FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ

How we can help

We set up Lemonaid to make it simple to get the affordable care you need regardless of insurance. If you're in one of the state we serve, we save you time and money by making it possible to get great care from a doctor - including, when appropriate, a prescription or lab tests- without having to see a doctor in person. This means you don't need to spend ages on the telephone trying to book an appointment, to travel to and from the doctor's office or to sit in a waiting room.

Our visit fee is only , so it's less than the cost of most insurance co-pays, even before you take into consideration the time we save you.

Our doctors follow strict guidelines that make sure we only give you a prescription when it's safe and appropriate to do so. If what you tell us about your health history or symptoms means it’s not in your best interest to use Lemonaid, we’ll advise you to see a doctor in person.

No. The online nature of our service means that our doctors have to be more cautious than if they were seeing you in person as part of a traditional doctor's visit. For this reason we can't help everyone who wants to use our service.

If we can't help you, we always refund your visit fee.

In short, super fast!

How super fast depends upon your state. In most states we’ll review your visit within 2 hours during business hours. Our business hours are Monday to Friday 8am-5pm Pacific Time, 11am-8pm Eastern Time. Outside business hours we try to review all requests for treatment as quickly as we can.

In some states it’s even faster than 2 hours, because some states require you to have an immediate video visit after you answer our health questions. In these states, the doctor will complete your visit there and then, without you having to wait 2 hours. Our video visits are available during business hours.

How Our Service Works

We provide the same level of professional care as a traditional doctor’s office, but in a more convenient way because we’re 100% online and you don’t have to wait days for an appointment.

Just like a traditional doctor’s office, our doctors need to ask you questions to work out whether it’s safe and appropriate to give you care. If appropriate, we can write a prescription and send it to your local office.

In most state you won’t need to have a video visit with one of our doctors, but some states have regulations that require one.

It is, as long as you answer our questions fully and truthfully and you read the important information we provide throughout our app and website, especially the information we send you about your treatment plan. When we ask you to send us photographs it’s important that these are photos of you, not somebody else, and that you took them then and there.

Before you take your medicine it’s essential that you read the detailed information we provide about your treatment plan so that you can weigh the risks and benefits of the medicine we’ve prescribed.

We can send your prescription to any pharmacy in Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Virginia or Washington. For now we don't send prescriptions outside these states but we plan on expanding our service into some other states shortly.

We always try to send your prescription to the pharmacy you’ve selected. But if for any reason we have to send your prescription to a nearby pharmacy at a different address or the pharmacy you selected has changed its name, we’ll always let you know by sending you a message. This sometimes happens because the list of pharmacies we show in the App and Website is slightly different to the list of pharmacies in the system that we use to send prescriptions electronically.

Eventually we want to serve every state in America, but for now you have to be 18 and in one of the states we serve to use Lemonaid.

Please make sure you tell us your correct date of birth as this is important for 2 reasons: we put your date of birth on the prescription we send to the pharmacy and if it doesn’t match your real date of birth then the pharmacy may refuse to give you the medicine; your age is an important element of what our doctors consider when we decide whether it’s appropriate to give you a particular medicine.

You have to be a woman to use our birth control and UTI treatment services.

Only men can use our hair loss treatment service and our erectile dysfunction service.

We’d like to help patients across America, but healthcare is regulated state by state, and our doctors don’t yet have licenses in every state.

In the coming months we plan to expand our service into other states.

State regulations require that our doctors see who we're treating, so that’s why we ask you to take a picture of yourself.

If you’re in a state that requires a short video visit then you don’t need to take a separate picture of yourself unless you’re using our hair loss or acne service.

Yes. We have a legal duty to protect your personal health information and have put in a place a number of safeguards.

Our Privacy Policy details how we comply with federal HIPAA rules and state specific rules.

If you have a doctor you see on an on-going basis, it's important to tell your doctor about all the medicines you're taking, including any medicines we prescribe.

To make it easy for you to keep your doctor informed of the care we provide, using our app you can email yourself a summary of the care we've provided. You should give this email to your doctor so that your health records are complete.

How Much Does It Cost

Our visit fee is . This fee covers the doctor's evaluation, but it doesn't cover the cost of your medicine. Our aim is to provide great care at a price you can afford.

You pay the within the app using a credit or debit card.

We'll refund your if we don't think it's appropriate to give you a prescription.

You pay for your medicine at the pharmacy, just like you would with a regular doctor's visit.

No, insurance won’t cover the cost of the visit. But our visit fee is less than the cost of many insurance co-pays.

Sometimes, yes. It depends upon your health plan and what medicines we prescribe. Please speak to your health plan or pharmacy if you have questions about the medicines your health plan covers.

Make sure you tell us your correct date of birth. If you don’t and you try to use your insurance card, the pharmacy may refuse to give you the medicine as the date of birth on our prescription won’t match your insurance card. Giving us an incorrect date of birth is also a bad idea because your age is an important element of what our doctors consider when they decide whether it’s appropriate to give you a prescription.

Acid Reflux

Acid reflux is a very common condition and is also called ‘heartburn', gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD. The symptoms can be very bothersome. It can cause a burning in the chest when lying down after eating or after eating certain foods, or you may feel a small amount of acid/vomit traveling from your stomach to your mouth or to the back of your throat.

It's caused when the muscle that's supposed to hold stomach acid down isn't strong enough and some acid goes up the esophagus (the tube that connects the mouth to the stomach).

Yes. There's lots of research that shows that doctors can diagnose acid reflux based on your symptoms. In this sense we diagnose you exactly the same way we would if we met you in person.

We help you by finding the lowest dose of medicine that controls your symptoms. We do this by understanding whether you've ever been diagnosed before, what medicines you've tried and how these medicines have controlled your symptoms, and then we recommend a particular medicine at a particular dose.

If this medicine doesn't control your symptoms then you can come back to us and we'll see if it's appropriate to increase the dose or change you to a different medicine.

We can prescribe 2 different types of medicines if we're confident that you have acid reflux. They both reduce the acid levels of your stomach but work in slightly different ways. One group is called proton pump inhibitors (PPI) and the other is called H2 blockers (H2B).

The exact medicine we'll give you depends on everything we learn about you and what medicines you've tried before. If the first medicine we give you doesn't control your symptoms then we can normally either increase the dose of the same medicine or switch you to a different medicine. Overall our goal is to find the lowest effective dose of the right medicine that will keep your symptoms under control.

We usually prescribe a 1-month course of treatment if we're giving you a trial of a new medicine or a new dose.

When you tell us that your symptoms are under control then we typically give you a 3-month course of treatment.

We're able to prescribe certain types of medicines and doses that are not available over-the-counter. The medicines we prescribe are very effective at preventing acid reflux from occurring, unlike antacids which provide only temporary relief. The types of medicines we prescribe, PPI and H2B, have some versions that are available over-the-counter.

Most of the medicines we prescribe for have low cost generic versions. Many pharmacies offer them as part of special programs that can make them even less expensive. We can help you find the lowest cost option. If you're using the service for a refill of a medicine you're already taking that's expensive, we may be able to help you find a lower cost alternative that's just as effective.

The medicines we prescribe are used to prevent the symptoms of acid reflux from occurring. Some people need to take the medicines every day on an ongoing basis in order to prevent the symptoms from coming back. Other people are able to gradually wean themselves down to taking medicines only when they think they're going to have symptoms. Others stop taking the medicines altogether. We do our best to help you get your symptoms under control, and then we help you find the lowest strength effective dose.

Don't worry if the medicine we give you doesn't control your symptoms after a month. This is very common because we'll start you on the lowest dose that we think can still be effective given what you've told us. At the end of the month you can come back for a follow-up visit and we'll see if we can move you to a stronger dose or to a different medicine.

If you're already on the highest dose medicine we can prescribe, we'll encourage you to see a doctor in person to discuss your treatment options.

If you experience symptoms of acid reflux 3 or more times a week then we think you should see a doctor in person and not use our service.

Similarly, if you’re already on the maximum dose that we can prescribe, then we’ll ask you to see a doctor in person. 

Other health conditions and symptoms make it important that you see a doctor in person, and we’ll tell you about these health conditions as part of our visit.

Even though we know we can make the right diagnosis in the vast majority of cases, it's important that you understand the risks of using our service.

Usually when you're diagnosed in person the diagnosis is based mostly on your symptoms, which is the same as we do. If your symptoms keep bothering you and aren't controlled you should go for a test called an endoscopy that actually looks in your esophagus and stomach.

If we diagnose you with acid reflux and you don't actually have acid reflux, then the medicine we give you could be unnecessary. Taking a medicine you don't need could cause harm from the possible side effects. It could also delay the time it would take for you to be diagnosed with a different underlying problem that could be the real source of your symptoms.

If you actually have acid reflux and we incorrectly decide that you don't have acid reflux there's a risk that it would delay your care. Whenever we tell someone that we can't help, we'll always give you clear instructions to go see a doctor in person.

There are some factors you can control for acid reflux and others that are out of your control. There are some simple things that are good for your general health that can help reduce symptoms in most people like losing weight if you're overweight, quitting smoking if you smoke, and avoiding sugary drinks and foods. You can also try avoiding caffeine, alcohol, or spicy foods, which can sometimes worsen your symptoms.

