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How can I prevent side effects from NSAIDs?

Here are some ways you can lower your risk of developing side effects from nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs):
  • Take lower-risk NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen, at doses of less than 1,600 mg per day (4 doses of 400 mg per day), if possible.
  • Take enteric-coated aspirin, which is more expensive than simple aspirin but has a lower risk of causing side effects.
  • Take misoprostol (Cytotec), which has been shown to protect the stomach   lining when taken in addition to NSAIDs. But misoprostol has side effects of its own, including diarrhea, cramps, and gas. While potentially unpleasant, these side effects should be weighed against the more serious side effects from NSAIDs.
  • Omeprazole (Prilosec) and similar drugs such as ranitidine (Zantac), cimetidine (Tagamet), famotidine (Pepcid), and nizatidine (Axid) can reduce   the risk of gastrointestinal side effects when taken in addition to NSAIDs.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.