Years of Healing

Arcade Lane makes medicine into a happy story

Thursday, August 21, 2014 | 12:01 am

Geyanne Besnelian has accomplished a lot in the two years since she opened her Arcade Lane Compounding Pharmacy.

“We’ve accomplished a lot of happy customers, a lot of happy cats and dogs and horses!,” she told Pasadena Now recently. The pharmacy specializes not just in filling prescriptions, but also in developing new kinds of ways to deliver that medicine to best fulfill a patient’s needs.

As Besnelian recalled, “We had one patient who had undergone back surgery, and we recommended a scar cream, which she told her doctor about. The doctor wrote the prescription and she came in and got it. She took a before picture before she started using it, and then a picture a month later. And when she went back to the doctor a month later, the doctor shocked that the scar had improved so much!

It was a doctor’s prescription, but a pharmacist’s suggestion.

“Then we had a little baby that had a burn on her little arm and we gave her the cream—it’s for scarring, and it helps with the burn. The grandmother came back the next day and said, ‘Oh, my god. That thing works like a miracle. Within a day, the redness went down and it wasn’t painful.’ And she said the baby loves having it applied because it has a silky consistency. Those have been just two success stories.”

Besnelian has also had several patients who have had back and neck issues. One patient had gotten to the point where she went to a surgeon who was recommending neck surgery.

But another suggested a pain cream first because of the patient’s age, and the feeling that maybe surgery was simply unnecessary.

“The doctor wrote a prescription, we filled it and she said the pain was just gone and the surgery was postponed for that time because the cream helped the pain so much that she didn’t feel like she needed the surgery at that point,” recalled Besnelian.

Essentially, Arcade Lane customizes various creams for pain, and those creams then help avoid the systemic side effects of stomach pain or any other type of systemic drowsiness that might occur through ingesting a medicine.

Naturally, Besnelian is grateful to be in a position to help so many through her skill and expertise with developing customized prescriptions and medicines.

“We’ve been very lucky and blessed to have the opportunity to help so many people in town. And our patients, when they find us, they feel very lucky, so we’ve gotten a lot of good feedback saying, ‘Oh my god, I’m so happy you’re here.’ So we’ve been able to help a lot of people in Pasadena area. So that’s been a great blessing.”

And it’s not just for humans. Arcade Lane also works little miracles with medicines for pets.

“Pets are like little babies if you really think about it,” Says Besnelian. So the doses for them are very tiny, cats especially.

“When cats get older, they usually have a lot of thyroid issues,” she continued. “They are also very sensitive, and they know that you’re giving them medicine and they’ll just scratch. A lot of owners have ended up in the hospital because they got scratched when they were trying to give a medicine to a cat!

“So what we do is we make the medications in a type of solution, which is flavored.” She explained.

“And then again, some cats are very picky, they will want a certain flavor. We do a chicken flavor, and we also have a fish flavor. If they taste something bitter, then they’ll know it’s medicine. And next time, they won’t even open their mouth to the owners. That’s why we make it palatable. We put in anti-bittering, and we add different flavorings, depending on what that cat likes.”

Continuing the wizardry, Besnelian can also concoct a medicine in a cream form that’s applied in the ear tip of the cat.

“Cats don’t even know that there’s something coming. You just rub the ear,” she said.

Dogs are better at taking medicines, in either pill or capsule form, says Besnelian. But she can also make a chew medicine for dogs.

Horses require a different and “larger” approach, she explained.

“Horses obviously they’re very big, so for the owner to give them a tablet, you have to crush almost a whole bottle of tablets and then try to give that to them.”

In one case, a prescribed medicine was so bitter that the horse just wouldn’t take it. So Besnelian made it into an apple-flavored suspension formula. which the owner ended up injecting into the animal.

Kids and babies are another equally successful story. One mother went to three or four different pharmacies and could not find a medicine that the baby would take. They were all too bitter.

Besnelian to the rescue.

“We made a medicine with marshmallow flavor,” said Besnelian, “and after that, the baby was just loving it. She thought it was candy.”

“So that was another success story,” said Besnelian. “The mother loved it, she was like, ‘Oh my god, that is awesome,’ after she had tried four different pharmacies. She was really happy that she found us.”

Two years of love and happy customers, dogs, cats, horses and babies. How many other local businesses can say that?

Arcade Lane Pharmacy is at 700 East Colorado Boulevard, Pasadena. . .


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