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Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)

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What are NSAIDs?

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) reduce inflammation, which helps to ease joint pain and stiffness.

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Why are NSAIDs prescribed?

NSAIDs ease pain and stiffness by reducing inflammation. They can be used for many different types of arthritis, including osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Read more >

How do I take NSAIDs and how long do they take to work?

NSAIDs are available as tablets, liquids, suppositories or creams and gels. The dosage will depend on the type of drug. They usually work within a few hours, although it can take 2 or more weeks for you to feel the full effect of prescribed NSAIDs. Read more >

What are the possible side-effects of NSAIDs?

Side-effects of NSAIDs can include heartburn, indigestion, stomach ulcers and skin rashes. They can damage the lining of your stomach, especially if you take them in higher doses or for a long time. There’s also some concern about small increases in the risk of heart attacks and strokes when NSAIDs are used for a long time. Read more >

What are the risks of taking NSAIDs?

You can have vaccinations and drink alcohol while on NSAIDs, but they're not generally recommended when trying for a baby or during pregnancy. You shouldn’t take some NSAIDs while you’re breastfeeding. Read more >

What else should I know about NSAIDs?

Your healthcare team will discuss other treatment options with you and may take your blood pressure. Some drugs interact with NSAIDs, so you should discuss any new medications (including complementary medicines) with your doctor before starting them, and you should always tell any other doctor treating you that you’re on NSAIDs. Read more >
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