What is ibuprofen?

Ibuprofen is in a group of drugs called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Ibuprofen works by reducing hormones that cause inflammation and pain in the body.

Ibuprofen is used to reduce fever and treat pain or inflammation caused by many conditions such as headache, toothache, back pain, arthritis, menstrual cramps, or minor injury.

Ibuprofen may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Precautions

Taking an NSAID can increase your risk of life-threatening heart or circulation problems, including heart attack or stroke. This risk will increase the longer you use an NSAID. Do not use this medicine just before or after having heart bypass surgery (also called coronary artery bypass graft, or CABG).

NSAIDs can also increase your risk of serious effects on the stomach or intestines, including bleeding or perforation (forming of a hole). These conditions can be fatal and gastrointestinal effects can occur without warning at any time while you are taking an NSAID. Older adults may have an even greater risk of these serious gastrointestinal side effects.

Do not use this medication if you are allergic to ibuprofen, aspirin or other NSAIDs.

Before taking ibuprofen, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have:

  • a history of heart attack, stroke, or blood clot;
  • heart disease, congestive heart failure, high blood pressure;
  • a history of stomach ulcers or bleeding;
  • asthma;
  • polyps in your nose; or
  • liver or kidney disease,
  • systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE);
  • a bleeding or blood clotting disorder; or
  • if you smoke.

If you have any of these conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely take ibuprofen.

FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether ibuprofen is harmful to an unborn baby. However, taking ibuprofen during the last 3 months of pregnancy may result in birth defects. Do not take ibuprofen during pregnancy unless your doctor has told you to.

It is not known whether ibuprofen passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Do not give this medicine to a child without the advice of a doctor.

Avoid taking ibuprofen if you are taking aspirin to prevent stroke or heart attack. Ibuprofen can make aspirin less effective in protecting your heart and blood vessels. If you must use both medications, take the ibuprofen at least 8 hours before or 30 minutes after you take the aspirin (non-enteric coated form).

Do not use any other over-the-counter cold, allergy, or pain medication without first asking your doctor or pharmacist. Many medicines available over the counter contain aspirin or other medicines similar to ibuprofen (such as ketoprofen or naproxen). If you take certain products together you may accidentally take too much of this type of medication. Read the label of any other medicine you are using to see if it contains aspirin, ibuprofen, ketoprofen, or naproxen.

Do not drink alcohol while taking ibuprofen. Alcohol can increase the risk of stomach bleeding caused by ibuprofen.

Avoid exposure to sunlight or artificial UV rays (sunlamps or tanning beds). Ibuprofen can make your skin more sensitive to sunlight and sunburn may result. Use a sunscreen (minimum SPF 15) and wear protective clothing if you must be out in the sun.

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Instructions

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine. Overdose symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, drowsiness, black or bloody stools, coughing up blood, shallow breathing, fainting, or coma.

Since ibuprofen is sometimes taken as needed, you may not be on a dosing schedule. If you are taking the medication regularly, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and wait until your next regularly scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

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Side Effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop taking ibuprofen and seek medical attention or call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • chest pain, weakness, shortness of breath, slurred speech, problems with vision or balance;
  • black, bloody, or tarry stools;
  • coughing up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds;
  • swelling or rapid weight gain;
  • urinating less than usual or not at all;
  • nausea, stomach pain, low fever, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);
  • fever, sore throat, and headache with a severe blistering, peeling, and red skin rash;
  • bruising, severe tingling, numbness, pain, muscle weakness; or
  • fever, headache, neck stiffness, chills, increased sensitivity to light, purple spots on the skin, and/or seizure (convulsions).

Less serious side effects may include:

  • upset stomach, mild heartburn, diarrhea, constipation;
  • bloating, gas;
  • dizziness, headache, nervousness;
  • skin itching or rash;
  • blurred vision; or
  • ringing in your ears.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

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Interactions

Tell your doctor if you are taking an antidepressant such as citalopram (Celexa), duloxetine (Cymbalta), escitalopram (Lexapro), fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem, Symbyax), fluvoxamine (Luvox), paroxetine (Paxil), sertraline (Zoloft), or venlafaxine (Effexor). Taking any of these drugs with ibuprofen may cause you to bruise or bleed easily.

Before taking ibuprofen, tell your doctor if you are taking any of the following drugs:

  • aspirin or other NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) such as diclofenac (Voltaren), etodolac (Lodine), flurbiprofen (Ansaid), indomethacin (Indocin), ketoprofen (Orudis), ketorolac (Toradol), mefenamic acid (Ponstel), meloxicam (Mobic), nabumetone (Relafen), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn), piroxicam (Feldene), and others;
  • an ACE inhibitor such as benazepril (Lotensin), captopril (Capoten), fosinopril (Monopril), enalapril (Vasotec), lisinopril (Prinivil, Zestril), moexipril (Univasc), perindopril (Aceon), quinapril (Accupril), ramipril (Altace), or trandolapril (Mavik);
  • lithium (Eskalith, Lithobid);
  • diuretics (water pills) such as furosemide (Lasix);
  • methotrexate (Rheumatrex, Trexall);
  • steroids (prednisone and others); or
  • a blood thinner such as warfarin (Coumadin).

This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with ibuprofen. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

Other Names

Advil, Advil Childrens, Advil Junior Strength, Advil Liquigel, Advil Migraine, Advil Pediatric, Childrens Ibuprofen Berry, Genpril, Haltran, IBU-200, Ibuprofen PMR, Midol IB, Midol Maximum Strength Cramp Formula, Motrin, Motrin Childrens, Motrin IB, Motrin Infant Drops, Motrin Junior Strength, Motrin Migraine Pain, NeoProfen, Nuprin, Pediacare Fever, Q-Profen, Rufen, Saleto-200, Saleto-400, Saleto-600, Saleto-800, ibuprofen, Ibu, Ibu-4, Ibu-6, Ibu-8, Ibu-Tab, Menadol, and Motrin Pediatric

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Disclaimer

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2004 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version 2.05. Revision date 8/23/04

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