Regular Marijuana Use Linked to Increased Heart Failure Risk

Recent observational research presented at the American Heart Association (AHA) 2023 Scientific Sessions reveals a 34% higher risk of heart failure within four years associated with daily marijuana use compared to non-use. The findings, while observational and indicating association rather than causation, contribute to a growing body of evidence on the potential cardiovascular effects of marijuana.

The study, led by Yakubu Bene-Alhasan, MD, MPH, and colleagues, examined data from the National Institutes of Health–sponsored All of Us research program. The analysis included 156,999 adults aged 18 or older without a baseline heart failure diagnosis. During a median follow-up of 45.3 months, 2958 incidents of heart failure events occurred. After adjusting for various factors, daily marijuana users exhibited a 34% increased heart failure risk, though this significance diminished when factoring in coronary artery disease (CAD).

Bene-Alhasan emphasized that the study cannot establish causation but noted a growing body of evidence suggesting negative cardiovascular effects associated with marijuana use. The study categorized participants based on reported marijuana use frequency, revealing that daily users faced an increased risk compared to never-users.

Another study presented at the same sessions by Avilash Mondal, MD, and colleagues explored the association between cannabis use disorder (CUD) and major adverse cardiac and cerebral events (MACCEs) in older patients with cardiovascular risk factors who were tobacco nonsmokers. The study, based on National Inpatient Sample data, found that patients with CUD had a 20% increased risk for MACCEs, including all-cause mortality, acute myocardial infarction, cardiac arrest, or stroke.

The research sheds light on the potential cardiovascular risks associated with marijuana use, emphasizing the need for healthcare providers to inquire about patients’ cannabis use when obtaining medical histories. Both studies highlight the complexity of assessing the impact of marijuana on cardiovascular health and underscore the importance of continued research in this evolving field.


The medical information on this site is provided as an information resource only and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes. This information does not substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment. Please do not initiate, modify, or discontinue any treatment, medication, or supplement solely based on this information. Always seek the advice of your health care provider first. Full Disclaimer


A New Survey Reveals Gaps in Understanding “Bad Cholesterol” and Its Impact

LDL cholesterol, often referred to as “bad cholesterol,” silently poses a grave threat to cardiovascular health. However, a recent survey conducted in 2023 by the American Heart Association (AHA) in collaboration with the Harris Poll has unveiled a concerning lack of awareness, especially among heart attack and stroke survivors. Astonishingly, 70% of these survivors were found to be unfamiliar with the term “bad cholesterol” and its implications, indicating a significant knowledge gap and an urgent need for widespread education and proactive health management.

Cholesterol is a waxy substance produced by the liver and introduced to the body through certain foods, primarily animal sources like meat and full-fat dairy products. Cholesterol travels through the bloodstream, attached to lipoproteins. The two main types of lipoproteins are high-density lipoproteins (HDL), often referred to as “good” cholesterol, and low-density lipoproteins (LDL), known as “bad” cholesterol. Together with triglycerides, these components make up your total cholesterol level.

The pervasive lack of public awareness about “bad cholesterol” and its impact on cardiovascular health is a cause for concern. Since elevated LDL cholesterol typically exhibits no symptoms, many individuals may be unaware of their risk and how to mitigate it. Elevated LDL cholesterol can lead to the formation of fatty deposits, or plaques, in the arteries, significantly increasing the risk of heart attacks and strokes. The AHA survey found that, while 75% of heart attack and stroke survivors reported having high cholesterol, but only 49% recognized the importance of lowering it. Furthermore, 47% of survivors were unaware of their LDL cholesterol levels, despite its crucial role in preventing additional cardiovascular events.

To address this issue, the AHA recommends that all adults aged 20 or older have their cholesterol checked every four to six years, provided their risk remains low. After the age of 40, healthcare professionals should use a specific calculation to assess an individual’s 10-year risk of experiencing a heart attack or stroke. Those with a history of such events may need more frequent cholesterol checks. Knowledge is undeniably a powerful tool in this context—the more you know, the better equipped you are to reduce the risk of future heart attacks and strokes.

The journey to lower cholesterol begins with mindful eating. The AHA recommends adopting a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, poultry, fish, and nuts, while minimizing red meat and full-fat dairy. Monitoring fat intake is crucial, particularly by reducing saturated fat to less than 6% of daily calories and avoiding trans fats.

Incorporating at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise per week, such as brisk walking or swimming, can have a significant impact on cholesterol levels and overall cardiovascular health. For smokers, quitting is imperative. Additionally, modest weight loss of 5% to 10% can lead to improvements in cholesterol levels and overall heart health.



