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Medication woes

andywild

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF apr18. CP sep18. CF Aug23, Finisterre may24.
Hi all, just a quickie,
Has anyone else noticed that the older you get, the larger the ratio of medication: kit you carry in your rucksack? This time round it appears to be around 60% walking clothes and 40% various pills and unguents for my dodgy knees.
I'm thinking of buying a bigger rucksack for my 2028 camino 🙄
 
Down bag (90/10 duvet) of 700 fills with 180 g (6.34 ounces) of filling. Mummy-shaped structure, ideal when you are looking for lightness with great heating performance.

€149,-
I am walking the Camino Portugues at the moment. When I walked my first Camino aged 28 I think I carried one blister pack of paracetamol. Now 62 years old and with osteoarthritis in my knees and unpredictable innards after gallbladder surgery. My fairly minimal pack for this trip includes prescription Co-Codamol and Naproxen, generic anti-diarrheals, antacids and anti-histamines.... :cool: Still compress down to about the size of a pack of playing cards and probably weigh less so I don't really resent the weight or bulk.
 
€2,-/day will present your project to thousands of visitors each day. All interested in the Camino de Santiago.
Andy, I’ve been in Italy for the last few weeks. Set off with an entire pharmacy it seemed. I noticed today that I’m down to the final 2-3 week supply. Though the reduced weight and bulk of medication doesn’t seem to have reduced my pack weight. Perhaps I should wash some socks 😉

I’m kind of hoping there will be room for a couple of bottles of Grappa once I’ve swallowed all the pills
 
Depending on the Rx, many are available OTC or simply by presenting your script to a pharmacist in Spain. BTW, they are generally less expensive than they are in the US.
 
€2,-/day will present your project to thousands of visitors each day. All interested in the Camino de Santiago.
I take beta blockers, asprin, antacids amiodarone, ramipril (stops me going into cardiac arrest again) and I also 'carry' a defibrillator/pacemaker implant in case the previous stuff doesn't work!
Always somebody worse off though . . right?
🙃
 
I wasn't a hiker while younger, but yes, the number and size of prescription meds needed to take on any trip has certainly grown.

I order a month's worth in advance, keep them in their original containers until I've cleared customs at my destination, then dump them in 1-2 plastic baggies. Fortunately, they're different enough from each other that, even in the dark, I still know which is which.

As for OTCs...yes, you can get *some* in Spain. But I've not yet seen the little travel doses that I like to carry in the farmacias. And I don't have to look up what loperamide is called in Spain... 😉
 
Ideal pocket guides for during & after your Camino. Each weighs only 1.4 oz (40g)!
I take beta blockers, asprin, antacids amiodarone, ramipril (stops me going into cardiac arrest again) and I also 'carry' a defibrillator/pacemaker implant in case the previous stuff doesn't work!
Always somebody worse off though . . right?
🙃
Almost the same here. The security did take a look at Frankfurt airport in the travel-prescription I got from my professional and waved through.
2019 on CF w/o any medication (bandaids only), 2023 on the CP with supplies of Ass100 (Aspirin), Metoprolol, HCT, Ramipril, Ezitimib-Rosuvastatin.
For the 14 days on the CP (11 walking, 3 vacation-days on the end) it was not as bad as I thought, but if I want to do a CF again I had to plan and pack accordingly. But I will walk as long as I'm able.
 
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I wasn't a hiker while younger, but yes, the number and size of prescription meds needed to take on any trip has certainly grown.

I order a month's worth in advance, keep them in their original containers until I've cleared customs at my destination, then dump them in 1-2 plastic baggies. Fortunately, they're different enough from each other that, even in the dark, I still know which is which.

As for OTCs...yes, you can get *some* in Spain. But I've not yet seen the little travel doses that I like to carry in the farmacias. And I don't have to look up what loperamide is called in Spain... 😉
I live in Canada, and usually fly to London first, then to France or Portugal. I keep my prescription and OTC meds in their original containers but as others have said, the containers get emptier over time and I'd love to transfer them to smaller, non-"official" containers to cut down on bulk. So far I've been loath to do that in case my tablets are confiscated (some are in blister packaging which has the name of the item on them, but most are loose). When I go back home I often stay for a few days in the UK. My question to everyone is, what have you experienced? Will customs check all my meds with the possibility of them being taken away from me? Thank you!
 