When your symptoms are well controlled we recommend a ‘discontinuation trial'. A discontinuation trial is exactly as what it sounds like. You decrease or stop your medicine to see if your symptoms return. This way we can make sure you are always on the lowest effective dose of medicine or no medicine if you don't need it anymore.

The medicines we use to treat acid reflux can be very effective. In fact, they’re often so effective that after a while it’s hard to tell if you even need to take them anymore. To be sure you really need to keep taking the medicine we advise all our patients to do a discontinuation trial at least once.

Acne

We know no one likes acne. Using standard medical guidelines and the latest clinical evidence, combined with your answers to our questions and the photos you provide, we can determine whether your symptoms are due to uncomplicated acne and which prescription medicines are most likely to be effective. If you've already tried over-the-counter treatments and haven't found success, we can help!

Read each of the questions carefully and answer each one truthfully. The questions have been carefully designed by our doctors to ensure we get the most complete information in a thoughtful and simple way. To evaluate the extent of your acne, we will require photos of your face, chest, and back to evaluate your skin.

Based on your answers and photos, we can determine which prescription medicines for acne to prescribe or if perhaps you should seek a doctor in person.

If you’re in any of you’ll need to have a short video visit with one of our doctors immediately after you complete our health questions and upload your photos.

Acne usually starts during puberty with the production of androgen hormone in both males and females which causes the following changes in the skin.

  • Skin glands, pores, or follicles of the face, upper chest and back known as sebaceous glands increase production of sebum – an oily substance.
  • The skin of these areas also have more production of skin layers known as hyperkeratinization. This thickening of skin can cause clogged pores known as comedomes. Open comedomes which are not clogged are called “blackheads”. Closed comedomes are called “whiteheads”.
  • The bacteria Propionibacterium acnes is present on the skin.
  • Both the clogged gland (follicle) and the bacteria can cause skin inflammation, causing red spots or pimples.

It's the combination of these factors that causes the zits, pimples, whiteheads, blackheads, and, in severe cases, cysts, that lead to the reddish painful bumps that we commonly refer to as acne.

Yes. Because a diagnosis of acne is based on a skin exam, we can make a diagnosis with your answers to our questions and the photos you submit.

We can prescribe medicines that effectively treat acne, minimize flare-ups and get long-term control. We have different treatments that focus on keeping the pores open, decreasing the amount of skin layer production or keratinization, and also decreasing the amount of bacteria of the skin. Your specific treatment plan may include any one or more of the following medicines: over-the-counter topical cream, gel, or ointment; prescription topical cream, gel, or ointment; prescription topical antibiotics; and prescription oral antibiotics. There are additional treatments for acne that we don't offer, including birth control and isotretinoin (Accutane).

The risks of taking any medicine include side effects or allergic reaction to the medicine. This is true with any prescription or over-the-counter medicine. In addition, the treatment we give you at first may not work as well as expected, which may mean you'll need to change your medicines, add medicines, or see a doctor in person.

It's possible that you may see no improvement because your symptoms are due to something else besides acne. In this case, you'll have used medicine(s) for acne unnecessarily and delayed your care.

If you're not seeing improvement in your acne after 1 to 2 months, send us a message for additional advice, return to the service for another visit, or see a doctor in person.

There are over-the-counter medicines and other non-prescription treatments available for acne. Left untreated, acne isn't life-threatening though it can result in scarring and ongoing flare-ups.

Although your acne should improve after a few weeks of treatment, it can get worse before it gets better. The flare-up may occur in the first 4 to 8 weeks of treatment. You should try to follow the treatment plan as prescribed for 3 months before deciding to continue or change medicines. The most successful way to treat acne is to be consistent with your treatment.

Although you may not be able to completely prevent acne, there are steps you can take to make your skin better.

Gently wash your face twice a day using a gentle, pH-balanced cleanser (Cetaphil or Dove bar) and warm water. Use your hands rather than a towel or other object that may damage the skin. By removing dirt and excess oil, you can decrease the chance of skin peeling, drying, and cracking. Scrubbing the skin harshly can damage the pores and make the acne worse. Avoid any oil-based skin products or makeup that can clog the pores. Always use hair products, lotions, or cosmetics that are "non-comedogenic," as they are designed to not clog your follicles and glands.

Moisturize your skin if you find the topical medicine(s) for acne dry your skin.

In some cases, your acne may be inflamed and extensive enough (such as when acne is located on the chest and/or back) that the benefits of taking an oral antibiotic outweighs the risks.

If oral antibiotics are part of your acne treatment, we recommend stopping after taking the antibiotic for 3 months.

Although birth control pills can be used to treat acne, at this time we do not offer this option via our acne service. We do offer birth control pills to prevent pregnancy through our birth control service.

No. Though isotretinoin (Accutane) is an effective oral acne medicine for individuals with severe nodular cystic acne, it has very significant risks and side effects including liver inflammation, high triglycerides, and severe abnormalities in a developing fetus. If you think you are a candidate for Accutane, we recommend you see a doctor in person who is authorized to prescribe it.

Yes. Acne typically goes away by age 25 to 30, but some some people may still experience flare-ups in their 30s and 40s. Among people 40 and older, about 1 in 10 men and 1 in 4 women report having acne. Overall, acne occurs more often in women than men, but it's typically more severe in men.

There's no medical evidence that acne is caused by what you eat or your personal hygiene, although stress can sometimes worsen acne.

Birth Control

You sure can, as long as it’s safe for us to give you a prescription based on your medical history. We write prescriptions for over 100 different birth control pills, for NuvaRing and for Xulane patch. The birth control patch branded as Ortho Evra is no longer available in the US, but the generic version, Xulane, is available at pharmacies.

Yes. We can start you on birth control for the first time, or change you to a method or specific pill that’s a better fit for you personally.

Yes. We can recommend a pill that matches your needs if you don’t already have a specific one in mind. There are 2 broad categories of birth control pills to choose from – combination pills and progestin-only pills - and we can recommend one cost-effective pill from each category. The combination pill we recommend and the progestin-only pill we recommend are both available at Walmart pharmacies for $9 per month.

We can give you a birth control prescription that lasts close to a year. We write a prescription for 3 packs, with 3 refills. Depending upon your health plan, if you have one, they may restrict you to getting a month at a time. After you’ve used your 12 packs you’ll need to come back to Lemonaid to complete another visit.

Hormones in the pill, patch and ring make it harder to get pregnant because they: a) keep eggs from leaving your ovaries, and b) thicken your cervical mucus. Because of this, it's harder for sperm to reach an egg and fertilize it.

No. They don't protect you from sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV.

If 100 women are on the pill, patch or ring as instructed, fewer than 1 in 100 women will get pregnant every 12 months. In reality, about 9 in 100 women taking birth control pills will get pregnant every 12 months. The pill, patch and ring are equally effective.

Longer-acting birth control methods such as an IUD are more effective at preventing unplanned pregnancy.

Combination pills, the patch and the ring contain 2 hormones – estrogen and progestin. Most pills are combination pills.

Birth control that contains estrogen come with a higher risk of serious side effects than progestin-only pills, the other type of birth control pill, or birth control methods that don’t contain hormones.  Certain health conditions increase the risks of serious side effects from estrogen. These serious side effects can include blood clots, stroke, and death. Because of the risk of serious side effects, our doctors will review your answers to our health questions before prescribing any medicine.

If you have high blood pressure, it's not safe to take a combination pill, the patch or the ring. This is why you'll need to tell us your blood pressure. It's important that you give us an accurate blood pressure measurement from the last 6 months.

Progestin-only pills contain just one hormone, progestin.

Progestin-only pills have a lower risk of serious side effects compared to combination pills, patch and ring, because they don’t contain estrogen. The challenge with progestin-only pills is that you need to take them at the same time every day or else they aren't effective.

We can prescribe progestin-only pills to women who aren't suitable for combination pills through our app, such as women 35 and older, women who have high blood pressure, or women with risk factors that make it dangerous for them to take a combination pill.

Bedsider (http://bedsider.org) is a great website with detailed information about all birth control methods. If you're not sure birth control pills are right for you, we recommend using Bedsider Methods (http://bedsider.org/methods) to help you choose the best method for you.

You have a higher risk of serious side effects from a combination pill, patch or ring if you have high blood pressure, which is why we ask for a blood pressure measurement as part of our health questions. Even if you don’t know your blood pressure, just the chance that it might be high makes it unsafe to give you combination pills, patch or ring without measuring it first.

If you do have high blood pressure we can prescribe a progestin-only pill. Taking progestin-only pills is safe if you have high blood pressure. If you have high blood pressure, but still prefer to take a combination pill, we think it’s safer for you to have an in-person discussion with a doctor or nurse first so you can review all your options for birth control.

No. To answer our health questions you need to provide us with recent and accurate blood pressure measurements.

Thousands of pharmacies have machines that can measure your blood pressure accurately for free, including most Walmart, Sam’s Club, Safeway, Rite Aid etc. Check these links for your nearest higi machine and Pursuant Health machine.

