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when we say side effect(s) of a drug, do we consider it single or plural? Options
frasha4ever
Posted: Thursday, August 25, 2011 7:26:47 PM
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Joined: 4/30/2009
Posts: 72
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Location: United Arab Emirates
like the side effects of steroids is or the side effects of steroid are?

and can side effect be used without an "S" for plural, i mean can i say it if there is only one side effect?

thanks in advance =)
Klaas V
Posted: Thursday, August 25, 2011 8:42:18 PM

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Joined: 7/12/2010
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Technically I'd say you can though not being a doctor, but kind of a experienced user of prescription drugs there are remarkably few with just one side effect reading faithfully the instructions that legally come with them here in Europe. If not you got illegal drugs or there was a mistake at the factory or the pharmacy. In both cases go back to the supplier. In the first case inform the police as well...
Angel-Baby
Posted: Thursday, August 25, 2011 10:32:04 PM
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Joined: 5/11/2009
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Location: Minnesota
Working in the pharmacology field and having proofread numerous patient inserts, I can tell you that it is very rare to find any drug with only one side effect (unless you are noting one specific effect). That being said, I think you are better off using the plural when documenting them.

Example:
The side effects of steroid usage may include the following symptoms...
One side effect of steroids is...

You could also say:
Common adverse reactions to steroid use are...
pedro
Posted: Friday, August 26, 2011 4:21:18 AM
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Joined: 5/21/2009
Posts: 13,057
Neurons: 63,022
Anyone who has suffered a hangover will recognise the plurality of a drug's effects. If one (negative) predominates then you could say 'A major adverse effect is..'
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