Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"When taking a medication (like swallowing a pill), where does it go?"
I need detail please.
Depending on the type of medication, it will travel in the body in different ways. If you have particular questions about a certain medication that you are taking or its effects, it will be important for you to make an appointment with your doctor to speak about it further. If it is a pill, the medication will first travel down the esophagus into the stomach. After leaving the stomach, the medication will then enter the small intestine, followed by the large intestine, and then will be excreted out of the body in stool during a bowel movement. Although it will be absorbed throughout the GI tract, most of the absorption takes place in the first part of the small intestine, called the duodenum. After being absorbed out of the GI tract, the medication will enter the blood stream and will travel to the different organs of the body, where it will take effect. For instance, if it is a blood pressure medication, it will act at cell receptors along the blood vessels, or if it is a kidney medication, it will act at receptors on cells in the kidney. However, it is important to note that it will act at other organs than the intended one, because the bloodstream will carry it throughout the body. The medication is then broken down by special enzymes that degrade it into smaller components. For most medications, this is performed by enzymes in the liver, and then these breakdown products leave the body by traveling to the kidney, then the bladder, and then exit the body in urine. Again, if you have questions about a particular medication you are taking, please make an appointment to speak with your doctor.
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