3rd Edition. More content, training & pack guides avoid common mistakes, bed bugs etc
Hi all, just a quickie,
Has anyone else noticed that the older you get, the larger the ratio of medication: kit you carry in your rucksack? This time round it appears to be around 60% walking clothes and 40% various pills and unguents for my dodgy knees.
I'm thinking of buying a bigger rucksack for my 2028 camino 🙄
Hi Andy,
Wow, can I relate to your comment about medications! I was 68 in April/May of 2022 on my CF Camino and a three time cancer survivor with other chronic health problems, as well. I had two mesh bags of medications, one for morning meds and one for evening meds. In addition, I had my pouch for blisters and foot care. I just decided to appreciate the gracious acceptance of the Camino ethos and be comfortable with the very slow person with lots of meds that I was. I wound up after Zubiri deciding to use Jacotrans to transport an extra waterproof bag with some of my gear. I then just carried my backpack with my meds and water, raincoat and other daily essentials. I arrived in SdC on June 1st. I have cancer again for a fourth time but I am always encouraged by dreaming of my next Camino, and I’m hoping and planning for the fall of 2025. One step at a time, by the grace of God.
God bless you and Buen Camino, Andy!
Warmly,
Daniel
 
I am walking the Camino Portugues at the moment. When I walked my first Camino aged 28 I think I carried one blister pack of paracetamol. Now 62 years old and with osteoarthritis in my knees and unpredictable innards after gallbladder surgery. My fairly minimal pack for this trip includes prescription Co-Codamol and Naproxen, generic anti-diarrheals, antacids and anti-histamines.... :cool: Still compress down to about the size of a pack of playing cards and probably weigh less so I don't really resent the weight or bulk.
Sounds about like me, plus micro bottle of alcohol, antibiotic, zycam cold med, roll of Tums, razor knife, sewing kit and microbutane lighter. Smaller than deck of cards, but tube of Voltaren, Vaseline and sunscreen take most of pack waist belt pouch. Don’t forget the 20 cm length of plastic pipe for rolling out the calf muscles!
 
I wasn't a hiker while younger, but yes, the number and size of prescription meds needed to take on any trip has certainly grown.

I order a month's worth in advance, keep them in their original containers until I've cleared customs at my destination, then dump them in 1-2 plastic baggies. Fortunately, they're different enough from each other that, even in the dark, I still know which is which.

As for OTCs...yes, you can get *some* in Spain. But I've not yet seen the little travel doses that I like to carry in the farmacias. And I don't have to look up what loperamide is called in Spain... 😉
Not on Camino, but in Gran Canaria at the moment. Unfortunately, my mother had a need for loperamide, so after a visit to the local farmacía, I can tell you they call it ‘loperamide’ in Spanish too
Buen Camino
Miguel
 
The 2024 Camino guides will be coming out little by little. Here is a collection of the ones that are out so far.
My question to everyone is, what have you experienced? Will customs check all my meds with the possibility of them being taken away from me?
In all my international travel, which is not as extensive as many, but includes Europe, Central America, China, and South Korea, no Customs agent has ever looked at my prescription or OTC medications. But, I've never flown through the Middle East, which I think can be different.

I put each day's meds into tiny pill pouches before I leave home, but I also bring the Rx bottles with me, just in case.
 
In all my international travel, which is not as extensive as many, but includes Europe, Central America, China, and South Korea, no Customs agent has ever looked at my prescription or OTC medications. But, I've never flown through the Middle East, which I think can be different.

I put each day's meds into tiny pill pouches before I leave home, but I also bring the Rx bottles with me, just in case.
Thank you, @trecile for your comment and idea.
 
Hi all, just a quickie,
Has anyone else noticed that the older you get, the larger the ratio of medication: kit you carry in your rucksack? This time round it appears to be around 60% walking clothes and 40% various pills and unguents for my dodgy knees.
I'm thinking of buying a bigger rucksack for my 2028 camino 🙄
Due to you and folks like me, we keep the pharmaceutical companies going. I am thinking . . . perhaps we ought to have a small wagon we carry around that contains our meds.
 
The 2024 Camino guides will be coming out little by little. Here is a collection of the ones that are out so far.
For each three weeks of traveling I have about a liter of heart pills in very small plastic bags. One bag for morning and one for evening. Seem to work. I don’t want my wife to have to erect another RIP monument along a Camino but I happily know she would rather do that than watch me rust away in front of a TV. Buen Camino
 
We ask the pharmacy to print prescription labels which we then put on ziplock bags and dump the pills into the labeled bag. Roll them up like a burrito and secure with a rubber band to save space. My husband also brings little snack bags labeled morning and night and once a week sits down and sorts them into a weeks worth of doses like with a pill minder. He reuses these same bags every Camino until the little zips give out. More difficult is carrying the injectable meds with various shelf lives which may or may need to be kept cold and then there's the CPAP machines with their supplies of special filters and accompanying cords, tube's, masks, etc.

