Home > Treating Back Pain > Using NSAIDs For Back Pain

Using NSAIDs For Back Pain

By: Jo Johnson - Updated: 29 Dec 2012 | comments*Discuss
Back Pain Nsaid Inflammation

NSAIDs or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are frequently taken for back pain. They are relatively cheap, very accessible to buy, safe if used correctly and come in many strengths and forms.

Unlike narcotics, NSAIDs are non-addictive, do not interfere with respiratory function and do not induce a sedative effect. As the name suggests they do not contain any steroidal agents and the most common forms of NSAID are aspirin and ibuprofen. Paracetamol, although often grouped in this category, is not seen by everyone as a true NSAID as its anti-inflammatory properties are low.

NSAIDs are very useful in reducing swelling, inflammation, pain and temperature. They work by interfering with the chemical chains of reaction within the body.

Indications For Use Of NSAIDs

NSAIDs are very widely used in both acute and chronic back pain, though prolonged use is not recommended due to the possibility of gastric irritancies.

Most back pain is accompanied by, or due to, inflammation; these drugs can be taken purely for their anti-inflammatory effects.

Typical conditions that can be helped by the use of NSAIDs are rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, period pain, headache, metastatic bone pain, post-operative pain, ankylosing spondylitis and fever.

Aspirin is also widely used in the treatment of some blood disorders as it helps to prevent blood thickening and clotting.Ibuprofen is particularly effective is the treatment of lower back pain and ligament, muscle and tendon pain in the cervical spine region.

Precautions For Use With NSAIDs

Most users should take the lowest dose for back pain and for the shortest time to reduce the risks of any side-effects, though NSAIDs should be taken on a regular regime, as directed, in order to experience the maximum anti-inflammatory benefits. The duration of the regime should not exceed three weeks.

NSAIDs are not recommended in pregnancy, with the exception of paracetamol and aspirin which may be taken under medical supervision.

As these drugs are metabolised in the liver and excreted through the kidneys, medical advice should be sought in the presence of liver or kidney diseases and disorders.

Aspirin should be taken with caution if other medications are being taken for blood or cardiovascular conditions.As many other preparations, such as cold and flu remedies contain paracetamol, all labels should be read thoroughly and taken only as directed to avoid accidental overdose.

In the event of an overdose, even if only a minor one, medical advice should be sought, as liver impairment can occur.Reported side-effects, particularly of prolonged use of NSAIDs, include heartburn, stomach upsets and nausea. To try and avoid these occurring, take medications with food and plenty of water.

Although rare, if there are any signs of an allergic reaction, such as swelling of the face or airway or difficulty in breathing, seek medical attention immediately and where possible, take the container of the drug with you to the hospital.

Non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are relatively safe for back pain, and for most people, the risks of taking it are minimal. They are effective at both reducing swelling and as an analgesic. They can be bought without prescription, but should not be taken for excessive periods of time.

Always read the label and follow directions carefully.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • Micky
    Re: Ligament Damage and Back Pain
    I had prolapse of rectum op in 2001.he also said he had repaired a ligament.cane home couldn't bare down to open bowels.lost…
    21 April 2017
  • Vis
    Re: Spinal Dislocation
    i have enjoyed the literature.
    17 April 2017
  • KFreedOM
    Re: Dehydrated Discs
    I'm so glad to have read this article about dehydration affecting the disc. It just happened to be something that I was curious about and decided…
    26 December 2016
  • Kal
    Re: Dehydrated Discs
    I was suffering from sciatic pain for nearly 1 year and don't have any idea what is the reason for pain. After 1 year 3 weeks back I went to…
    26 November 2016
  • Skb24 going on 75
    Re: Dehydrated Discs
    I am 24 and i have severe back pain i have a buldging disc in my L1 and L5 almost my entire lower lumbar is dehydrated and i have lost nearly 50%…
    21 November 2016
  • billa
    Re: Dehydrated Discs
    I am 25. My mri result shows I hv got dehydration of L4/5 disc.my doctor advice me to take Diclofenac and hv physiotherapy ,but I Still hv pain…
    16 October 2016
  • Salsybar
    Re: Dehydrated Discs
    Hello all Im a newbie on here ...my long road started 4 years ago I had always been a fitness fanatic..vegetarian and look after myself At the…
    14 October 2016
  • Lorie
    Re: Dehydrated Discs
    All dics on mri are dehydrated with bulging at c4 and c5 also L4 and L5 amd an elongated conus medullaris. I have radiculopathy from neck to…
    7 October 2016
  • madan
    Re: Spinal Dislocation
    My father is 51 his spin has dislocated Lower region due to this he suffer pain on his one whole leg suggests me what should we do
    13 September 2016
  • zane
    Re: Spinal Dislocation
    I can literally see one of the nobs(disks or whatever it's called) on my back that is moved to right of my spine and out of line with the rest…
    25 August 2016
Further Reading...
Our Most Popular...
Add to my Yahoo!
Add to Google
Stumble this
Add to Twitter
Add To Facebook
RSS feed
You should seek independent professional advice before acting upon any information on the BackPainExpert website. Please read our Disclaimer.