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Posts Tagged ‘Ann Kuttothara’

What’s For Lunch? By Our August Student Pharmacist, Ann Kuttothara, Who is Now Hungry!

During this time of year, everyone adjusts to a different schedule as students return to school. One change in the morning schedule for parents may be the additional task of preparing lunch for children. This meal helps students recharge during the school day and provides energy for the rest of the afternoon. Kids can then concentrate on classes and after school activities once they have had a tasty lunch. Sometimes lunch may be the first meal of the day for children who tend to skip breakfast–so it is important to provide nutritious food that will energize kids!


-Get children involved in the process of packing lunch. They will be more likely to choose foods they like and eat their lunch!

-If weeknights are hectic, prepare lunch for the week during the weekend.

-Avoid pre-packaged lunches that are loaded with unhealthy ingredients.

-Hydration-include water!

-Don’t forget ice packs to keep food cool or a thermos for hot food.

-Inform the school about any food allergies.

Some days there just may not be time to pack lunch or your kids may want to buy lunch. So discuss other options, such as buying lunch from the cafeteria twice a week and packing lunch the remainder of the week. Use this opportunity to discuss the importance of moderation in choosing a variety of foods. Review the USDA’s recommendations of different food groups to include in each meal using the choosemyplate.gov website. Chat about how to choose delicious, healthy food such as fruits or vegetables often instead of occasional treats like pizza. Teach healthy habits for life!

Search online for new lunch recipes! Below are links to recipes and snack tips available from the US Department of Agriculture.

Click on the picture of the Mediterranean Quinoa Salad to get the recipe. You will need to scroll down to the second page of the article for ingredients and preparation. You can also click on the “Kid-friendly Veggies and Fruits” tip page to make it larger and print.







To get the recipe for how to make this, click on the picture.

Lyme Disease. By Our August Student Pharmacist, Ann Kuttothara.

Planning a road trip or camping trip soon? Here at Plain City Druggist, we want to keep you prepared to face anything! So in continuing with the summer theme of bug bites, today’s topic is Lyme disease.

The majority of Lyme disease cases are reported in 13 states including Minnesota, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey. The incidence of Lyme disease in Ohio has been decreasing so help to keep that statistic down by keeping an eye out for ticks!

Lyme disease is caused by a bacteria called Borrelia burgdorferi which is passed to humans by blacklegged ticks. On the East Coast, this tick is called Ixodes scapularis and on the West Coast, the tick is Ixodes pacificus. A bite from an infected tick can result in a unique rash and Lyme disease. The official name of the rash is erythema migrans and it looks like a bull’s eye.

A tick bite can result in flu-like symptoms such as:

  • feeling tired
  • muscle or joint ache
  • headache
  • fever
  • chills

Even if a rash does not appear, tell your doctor about the exposure to ticks if any of these symptoms occur. Monitor for symptoms up to 30 days after tick exposure.


An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, right? So avoid Lyme disease by reducing your exposure to ticks and removing them if you detect one.

Use trails when outside and check often for ticks on clothing and hair.

Wear light colored clothes to identify ticks and wear long sleeves and long pants, which can prevent the tick from latching on to your skin.

Use repellants on clothing for an extra layer of protection (as described in Amy’s column: http://pcdblog.com/2013/07/insect-repellent-what-products-should-i-use-on-my-family-by-our-bite-free-july-student-pharmacist-amy-reed/).

The tick usually has to be attached to the skin for at least 36 hours to spread the bacteria. If a tick is found on the skin, it can be removed with tweezers (to refresh your memory on how to remove a tick, re-read Amy’s blog: http://pcdblog.com/2013/07/). Do not hesitate to mention the tick to your doctor if you experience any of the symptoms described above after removing the tick.


Lyme disease is usually treated with antibiotics. Visit your doctor if you notice the bull’s eye rash or experience symptoms. Early treatment is ideal for quick recovery. Symptoms such as muscle and joint ache can persist for months or years after a bite so make sure to visit the doctor as soon as you think there might be a problem.

