Tags: Arthritis | arthritis | painkiller | ibuprofen

Do I Need Prescription Painkillers for Arthritis?

By    |   Wednesday, 07 May 2014 10:00 AM

Question: I have some pain in the base of my spine and occasionally in the back of my legs. My doctor said I probably have arthritis and I’m taking 600 milligrams of ibuprofen every six hours.  Are there other medications that may be more effective? I stay active bike riding and hiking.

Dr. Hibberd's answer:
Ibuprofen is an excellent choice for ordinary (degenerative) or osteoarthritis. You do not need to be taking more than 200 milligrams four times a day. Higher dosing does little but add to side effects for most patients with simple osteoarthritis.
Some patients prefer to use ibuprofen 600 two to three times a day, but side effects increase as you increase dosing. If you have an inflammatory arthritis, often higher doses are needed. In osteoarthritis, higher dosing rarely adds any more than increased gastric and renal side effects, as well as increased drug interactions.
There are many other anti-inflammatories your doctor can choose from, but ibuprofen and its sister drugs are often the most cost-effective agents. Some painkillers cost 10 times more with no additional benefit. The once-daily choices are tempting, but they are more costly. The various anti-inflammatories have varying potencies, and some are better than others for certain inflammatory conditions. 

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Ibuprofen is an excellent choice for ordinary arthritis treatment.
arthritis, painkiller, ibuprofen
Wednesday, 07 May 2014 10:00 AM
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