We need to walk while we can until we can't and if this is what it takes then so be it!
 
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Down bag (90/10 duvet) of 700 fills with 180 g (6.34 ounces) of filling. Mummy-shaped structure, ideal when you are looking for lightness with great heating performance.

€149,-
And there are pain remedies like Voltaren Forte which are stronger than what is available in the US.
 
I have been blessed with traveling for thirty-eight years and part of that has been hiking. I've seen tremendous improvements in gear, a little inflation in prices and I carry a whole lot more Rx than at seventeen 😳 the biggest issue is insulin and keeping it cool. I have a device that I will share that has helped me in other trips but nothing like the Camino. However those who have gone before me have used the same cooling device and have had successful results.
 

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...and ship it to Santiago for storage. You pick it up once in Santiago. Service offered by Casa Ivar (we use DHL for transportation).
Hi Andy,
Wow, can I relate to your comment about medications! I was 68 in April/May of 2022 on my CF Camino and a three time cancer survivor with other chronic health problems, as well. I had two mesh bags of medications, one for morning meds and one for evening meds. In addition, I had my pouch for blisters and foot care. I just decided to appreciate the gracious acceptance of the Camino ethos and be comfortable with the very slow person with lots of meds that I was. I wound up after Zubiri deciding to use Jacotrans to transport an extra waterproof bag with some of my gear. I then just carried my backpack with my meds and water, raincoat and other daily essentials. I arrived in SdC on June 1st. I have cancer again for a fourth time but I am always encouraged by dreaming of my next Camino, and I’m hoping and planning for the fall of 2025. One step at a time, by the grace of God.
God bless you and Buen Camino, Andy!
Warmly,
Daniel
Hi Daniel, I hope your battle with this fourth cancer is smooth and successful, and you can be back on the Camino in no time. Blessings to you, buen camino for 2025.
 
Hi all, just a quickie,
Has anyone else noticed that the older you get, the larger the ratio of medication: kit you carry in your rucksack? This time round it appears to be around 60% walking clothes and 40% various pills and unguents for my dodgy knees.
I'm thinking of buying a bigger rucksack for my 2028 camino 🙄
Buy smaller amounts in pharmacies as you go? I got my metformin, levothyroxine, and lisinopril in Spain without my prescriptions, and cheaper than my co-pay in USA.

Also, when I was hospitalero, we had all sorts of first-aid and pain-related things that we could provide to peregrinos in need.
 
...and ship it to Santiago for storage. You pick it up once in Santiago. Service offered by Casa Ivar (we use DHL for transportation).
2028!, I am not sure am going to be alive then, at 84. Let’s see here…sleep med, gut med, PTSD meds…(can’t go squirrely on the Camino, after all). Not too much to carry, for my usual 17-21 day journey. In the end, I find that I don’t need as much of the meds while walking. One of the many virtues of the Camino…
 
I live in Canada, and usually fly to London first, then to France or Portugal. I keep my prescription and OTC meds in their original containers but as others have said, the containers get emptier over time and I'd love to transfer them to smaller, non-"official" containers to cut down on bulk. So far I've been loath to do that in case my tablets are confiscated (some are in blister packaging which has the name of the item on them, but most are loose). When I go back home I often stay for a few days in the UK. My question to everyone is, what have you experienced? Will customs check all my meds with the possibility of them being taken away from me? Thank you!
I also live in Canada and have likely heard the same types of stories as @PilgrimPatricia. I wouldn't dream of crossing borders without the original packaging for my meds. They're very expensive and do indeed take up a lot of room, but I'm not risking some over-zealous border guard who could decide that without the packaging they can't tell if they're legitimate or not, and doesn't let them through. IMHO, better safe than sorry: Leave them in original packaging.
 
I travel all the time and could not possibly carry all my medications in their original bottles. Where I live no prescription is required for most medications and I get little boxes or "blisters" as they are called here. I have never had a problem.
 
