Discussing NSAIDs With Your Doctor

What Should I Tell My Healthcare Provider?

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns that people using NSAIDs may have a higher risk of having a heart attack or stroke than those people who do not take them. This warning does not apply to those who take aspirin. This risk may be higher in people who have been taking NSAIDs for a long time. These events can occur without any warning and can lead to death. Be sure to tell your healthcare provider if you have or have ever had any of the following:
 
Prior to taking NSAIDs, you should also tell your healthcare provider if you have:
 
  • Asthma
  • Congestive heart failure
  • Liver disease or failure
  • Kidney disease or failure
  • Bleeding problems (or if you are taking medicine that decreases your blood's ability to clot)
  • Diabetes
  • Nasal polyps
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus (lupus or SLE)
  • Stomach ulcers, stomach bleeding, or a history of either condition
  • Any allergies to medicines, including sulfa drugs, aspirin, or other NSAID pain medicines.
     
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you:
 
  • Are pregnant or thinking about becoming pregnant (see NSAIDs and Pregnancy)
  • Are breastfeeding
  • Drink alcohol frequently
  • Smoke
  • Are having or have recently had heart surgery.
     
You should also tell your healthcare provider about all of the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
 
(Click NSAIDs Warnings and Precautions to learn more, including information on who should not take them.)
 
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