Naproxen is used to relieve pain and swelling (inflammation) from various conditions. It is used to treat headaches, muscle aches, backaches, tendonitis, dental pain, and menstrual cramps. It also reduces pain, swelling, and joint stiffness caused by arthritis, bursitis, and gout attacks. Reducing these symptoms helps you do more of your normal daily activities. Naproxen is also used to reduce fever and relieve minor aches and pain due to the common cold or flu. This medication is known as a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). Do not give nonprescription products containing naproxen to a child younger than 12 years of age unless directed to do so by the doctor.
If you are prescribed this drug on a regular schedule (not just "as needed") and you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
How To Use
Read the product instructions before using naproxen. A Medication Guide is also available from your pharmacist. If you have any questions regarding the information, consult your doctor or pharmacist. Take this medication by mouth with a full glass of water (8 ounces or 240 milliliters) unless your doctor directs you otherwise. Do not lie down for at least 10 minutes after taking this drug. To prevent stomach upset, take this medication with food, milk, or an antacid. Follow the directions on the package label. To minimize your risk of stomach bleeding and other side effects, use the lowest effective dose for the shortest possible length of time. Do not exceed the recommended dosage or take it for more than 10 days unless otherwise directed. Do not take more than 2 tablets in any 8-12 hour period and no more than 3 tablets in a 24-hour period unless directed by your doctor. The elderly should not take more than 1 tablet every 12 hours unless directed by the doctor. For ongoing conditions such as arthritis, continue taking it as directed by your doctor. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor or pharmacist. If you are treating yourself or giving this medication to a child over 12 years old for undiagnosed fever, consult the doctor immediately if the fever worsens or lasts more than 3 days. In certain conditions (e.g., arthritis), it may take up to 2 weeks of regular use before the full benefits of this drug take effect. If you are taking this drug on an "as needed" basis (not on a regular schedule), remember that pain medications work best if they are used as the first signs of pain occur. If you wait until the pain has significantly worsened, the medicine may not work as well. If you use this medication for migraine headache, and the pain is not relieved or worsens after the first dose, tell your doctor immediately. Inform your doctor if your condition persists or worsens.
If you are taking this medication under your doctor's direction, your healthcare professionals (e.g., doctor or pharmacist) may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for it. Before you start taking this medication for self-treatment, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you are also using any prescription or nonprescription medications. Do not stop or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with your doctor or pharmacist first. This drug should not be used with the following medications because very serious interactions may occur: high doses of aspirin and related drugs (salicylates), cidofovir, other NSAIDs (e.g., ketorolac). If you are currently using any of these medications listed above, tell your doctor or pharmacist before starting naproxen. Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription/herbal products you may use, especially of: anti-platelet drugs (e.g., cilostazol, clopidogrel), oral bisphosphonates (e.g., alendronate), "blood thinners" (e.g., enoxaparin, heparin, warfarin), corticosteroids (e.g., prednisone), cyclosporine, desmopressin, digoxin, high blood pressure drugs (including ACE inhibitors such as captopril, angiotensin receptor blockers such as losartan, and beta-blockers such as metoprolol), lithium, methotrexate, pemetrexed, probenecid, SSRI antidepressants (e.g., fluoxetine, sertraline), "water pills" (diuretics such as furosemide, hydrochlorothiazide, triamterene). Check all prescription and nonprescription medicine labels carefully for other pain/fever drugs (NSAIDs such as aspirin, celecoxib, ibuprofen). These drugs are similar to this medication, so taking one of these drugs while also taking this medication may increase your risk of side effects. However, if your doctor has prescribed low doses of aspirin to prevent heart attack or stroke (usually at dosages of 81-325 milligrams a day), you should continue to take the aspirin. Daily use of NSAIDs (e.g., ibuprofen) may decrease aspirin's ability to prevent heart attack/stroke. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details and to discuss other possible treatments (e.g., acetaminophen) for your pain/fever. This medication can affect the results of certain lab tests. Make sure laboratory personnel and your doctors know you use this drug. This document does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, before using this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the products you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist.