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
We ask the pharmacy to print prescription labels which we then put on ziplock bags and dump the pills into the labeled bag. Roll them up like a burrito and secure with a rubber band to save space. My husband also brings little snack bags labeled morning and night and once a week sits down and sorts them into a weeks worth of doses like with a pill minder. He reuses these same bags every Camino until the little zips give out. More difficult is carrying the injectable meds with various shelf lives which may or may need to be kept cold and then there's the CPAP machines with their supplies of special filters and accompanying cords, tube's, masks, etc.

We need to walk while we can until we can't and if this is what it takes then so be it!
Very similar to what I do, except I laminate all of the prescription "labels" so it is easy to slip into my pack between the water bladder and main compartment. I do transfer all meds to plastic baggies, labeled with what they are that match the prescription documentation and ditch the bottles. I carried 4 months of meds that way and was never even asked by customs in any of the3 countries I went through for any documentation. I just had the baggies in my little med kit stuffed down in my pack.
 
Buy smaller amounts in pharmacies as you go? I got my metformin, levothyroxine, and lisinopril in Spain without my prescriptions, and cheaper than my co-pay in USA.

Also, when I was hospitalero, we had all sorts of first-aid and pain-related things that we could provide to peregrinos in need.
I also take metformin and lisinopril and was wondering how you got them filled in Spain.
 
Hi Andy,
Wow, can I relate to your comment about medications! I was 68 in April/May of 2022 on my CF Camino and a three time cancer survivor with other chronic health problems, as well. I had two mesh bags of medications, one for morning meds and one for evening meds. In addition, I had my pouch for blisters and foot care. I just decided to appreciate the gracious acceptance of the Camino ethos and be comfortable with the very slow person with lots of meds that I was. I wound up after Zubiri deciding to use Jacotrans to transport an extra waterproof bag with some of my gear. I then just carried my backpack with my meds and water, raincoat and other daily essentials. I arrived in SdC on June 1st. I have cancer again for a fourth time but I am always encouraged by dreaming of my next Camino, and I’m hoping and planning for the fall of 2025. One step at a time, by the grace of God.
God bless you and Buen Camino, Andy!
Warmly,
Daniel
Hi Daniel,
From one cancer survivor to another, I will keep in my thoughts and prayers.
Also wish your pain will be something easily manageable.
 
Get a spanish phone number with Airalo. eSim, so no physical SIM card. Easy to use app to add more funds if needed.
I live in Canada, and usually fly to London first, then to France or Portugal. I keep my prescription and OTC meds in their original containers but as others have said, the containers get emptier over time and I'd love to transfer them to smaller, non-"official" containers to cut down on bulk. So far I've been loath to do that in case my tablets are confiscated (some are in blister packaging which has the name of the item on them, but most are loose). When I go back home I often stay for a few days in the UK. My question to everyone is, what have you experienced? Will customs check all my meds with the possibility of them being taken away from me? Thank you!
Ive been traveling the world since October 2023 with lots of different meds including a years supply of a pancreatic enzyme I have to take with every meal. I carry letters from my doctor saying what the meds are for and started out with original containers. No one, not even in Turkey or India checked my meds. I guess I look old enough they figure I just need them. Now almost all are out of the original bottles and in baggies with little labels. I have had no problems. I hear you though, when I was young I carried a blister bandage...now it's a full two sandwich bags of stuff. We are blessed to have things we can take to ease the aging bodies and still hike the camino. How fortunate we are indeed.
 
I live in Canada, and usually fly to London first, then to France or Portugal. I keep my prescription and OTC meds in their original containers but as others have said, the containers get emptier over time and I'd love to transfer them to smaller, non-"official" containers to cut down on bulk. So far I've been loath to do that in case my tablets are confiscated (some are in blister packaging which has the name of the item on them, but most are loose). When I go back home I often stay for a few days in the UK. My question to everyone is, what have you experienced? Will customs check all my meds with the possibility of them being taken away from me? Thank you!
I was concerned about this too but No one has ever checked my medications, I put them in a ziplock bag with a letter from my MD stating the name of the meds & dosage. However, in the future I will keep them in the RX bottles until I arrive in Spain, then ditch the bottles and transfer to ziplock. One can also get a paper copy of meds from your pharmacy to carry with you.
 
Hi all, just a quickie,
Has anyone else noticed that the older you get, the larger the ratio of medication: kit you carry in your rucksack? This time round it appears to be around 60% walking clothes and 40% various pills and unguents for my dodgy knees.
I'm thinking of buying a bigger rucksack for my 2028 camino 🙄
In a word, yes. 🤪
 
3rd Edition. More content, training & pack guides avoid common mistakes, bed bugs etc

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