How Does Diclofenac Work?

Diclofenac is a prescription medication commonly used for relieving pain. It is also approved for the treatment of migraine headaches, various types of arthritis, painful menstrual periods, eye sensitivity after eye surgery, ankylosing spondylitis, and many other conditions.
How does it work? Diclofenac, like other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), works by blocking a specific enzyme known as cyclooxygenase (COX), inhibiting the production of various inflammatory substances in the body. This action helps to treat pain and inflammation but also seems to help treat seemingly unrelated conditions (such as actinic keratosis).
(Click What Is Diclofenac Used For? for more information on what diclofenac products are used for, including possible off-label uses, and to find out if this medication is approved for use in children.)
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