It’s important to use a blood pressure monitor that has a cuff for the upper arm and has a label on the box that says ‘clinically validated.’ You can buy them in most drugstores or online. Always read the instructions carefully. We don’t recommend using finger and wrist monitors, as they tend to be less accurate.

Rest for at least 5 minutes before taking your readings. Wait at least 30 minutes after smoking, eating, drinking caffeine, or exercising.

Make sure the cuff for the upper arm fits properly. A cuff that is the wrong size will give an inaccurate reading. You should have just enough room to fit your fingertips between the cuff and your arm.

Make sure you put the cuff on the correct part of your arm. The lower edge of the cuff should be about an inch above your elbow. Rest your elbow on a table so that the cuff is at the same level as your heart.

Take 2 readings in both arms and give us the highest number you record.

Cholesterol

We set up Lemonaid to help Americans get the convenient affordable care they need regardless of insurance.

With our cholesterol service you can get the care and advice you need – including labs - online without having to go to a traditional doctor’s office.

Just like a traditional doctor office we can order labs, write refills, start you on statin treatments and help you manage your cholesterol on an ongoing basis.

Cholesterol is a type of fat that’s in our blood. Our body needs cholesterol. Our body makes cholesterol and we also get cholesterol from food.

LDL is ‘bad’ cholesterol and raises your chance of heart disease and stroke.

HDL is ‘good’ cholesterol and is linked to a lower risk of heart disease and stroke.

If you have too much cholesterol it can make it hard for blood to flow through the blood vessels that take blood away from your heart. This increases your chance of having a heart attack, heart disease and stroke. 1 in 3 American adults die because of heart attack, heart disease or stroke. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women.

Statin medicines can lower your risk of a heart attack or stroke by 20-25%. Lowering your risk of heart attack and stroke is the aim of taking statins.

You need to have a blood test to find out your cholesterol levels. A blood test can tell you your total cholesterol level and the levels of different types of cholesterol.

We can order lab work for you through our partner Quest Diagnostics. They have Patient Service Centers all around the country.

Lemonaid is simple to use.

The process is different depending upon your personal situation but everyone needs to answer our health questions and create a Lemonaid account. If necessary we’ll order blood work at Quest Diagnostics.

If we prescribe statin treatment we’ll send the prescription to your local pharmacy electronically so that you can benefit from the advice and care from the great pharmacists in your community.

Most people find generic statins affordable.

How much you pay for the statin medicines we prescribe depends upon the pharmacy you go to and what kind of insurance you have, if you have insurance. You pay the pharmacy for your statins, not us.

If you have to cash pay for your statin medicines then Costco pharmacies can provide generic medicines starting at $10-15 a quarter or $40-60 for a whole year. That’s one hell of a deal.

We sure can. After an online assessment and a review of the lab work we ordered our doctors can start you on statin medicines.

We follow strict guidelines to determine when it’s appropriate to prescribe statins online and we can only give you a prescription if your risk of a heart attack or stroke makes it appropriate. It wouldn’t be appropriate for us to start you on statins unnecessarily because all medicines, including statins, can have side-effects and cause adverse events.

Please note, you need to know your blood pressure to get an online prescription for statins from Lemonaid. See below for the thousands of pharmacies that have machines that can accurately measure your blood pressure for free.

Yes, after an online assessment we can generally refill a statin prescription that you initially received from another doctor. The most we would prescribe online without you doing lab work through Lemonaid would be a 1-month refill.

Once you’ve done lab work through Lemonaid then we can give you a 3-month statin prescription at a time. Without knowing your lab results it wouldn’t be appropriate to provide you with ongoing care.

You need to know your blood pressure to get a statin prescription from Lemonaid.

There are other medicines that lower cholesterol but we don’t currently prescribe them.

We recommend you see a doctor in person if you’re taking these other medicines by themselves or in combination with a statin.

Absolutely. We’ve partnered with Quest Diagnostics, the largest lab company in the US, so that you can get your lab work done cost effectively. Quest Diagnostics have thousands of Patient Service Centers around the US.

When we order lab work as part or our cholesterol service we’ll test your cholesterol, your liver and your thyroid.

In all states other than New York you’ll need to pay Lemonaid for the lab work.

Yes, you need to know your blood pressure to complete our health questions.

We use your blood pressure along with other factors - whether you smoke, your age and cholesterol test results – to determine your risk of having a heart attack over the next 10 years.

We also need to know your blood pressure because giving guidance on blood pressure is an important part of providing responsible care for decreasing your risk of heart attack, heart disease, or stroke. If you have uncontrolled high blood pressure you need to get it investigated.

Many pharmacies have a machine where you can accurately measure your blood pressure for free. Most Walmart, Sam’s Club, Safeway, Rite Aid pharmacies have a machine.

Here are two links to help you find your nearest higi machine and Pursuant Health kiosk . Both machines are FDA approved to check blood pressure accurately.

Managing your cholesterol is only one part of managing your overall health. We’ll give you guidance on other aspects of your health that you need to manage, such as your blood pressure. When necessary you’ll need to compliment care from Lemonaid with a visit to a doctor in your community.

You only need to get your lab done one time if we start you on a statin.

If you’d like to get a repeat blood test after starting a statin, we recommend it no sooner than 6 weeks after you start the statin.

We recommend waiting 3-6 months after making significant lifestyle changes before retesting your cholesterol. We can re-order labs for you no problem.

Most patients who start a statin should continue taking statins for life. The risk of heart attack, heart disease, or stroke increases as we get older so if you wish to benefit from the protective effects of a statin medicine, you should take the medicine every day for life.

For now we only prescribe statins. If you need other medicines to treat high cholesterol then you should visit a doctor in your community.

Cold Sore

Lemonaid is a convenient way to get prescription-strength cold sore medicines without going to a doctor’s office. If our doctors think you have cold sores, we can send a prescription to your local pharmacy for you to pick-up and pay for your medicines.

Select whether you want medicine for an immediate outbreak or daily preventative treatment, then select the specific medicine you’d like us to prescribe. Answer our health questions, select a pharmacy in your area, and pay our $25 visit fee out of pocket.

One of our doctors will review your request within 2 hours during the business day. In some states, you’ll have an immediate video visit with our doctors after you pay our visit fee.

If our doctors give you a prescription we’ll send it to your local pharmacy, so that you can go to the pharmacy to pick-up and pay for your medicine. If you have insurance, you should be able to use your insurance to pay for your medicines at the pharmacy.

Anyone age 18 or over and who lives the states that Lemonaid serves.

Some health conditions mean we won’t be able to give you a prescription for cold sore treatment, but we’ll ask you about those when you complete your online visit.

If you’ve never had a cold sore before we won’t be able to give you prescription because we think you should see a doctor in person for your initial diagnosis. First time infection of cold sores can be quite painful for some patients and can include severe sore throat, swollen neck glands, and fever. Other symptoms can include neck stiffness or eye pain. If you have these types of symptoms we recommend you see a doctor in person.

Yes. Based on your symptoms and medical history we can diagnose cold sores. We don’t need to see a photo of your cold sores.

There are 2 types of treatment: treatment for an immediate outbreak or daily preventative treatment. The prescription medicines we prescribe for both types of treatment are antivirals.

Treatment for an immediate outbreak aims to make your symptoms go away faster.

Daily preventative treatment aims to stop you getting so many outbreaks, and if you do get outbreaks, they should be less severe and not last as long.

We prescribe the oral antiviral medicines acyclovir 400 mg, valacyclovir 1g or 1000 mg, and famicyclovir 500 mg tablets to treat an immediate outbreak.

For daily preventative treatment we prescribe acyclovir 400mg and valacyclovir 500mg.

The FDA approved use of valacyclovir or famicyclovir for treating cold sores when they come on. We offer these medicines explicitly for these uses.

Although commonly prescribed by doctors in the US to treat cold sores, the FDA has not approved use of acyclovir for immediate outbreak or acyclovir or valacyclovir for daily preventative treatment to treat cold sores the way we prescribe them. This means the way we prescribe them is ‘off-label’ use. Please note, doctors in the community commonly prescribe these medicines in this manner and as outlined in peer reviewed medical references.

The risks of taking any medicine include side effects or allergic reaction to the medicine. This is true with any prescription or over-the-counter medicine. In addition, the treatment we give you at first may not work as well as expected, which may mean you'll need to change your medicines, add medicines, or see a doctor in person.

It's possible that you may see no improvement because your symptoms are due to something else besides cold sores. In this case, you'll have used medicine for cold sores unnecessarily and delayed your care.

If you don’t feel like your cold sores are getting better after 3-5 days of treatment, please send us a message so that we can give you additional advice. We may encourage you to see a doctor in person.

There are over-the-counter (OTC) medicines treatments as well as other prescription medicine available for cold sores. OTC medicines are typically less effective and generally have fewer potential side effects.

You also have the option of not taking any treatment for your cold sores. Only take a treatment if you think the risks outweigh the benefits.

With treatment, a cold sore outbreak should go away within 5-10 days.

If you take the daily preventative treatment, you should have fewer cold sore breakouts and when they occur they should be less severe and last a shorter amount of time.