For more information visit: http://www.cdc.gov/lyme/

References (info and pictures obtained):

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Lyme disease. Available from: http://www.cdc.gov/lyme/

The Clinical Assessment, Treatment, and Prevention of Lyme Disease, Human Granulocytic Anaplasmosis, and Babesiosis: Clinical Practice Guidelines by the Infectious Diseases Society of America. Available from: http://cid.oxforjournals.org/content/43/9/1089.full


Medication Use in Schools. By Our August Student Pharmacist, Ann Kuttothara, Who Very Happily is Almost Done With School.

As you and your children gear up to go back to school, there are many things to do: buy school supplies, shop for new clothes, get haircuts, and try out new lunch recipes.

Don’t forget, however, to add one more important task to your to-do list: get your child’s medication ready for school.

Many children have food allergies which require an EpiPen to be kept with them not only at home, but at school, as well. Some students use asthma inhalers and others carry insulin.

Your child’s important medical information should be shared with the school.

Discuss with your child’s doctor about using medications in school and whether prescriptions are needed for school use. For example, if a child needs an extra EpiPen at school, ask your doctor for an additional prescription for the second EpiPen. Also ask your child’s doctor about carrying medical information with the child when they are at school.

Along with the many forms you fill out for back to school, ensure that medical information and emergency contact information is completed accurately. Provide detailed information about your child’s allergies, medical conditions, and symptoms. Schedule a meeting with school staff, including your child’s teacher and the school nurse, to discuss the use of medications and any special instructions. You may be able to talk with the official in charge of food services, as well, for those children with food allergies. Work with your child’s doctor and school to develop an emergency action plan for steps to follow in case medication administration is necessary.

So how does your pharmacist fit in? Ask your pharmacist to show you how to use all medications, including the EpiPen. Your pharmacist will use the EpiPen training device to help you practice, so you will be comfortable using the actual EpiPen when the time comes. If your child uses medications that need to be taken at school, ask your pharmacist to provide two bottles to separate the medicine for home use and for school use–that way appropriate labels with instructions will be available in both places. Your pharmacist is a great resource, so discuss any questions or concerns with them.

Quick Tips for the EpiPen:

Keep the EpiPen at room temperature and not in cars where the temperatures can become very hot.

Check to make sure the solution is NOT cloudy and make sure it is NOT expired.

Give the injection in the outer thigh. The injection can be given through clothing.

Do not re-use the EpiPen after it is used.

How To Use the EpiPen (follow the picture instructions):

1. Flip open the yellow cap of your EpiPen or the green cap of your EpiPen Jr. Slide the auto-injector out of the carrier tube. Grasp the EpiPen in your fist with the orange tip pointing downward. Remove the blue safety release by pulling straight up–do not bend or twist the release.

2. Push the orange tip against the outer thigh. You can do this through clothing.

3. Push down until a “click” is heard or felt and hold for 10 seconds.

4. Remove the EpiPen and massage the injection site for 10 seconds.




































Management of Food Allergy in the School Setting. Available from: http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/126/6/1232.full


EpiPen Use: Kids Health at The Children’s Hospital at Westmead: http://kidshealth.schn.health.nsw.gov.au/fact-sheets/epipen-use






Ann Kuttothara is Our Second Student Pharmacist for August. Make Her Feel Welcome!

We happily have two pharmacy students from The Ohio State University’s College of Pharmacy with us for August. We already introduced you to Grace Kilbane. Now meet Ann Kuttothara.

Here is Ann’s information about herself:

“My name is Ann and I’m excited to learn about independent pharmacy at Plain City Druggist this month! I’m looking forward to working with everyone at PCD and to hone my compounding skills. I hope to learn more about Plain City  and the patients here at the drugstore.

“I grew up in Columbus and attended high school nearby in Dublin. In my spare time, I like spending time with my family and friends, reading, and exploring new places. I’m learning a lot during my rotations and can’t believe I’ll soon be finishing many years of school at Ohio State.

“I was initially interested in becoming a pharmacist in high school, but decided to explore a variety of careers in college. I became a technician at a community pharmacy in Columbus and enjoyed interacting with patients. This experience ultimately confirmed my interest in pharmacy. I still work at that pharmacy and like sharing what I’ve learned in school to help patients. I hope to practice in an ambulatory care setting as a pharmacist in the future-maybe somewhere warm!

“I am ooking forward to a great month at Plain City Druggist!”