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Pill Identifiers

By Kathy Sinkin, RN, CDE

Did you ever fill a prescription and come home from the pharmacy, open the bottle, and notice that the pill you have been taking does not look the same? Many pharmacies change drug manufacturers from time to time which can be confusing. To make sure that you are taking the correct medication, there are several websites that will help you identify the pill. The one I like the best is called Pill It will ask you to enter the imprint code that appears on the pill (an example is L484, which is Acetaminophen), select the pill color and shape, and it will identify the name of that particular drug. You can then compare it to the name of the medicine on your prescription bottle.

Taking charge of your health means understanding your medical treatment. Knowing what medications you are taking, why they have been prescribed for you, and knowing the side effects are essential in helping you understand and manage your health.

Kathy Sinkin is a Registered Nurse and Certified Diabetes Educator with Cornell Cooperative Extension of Suffolk County’s Family Health and Wellness Program. She can be reached at


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