Cold sores occur whenever the virus wakes up (reactivation) in the body. Things that can trigger cold sores include exposure to sunlight, having a menstrual period, stress, injury to the skin where the cold sore appears, dental work, or having some other illness. Each person's trigger may be different.

Avoiding these triggers can help decrease the number of cold sore breakouts you have.

If you have cold sores 5 of more times per year consider taking a daily medicine to prevent outbreaks (preventative or suppression therapy). You can get a prescription for this through our service.

If you have cold sores breakouts 5 or more times per year we recommend trying a daily medicine to help keep the blisters from popping up. This is known as preventative or suppressive therapy. If the medicine is working we would usually recommend taking it for a year and then stopping to see if the cold sores still come back. If you don't want to take a daily medicine you can also try taking a medicine as soon as you feel the cold sores coming back.

Cold sores are caused by a type of ‘herpes simplex virus’ (HSV) that infects the mouth and then hides out in the nerve of the face. Most people don't know they’ve been infected by the virus and you can have the virus for years before you have your first cold sore outbreak.

Your first outbreak can be quite painful with severe sore throat, swollen neck glands, and fever. Other symptoms can include neck stiffness or eye pain. If you have these types of symptoms yourself then we recommend you see a doctor in person.

Once the virus is in the nerve, it can come back as an outbreak of small blisters or sores on or around the mouth any time. You may notice a tingling, itching, burning around your lips before a cold sore outbreak. Within a few hours to a couple of days, painful blisters will appear. The blisters usually heal within 1 week.

Once you have the virus that causes cold sores, it never goes away. The good news is that most people get fewer outbreaks as they get older.

Erectile Dysfunction

Our doctors can give you a prescription for ED medicines after an online assessment and send it to your local pharmacy same day. By getting your medicine from your local pharmacy you know you’re getting the real deal and not counterfeit drugs.

Just as importantly, we can order investigative laboratory tests to help you identify some underlying health conditions that might be the cause of your ED. These tests are optional, but we strongly recommend them.

You have ED if you can't achieve and maintain an erection sufficient for sex even though you're sexually aroused. ED is not the same as premature ejaculation and ED is not the same as lacking sex drive, low desire to have sex, or low libido.

It’s very common and affects 10% of adult men and as many as 40% of men over 40. Some men experience ED from an early age. ED is sometimes called impotence.

ED is most commonly caused by physical factors but can also be caused by psychological factors such as anxiety or depression. Sometimes ED is caused by a combination of physical and psychological factors.

ED can be the first sign of potentially more serious underlying heart or general health problems. That's why it's important to have a range of investigative tests to look for the cause even if you feel fine. We can order these laboratory tests for you as part of our service to be drawn at any Quest Diagnostics center.

Aside from the stress and relationship problems that ED can cause, from a purely medical perspective ED can be the first sign of potentially more serious underlying health conditions that need investigation.

So by providing you with a way to get treatment for ED we hope that you'll consider letting us order routine laboratory tests to investigate other potential causes of your ED that you can do something about. We can order your tests at any Quest Diagnostics center in the country and we'll explain what your test results mean.

You can use our service if you're a man who's 30 or older and younger than 67 years old, you live in one of the states where we offer services and you suffer from ED.

ED medicines are not recreational drugs and you should only request a prescription if you really do suffer from ED.

ED is not the same as premature ejaculation and ED medicines will not increase your sex drive or desire to have sex. ED medicines are not aphrodisiacs. ED medicines only help you get and sustain an erection if you're sexually aroused.

We can prescribe one of four medicines to treat ED: generic sildenafil (Revatio), branded sildenafil (Viagra made by Pfizer), tadalafil (Cialis), and vardenafil (Levitra). You can't get these medicines without a doctor's prescription and we prescribe whichever type works best if it’s safe and appropriate to do so after an online consultation with our doctors. These don’t work in women and we don’t prescribe them to women.

Each of these medicines work by making it easier for blood to flow through your penis. Each of the four medicines comes in different doses and we prescribe different number of pills.

All four medicines come with the potential for serious side effects. They're absolutely not recreational drugs.

Because it's not safe for everyone to take these prescription medicines, we ask you a detailed set of health questions to confirm that you have ED and that it's safe to give you a prescription. You’ll need to know your blood pressure to answer our health questions.

The medicines we prescribe are not aphrodisiacs and they can't give you an erection. But they can help you get and maintain an erection when you're sexually aroused and many men find them to be very effective.

The medicines we prescribe work for the majority of men, but how a medicine works for you as an individual will depend upon the underlying cause of your ED and your body's response to the medicine.

We advise patients to try a particular medicine at a particular dose at least 3 times before deciding it doesn't work.

It's very easy to use our ED service and to complete a Lemonaid visit. It takes most patients a few minutes to complete a Lemonaid visit. During business hours one of our doctors will review your visit within two hours.

To complete a visit you need to select one of the four medicines, answer our simple health questions and take a photo of yourself. To form a relationship with you it’s important that our doctors can see you. Then you select a local pharmacy where you want us to send your prescription, and finally you enter your payment details to pay our visit fee. You can select a pharmacy in your community or you can use our mail order partner PHIL. You pay the pharmacy for your medicines just like you would for a prescription from a doctor in person. In some states you’ll have a short video visit with one of our doctors immediately after making payment during normal business hours.

Our doctors will review all your information to make sure you've a good candidate for treatment and that it's appropriate for us to treat you without meeting you in person. If we need any more information we'll send you a message or call you. If appropriate to treat you we'll send your prescription to the pharmacy electronically.

We also ask if you want us to order you investigative tests. These routine lab tests look for other potential underlying causes of your ED that if left untreated could cause premature death or permanent disability. If you ask us to order these tests we'll order them at Quest Diagnostics. Quest Diagnostics has over 2,200 centers throughout the US and you can go to any of them. Asking us to order these tests does not delay your care. It simply gives you and us helpful information about potential underlying causes of your ED. We'll always explain what your test results mean and what, if anything, you should do next.

Yes. It's safe to use our ED service so long as you answer our health questions fully and accurately, and you read the information we provide about the risks and benefits of treatment and the details of how to take any medicines.

These medicines should only be used by men who are healthy enough for sexual activity. It's not safe for everyone to take these medicines. We'll base our judgment on whether it's appropriate and safe to give you a prescription on medical guidelines and all the information you provide.

Yes. Medical guidelines are clear that a doctor can diagnose ED based on a patient self-reporting their symptoms. We diagnose ED in the same way that we would if we could meet you in person – we ask you questions to confirm that you have ED. We also ask you separate questions to help us understand the likely cause of your ED.

Just like we'd do if we saw you in person, we encourage you to let us order investigative tests to look for underlying health conditions that might be causing your ED. We know that not everyone can afford or wants these tests, so it's optional whether you want us to order these tests for you. Asking us to order tests is not a requirement for obtaining treatment from us.

You need to tell us your blood pressure to answer our health questions. We need to know your blood pressure because it's not appropriate for us to give you a prescription if your blood pressure is below a certain level or above a certain level.

It's important that the blood pressure readings you give us are accurate and recent because your blood pressure measurements are an important factor in our decision as to whether it's appropriate and safe to give you a prescription.

The good news is that pharmacies in your area will have machines that can accurately measure your blood pressure for free. Most Walmart, Sam’s Club, Rite Aid and Safeway have them. Use these links to find your nearest higi station or Pursuant Health machines.

Medicines with nitrates or nitroglycerin in combination with these medicines can lower blood pressure unexpectedly and could be fatal.

We pride ourselves on the great clinical care we provide. It's really important for us that as part of the care we provide we can order lab tests for you and help you understand what the results mean. We don't charge any extra for ordering and interpreting your lab tests because helping you understand the underlying cause of your ED is part of helping manage your ED.

We pride ourselves on transparent service. You can see the names of all our doctors and the doctor who treats you is always licensed in your state and will send you a message when your prescription has been sent. You can always reach one of our doctors by sending a message in Lemonaid.

We pride ourselves on sending your prescription to your local pharmacy because we want to part of your healthcare team and not separated from it.

We pride ourselves on using video visits in states that require it. We always work within the regulations, not outside of the regulations.

If you've tried one of the medicines at a particular dose at least three times and it doesn't work, don't give up hope and instead send us a message in Lemonaid or complete another visit. Based on what you tell us we may be able to increase the dose of the same medicine or move you to one of the other two medicines.

If we've tried you on different medicines and doses and it's still not helping your ED, we'll recommend that you go and see a doctor in person. There are other treatments available and it's best to discuss these with a doctor in person.

The cost of the treatments varies but generic sildenafil (Revatio) is the most cost effective and can cost less than $1 per treatment. If you have to pay for your medicines then in general brand name Viagra costs $65 per pill, Cialis costs $65 per pill and Levitra costs $50 per pill. Your insurance may cover the cost of the medicines but it will depend upon your plan and your medical history.

Most Walmart, Sam’s Club, Rite Aid and Safeway have machines that can accurately measure your blood pressure for free. Use these links to find your nearest higi station or Pursuant Health machines.

