If I were you, I would get a second opinion from another doctor before starting to freak out. There may very well be an alternative which your doctor does not know of, or which he/she is not in the habit of prescribing.
Second opinions are always useful when it comes to medical issues. It's amazing sometimes the different viewpoints one can get.
Try look up if a support group in your region has a list of vegetarian GPs, who might know about an alternative. Some groups issue such lists (here in Germany the Deutsche Vegetarier Bund <Veg Union> issued such a list).
And if you don't have an alternative ... even Bernard Shaw had to make such a decision ... I'd rather take the medication, as Bernard Shaw did.
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I say take the medicine, and don't lose a minute's sleep over it. My husband has to carry an epi-pen; I'm told the medicine does not come from animals, but if it did, I still wouldn't have a second thought about it.
Yep. I'd take meds in a heartbeat that had animal derived ingredients if I needed them to save my life. It's naturally to want to save yourself..even the animals act on self preservation instincts. Don't lose any sleep over it like bst posted.
Well, if it was life or death I would take it but it strikes me as pretty weird if a doctor just came out and said "take this random drug or die. Have a nice day!" I'd definately be asking for second opinions.
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Take your medicine. Using an animal product to save a human life is a whole lot different than using it because you feel like it, or like how it tastes or looks or how it feels on your skin. Medical technology just isn't at the point where they can avoid it completely (they'll get there eventually, just not yet.) Take your medicine. Don't beat yourself up over it.
Don't forget that EVERY medicine whether prescription or over the counter has been tested on animals regardless of whether it contains animal ingredients or not. It's unfortunate but medical technology just isn't to the point where they can skip out on animal testing yet.