GENERIC NAME: naproxen
BRAND NAME: Anaprox, Naprelan, Naprosyn, Aleve, Mediproxen
DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Naproxen belongs to a class of drugs called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Other members of this class include ibuprofen (Motrin), indomethacin (Indocin), nabumetone (Relafen) and several others. These drugs are used for the management of mild to moderate pain, fever, and inflammation. They work by reducing the levels of prostaglandins, chemicals that are responsible for pain, fever, and inflammation. Naproxen blocks the enzyme that makes prostaglandins (cyclooxygenase), resulting in lower concentrations of prostaglandins. As a consequence, inflammation, pain and fever are reduced. Naproxen was approved by the FDA in December 1991.
PRESCRIBED FOR: Naproxen is used for the treatment of
- mild to moderate pain,
- rheumatoid arthritis,
- ankylosing spondylitis, and
- painful menstrual periods (dysmenorrheal).
SIDE EFFECTS: The most common side effects from naproxen are:
- ringing in the ears,
- drowsiness, abdominal pain, nausea,
- fluid retention, and
- shortness of breath.
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