It's important to use a blood pressure monitor that has a cuff for the upper arm and has a label on the box that says 'clinically validated'. You can buy them in most pharmacies or online. Always read the instructions carefully. We don't recommend using finger and wrist monitors as they tend to be less accurate.

Rest for at least 5 minutes before taking your readings. Wait at least 30 minutes after smoking, eating, drinking caffeine, or exercising.

Make sure the cuff for the upper arm fits properly. A cuff that is the wrong size will give an inaccurate reading. You should have just enough room to fit your fingertips between the cuff and your arm.

Make sure you put the cuff on the correct part of your arm. The lower edge of the cuff should be about an inch above your elbow. Rest your elbow on a table so that the cuff is at the same level as your heart.

Take 2 readings in both arms and give us the highest number you record.

There are several alternative treatments you should consider including lifestyle changes, other medicines, penile vacuum pumps, and surgical options.

Penile vacuum pumps may be effective for some men. Other medicines including penile injections or penile suppository may be more effective for some men who still have symptoms despite taking oral ED medicines. Those with ED due to nerve damage or who don't respond to medicines may also benefit from surgical options. It’s always okay to see another doctor in person who may be able to provide you with additional options.

You also always have the option of taking no treatment. You can often improve the symptoms of ED by improving your health overall. This includes eating healthier foods, stopping smoking if you smoke, reducing alcohol consumption, and exercising regularly. If you have health problems such as high blood pressure or diabetes, it's also important to make sure they're under good control.

To make sure you are in optimal health you should also consider the investigative tests we offer that can help diagnose some causes of ED including problems with your overall health.

Flu

We know having the flu is a miserable experience. We can help you if you:

  1. You have a medical condition that makes it dangerous to have the flu
  2. You've been in close contact with someone who has the flu or developed the flu within 24 hours of you being with them
  3. You live in an area where there's a flu outbreak

By reviewing your answers to our questions and using standard medical guidelines, we can determine if your symptoms are likely due to flu and whether you might benefit from an antiviral medicine.

Antiviral medicine is most effective when started within the first 48 hours of having flu symptoms. Your symptoms may not disappear right away, but typically antiviral medications can shorten the total time you have the flu by up to a day. After 3 days of taking the medicine, if your symptoms don't improve or if you feel your symptoms are worsening, please seek medical attention in person and let us know by sending us a message in the app.

For treatment of the flu, take the antiviral medicine twice a day for 5 days.

Read each of the questions carefully and answer each one truthfully. The questions have been carefully designed by our doctors to ensure we get the most complete information in a thoughtful and simple way.

Based on your answers, we can determine if we might be able to help you. If we think an antiviral medicine is appropriate, we'll prescribe one for you. We'll also tell you when we think you should see a doctor in person instead.

If we give you a prescription, it's important to begin taking the medicine as quickly you can.

You need to be 18 or over and in one of the states where we operate.

Influenza - commonly called "flu" - is due to the influenza virus and typically occurs in the winter. Classic flu symptoms are sudden onset of fever, muscle aches, joint pains, and fatigue. Sometimes the quick onset of the illness is so sudden that people can tell you exactly when they got ill! Other symptoms can include a dry cough. Flu symptoms are typically more severe than a cold. Symptoms can last a few days and sometimes up to a week or more. Even with the infection gone, some patients report being more tired than usual or having weakness for weeks.

In some cases, the flu can cause permanent disability or death due to complications from other illnesses that develop. These include pneumonia, muscle problems, or brain problems like encephalitis or meningitis.

The good news is that most healthy adults recover without the need for any prescription medicine. People at risk of complications from the flu include pregnant women, adults age 65 and older, and those with chronic medical problems like lung problems, heart disease, liver disease, or morbid obesity (body mass index 40 or higher).

Yes. Influenza is a diagnosis based on a patient's symptoms. We use standard medical guidelines and the latest clinical evidence to determine whether you have a case of flu that could be helped with antiviral medicine. We can also determine if you'd benefit from antiviral medicine if you've had recent close contact with someone with flu. Testing for flu with a blood or respiratory sample isn't routinely recommended for people under 65, and it's generally reserved for hospitalized patients, when identifying a cause of death, and in outbreak prevention.

For otherwise healthy adults, there's often no need to take antiviral medicine for the flu because most will recover on their own. Taking antiviral medicine, however, can shorten the illness by a day.

For individuals who have risk factors that increase the risk of complications from the flu, antiviral medicine is most helpful when given within 48 hours of developing flu symptoms.

There are two types of antiviral medicine. One is a capsule and taken by mouth (oseltamivir or "Tamiflu") and the other is inhaled by mouth (zanamivir or "Relenza"). Our selection of antiviral medicine is tailored to your medical history, your symptoms, and the latest medical guidelines and evidence.

The risks of taking antiviral medicine include side effects or allergic reaction to the antiviral medicine. This is true with any prescription medicine. In addition, the antiviral medicine may not stop the flu from worsening, at which point you'd need to see a doctor in person for further evaluation.

It's possible that if we misdiagnose you with the flu and give you an antiviral medicine, your symptoms won't improve because they were caused by something else. In this case, you'll have taken an antiviral medicine unnecessarily and delayed your care. If you don't see improvement in your symptoms after 3 days or if your symptoms continue to worsen, you should see a doctor in person.

If the flu is left untreated, particularly if you're at higher risk of complications of influenza, you may increase your risk of pneumonia, muscle problems, or brain problems like encephalitis or meningitis, which can result in permanent disability or death.

You can try over-the-counter (OTC) medicines to help with symptom relief. These include acetaminophen (Tylenol) and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines like ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or naproxen (Naprosyn), both of which can be helpful for temporary relief of pain and fever. If you have liver problems, don't take acetaminophen. If you have high blood pressure or kidney problems, don't take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines such as ibuprofen or naproxen.

Your symptoms may not disappear right away, but typically antiviral medications can shorten the total time you have the flu by a day.

Please don't share your prescription medicine. The antiviral medicine we give you is meant to be enough only for one person. If your family members are at risk for getting the flu but don't currently have symptoms, the dose and duration of the treatment is likely different from yours.

There are a few simple things you can do:

  • If you smoke, quit smoking
  • Get the flu vaccine (if not vaccinated already)
  • Wash your hands regularly
  • Keep your hands away from your face, nose, and mouth
  • Avoid people who are ill with either a viral infection or the flu

At this time we don't provide prescriptions for individuals under age 18. If you see a doctor in person, you may be able to get antiviral medicine depending on your child's symptoms and medical history.

The medicine oseltamivir (Tamiflu) is felt to be generally safe during pregnancy. Having the flu when pregnant does increase the risk of complications to both you and your fetus. Though there were some adverse events in animal studies, there has been no increased risk observed in the newborn or mother when this medicine was used during pregnancy. The medicine is recommended if you're pregnant or within the first 2 weeks of delivering a baby. Taking the medicine for treatment of flu outweighs the risk of not taking the medicine.

No, you may not be immune from the flu. The flu vaccine protects about 50 to 80 percent of patients from the flu, though this level of protection varies from year to year. The vaccine takes at least 2 weeks before it becomes effective. If you're exposed to the flu, the vaccine can make your symptoms milder and your recovery time shorter.

Most people take the antiviral medicines with no problems. The 2 antiviral medicines we prescribe have different side effects. Make sure to review the Treatment Plan we send you and read the full leaflet that comes with your specific antiviral medicine for a full list of side effects and warnings. The most common side effects of oseltamivir (Tamiflu) include mild abdominal pain, nausea, and vomiting (2 to 15% of users). The most common side effects of the zanamivir (Relenza) include headache (1%), nasal symptoms (2%), and cough (2%).

Both oseltamivir (Tamiflu) or zanamivir (Relenza) are thought to be safe for babies who are breastfed. Although small levels of oseltamivir have been found in breast milk, the levels are too low to be a problem for a breastfeeding infant. It's unknown if zanamivir is found in breast milk. The risk of the baby possibly getting a small dose of antiviral medicine may be outweighed by the benefit of having the breastfeeding mother treated for flu rather than giving the flu to the baby, who is at high risk of complications from the flu.

We agree with national guidelines that anyone 6 months and older should get vaccinated against the flu every year. Vaccines save lives.

Experts don't know why, but it appears people in this group are at higher risk for complications. It may be due to social or economic issues, crowding, or difficulty in accessing health care.

Hair Loss

Hair loss is common and causes stress and worry. We can prescribe an effective treatment if you’re a man with ‘male pattern baldness’.

Finasteride is an FDA-approved pill that’s effective at slowing and even reversing ‘male pattern baldness’, the most common type of hair loss in men. Finasteride is available under the brand ‘Propecia’ and also as a more affordable generic. As part of our health questions we’ll ask you whether you have a preference between the branded Propecia or the generic version.

If it’s safe to do so, we’ll send your prescription to your local pharmacy so you can be confident you’re getting genuine medicines from a pharmacy you trust.

Our visit fee is and our service is confidential.

It’s very easy to use our service.

To complete a visit you need to answer our simple health questions and take photographs of your hair loss from different angles. Then you’ll select a local pharmacy where you want us to send your prescription, and finally you’ll enter your credit card information to pay the visit fee.

