Medical Q&As

Anti-inflammatories

I suffer from mild osteoarthritis, in my knee hip, and lumbar area. It flares up for very little reason e.g. sitting in an awkward position, or performing tasks, which require bending. Is it safe to take an anti-inflammatory drug on these occasions? My GP has prescribed them but has not informed me if I could use them from time to time.

It is entirely reasonable to take the anti-inflammatory medication when you are experiencing pain and stiffness in your joints. It is not absolutely necessary to take them on a continuing basis because they are usually prescribed for symptomatic relief. It is important to take such medication with food or after food in order to protect against the possibility of gastric side effects. Long-term continuous use of anti-inflammatory drugs can result in ulcer formation and gastric bleeding. Therefore if your symptoms are severe and you need to take the medication more frequently you should consult with your GP again.