Do not share this medication with others. If you use this medication regularly or at high doses, laboratory and/or medical tests (e.g., complete blood count, liver and kidney function tests) may be performed periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details. Non-drug treatment for arthritis that is approved by your doctor (e.g., weight loss if needed, strengthening and conditioning exercises) may help improve your flexibility, range of motion, and joint function. Consult your doctor for specific instructions.
If overdose is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call the US national poison hotline at 1-800-222-1222. Canadian residents should call their local poison control center directly. Symptoms of overdose may include: severe stomach pain, vomit that looks like coffee grounds, extreme drowsiness, slow or shallow breathing, seizures.
Before taking naproxen, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to aspirin or other NSAIDs (e.g., ibuprofen, celecoxib); or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details. This medication should not be used if you have certain medical conditions. Before using this medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have: aspirin-sensitive asthma (a history of worsening breathing with runny/stuffy nose after taking aspirin or other NSAIDs), severe kidney disease, recent heart bypass surgery (CABG). Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: kidney disease, liver disease, poorly controlled diabetes, stomach/intestine/esophagus problems (e.g., bleeding, ulcers), heart disease (e.g., congestive heart failure, history of heart attack), high blood pressure, stroke, swelling (edema, fluid retention), a severe loss of body water (dehydration), blood disorders (e.g., anemia), bleeding or clotting problems, asthma, growths in the nose (nasal polyps). This medication contains salt (sodium). Tell your doctor if you are on a salt-restricted diet. Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist that you are using this medication. This drug may make you dizzy or drowsy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. This medicine may cause stomach bleeding. Daily use of alcohol and tobacco may increase your risk for stomach bleeding, especially when combined with this medicine. Limit alcohol and stop smoking. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more information. This medication may make you more sensitive to the sun. Avoid prolonged sun exposure, tanning booths, and sunlamps. Use a sunscreen and wear protective clothing when outdoors. The elderly may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially stomach/intestinal bleeding and kidney effects. This medication should be used only when clearly needed during the first 6 months of pregnancy. It is not recommended for use during the last 3 months of pregnancy due to possible harm to the unborn baby and interference with normal labor/delivery. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor. This drug passes into breast milk. While there have been no reports of harm to nursing infants, consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
Store at room temperature between 59-86 degrees F (15-30 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medicines away from children and pets. Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.
See also Warning section. Upset stomach, nausea, heartburn, diarrhea, constipation, headache, tiredness, drowsiness, and dizziness may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly. If your doctor has directed you to use this medication, remember that he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects. Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: stomach pain, difficult/painful swallowing, swelling of the hands/feet, sudden/unexplained weight gain, vision changes, hearing changes (e.g., ringing in the ears), mental/mood changes (e.g., depression), fast/pounding heartbeat, persistent/severe headache, fainting. Tell your doctor immediately if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: change in the amount of urine, easy bruising/bleeding, signs of infection (e.g., fever, persistent sore throat), unexplained stiff neck. This drug may rarely cause serious (possibly fatal) liver disease. If you notice any of the following rare but very serious side effects, stop taking naproxen and tell your doctor immediately: yellowing eyes/skin, dark urine, unusual/extreme tiredness, severe stomach/abdominal pain, persistent nausea/vomiting. A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction may include: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing. This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist. In the US - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
This drug may infrequently cause serious (rarely fatal) bleeding from the stomach or intestines. This side effect can occur without warning at any time during treatment with naproxen. The elderly are at increased risk for serious stomach/intestinal bleeding. Drugs related to naproxen have rarely caused blood clots to form, resulting in serious (possibly fatal) heart attacks and strokes. This medication might also rarely cause similar problems. The risk of these serious side effects may increase if you have heart disease and with longer use of this medication. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about the benefits and risks of treatment, as well as other possible medication choices. Stop taking naproxen and seek immediate medical attention if you notice any of the following rare but very serious side effects: black stools, persistent stomach/abdominal pain, vomit that looks like coffee grounds, chest pain, shortness of breath, weakness on one side of the body, sudden vision changes, slurred speech. This medication should not be used right before or after heart bypass surgery.
This is a summary and does NOT have all possible information about this product. This information does not assure that this product is safe, effective, or appropriate for you. This information is not individual medical advice and does not substitute for the advice of your health care professional. Always ask your health care professional for complete information about this product and your specific health needs.
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