Our doctors will review all your information to make sure it’s safe to give you a prescription and that you’ve got the type of hair loss that we can treat with finasteride. We’ll then write a prescription and send it to the pharmacy.

If you’re in any of you’ll need to have a short video visit with one of our doctors immediately after you complete our health questions and upload your photos.

We can only prescribe finasteride if we’re confident your hair loss is consistent with ‘male pattern baldness’.

If you’re a woman wanting treatment for hair loss, we’re unable to prescribe finasteride to you and you should visit a doctor in person instead for a detailed discussion of your treatment options.

'Androgenetic alopecia' is the technical term for male pattern baldness. It's by far the most common form of hair loss in men. It's particularly common in Caucasian men. Male pattern baldness affects 30% of Caucasian men by age 30, 50% by age 50, and 80% by age 70.

Male pattern baldness is caused by changes that result from your genes and hormones.

Yes. We’ll ask you health questions and ask you to take photos of your hair loss from different angles. Our doctors review all your information to determine whether you have hair loss that it’s safe to treat with finasteride.

Given the online nature of our service our doctors can't do a ‘hair-pull test'. A hair-pull tests helps make a diagnosis of male pattern baldness but isn't required.

Finasteride is FDA-approved to treat male pattern baldness.

Finasteride isn't guaranteed to work in everyone, but it's generally effective at reversing or stopping hair loss for as long as you take it. In a clinical trial, 2/3 of patients experience a reversal of hair loss when taking finasteride, and finasteride generally stops hair loss in the other 1/3 of patients.

You may need to take finasteride for several months for it to work, and it can take up to 12 months before you get the full effect of the medicine. You should take the medicine every day, because as soon as you stop taking it, you may continue to lose hair or even lose the hair you gained while on treatment.

Finasteride blocks DHT, a derivative of testosterone that shortens the growth phase of hair follicles. Finasteride only works for as long as you take it.

$90 per month is the typical cash cost of branded Propecia if you have to pay for the medicine yourself. The exact cost will vary depending upon your health plan and the pharmacy you select.

Generic finasteride is more affordable. A month’s supply can range from under $10 at Sam’s Club to $70 elsewhere.

Finasteride is generally safe but it can also cause serious side effects, including but not limited to allergic reaction, breast cancer, sexual dysfunction, and high-grade prostate cancer. If we give you a prescription for finasteride, it's particularly important that you read all the information we provide before you start taking the medicine as this helps you make an informed decision about whether you want to accept our treatment plan.

1.5% of patients may experience problems in sexual function including but not limited to erectile dysfunction, decreased libido, ejaculatory disorders and reduced sperm count. Your risk increases the older you are. Most patients find that their problems with sexual function resolve when they stop taking the medicine, but a minority of patients find that their problems with sexual function persist for an average of 40 months after stopping the medicine.

Women of childbearing age shouldn't take finasteride or touch broken tablets, as finasteride can cause birth defects.

Read the package insert that comes with the medicine for a full list of side effects and warnings.

No. We can only give you a prescription if we’re confident that you have ‘male pattern baldness’. Other health conditions can cause hair loss, but finasteride won’t help you.

We can’t treat hair loss in women. If you’re a woman wanting treatment for hair loss, please visit a doctor in person for a detailed discussion of your treatment options.

No. We can only prescribe finasteride if you’ve got visible signs of hair loss, including thinning or a receding hairline and you’ve experienced hair loss for at least 6 months. That said, your hair loss doesn’t need to be drastic before you start using our service.

Yes. There's an alternative treatment called minoxidil (brand name ‘Rogaine') that's available over the counter without a prescription. Minoxidil is not as effective as finasteride. Minoxidil has a lower risk of serious side effects relative to finasteride because it's a topical medicine that you apply to your scalp. There's no strong evidence to show that a combination of finasteride and minoxidil is any better than finasteride alone.

Many men choose not to take any treatment for hair loss and instead let their hair loss run it's natural course.

You should speak with a hair transplant specialist to determine if you'd be a good candidate for surgical treatment. Patients opting for surgery are often put on hair loss medicines both before and after surgery.

Stop Smoking

Our doctors can give you a prescription for a 3-month supply of prescription-only medicines that can help you stop smoking. Our doctors can write prescriptions for either Chantix or Zyban.

The medicines can double the chance that you stop smoking relative to not taking any medicines. The medicines we prescribe are more effective than over-the-counter alternatives.

It’s really simple. Choose between the two medicines we offer, then answer our health questions. If you don’t have insurance that covers your medicines, it’s important to know that Zyban costs 1/10th of Chantix.

After you’ve answered our health questions we’ll ask you to select a pharmacy in your area. We’ll send the prescription to the pharmacy you select.

If you’re in a state that requires our doctors to conduct a live video visit, you’ll have a short live video visit immediately after you select a pharmacy.

Once you’ve submitted all your information our doctors will review all your information and decide whether it’s appropriate to prescribe the medicine you’ve requested. If we give you a prescription, we’ll send it to the pharmacy you selected electronically.

You pay the pharmacy for your medicines when you go to pick them up.

$25 straight. Even if you have insurance, that could be less than the cost of your co-pay.

You need to be 18 or over and in one of the states where we operate.

Certain health conditions make it inappropriate for us to give you a stop smoking medicine, but we’ll ask you about your medical when you do a visit.

Chantix and Zyban work by blocking some of the places nicotine cravings happen in your brain.

Chantix is slightly more effective but it’s 10 times more expensive than Zyban if you have to pay for it yourself.

All other things being equal, if cost is a big driver, then Zyban is probably a better choice.

Chantix and Zyban are generally safe, but come with a higher risk of significant side effects than over-the-counter stop smoking medicines.

Chantix and Zyban can rarely cause serious side effects including increased risk of suicidal thought and behavior, severe allergic reaction, disability, and death. Each specific medicine will have a unique set of side effects.

The risk of continuing to smoke probably outweighs the risk of taking Chantix or Zyban.

There sure are, but they’re not as effective as the medicines we prescribe.

Some people stop smoking without any medicines. Other people use over-the-counter nicotine patches, gum or lozenges.

You start taking Chantix or Zyban a week before the date when you want to stop smoking.

Nicotine cravings will be worst in the first week after you stop, and by then the medicine should be helping. Cravings typically last from 2-4 weeks.

Sinus Infection

A sinus infection is an inflammation of the sinus cavities (spaces or air pockets) of the face. These sinus cavities are typically filled with air, but when inflamed can fill with mucus and produce facial pain and pressure. Common causes of sinus infection include infections from viruses, bacteria, and rarely fungus. Most sinus infections are caused by viruses.

Sinus infections that are caused by a virus will get better by themselves. It's not appropriate for us to prescribe antibiotics if we think a virus is the cause of your sinus infection, because antibiotics are only effective against bacteria.

The symptoms of a sinus infection can be similar to symptoms caused by allergies. In general, sinus infections can cause muscle aches, joint pains and fever, whereas allergies don't cause these symptoms. Allergies can cause runny nose, clear nasal discharge, itchy eyes or nose, and sometimes clear eye discharge. It's not appropriate for us to prescribe antibiotics if we think allergies are the cause of your symptoms.

We know having a sinus infection is a miserable experience. Using the latest most up to date medical guidelines and evidence and with your help, based on your medical history and symptoms, we can determine whether your acute sinus symptoms (colored nasal mucus / snot) may or may not benefit from antibiotics. Though the vast majority of acute sinus infection are due to viruses and don’t need any antibiotics, there are situations where antibiotics can be helpful.

Yes. Sinus infection is a diagnosis based on a patient's symptoms. For patients who are otherwise healthy and have no medical problems, there's no testing or imaging needed. We use the latest most up to date medical guidelines and evidence to determine whether you have a sinus infection that can be treated with antibiotics.

Great question. Both allergies and a sinus infection can look similar. In general, because sinus infection is often due to an infection, either a virus or bacteria, other symptoms like muscle aches, joint pains, and fever occur. Allergies don’t typically have these symptoms. Allergy symptoms usually are runny nose, clear nasal discharge, itchy eyes or nose, and/or clear eye discharge.

The majority of acute sinus infection cases are due to viral infections or colds. We can help you determine if your sinus infection might be a bacterial infection that could be helped with antibiotics. However, if you’ve had mild symptoms for less than a week, it may be too early to tell the difference between a bacterial or viral cause, and we recommend a wait and see approach. You may elect to use over-the-counter (OTC) remedies during this time, provided that you always read the leaflet that comes with the medicine for a full list of side effects and warnings.

For uncomplicated sinus infection, which is viral, you don’t need any treatment because the infection will get better by itself. In the case of bacterial sinus infection, antibiotics can be helpful. You should be feeling better within 3 days. Even if you’re feeling better, finish all of your antibiotic medicine.

The risks of taking antibiotic treatment include side effects or allergic reaction to the antibiotic. This is true anytime you get treatment with an antibiotic. In addition, sometimes the antibiotic we select won’t work as well as we expected which may mean additional treatment with another antibiotic or the need to see a doctor in person.

