"Jan. 12, 2011 -- A new study weighs in on the debate over the relative safety of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs), commonly used to treat joint and muscle aches and pain.
The study, published online in the BMJ,"...
- Clinician Information:
Voltaren Gel Patient Information including How Should I Take
In this Article
- What is diclofenac topical (Voltaren Gel)?
- What are the possible side effects of diclofenac topical (Voltaren Gel)?
- What is the most important information I should know about diclofenac topical (Voltaren Gel)?
- What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using diclofenac topical (Voltaren Gel)?
- How should I use diclofenac topical (Voltaren Gel)?
- What happens if I miss a dose (Voltaren Gel)?
- What happens if I overdose (Voltaren Gel)?
- What should I avoid while using diclofenac topical (Voltaren Gel)?
- What other drugs will affect diclofenac topical (Voltaren Gel)?
- Where can I get more information?
What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using diclofenac topical (Voltaren Gel)?
While the risk of absorbing diclofenac topical into your bloodstream is low, an NSAID can cause life-threatening heart or circulation problems such as heart attack or stroke, especially if you use it long term.
This medicine may also cause serious effects on the stomach or intestines, including bleeding or perforation (forming of a hole). These conditions can be fatal and can occur without warning while you are using diclofenac topical, especially in older adults.
Do not use this medication if you have ever had asthma or a severe allergic reaction caused by aspirin, diclofenac (Cataflam, Voltaren), or another NSAID. Do not use diclofenac just before or after having heart bypass surgery (also called coronary artery bypass graft, or CABG).
To make sure you can safely use diclofenac topical, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:
- a history of drug allergies;
- a history of heart attack, stroke, or blood clot;
- heart disease, congestive heart failure, high blood pressure;
- a history of stomach ulcer or bleeding;
- liver or kidney disease;
- a bleeding or blood clotting disorder; or
- asthma, or polyps in your nose.
This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. If you are pregnant, ask your doctor if it is safe for you to use diclofenac topical. Tell your doctor if you become pregnant during treatment.
Diclofenac topical can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while using diclofenac topical.
How should I use diclofenac topical (Voltaren Gel)?
Use exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label. When treating osteoarthritis, keep using any oral medications your doctor has prescribed.
Do not use diclofenac topical on an open skin wound, or on areas of eczema, infection, skin rash, or burn injury. Do not cover the treated skin with a bandage or expose it to heat from a hot tub, heating pad, sauna, or heated water bed. Heat or bandaging can increase the amount of drug you absorb through your skin and may cause harmful effects.
Wash your hands after applying this medication, unless you are treating the skin on your hands. Do not wear gloves for at least 10 minutes after applying diclofenac topical to the hands.
After you apply diclofenac topical gel, wait at least 10 minutes before dressing and at least 1 hour before you bathe or shower.
To treat actinic keratosis (with Solaraze): Apply enough gel to cover each lesion and rub in gently. Do not apply Solaraze gel more than 2 times daily and never use more than your prescribed dose.
To treat osteoarthritis knee pain (with Pennsaid): Apply the solution only to clean, dry skin. Place 10 drops at a time into your hand and spread the solution over the front, back, and sides of the knee. Apply a total of 40 drops to each affected knee, 4 times per day. You may also drop the medicine directly onto the knee, spreading after every 10 drops.
Wait until the solution is completely dry before covering treated skin with clothing or applying any other skin products, including sunscreen.
To treat osteoarthritis pain (with Voltaren Topical): This medicine is supplied with dosing cards that show you how much gel to use for a 2-gram dose or a 4-gram dose. Squeeze the gel onto this card along the line for your dose. Use no more gel than will fit on the length of your dosing line. Wipe the card directly onto the treatment area and rub gently into the skin.
To treat arthritis pain in the foot, spread the gel out onto all areas of the foot including the toes and soles. When treating the hand, spread the gel out onto all areas of the hand including the fingers and palms.
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Do not freeze.
Additional Voltaren Gel Information
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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