The medical information on this site is provided as an information resource only and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes. This information does not substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment. Please do not initiate, modify, or discontinue any treatment, medication, or supplement solely based on this information. Always seek the advice of your health care provider first. Full Disclaimer 



Did your doctor retire, leave or close their practice?

Are you new to our community?


There is an acute shortage of Family doctors in the community. Centrum Pharmacy is committed to ensuring that our patients have access to timely health care services. If you are a current patient of Centrum Pharmacy and need a Family Doctor, please place your name on our WAITING LIST FOR A FAMILY DOCTOR. Over the past few years, we have helped recruit EIGHT new family physicians to move into the Orleans Community. Over 4000 patients have been able to find a new family physician due to our efforts. We also are expecting to recruit TWO new physicians to arrive in our area next year.

Transfer your prescriptions to Centrum Pharmacy and get placed on our waiting list for a new physician. It’s easy, just place your name on our WAITING LIST and indicate that you wish to transfer your existing prescriptions to Centrum Pharmacy.

Many existing physicians also open up their rosters to new patients periodically. One of the first things that they do is to send us a notification that they are currently accepting new patients. At that point, we send them the WAITING LIST of our patients needing a new physician. In this manner, we have already helped countless residents of our local community get a family physician. Over 15% of the Orleans population do not have a family physician, whereas, only less than 5% of our patients at Centrum Pharmacy are without a GP.


Customers of Centrum Pharmacy can get PRESCRIPTION EXTENTIONS at no additional charge. We don’t charge for chronic prescription extensions like other pharmacies do. So, while you are waiting to get a new physician, we can keep your drug therapy intact.


ED and Heart Health

Erectile dysfunction is frequently associated with the same factors responsible for cardiovascular disease, such as inflammation, arterial narrowing (endothelial dysfunction), or artery hardening (atherosclerosis). Consequently, erectile dysfunction can often serve as an early warning sign or an indicator of an individual’s overall cardiovascular health. If you’re grappling with erectile dysfunction, it is advisable to consult your healthcare provider for a thorough evaluation of your heart health. This proactive approach can help identify potential cardiovascular issues and allow for timely intervention.

Engaging in regular exercise for a minimum of 30 minutes, three times a week, has been discovered to yield results almost on par with pharmaceutical options like Viagra and similar medications when it comes to enhancing erectile function. This revelation stems from a recent comprehensive analysis of the most reliable research available on the connection between aerobic exercise and erectile function.
The findings of this study, published in The Journal of Sexual Medicine, reveal that aerobic activities, such as walking or cycling, have a positive impact on erectile function for all men dealing with erectile dysfunction. Notably, this improvement occurs regardless of factors such as body weight, overall health, or the use of medication. In fact, men with the most severe cases of erectile dysfunction experienced the most significant benefits.

While the medical community has long recognized the relationship between erectile function and cardiovascular health, the evidence supporting the impact of exercise on this condition has been limited. The study’s results demonstrated that the more severe the erectile dysfunction, the more exercise aided in enhancing erectile function. On a standardized scale ranging from 6 to 30, men with severe erectile dysfunction who incorporated exercise into their routines reported a notable 5-point enhancement in erectile function. Those with mild and moderate cases of erectile dysfunction experienced improvements of 2 and 3 points, respectively.

In comparison, pharmaceutical treatments like phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitors, such as sildenafil (commonly known as Viagra) or tadalafil (Cialis), could lead to improvements within the range of 4 to 8 points, as pointed out by the study authors. Similarly, testosterone replacement therapy was found to result in an improvement of 2 points. These findings highlight the valuable role of exercise in addressing erectile dysfunction, particularly for those with more severe cases, while also underlining the effectiveness of established pharmaceutical treatments.


The medical information on this site is provided as an information resource only and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes. This information does not substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment. Please do not initiate, modify, or discontinue any treatment, medication, or supplement solely based on this information. Always seek the advice of your health care provider first. Full Disclaimer


Come Visit our Walk-in Clinic

We are pleased to announce the opening of Centrum Pharmacy Walk-In Clinic, your new healthcare destination in Orléans, Ontario. We are open Saturdays 8:30 am till 2:30 pm to serve our community with the utmost care and dedication. 