Finally, it’s possible that with an antibiotic, you may see no improvement because your symptoms are due to a virus rather than bacteria, so you may have taken an antibiotic unnecessarily. Also it’s very unlikely that your symptoms are due to a sinonasal cancer which can occur in 1 in 100,000 patients, which obviously antibiotics cannot treat. Certainly there are other causes as well, so if you’re not seeing improvement in 3 days, seek medical care.

If you have a bacterial infection, left untreated, it's possible it can spread to other parts of the head. Rare complications of bacterial sinus infection can include infection to the eye or brain, causing blindness, meningitis, and rarely death. Complications from acute bacterial sinus infections can occur in 1 in 1000 cases and often involves the eye.

You can try over-the-counter medicines to help with symptom relief. These include the following:

  • Acetaminophen and/or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (ibuprofen or Naprosyn) can be helpful for temporary relief of pain and fever.

  • Saline rinse / irrigation – there is some evidence that rinsing the sinuses with saline rinse irrigation can help loosen up the mucous and provide temporary relief.

  • Over the counter nasal steroid sprays - can be helpful if you have a history of seasonal allergies (hay fever)

  • Antihistamines are not recommended as they can dry up the nasal lining causing more pain and discomfort. Antihistamines may be helpful if you have seasonal allergies / hay fever.

  • Decongestants either tablets / pills (pseudoephedrine – behind the counter) or nasal spray (oxymetazoline) have been found helpful for relief of nasal congestion or stuffiness. However, there is no research that show that they help with sinus congestion. Side effects of these tablets / pills include heart palpitations, high blood pressure, and anxiety, so if you have a history of high blood pressure, heart disease, or anxiety, check with your doctor or pharmacist if these are appropriate for you. If you choose to use the nasal decongestant spray, DON’T use it for more than 3 consecutive days as this will cause your nasal congestion to be worse.

This service provides antibiotic treatment for patients who have uncomplicated acute sinus infections from bacteria. If you find you’re getting infections more than often than you would like, we would recommend that you seek in person medical care to ensure that you don’t have any medical problems or nasal issues that make you more at risk for repeated sinus infections.

Our service is designed around the latest most up to date medical guidelines on the treatment of acute uncomplicated bacterial sinus infection. If it’s appropriate to prescribe you the same antibiotic based on our protocol, we will do so. If not, we can suggest an alternative treatment that we believe will be just as effective.

When taking antibiotics, expect to see improvement over the next 3 to 5 days. If you see no improvement after 3 to 5 days or see worsening symptoms despite antibiotic treatment after 2 to 3 days, there are other antibiotics that can be tried. If this happens, come back to us or see a healthcare professional in person.

Yes, if your sinus infection is caused by viruses or bacteria you’re potentially contagious. Stay home to prevent spreading to others. Cover your mouth or nose when coughing or sneezing. Wear a face mask.

Encourage those in close contact to you to wash their hands regularly and to keep their hands away from their eyes, nose, and mouth. Viruses and bacteria enter the body through these sites.

Quit smoking if you smoke. To decrease your chance of catching a cold, wash your hands regularly. Keep your hands away from your eyes, nose, and mouth.

STD Testing

Yes. Through Lemonaid you can get tested for chlamydia (kla-MIH-dee-ah) and gonorrhea (gon-o-RHEE-ah). They’re the two most common sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) caused by bacteria.

Chlamydia and gonorrhea are infections you can get in your vagina, penis, anus or throat. The urine test we use looks for chlamydia and gonorrhea in your penis or vagina.

About three million Americans get chlamydia every year. Gonorrhea is also common but not as common as chlamydia.

Getting tested is the only way to know if you have chlamydia and/or gonorrhea. Most people don’t have symptoms and won’t know they have them.

If you have chlamydia or gonorrhea and don’t get treated they can increase the chances of you getting other STDs, including HIV. You can also pass them on to your sex partners. If you’re a woman they can cause infertility because they can damage your fallopian tubes.

is the cost to get checked for chlamydia and gonorrhea through Lemonaid. The cost breaks down into a Lemonaid doctor-visit fee and that we pay to the lab.

In all states other than New York you pay us for the labs. In New York, state law requires that you have to pay the lab directly, so if you order a test in New York we’ll refund the lab fees you pay to us.

We’ve negotiated great cash prices for our lab tests in order to keep costs down for all our patients, especially those without insurance. The prices we’ve negotiated mean that patients with insurance still have to pay cash for their labs.

You have to go to Quest Diagnostics to have an STD test through Lemonaid. They have thousands of testing centers around the US. You can find our nearest testing center here.

Most of our patients will get their STD test results within three business days. We’ll send you a private and secure message through your Lemonaid account when your test results are ready.

We use Quest Diagnostics just like everyone else does, so it’s unlikely that you’ll get your test results faster elsewhere.

Precisely how long your results take depends upon which testing center you go to, what time of day you go to the lab, what day of the week etc..

Chlamydia and gonorrhea are easy to treat with antibiotics. To treat chlamydia you need to take a course of oral antibiotics (pills). To treat gonorrhea you need to have an antibiotic injection/shot..

We can give you a prescription for chlamydia treatment after an online assessment if the test we order finds chlamydia. We can only give you a prescription if you ordered your test through Lemonaid.

We’re not able to give you a prescription to treat gonorrhea. You’ll need to see a doctor in person get an antibiotic injection/shot. Your local Planned Parenthood clinic can also provide the antibiotic injection.

The treatment we prescribe for chlamydia is effective so long as you take the medicine as instructed and finish the course. You’ll also need to make sure any sex partners from the last two months get treated. It’s easy for sex partners to give chlamydia and gonorrhea back to you if they don’t get treated themselves.

Chlamydia is super common. Three million Americans get chlamydia every year. Gonorrhea is also common but not as common as chlamydia.

Most people who have chlamydia or gonorrhea won’t have symptoms.

If you have symptoms, they may include: pain or burning when you urinate (pee); fluid from the vagina, penis or anus that smells bad or looks strange; bleeding from the vagina during or after sex; pain or tingling in the penis; pain in the lower belly or back, especially when having sex (in women); pain and/or swelling in the testicles (in men); or fever.

If you have symptoms we recommend you go see a medical professional in person if you can. That way you can have a physical exam and discuss the most appropriate tests.

Yes, we use Quest Diagnostics to run all of our STD tests. They’re the largest lab in the US. The urine test we order is exactly the same test that all doctors order.

The test should find chlamydia and gonorrhea in your penis or vagina unless you got them in the last two weeks. If you got them in the last two weeks the test may not find them even though you have them.

The test does not look for chlamydia or gonorrhea in your throat or anus.

Yes, treatment is effective. To treat chlamydia you need to take antibiotic pills. To treat gonorrhea you need an antibiotic injection/shot..

We prescribe low cost antibiotics that cost under $20 with free coupons that you get find online.

Yes, Lemonaid is private and confidential just like all healthcare services.

Because we comply with state regulations like all healthcare providers, we generally have to notify your county health department if your test finds chlamydia or gonorrhea.

Depending upon when you last got checked and the specifics of who you have sex with, you should think about getting checked for other STDs, including HIV.

Depending upon your personal situation you should also consider getting checked for chlamydia and gonorrhea in your throat and anus. The urine test we offer does not check for chlamydia and gonorrhea in your throat or anus.

UTI

Most UTIs are bladder infections. Women tend to get more bladder infections than men.

A bladder infection isn't serious if you treat it straight away. But a bladder infection becomes serious if it spreads to your kidneys. A kidney infection can cause permanent damage and is serious.

In women, the symptoms that are typical of a UTI can sometimes be confused with symptoms caused by other vaginal infections.

Yes. There's lots of research to show that we can make the right diagnosis in the vast majority of cases even without running a test on your urine. What's important is that we ask you the right questions and you answer our questions accurately.

Specifically, we'll ask you health questions to confirm that you have 3 common symptoms of a UTI. We'll then ask you other questions to make sure you don't have a different cause of these symptoms.

If we think something other than a simple UTI is the cause of your symptoms, we'll tell you that we can't give you a prescription and we'll refund your visit fee.

Even though we know we can make the right diagnosis in the vast majority of cases, it’s important that you understand the risks of using our service when we can’t run a test on your urine. If we could run tests on your urine then our diagnosis would be even more accurate.

If we diagnose you with a UTI and you don’t actually have a UTI, then we’ll be giving you an antibiotic that you don’t need. Taking antibiotics you don’t need can cause harm from the possible side effects of the medicine and increases the chances that you’ll build resistance to that antibiotic. If something other than a UTI is the cause of your symptoms then by diagnosing you with and treating you for a UTI we haven’t resolved or identified the underlying problem.

If you actually have a UTI and we incorrectly decide that you don’t have a UTI, the risk is that we’ll delay your care. Whenever we tell someone that we can’t help, we’ll always give you clear instructions to go see a medical professional in person.

We'll prescribe one of 3 antibiotics to treat you if we're confident that you have a simple UTI. The 3 antibiotics we use are: nitrofurantoin (Macrobid), trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (Bactrim), and ciprofloxacin (Cipro).

The exact medicine we'll give you depends on everything we learn about you. We even vary the medicine we prescribe based on exactly where you live. That's because our doctors use data on antibiotic resistance in your local area to decide the very best treatment.

