How to dispose of outdated drugs

You have old drugs in your medicine cabinet and you want to get rid of them. Here’s what the FDA says you should do — and not do. First, drugs should not be flushed down the toilet. “They may get in the water supply or get into a stream and affect marine life,” University of Maryland pharmacist Frank Palumbo said.

If disposal directions are not printed on the label, the FDA suggests that drugs be taken out of their containers, placed in a bag and mixed with dirt, coffee grounds or kitty litter to make them unusable. The Justice Department and its Drug Enforcement Administration periodically hold programs in the area where consumers can turn in unused and outdated prescription drugs.

Laura Hambleton