Address: 210 Centrum Blvd, Suite 107, Orléans, ON K1E 3V7 

At Centrum Walk-In Clinic, your well-being is our top priority, and we are here to provide prompt and professional healthcare services for a range of needs, including:

  • Cold and Flu Symptoms
    In times of illness, come to us for evaluation and guidance on managing cold and flu symptoms to get you back on your feet.
  • Minor Injuries Only
    From cuts and scrapes to minor burns, we’re here to help with your minor injuries and provide the care you need (Please note: we cannot provide sutures or cast fractures).
  • Prescription Renewals
    We offer prescription renewals for a wide range of medications. (Please note: we do not prescribe narcotics, benzodiazepines, or sleeping pills).
  • Sexually Transmitted Infections
    Our clinic is equipped to address concerns related to sexually transmitted infections (STIs) with
    discretion and confidentiality.
  • Doctor Attestations – Doctor’s Note
    Require a doctor’s note for school, work, or other purposes? We’ve got you covered.
  • Other Ailments Minor in Nature
    We are here to address various other minor ailments and conditions to ensure your well-being.

Additionally, for very minor ailments and conditions, you don’t have to wait to see the walk-in doctor. You can visit any of our pharmacists at Centrum Pharmacy six days a week for immediate assistance with a range of minor ailments.

We are dedicated to providing you with quality healthcare services in a warm and welcoming environment. Our experienced medical professionals are here to listen, diagnose, and support you on your journey to better health.

We are open every Saturday 8:30 am till 2:30 pm. Your health is our priority, and we look forward to serving you and your family. For more information and updates, please follow our social media channels and visit our website

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Newer Obesity Medications Could Interact With Birth Control Pills

For women grappling with obesity and undergoing treatment with drugs such as semaglutide (known as Ozempic) or tirzepatide (referred to as Mounjaro), the benefits of these medications are remarkable. Belonging to a novel category known as GLP-1 receptor agonists, they offer substantial and rapid weight loss, improved blood sugar management, and an enhanced quality of life. These drugs represent a significant departure from the long-established view that surgical procedures were the most effective long-term solution for obesity.

However, the quest for accelerated weight loss and enhanced blood sugar control carries an unexpected caveat. Many women dealing with obesity, who are also taking oral contraceptives, might be unaware that these medications, particularly Mounjaro, can impede the absorption and efficacy of birth control pills, potentially increasing the risk of unintended pregnancies.

One of the mechanisms through which drugs like Ozempic operate is by delaying the transit of food from the stomach to the small intestine. While research in this area is still evolving, it is theorized that this delay in gastric emptying may influence the absorption of birth control pills. Another hypothesis suggests that vomiting, a common side effect associated with these medications, might also interfere with the contraceptive’s effectiveness. At lower doses, the impact on absorption and gastric emptying may be minimal. However, as the dosage increases, these concerns become more prevalent, sometimes resulting in diarrhea, which is another factor that can disrupt the absorption of any medication.

In the United States, approximately 42% of women are obese, with 40% of them falling between the ages of 20 and 39. While these new drugs hold the potential to improve fertility outcomes for obese women, particularly those with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), only one drug, Mounjaro, currently carries a warning about its potential impact on birth control pill efficacy. Regrettably, it appears that some healthcare providers may not be fully informed about or may not be advising their patients regarding this risk. Furthermore, the data remains inconclusive regarding whether other drugs in the same class, like Ozempic, pose similar risks.

For patients seeking to safeguard themselves from unplanned pregnancies, it is advisable to use condoms when commencing treatment with GLP receptor agonists. While the effect on gastric emptying is generally minimal at lower doses, it becomes more significant with higher dosages or the onset of diarrhea. While this aspect was not a conventional subject of discussion, it is now recommended that patients consider adding a barrier contraceptive method such as a condom, at least four weeks before initiating their initial dose or when adjusting the dosage. Additionally, it is advisable to schedule the GLP receptor agonist injection at least one hour apart from any other medication, including oral contraceptives.


The medical information on this site is provided as an information resource only and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes. This information does not substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment. Please do not initiate, modify, or discontinue any treatment, medication, or supplement solely based on this information. Always seek the advice of your health care provider first. Full Disclaimer

COVID-19 mRNA Pregnancy

Ministry Guidance on COVID-19 Vaccines

On October 13th, 2023, the Ministry of Health issued a guidance document.  The Ministry have updated the EO Notice to include information regarding the newly approved Pfizer and Moderna XXB.1.5 vaccines.

Effective October 13th, 2023, the Ministry is recommending that: 

All individuals eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine this fall should be offered the Moderna or Pfizer COVID-19 XBB formulations. 

Individuals who have previously been vaccinated, meaning they have completed their primary vaccination series and are now eligible for a booster dose, may be offered the Moderna or Pfizer XBB vaccine if it has been at least 6 months since their last COVID-19 vaccine dose or since their last COVID-19 infection. A minimum interval of 3 months since the patient’s last COVID-19 vaccine dose or COVID-19 infection may also be considered based on the judgment of pharmacy professionals and specific patient factors. 

The XBB formulation is the preferred product for individuals who have not been previously vaccinated against COVID-19.

