Gout is a painful form of arthritis that is commonly treated with prescription medications. When you visit your doctor for Gout relief, he may prescribe a drug called Indocin. This drug is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug or NSAID. It can be used to treat pain associated with different forms of arthritis such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and Gout. Indocin works by interfering with the action of specific hormones, which will help you in get rid of pain and inflammation. Even though at first glance this drug seems harmless, there are severe Indocin side effects that you need to consider before starting on this medication.
When a doctor makes a choice to prescribe a medication for an individual, he must examine the risks versus the benefits of taking the drug. This is definitely true with Indocin. This medication is very effective in providing relief from the pain of Gout. But as it is treating your Gout, it can cause other problems. For short term use, the benefits will outweigh the risks. The most common dosage for treatment of Gout is indocin 25 mg two or three times a day. Your doctor may adjust this dose depending upon your symptoms and their severity. It is very important that you take this drug exactly as prescribed.
Before you begin your Indocin Gout treatment regimen, you need to make sure your doctor knows of any other medications you may be taking, including herbal supplements. Indocin can interfere with the action of other medications. Mixing Indocin with certain medications can cause a severe, even life threatening reaction. You should never take over the counter NSAIDS while on Indocin.
You should also tell your doctor if you have certain medical conditions that could make it dangerous to take Indocin. The following is a list of conditions that your doctor must be aware of:
- Allergies to medications especially NSAIDS and pain medications.
- If you are pregnant or planning on getting pregnant.
- If you have stomach ulcers or have a history of stomach bleeding.
- Chronic medical conditions that include diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, asthma and Parkinson’s disease.
- If you have a history of seizures.
- A history of diverticulitis, ulcerative colitis or any type of bleeding problems
- If you drink alcohol on a regular basis
These conditions may make it too dangerous to take Indocin for your Gout pain. Your doctor can decide if the benefits of the drug are worth taking the risk. Make sure you discuss this thoroughly with your health care provider before you start taking this medication for your Gout.
So what about those Indocin side effects? What do you need to look out for? Every medication is put through extensive testing prior to releasing it to the public. This testing collects all types of data from the test patients. Side effects are one type of data that is collected and categorized. Clinical studies have shown that the most common Indocin side effects that occurred in over 3% of the test subjects included heartburn, headache, nausea and dizziness. These are very mild symptoms that usually resolve on their own.
There were some side effects that were a little more severe that occurred in over 1% of the test subjects. These side effects are mild and resolve on their own and they usually do not require medical intervention. The following is a list of these side effects:
- Constipation and/or diarrhea
- Stomach or abdominal pain
- Vertigo (feeling that everything is spinning)
- Extreme fatigue
- Hearing a ringing noise in the ears (tinnitus)
As with any prescription drug, you do have a risk for developing more severe side effects that need immediate medical intervention. Indocin will put you at a higher risk for developing a heart attack or stroke. Therefore, you should call 911 if you have slurred speech, chest pain, shortness of breath or weakness on one side of your body.
Taking Indocin can also put you at risk for major life-threatening bleeding. You should call your doctor immediately if you notice blood in the toilet after a bowel movement. This can be in the form of bright red blood, or you may see black, tarry looking stools. If you notice unexplained bruising on your skin, or if you start vomiting blood, you should contact your doctor as soon as possible. The side effects of this medication may sound intimidating. It is important that you have a conversation with your doctor about this common treatment for Gout.