We don't allow our patients to request a specific medicine because we always follow nationally-recognized guidelines and local antibiotic resistance reports to select the antibiotic that's best for you.

The course of treatment lasts from 3-7 days, depending upon the medicine we give you.

It's important that you complete the entire course of antibiotics we prescribe you. Not taking the full course of treatment is not recommended because it makes it easier for your UTI to return and you may become resistant to the antibiotic we give you.

What you’ll pay at the pharmacy depends upon whether you have insurance and your specific health plan. But in general, the cash cost for the medicines we prescribe is $4-60 for a full course.

If you miss a dose, you should take the medicine you missed as soon as possible. But if it’s already close to the time to take your next dose, wait until the time of your next dose and take a single dose, then stick to your regular dosing schedule.

If you still have symptoms 3 days after taking the medicine we give you or if you develop new symptoms such as fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, pain in your back or sides, or bloody urine, you should seek medical attention in person.

We can’t treat women under 18, women who are post-menopausal and men. If this applies to you, please see a doctor for an in-person examination and a face-to-face discussion.

If you’re under 18 you’re more likely to have a complicated UTI. We can only treat simple UTIs.

If you’re post-menopausal, changes associated with aging can cause symptoms that are easily confused with a UTI. This makes it difficult for us to make an accurate diagnosis.

We can’t treat men. Men are more likely to have a complicated UTI. We can only treat uncomplicated UTIs.

Other health conditions and symptoms also make it essential that you see a doctor face-to-face rather than use our online service. We tell you about these as part of our health questions so that you get the right level of care as quickly as possible.

A1C Blood Sugar Test

Lemonaid can help you understand your risk of diabetes and prediabetes without you having to go to a doctor in person. If you already know you have diabetes or prediabetes we can help you understand how well you’re controlling your condition.

Our doctors order A1C blood sugar tests from Quest Diagnostics - the largest lab in the US.

Unlike other online testing services our doctors actually help you understand and interpret your result in the context of your health history.

If you’ve got symptoms of diabetes, a family history of diabetes, you’re 40 and over or you’re overweight or obese, or you have one of the other ‘risk factors’ you should consider testing your blood sugar levels to see if you have diabetes or prediabetes. 7 million Americans have diabetes but don’t know it.

If you have diabetes or prediabetes your might want to see how well your blood sugar is controlled.

If you don’t fall into one of the groups above and you don’t show any symptoms of diabetes, you’re welcome to take our A1C test but we want you to know that there isn’t sufficient data to show if the benefits of you taking the test outweigh the potential harm. Potential harms can include ‘false-positive’ results (a result that says a condition exists when, in fact, it doesn’t and this can result in you doing more tests), unnecessary testing with no change in your health, and overtreatment (treating an abnormal blood sugar level that may return to normal on its own and would have never caused health problems on its own).

You may want to be checked for diabetes if you have one or more of the following risk factors.

  • You’re 40 years or older
  • a family history of diabetes in a first degree relative
  • a body mass index of 30 or more (obesity)
  • ethnic background of African American, Hispanic, Native American, Asian American, and Pacific Islanders
  • diabetes during pregnancy (gestational diabetes)
  • polycystic ovarian syndrome
  • high blood pressure
  • history of vascular disease
  • high cholesterol (especially if triglycerides >250)
  • prediabetes or high fasting blood sugar

The A1C test is a blood test that looks for your ‘HgbA1c’ or ‘hemoglobin A1c’. HgbA1c is a measure of your average blood sugar over the past 3 months and is measured as a percentage. Another name for the A1C test is the HbA1c test.

The A1C test shows your average blood sugar levels over the last 3 months. By comparison, most home tests tell you your blood sugar level at a single point in time.

The results of your A1C test can tell you if your blood sugar is in the diabetes or prediabetes range.

Our service costs . This includes our doctor visit fee and the lab fees of that we pass on to Quest Diagnostics. We don’t make any money on the lab fees.

Answer our health questions. We’ll ask about risk factors, family members with diabetes etc. Your answers will help our doctors interpret your A1C result.

Pay our doctor visit and lab fees.

On the Quest Diagnostics website find your nearest Quest Diagnostics location that offers online appointments. You don’t need to make an appointment, but if a location offers online appointments then we know they’re connected to our online lab ordering system. You need to go to a Quest location so that they can draw your blood.

You don’t need to stop eating (fast) before doing the test.

When we get your A1C test results we’ll send you a confidential message through your Lemonaid account. Our message will help you interpret your A1C results. You can download a PDF document of your A1C test results from the MyQuest website.

Quest Diagnostics is the largest laboratory company in the US and has thousands of locations around the country. It’s important to select a location that allows you to book an appointment online. You don’t need to actually book an appointment, but if the location lets you book online appointments, then we know they’re connected to the online ordering system that we use to order your A1C test.

You should have your test result 3-5 business days after going to Quest Diagnostics. Exactly how long your result takes depends upon when in the week you go to the lab and which lab location you go to.

If the test shows you have higher than normal blood sugar levels then this is a sign you could have diabetes or prediabetes and you need to see a doctor in person for a more detailed evaluation.

Like most doctors, our doctors wouldn’t diagnose you with diabetes after a single test, and other health conditions can raise your blood sugar levels, not just diabetes and prediabetes.

Yes. We work with Quest Diagnostics, the largest laboratory company in the US, and their test is very accurate. We use the same test and the same laboratory that most doctor’s offices use.

But like all blood tests there’s a small chance of error. This means that if the test says you have a high A1C. there’s a small chance that you don’t. This chance exists whether you get the test through Lemonaid or from another doctor because we all use the same test. If the test is wrong it can cause you stress and can lead to more tests and more doctor visits.

Your A1C test result can be falsely high or low if you’re anemic or you have kidney disease.

Diabetes and prediabetes are very common. Approximately 30 million Americans have diabetes. 7 million Americans have diabetes and don’t know it. 1.5 million Americans are diagnosed with diabetes every year.

5% of diabetes have type 1 diabetes. In type 1 diabetes your body doesn’t produce insulin. 95% of diabetes have type 2 diabetes. If you have type 2 diabetes your body doesn’t use insulin properly.

The symptoms below are typical if you have diabetes. However, some people with type 2 diabetes may not notice any symptoms. People with prediabetes may have no symptoms.

  • Urinating/peeing often
  • Feeling very thirsty
  • Feeling very hungry - even though you are eating
  • Extremely tired
  • Blurry vision
  • Cuts/bruises that heal slowly
  • Weight loss - even though you’re eating more (type 1)
  • Tingling, pain, or numbness in your hands/feet (type 2)

Cut your risk of developing diabetes in half by signing up for the National Diabetes Prevention Program recommended by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). They have programs available in your state in person and also online.

https://nccd.cdc.gov/DDT_DPRP/Programs.aspx

Blood Type Test

Lemonaid is a convenient way to find out your blood type.

With Lemonaid you don’t have to take the time to go to a doctor’s office. Instead, our doctors order the lab test for you online and you can go straight to your nearest Quest Diagnostics, the largest laboratory company in the US.

Quest Diagnostics will take your blood and run the test. The test results will come back to our doctors and we’ll give you your results through your secure Lemonaid account.

The test will tell you if you’re blood group A, B, AB, or O and if you’re Rh negative or positive.

Yes. The blood type test use order is exactly the same test that other doctors order.

You pay us a total of . This includes our doctor visit fee and the lab fees of that we pass on to Quest Diagnostics. We don’t make any money on the lab fees.

You don’t need to pay anything extra when you get to the lab.

You can’t use your insurance to pay for the labs we order.

No. You don’t need to fast before you go to Quest Diagnostics.

Create a Lemonaid account then select our blood type testing service. Pay using a debit or credit card.

Within 2 hours during business hours our doctors will contact you to say that we’ve ordered your labs.

You need to wait for the message from our doctors before you go to Quest Diagnostics. If you go to the lab before our doctors place your lab order the lab won’t be able to run your tests.

On the Quest Diagnostics website find your nearest Quest Diagnostics location that offers online appointments.

You don’t need to make an appointment, but if a location offers online appointments then we know they’re connected to our online lab ordering system.

You need to go to a Quest location so that they can draw your blood.

When we get your blood type test results we’ll send you a confidential message through your Lemonaid account. You can download a PDF document of your blood type test results from the MyQuest website.

You should have your test result 3-5 business days after going to Quest Diagnostics. Exactly how long your result takes depends upon when in the week you go to the lab and which lab location you go to.

About Lemonaid

Our doctors are Dr Vijay Bhat, Dr Davis Liu and Dr Matthew Walvick.

Our nurse practitioners are Mark Abbott APRN, Trisha Dmytruk APRN, Kimberly Hildebrant APRN, Lindsay Mitchell APRN, Sara Seeley APRN, Emily Youngblood APRN.

We always provide the name of the medical professional who looked after you.

If you want to check their credentials you can contact your local state medical board or nursing board.

You can find the contact details for all state medical boards on this website www.fsmb.org/contact-a-state-medical-board

You can find the contact details for all state nursing boards on this website www.ncsbn.org/contact-bon.htm

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