Diclofenac and Ibuprofen: which one is better?

Diclofenac and Ibuprofen

Both diclofenac and ibuprofen are nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). They work by blocking the action of both cyclooxygenases, COX-1 and COX-2 enzymes blocking prostaglandin production. Prostaglandin is responsible for inflammation and pain.

Diclofenac and Ibuprofen are used for pain and inflammatory conditions such as pyrexia, headache, migraine attacks, osteoarthritis, menstrual cramps, etc.

In our previous post, we compared and explained the differences between diclofenac sodium and potassium. Diclofenac is mostly sold with prescription and is more potent than ibuprofen. It mostly comes in 25, 50, and 75 mg tablets. The only form of diclofenac that can be purchased without prescription is the topical gel. The recommended daily dosage of the drug is between 50 – 150 mg.

Ibuprofen can be gotten as an over-the-counter medication(OTC). However, there is a need for a prescription in purchasing higher doses such as 400 mg, in some countries. It has a recommended maximum daily dosage of 2.4g in some cases.

Differences between diclofenac and ibuprofen

Diclofenac is more effective than ibuprofen in reducing postoperative pain like during tooth extraction. This is also seen in the treatment of arthritis. Diclofenac was more effective compared to other NSAIDs and causes fewer gastrointestinal disorders.

Ibuprofen is one of the most preferred and safest analgesics and anti-inflammatory agents in a breastfeeding mother. This is because it is secreted in a quantity too small to be harmful to the newborn. Diclofenac should be considered as an alternative only and should be given for a short duration.

Note: Do not take both ibuprofen and diclofenac together. It will cause increased gastrointestinal disturbances and ulceration.

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The information contained in this post is to provide pharmaceutical and health information only. The information is provided by our qualified writers and reviewed by qualified healthcare professionals. We make sure the information here is not misleading, deceptive, or encourages any illegal behavior. Our information is up-to-date, insightful, and correct.

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However, we do not encourage you to self-medicate or abuse any form of medication. It is strictly recommended that you consult your doctor when you have any symptoms of ill-health.

About Vincent Jo, B. Pharm

A trained and fully licensed pharmacist by the Pharmacists Council of Nigeria. Vincent has four years experience as a pharmacist. He is a researcher and content writer for several blogs, forums and magazines focusing on health

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