About diclofenac and misoprostol
|Type of medicine||Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID).|
|Used for||Rheumatoid arthritis
|Also called||Arthrotec® 50
This is a combined medicine containing diclofenac and misoprostol. Diclofenac is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) and is used to relieve pain and inflammation in rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Misoprostol helps to protect the stomach against irritation and ulcers which can be caused by taking diclofenac over a long period.
Diclofenac works by blocking the action of a substance in the body called cyclo-oxygenase (COX) which is involved in the production of various chemicals in the body, including prostaglandins. Prostaglandins are produced in response to conditions such as arthritis, and they are responsible for causing pain, swelling and inflammation.
By blocking the action of COX, diclofenac stops the production of these prostaglandins and this results in less pain, swelling and inflammation.
Before taking diclofenac and misoprostol
Before taking diclofenac and misoprostol make sure your doctor or pharmacist knows:
- If you are pregnant, trying for a baby or breast-feeding.
- If you have ever had stomach problems such as stomach ulcers.
- If you have liver or kidney problems.
- If you suffer with allergies or asthma.
- if you have ever had blood clotting problems.
- If you have a heart condition or any disease of the blood vessels.
- if you have low or high blood pressure.
- If you suffer from porphyria (a rare blood disorder).
- If you have ever had an allergic or unusual reaction after taking this medicine, any other NSAID (such as aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, indometacin) or any other medicine.
- If you are taking other medicines, including those available to buy without a prescription, herbal or complementary medicines.
How to take diclofenac and misoprostol
- Before beginning treatment, read the manufacturer's printed information leaflet.
- Take diclofenac and misoprostol exactly as directed by your doctor.
- Take these tablets with or immediately after food. Swallow them whole, not chewed or crushed.
- Try to take these tablets at the same times each day to avoid missing any doses.
- If you forget to take a dose, take one as soon as you remember unless it is nearly time for your next dose in which case skip the missed dose. Do not take two doses at the same time to make up.
Getting the most from your treatment
- If you are a woman who has not yet been through the menopause, it is important that you speak to your doctor or pharmacist about effective methods of contraception. You must not become pregnant while you are taking these tablets.
- If you are having any treatment like an operation or dental treatment, tell the person carrying out the treatment that you are taking these tablets.
- Keep your regular doctor's appointment so your progress can be monitored.
- If you buy any medicines, check with a pharmacist that they are safe to take with your other medicines.
Can diclofenac and misoprostol cause problems?
Along with their useful effects, all medicines can cause unwanted side-effects although not everyone experiences them. These usually improve as your body adjusts to the new medicine, but speak with your doctor or pharmacist if any of the following side-effects continue or become troublesome.
|Common side-effects - these affect less than 1 in 10 people who take this medicine||What can I do if I experience this|
|Feeling or being sick, indigestion||Eat little and often. Stick to simple foods|
|Diarrhoea||Make sure you take these tablets with or after food to reduce this. Drink plenty of water to replace lost fluids. Avoid antacids that contain magnesium|
|Dizziness||Make sure you are unaffected before driving, operating machinery or doing any other jobs which could be dangerous if you were to become dizzy|
|Headache, difficulty sleeping||If troublesome, speak with your doctor|
|Vaginal bleeding and bleeding between periods||Speak with your doctor or pharmacist|
Important: if you experience any sign of bleeding in the stomach or intestine, such as blood in vomit or black stools, speak with your doctor immediately or go to your local accident and emergency department without delay.
Important: if you experience any shortness of breath, skin rash or swelling of the mouth or face, speak with your doctor immediately or go to your local accident and emergency department without delay.
If you experience any other symptoms which you think may be due to this medicine, speak with your doctor or pharmacist.
How to store diclofenac and misoprostol
- Keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children.
- Store in a cool, dry place, away from direct heat and light.
Important information about all medicines
Further reading & references
- British National Formulary; 59th Edition (March 2010) British Medical Association and Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, London.
- Manufacturer's PIL, Arthrotec® 50 Tablets; Manufacturer's PIL, Arthrotec® 50 Tablets, Pharmacia Limited, electronic Medicines Compendium. Dated September 2009, accessed March 2010.
- Manufacturer's PIL, Arthrotec® 75 Tablets; Manufacturer's PIL, Arthrotec® 75 Tablets, Pharmacia Limited, electronic Medicines Compendium. Dated September 2009, accessed March 2010.
|Original Author: Helen Allen||Current Version: Helen Allen|
|Last Checked: 21/10/2010||Document ID: 3502 Version: 22||© EMIS|
Disclaimer: This article is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. EMIS has used all reasonable care in compiling the information but make no warranty as to its accuracy. Consult a doctor or other health care professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions. For details see our conditions.