- What is flurbiprofen, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- What are the uses for flurbiprofen?
- What are the side effects of flurbiprofen?
- What is the dosage for flurbiprofen?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with flurbiprofen?
- Is flurbiprofen safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about flurbiprofen?
What is flurbiprofen, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- Flurbiprofen is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) effective in treating fever, pain, and inflammation in the body. It is similar to ibuprofen (Motrin or Advil), naproxen (Naprosyn), and others. As a group, NSAIDs are non-narcotic relievers of mild to moderate pain of many causes, including injury, menstrual cramps, arthritis, and other musculoskeletal conditions. They work by reducing the levels of prostaglandins, chemicals that are responsible for pain, fever, and inflammation. Flurbiprofen blocks the enzyme that makes prostaglandins (cyclooxygenase), resulting in lower concentrations of prostaglandins. As a consequence, inflammation, pain and fever are reduced.
- The FDA approved flurbiprofen in October 1988.
What brand names are available for flurbiprofen?
Is flurbiprofen available as a generic drug?
Do I need a prescription for flurbiprofen?
What are the side effects of flurbiprofen?
Most patients benefit from flurbiprofen and other NSAIDs with few side effects. However, serious side effects can occur, and generally tend to be dose related. Therefore, it is often desirable to use the lowest effective dose to minimize side effects. The most common side effects of flurbiprofen involve the gastrointestinal system. These are:
- Abdominal burning
- Water retention
- Sensitivity to sunlight
- Serious gastrointestinal bleeding
- Liver toxicity
Other important side effects include:
Flurbiprofen should be avoided by patients with a history of asthma attacks, hives, or other allergic reactions to aspirin or other NSAIDs. Rare but severe allergic reactions have been reported in such individuals.
It also should be avoided by patients with peptic ulcer disease or poor kidney function, since this medication can aggravate both conditions.
What is the dosage for flurbiprofen?
- The recommended dose is 50-100 mg 2 to 4 times daily.
- The maximum daily dose is 300 mg.
- Flurbiprofen should be taken with food to reduce stomach upset.
Which drugs or supplements interact with flurbiprofen?
- Flurbiprofen is generally used with caution in patients taking blood thinning medications (anticoagulants), such as warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven), because of the increased risk of bleeding. Patients taking lithium (Lithobid, Eskalith) can develop toxic blood levels of lithium because flurbiprofen may inhibit the elimination of lithium from the body by the kidney.
- Side effects from methotrexate (Trexall, Rheumatrex) and cyclosporine also may be increased by flurbiprofen.
- Flurbiprofen may reduce the effectiveness of medications that are used for treating high blood pressure because it causes or worsens high blood pressure. NSAIDs may diminish the blood pressure-lowering effects of angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors. Combining NSAIDs with angiotensin receptor blockers (for example, valsartan [Diovan], losartan [Cozaar], irbesartan [Avapro]) or angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (for example, enalapril [Vasotec], captopril [Captoen]) in patients who are elderly, volume-depleted (including those on diuretic therapy), or with poor kidney function may result in reduced kidney function, including kidney failure. These effects usually are reversible.
- Persons who have more than three alcoholic beverages per day are at increased risk of developing stomach ulcers when taking flurbiprofen or other NSAIDs.
Is flurbiprofen safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
What else should I know about flurbiprofen?
What preparations of flurbiprofen are available?
Tablets: 50 and 100 mg
How should I keep flurbiprofen stored?
- Flurbiprofen should be stored at room temperature 20 C to 25 C (68 F to 77 F) in a sealed, moisture-free container.
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Related Disease Conditions
Acute injuries, medical conditions, and chronic use conditions are causes of knee pain. Symptoms and signs that accompany knee pain include redness, swelling, difficulty walking, and locking of the knee. To diagnose knee pain, a physician will perform a physical exam and also may order X-rays, arthrocentesis, blood tests, or a CT scan or MRI. Treatment of knee pain depends upon the cause of the pain.
