Custom Dosing, a local compounding pharmacy chain, recently opened its third location in Michigan City.
Founded by the second-generation pharmacist Jeff Barton in 1999, the chain has locations in Crown Point, Valparaiso and now at 4319 S. Franklin St. Barton decided to open his third pharmacy by the new Franciscan Health Michigan City hospital, where he gets many referrals from doctors.
Custom Dosing makes customized prescription drugs to order, such as for patients who are sensitive to dyes or who would react badly to fillers like lactose, sucrose, calcium carbonate, glucose, plant cellulose, or calcium carbonate that are common in mass-produced pharmaceutical products.
The pharmacy will for instance make a prescription drug as a suspension if the patient would have trouble swallowing a pill.
"We make a lot of stuff for pediatric patients, hospices and veterinarians," Barton said. "The most common are hormone replacement drugs like estrogen or testosterone for menopause or andropause. Veterinarians might use us for thyroid medication for cats or for dogs with seizure issues."
Custom Dosing's new Michigan City pharmacy is just five blocks north of the newly constructed hospital because most of its business comes from physician referrals. But it also gets some walk-in traffic from sales of high-end vitamins and CBDMD premium CMB products.
"We chose this brand after testing all the lines for potency," he said. "This one tested better. We also needed to make sure there was no THC because we serve a lot of union guys who are working and can't afford even a small amount of THC that would result in a false positive on a drug test."
The pharmacy sells CBD tinctures, creams, roll-ons, and capsules, with tinctures being the best-selling item.
"It's used by people ranging from 13 years old to 80 years old," Barton said. "It's a broad demographic. Studies have shown the most results for pain, inflammation, anxiety and sleep. It's effective in those four areas and it's not going to hurt you. There are no addiction problems, side effects or overdoses."
Barton said he believed it made the most sense to buy CBD from a pharmacist where one could get a free consultation and make sure there are no interactions with other drugs one is taking.
"If you want a CBD product that's tested in-house or bioavailable vitamins and minerals that will be best absorbed by your body, come see us," he said.
The chain previously expanded to Valparaiso in 2011 and now has a presence in each of Northwest Indiana's three most populous counties: Lake, Porter and LaPorte counties. As for future growth, Barton said, "three is plenty."
"Our long-term goal is to add more patients and more practitioners," he said.
The Michigan City pharmacy is open from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
For more information, call (219) 221-6958, visit https://customdosing.com or find the business on Facebook.