Prescription Drug Information: Ibuprofen (Page 3 of 5)

Aseptic Meningitis

Aseptic meningitis with fever and coma has been observed on rare occasions in patients on ibuprofen therapy. Although it is probably more likely to occur in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus and related connective tissue diseases, it has been reported in patients who do not have an underlying chronic disease. If signs or symptoms of meningitis develop in a patient on ibuprofen tablets, the possibility of its being related to ibuprofen tablets should be considered.

Information for Patients

Patients should be informed of the following information before initiating therapy with an NSAID and periodically during the course of ongoing therapy. Patients should also be encouraged to read the NSAID Medication Guide that accompanies each prescription dispensed.

  • Cardiovascular Thrombotic Events: Advise patients to be alert for the symptoms of cardiovascular thrombotic events, including chest pain, shortness of breath, weakness, or slurring of speech, and to report any of these symptoms to their health care provider immediately [see WARNINGS].
  • Ibuprofen tablets, like other NSAIDs, can cause GI discomfort and, rarely, serious GI side effects, such as ulcers and bleeding, which may result in hospitalization and even death. Although serious GI tract ulcerations and bleeding can occur without warning symptoms, patients should be alert for the signs and symptoms of ulcerations and bleeding, and should ask for medical advice when observing any indicative signs or symptoms including epigastric pain, dyspepsia, melena, and hematemesis. Patients should be apprised of the importance of this follow-up [see WARNINGS, Gastrointestinal Effects — Risk of Ulceration, Bleeding and Perforation].
  • Serious Skin Reactions, including DRESS: Advise patients to stop taking ibuprofen tablets immediately if they develop any type of reaction or fever and to contact their healthcare provider as soon as possible [see WARNINGS].
  • Heart Failure and Edema: Advise patients to be alert for the symptoms of congestive heart failure including shortness of breath, unexplained weight gain, or edema and to contact their healthcare provider if such symptoms occur [see WARNINGS].
  • Patients should be informed of the warning signs and symptoms of hepatotoxicity (e.g., nausea, fatigue, lethargy, pruritus, jaundice, right upper quadrant tenderness and “flu-like” symptoms). If these occur, patients should be instructed to stop therapy and seek immediate medical therapy.
  • Patients should be informed of the signs of an anaphylactoid reaction (e.g. difficulty breathing, swelling of the face or throat). If these occur, patients should be instructed to seek immediate emergency help [see WARNINGS].
  • In late pregnancy, as with other NSAIDs, ibuprofen tablets should be avoided because it may cause premature closure of the ductus arteriosus.

Fetal Toxicity

Inform pregnant women to avoid use of “ibuprofen” and other NSAIDs starting at 30 weeks gestation because of the risk of the premature closing of the fetal ductus arteriosus. If treatment with “ibuprofen” is needed for a pregnant woman between about 20 to 30 weeks gestation, advise her that she may need to be monitored for oligohydramnios, if treatment continues for longer than 48 hours [see WARNINGS; Fetal Toxicity, PRECAUTIONS; Pregnancy].

Laboratory Tests

Because serious GI tract ulcerations and bleeding can occur without warning symptoms, physicians should monitor for signs or symptoms of GI bleeding. Patients on long-term treatment with NSAIDs should have their CBC and chemistry profile checked periodically. If clinical signs and symptoms consistent with liver or renal disease develop, systemic manifestations occur (e.g., eosinophilia, reaction etc.), or abnormal liver tests persist or worsen, ibuprofen tablets should be discontinued.

Drug Interactions

ACE-inhibitors

Reports suggest that NSAIDs may diminish the antihypertensive effect of ACE-inhibitors. This interaction should be given consideration in patients taking NSAIDs concomitantly with ACE-inhibitors.

Aspirin

Pharmacodynamic studies have demonstrated interference with the antiplatelet activity of aspirin when ibuprofen 400 mg, given three times daily, is administered with enteric-coated low-dose aspirin. The interaction exists even following a once-daily regimen of ibuprofen 400 mg, particularly when ibuprofen is dosed prior to aspirin. The interaction is alleviated if immediate-release low-dose aspirin is dosed at least 2 hours prior to a once daily regimen of ibuprofen; however, this finding cannot be extended to enteric-coated low-dose aspirin [see Clinical Pharmacology/Pharmacodynamics].

Because there may be an increased risk of cardiovascular events due to the interference of ibuprofen with the antiplatelet effect of aspirin, for patients taking low-dose aspirin for cardio protection who require analgesics, consider use of an NSAID that does not interfere with the antiplatelet effect of aspirin, or non-NSAID analgesics, where appropriate.

When ibuprofen tablets are administered with aspirin, its protein binding is reduced, although the clearance of free ibuprofen tablets is not altered. The clinical significance of this interaction is not known; however, as with other NSAIDs, concomitant administration of ibuprofen and aspirin is not generally recommended because of the potential for increased adverse effects.

Diuretics

Clinical studies, as well as post marketing observations, have shown that ibuprofen tablets can reduce the natriuretic effect-of furosemide and thiazides in some patients. This response has been attributed to inhibition of renal prostaglandin synthesis. During concomitant therapy with NSAIDs, the patient should be observed closely for signs of renal failure [see PRECAUTIONS, Renal Effects], as well as to assure diuretic efficacy.

Lithium

Ibuprofen produced an elevation of plasma lithium levels and a reduction in renal lithium clearance in a study of eleven normal volunteers. The mean minimum lithium concentration increased 15% and the renal clearance of lithium was decreased by 19% during this period of concomitant drug administration.

