compare these side effects to those of similar medications with the click of a button. If you find out that people who take a similar pill are less likely to suffer from depression or insomnia as a result, for example, then you can take this information to your physician for a more in-depth analysis. Individuals and organizations that sign up for premium subscriptions, meanwhile, can set up special alerts to find out when new adverse events have been reported by people taking their same medications.

Although the information that Adverse Events provides was available through the FDA Adverse Events Reporting System in the past, it was organized in a way that was difficult for patients to navigate or understand. Adverse Events opens up this information and improves patient safety by encouraging people to get informed about the potential side effects of any medications they’re taking on a regular basis.

Practical Uses:

  • Find out whether the pills you’re taking are making you drowsy
  • Do research on the prescription medications your doctor recommends
  • Find out if any alternative medications are available with fewer side effects
  • Prevent bad drug interactions by finding out which pills should never be mixed

Insider Tips:

  • Premium users can sign up for alerts when adverse effects are reported
  • Drugs can be searched for by keyword or by the condition they are intended to treat
  • The data itself comes from the FDA Adverse Events Reporting System
  • Adverse Events uses a special algorithm to organize and filter the FDA’s data

What we liked:

  • Adverse Events encourages people to become their own advocates
  • People who use this web-app can learn more about the pills they take
  • Users do not have to sign up for accounts to access the majority of the data
  • Adverse Events was created both for patients and their healthcare providers

What we didn’t like:

  • Adverse Events is not set up and organized in a way that is easy for the average layperson to understand


Company Info:

  • Launched: September 2011
  • Privately Held
  • Headquarters: Healdsburg, California
  • Founded by: Brian Overstreet
  • Web site:


  • Basic plan is free
  • Premium plan is $39/year
  • Professional plan is $59/year

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