The new XBB formulations will be made available to the general public beginning on October 30th, 2023.


Elevated TSH Values: When Is Treatment Necessary?

Thyroid hormone medications, thyroxine and L-thyroxine, rank among the most frequently prescribed drugs. However, not every elevated thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) value requires immediate therapy. TSH values can fluctuate and should be interpreted cautiously. Here’s a concise breakdown:

  1. Check Again:

A slightly elevated TSH value may not warrant treatment. Reassess TSH levels 2-6 months later, especially if the patient shows no symptoms. 50%-60% of cases see TSH values normalize without treatment.

  1. Reasons for Elevated TSH:

TSH levels fluctuate with the time of day and year, sleep patterns, and age. Sex and obesity can also influence TSH values. Biotin supplements, commonly used for hair and nail health, can affect TSH measurements.

  1. Avoid Hasty Prescriptions:

Not every high TSH value signifies hypothyroidism. Patients with thyroid nodules due to iodine deficiency may be overprescribed thyroid hormones. Iodine supplementation, not thyroid hormones alone, is recommended for iodine-deficient individuals.

  1. When to Consider Treatment:

Treatment is warranted in young patients with TSH values > 10 mU/L. Young symptomatic patients with TSH values between 4 and < 10 mU/L may require treatment. Treatment is necessary after thyroid surgery, radioactive iodine therapy, or in cases of a diffuse enlarged or severely nodular thyroid gland. Pregnant women with elevated TSH values should also be treated.

Standard TSH determination may not be sensible; instead, clinicians should investigate patients with symptoms and conduct comprehensive thyroid function assessments. Autoimmune-related hypothyroidism (Hashimoto thyroiditis) is a common cause of high TSH levels. In summary, not all elevated TSH values require immediate action, and careful evaluation is key to determining the appropriate course of treatment.

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How Exercise Prevents Cancer

A recent study has shed light on the connection between exercise and cancer prevention, specifically in individuals with Lynch syndrome, a genetic condition associated with a heightened risk of early-onset cancer. Researchers at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center discovered that engaging in intense exercise for just forty-five minutes, three times a week, can significantly reduce the risk of cancer in these patients.

The study’s findings revealed that this level of exercise had a profound impact on the immune system’s ability to combat cancer cells. All twenty-one participants in the study had Lynch syndrome and were divided into two groups: one received a 12-month exercise program, while the other did not. Researchers closely monitored their cardio and respiratory fitness levels and tracked immune cells, including natural killer cells and CD8+ T cells, in both their blood and colon tissues.


These immune cells play a crucial role in targeting foreign entities, such as cancer cells, and the exercise group exhibited heightened activity in these cells. Additionally, individuals in the exercise group experienced a decrease in the levels of the inflammatory marker prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), which was closely associated with the increased activity of immune cells. Both of these changes suggest a more robust immune response. Scientists believe these changes are linked to an enhanced “immune surveillance” system in the body, which helps detect and eliminate cells that could otherwise become cancerous.


Scientific evidence has long supported the idea that regular exercise can contribute to cancer prevention. A comprehensive systematic review conducted in 2019, comprising over 45 studies and several million people, provided strong evidence that exercise can reduce the risk of various cancers, including bladder, breast, colorectal, and gastric cancers, by as much as 20%.


According to the American Cancer Society, lifestyle factors, such as physical inactivity, excessive body weight, alcohol consumption, and poor nutrition, contribute to over 15% of cancer-related deaths in the United States (excluding tobacco-related cancers). To mitigate cancer risk, the society recommends 150 to 300 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week. Remarkably, the study participants experienced a significant immune response with just 135 minutes of high intensity exercise each week.


Thanks Giving

October 6 2023

This Thanksgiving, Centrum Pharmacy is grateful for you! 

As we gather around our tables and hearts fill with gratitude, we want to take a moment to express our appreciation for the incredible community we serve. 

Note: In observance of Thanksgiving, Centrum Pharmacy will be closed on Monday October 9th, 2023. We hope you enjoy this time with your loved ones.

Centrum Pharmacy isn’t just a place to fill prescriptions; we’re your local family owned, community based, healthcare provider. We’re here to care for you and your family. Our commitment to your well-being goes beyond medication. We offer personalized care, health education, and support at every stage of your health journey. Your health is our priority! 

This Thanksgiving, we celebrate the bond we’ve built with our amazing patients. Your trust and loyalty inspire us to continue our passion of promoting wellness in our community. Thank you for making Centrum Pharmacy your trusted healthcare partner.

From all of us at Centrum Pharmacy, we wish you a warm and wonderful Thanksgiving filled with love, laughter, and gratitude! Thank you for being a part of our healthcare family!