Low Back Pain (Lumbar Spine Pain)
There are many causes of back pain. Pain in the low back can relate to the bony lumbar spine, discs between the vertebrae, ligaments around the spine and discs, spinal cord and nerves, muscles of the low back, internal organs of the pelvis and abdomen, and the skin covering the lumbar area.
Bursitis of the hip results when the fluid-filled sac (bursa) near the hip becomes inflamed due to localized soft tissue trauma or strain. Symptoms include stiffness and pain around the hip joint. If the hip bursa is not infected, hip bursitis can be treated with ice compresses, rest, and anti-inflammatory and pain medications.
Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease resulting in chronic inflammation of the joints, the tissue around the joints, as well as other organs in the body. Early RA signs and symptoms include anemia, both sides of the body affected (symmetric), depression, fatigue, fever, joint deformity, joint pain, joint redness, joint stiffness, joint swelling, joint tenderness, joint warmth, limping, loss of joint function, loss of joint range of motion, and polyarthritis.
Neck Pain (Cervical Pain)
Neck pain (cervical pain) may be caused by any number of disorders and diseases. Tenderness is another symptom of neck pain. Though treatment for neck pain really depends upon the cause, treatment typically may involve heat/ice application, traction, physical therapy, cortisone injection, topical anesthetic creams, and muscle relaxants.
Arthritis (Joint Inflammation)
Arthritis is inflammation of one or more joints. When joints are inflamed they can develop stiffness, warmth, swelling, redness and pain. There are over 100 types of arthritis, including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, psoriatic arthritis, lupus, gout, and pseudogout.
Osteoarthritis is a type of arthritis caused by inflammation, breakdown, and eventual loss of cartilage in the joints. Also known as degenerative arthritis, osteoarthritis can be caused by aging, heredity, and injury from trauma or disease.
Bursitis of the knee results when any of the three fluid-filled sacs (bursae) become inflamed due to injury or strain. Symptoms and signs include pain, swelling, warmth, tenderness, and redness. Treatment of knee bursitis depends on whether infection is involved. If the knee bursa is not infected, knee bursitis may be treated with ice compresses, rest, and anti-inflammatory and pain medications.
Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs and Ulcers
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are prescribed medications for the treatment of inflammatory conditions. Examples of NSAIDs include aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, and more. One common side effect of NSAIDs is peptic ulcer (ulcers of the esophagus, stomach, or duodenum). Side effects, drug interactions, warnings and precautions, and patient safety information should be reviewed prior to taking NSAIDs.
Shoulder bursitis is inflammation of the shoulder bursa. Bursitis may be caused by injury, infection, or a rheumatic condition. Symptoms include pain, swelling, tenderness, and pain with movement of the shoulder joint. Treatment may involve ice compresses, rest, and anti-inflammatory medications and depends on whether there is an infection.
Elbow pain is most often the result of tendinitis, which can affect the inner or outer elbow. Treatment includes ice, rest, and medication for inflammation. Inflammation, redness, warmth, swelling, tenderness, and decreased range of motion are other symptoms associated with elbow pain. Treatment for elbow pain depends upon the nature of the patient's underlying disease or condition.
Calcific bursitis is the calcification of the bursa caused by chronic inflammation of the bursa. Calcific bursitis most commonly occurs in the shoulder. Calcific bursitis treatment includes medication for inflammation, ice, immobilization, cortisone injections, and occasionally surgical removal of the inflamed bursa.
What Is the Safest Anti-Inflammatory to Take?
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDs are some of the most commonly used medicines available. Experts say that taking NSAIDs for a short time at the lowest effective dose is generally safe.
Treatment & Diagnosis
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Medications & Supplements
- Nonsteroidal Antiinflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)
- tramadol (Ultram)
- ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, Nuprin)
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- celecoxib (Celebrex)
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- indomethacin, Indocin, Indocin-SR (Discontinued Brand in U.S.)
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- diflunisal (Dolobid)
- fenoprofen (Nalfon)
- valdecoxib, Bextra
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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
FDA Prescribing Information