This effect has been attributed to inhibition of renal prostaglandin synthesis by ibuprofen. Thus, when ibuprofen and lithium are administered concurrently, subjects should be observed carefully for signs of lithium toxicity. (Read circulars for lithium preparation before use of such concurrent therapy.)

Methotrexate

NSAIDs have been reported to competitively inhibit methotrexate accumulation in rabbit kidney slices. This may indicate that they could enhance the toxicity of methotrexate. Caution should be used when NSAIDs are administered concomitantly with methotrexate.

Warfarin-type anticoagulants

Several short-term controlled studies failed to show that ibuprofen tablets significantly affected prothrombin times or a variety of other clotting factors when administered to individuals on coumarin-type anticoagulants. However, because bleeding has been reported when ibuprofen tablets and other NSAIDs have been administered to patients on coumarin-type anticoagulants, the physician should be cautious when administering ibuprofen tablets to patients on anticoagulants. The effects of warfarin and NSAIDs on GI bleeding are synergistic, such that the users of both drugs together have a risk of serious GI bleeding higher than users of either drug alone.

H-2 Antagonists

In studies with human volunteers, co-administration of cimetidine or ranitidine with ibuprofen had no substantive effect on ibuprofen serum concentrations.

Pregnancy

Risk Summary

Use of NSAIDs, including “Ibuprofen”, can cause premature closure of the fetal ductus arteriosus and fetal renal dysfunction leading to oligohydramnios and, in some cases, neonatal renal impairment. Because of these risks, limit dose and duration of “Ibuprofen” use between about 20 and 30 weeks of gestation, and avoid “Ibuprofen” use at about 30 weeks of gestation and later in pregnancy [see WARNINGS; Fetal Toxicity].

Premature Closure of Fetal Ductus Arteriosus

Use of NSAIDs, including “Ibuprofen”, at about 30 weeks gestation or later in pregnancy increases the risk of premature closure of the fetal ductus arteriosus.

Oligohydramnios/Neonatal Renal Impairment

Use of NSAIDs at about 20 weeks gestation or later in pregnancy has been associated with cases of fetal renal dysfunction leading to oligohydramnios, and in some cases, neonatal renal impairment.

Data from observational studies regarding other potential embryofetal risks of NSAID use in women in the first or second trimesters of pregnancy are inconclusive. Reproductive studies conducted in rats and rabbits have not demonstrated evidence of developmental abnormalities. However, animal reproduction studies are not always predictive of human response. Based on animal data, prostaglandins have been shown to have an important role in endometrial vascular permeability, blastocyst implantation, and decidualization. In animal studies, administration of prostaglandin synthesis inhibitors such as ibuprofen, resulted in increased pre- and post-implantation loss. Prostaglandins also have been shown to have an important role in fetal kidney development. In published animal studies, prostaglandin synthesis inhibitors have been reported to impair kidney development when administered at clinically relevant doses.”

The estimated background risk of major birth defects and miscarriage for the indicated population(s) is unknown. All pregnancies have a background risk of birth defect, loss, or other adverse outcomes. In the U.S. general population, the estimated background risk of major birth defects and miscarriage in clinically recognized pregnancies is 2 to 4% and 15 to 20%, respectively.

Clinical Considerations

Fetal/Neonatal Adverse Reactions Premature Closure of Fetal Ductus Arteriosus: Avoid use of NSAIDs in women at about 30 weeks gestation and later in pregnancy, because NSAIDs, including “ibuprofen”, can cause premature closure of the fetal ductus arteriosus [see WARNINGS; Fetal Toxicity].

Oligohydramnios/Neonatal Renal Impairment

If an NSAID is necessary at about 20 weeks gestation or later in pregnancy, limit the use to the lowest effective dose and shortest duration possible. If “Ibuprofen” treatment extends beyond 48 hours, consider monitoring with ultrasound for oligohydramnios. If oligohydramnios occurs, discontinue “ibuprofen” and follow up according to clinical practice [see WARNINGS; Fetal Toxicity].

Data

Human Data

There are no adequate, well-controlled studies in pregnant women. Ibuprofen tablets should be used in pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.

Premature Closure of Fetal Ductus Arteriosus:

Published literature reports that the use of NSAIDs at about 30 weeks of gestation and later in pregnancy may cause premature closure of the fetal ductus arteriosus.

Oligohydramnios/Neonatal Renal Impairment:

Published studies and postmarketing reports describe maternal NSAID use at about 20 weeks gestation or later in pregnancy associated with fetal renal dysfunction leading to oligohydramnios, and in some cases, neonatal renal impairment. These adverse outcomes are seen, on average, after days to weeks of treatment, although oligohydramnios has been infrequently reported as soon as 48 hours after NSAID initiation. In many cases, but not all, the decrease in amniotic fluid was transient and reversible with cessation of the drug. There have been a limited number of case reports of maternal NSAID use and neonatal renal dysfunction without oligohydramnios, some of which were irreversible. Some cases of neonatal renal dysfunction required treatment with invasive procedures, such as exchange transfusion or dialysis.

Methodological limitations of these postmarketing studies and reports include lack of a control group; limited information regarding dose, duration, and timing of drug exposure; and concomitant use of other medications. These limitations preclude establishing a reliable estimate of the risk of adverse fetal and neonatal outcomes with maternal NSAID use.

Because the published safety data on neonatal outcomes involved mostly preterm infants, the generalizability of certain reported risks to the full-term infant exposed to NSAIDs through maternal use is uncertain.

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