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The information provided here is meant to give you a general idea about each of the medications listed below. Only the most general side effects are included. Ask your doctor if you need to take any special care. Use each of these medications only as advised by your doctor, and according to the instructions provided. If you have further questions about usage or side effects, contact your doctor.

Prescription Medications

Glucocorticoids

  • Prednisone
  • Prednisolone
  • Triamcinolone
  • Dexamethasone

Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)

  • Ibuprofen
  • Naproxen
  • Celecoxib
  • Meloxicam
  • Diclofenac
  • Sulindac
  • Piroxicam
  • Ketoprofen
  • Diflunisal
  • Nabumetone
  • Etodolac
  • Oxaprozin
  • Indomethacin
Over-the-Counter Medications

Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)

  • Aspirin
  • Ibuprofen
  • Naproxen

Acetaminophen

Prescription Medications
Glucocorticoids

Common names include:

  • Prednisone
  • Prednisolone
  • Dexamethasone
  • Triamcinolone

You may be given glucocorticoids (cortisone-like drugs) to reduce inflammation. Sometimes these are given by mouth for a short period of time. This helps you avoid the side effects of a lengthy treatment. These doses should not be used when the inflammation is fighting off an infection. More often, certain steroids are given by an injection into the affected area. This is done to try to avoid the whole-body side effects that occur more often with taking steroid medicines by mouth.

There are many complications associated with this class of drugs. Even repeated doses separated by long periods of time may cause major damage. But a few sessions of glucocorticoids should not cause serious problems in most people.

Possible side effects include:

Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)

Common names include:

  • Ibuprofen
  • Naproxen
  • Celecoxib
  • Meloxicam
  • Sulindac
  • Diclofenac
  • Piroxicam
  • Ketoprofen
  • Diflunisal
  • Nabumetone
  • Etodolac
  • Oxaprozin
  • Indomethacin

The standard nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can be as effective as cortisone. These drugs reduce inflammation by other pathways than the cortisone class of drugs. They are safer to use in the presence of infection. But they may have other harmful side effects.

Possible side effects include:

  • Stomach irritation, ulceration, and bleeding
  • Allergic reactions
  • Kidney damage
  • Possible increased risk of events such as heart attacks and strokes
Over-the-Counter Medications
Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)

Common names include:

  • Aspirin
  • Ibuprofen
  • Naproxen

Aspirin, which reduces inflammation, is really the first of the NSAIDs. There are minor differences among the available anti-inflammatory agents. These differences include dosing intervals, frequency of certain side effects, and other characteristics.

Possible side effects include:

  • Stomach irritation, ulceration, and bleeding
  • Allergic reactions
  • Kidney damage
  • Possible increased risk of events such as heart attacks and strokes
Acetaminophen

Acetaminophen can help relieve mild aches and pains.

Side effects such as allergic reactions can occur in some people. Symptoms can include:

  • Rash
  • Hives
  • Itching
  • Swelling of the face, throat, tongue, lips, eyes, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
  • Hoarseness
  • Difficulty breathing or swallowing
When to Contact Your Doctor

Contact your doctor if:

  • The desired effect is not achieved
  • An undesired effect appears
  • You develop stomach problems
Special Considerations

Whenever you are taking a prescription medication, take the following precautions:

  • Take your medication as directed. Do not change the amount or the schedule.
  • Do not stop taking them without talking to your doctor.
  • Do not share them.
  • Know what the results and side effects may be. Report them to your doctor.
  • Some drugs can be dangerous when mixed. Talk to a doctor or pharmacist if you are taking more than one drug. This includes over-the-counter medication and herb or dietary supplements.
  • Plan ahead for refills so you don’t run out.

References:

Acetaminophen. EBSCO Patient Education Reference Center website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/pointofcare . Accessed December 31, 2012.

Foot care. American Diabetes Association website. Available at: http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/complications/foot-complications/foot-care.html . Accessed December 28, 2012.

Foot care. National Institute on Aging website. Available at: http://www.nia.nih.gov/health/publication/foot-care . Updated April 18, 2012. Accessed December 28, 2012.

Foot care 101. American Podiatric Medical Association site. Available at: http://www.apma.org/files/FileDownloads/myFEETFootCare101.pdf . Accessed December 28, 2012.

Foot care basics: preventing and treating common foot conditions. Harvard Medical School website. Available at: http://www.health.harvard.edu/special_health_reports/Foot_Care_Basics . Accessed December 28, 2012.



Last reviewed November 2012 by Brian Randall, MD

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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