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Diclofenac Suppository - Rectal

Pronunciation: dye-KLOE-fen-ak

Common Brand Name(s): Voltaren

Important: How To Use This Information

This is a summary and does NOT have all possible information about this product. This information does not assure that this product is safe, effective, or appropriate for you. This information is not individual medical advice and does not substitute for the advice of your health care professional. Always ask your health care professional for complete information about this product and your specific health needs.

Warning

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (including diclofenac) may rarely increase the risk for a heart attack or stroke. This effect can happen at any time while using this drug but is more likely if you use it for a long time. The risk may be greater in older adults or if you have heart disease or increased risk for heart disease (for example, due to smoking, family history of heart disease, or conditions such as high blood pressure or diabetes). Do not use this drug right before or after heart bypass surgery (CABG).

Also, this drug may rarely cause serious (rarely fatal) bleeding from the stomach or intestines. This side effect can occur without warning symptoms at any time while using diclofenac. Older adults may be at higher risk for this effect. (See also Precautions and Drug Interactions sections.)

Stop using diclofenac and get medical help right away if you notice any of the following rare but very serious side effects: black/bloody stools, persistent stomach/abdominal pain, vomit that looks like coffee grounds, chest/jaw/left arm pain, shortness of breath, unusual sweating, confusion, weakness on one side of the body, sudden vision changes, trouble speaking.

Talk with your doctor or pharmacist about the benefits and risks of using this medication.

Uses

See also Warning section.

Diclofenac suppositories are used to relieve pain, swelling (inflammation), and joint stiffness caused by arthritis. Diclofenac does not cure arthritis, but reducing the symptoms helps you do more of your normal daily activities. This medication is known as a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID).

If you are treating a chronic condition such as arthritis, ask your doctor about non-drug treatments and/or using other medications to treat your pain.

Other Uses

This section contains uses of this drug that are not listed in the approved professional labeling for the drug but that may be prescribed by your health care professional. Use this drug for a condition that is listed in this section only if it has been so prescribed by your health care professional.

This drug may also be used for other painful conditions (such as gout attacks). Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details.

How To Use

Read the Patient Information Leaflet if available from your pharmacist before you start using diclofenac and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

Unwrap and insert 1 suppository into the rectum as directed by your doctor. Lie down on your left side with right knee bent. Gently push the suppository into the rectum with your finger. Remain lying down for a few minutes, and avoid having a bowel movement for an hour or longer so the drug will be absorbed. The suppository is for use in the rectum only. Wash your hands after use.

The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. Do not use more than 100 milligrams of diclofenac (suppositories and/or tablets) in a 24-hour period. To reduce your risk of stomach bleeding and other side effects, use this medication at the lowest effective dose for the shortest possible time. Do not increase your dose or use this drug more often or for longer than prescribed. For ongoing conditions such as arthritis, continue using it as directed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor or pharmacist.

For certain conditions (such as arthritis), it may take up to 2 weeks of using this drug regularly until you get the full benefit.

If you are using this drug "as needed" (not on a regular schedule), remember that pain medications work best if they are used as the first signs of pain occur. If you wait until the pain has worsened, the medication may not work as well.

Tell your doctor if your condition worsens or if your pain is not controlled.

Side Effects

See also Warning section.

Headache, drowsiness, dizziness, loss of appetite, gas, or irritation of the rectum may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

This medication may raise your blood pressure. Check your blood pressure regularly and tell your doctor if the results are high.

Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including:

  • vision changes
  • hearing changes (such as ringing in the ears)
  • easy bruising/bleeding
  • mental/mood changes
  • fast/pounding heartbeat
  • persistent/severe headache
  • fainting
  • seizures
  • symptoms of heart failure (such as swelling ankles/feet, unusual tiredness, unusual/sudden weight gain)

Get medical help right away if you have any very serious side effects, including:

  • signs of kidney problems (such as change in the amount of urine)
  • unexplained stiff neck

This drug may rarely cause serious (possibly fatal) liver disease. Stop using diclofenac and get medical help right away if you have any symptoms of liver damage, including:

  • persistent nausea/vomiting
  • loss of appetite
  • stomach/abdomen pain
  • yellowing eyes/skin
  • dark urine

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including:

  • rash
  • itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat)
  • severe dizziness
  • trouble breathing

This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

In the US -

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch.

In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.

Precautions

See also Warning section.

Before using diclofenac, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to aspirin; or to other NSAIDs (such as ibuprofen, naproxen, celecoxib); or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of:

  • asthma
  • aspirin-sensitive asthma (a history of worsening breathing with runny/stuffy nose after taking aspirin or other NSAIDs)
  • liver disease
  • stomach/intestine problems (such as bleeding, ulcers)
  • heart disease (such as previous heart attack)
  • high blood pressure
  • stroke
  • swelling (edema, fluid retention)
  • blood disorders (such as anemia)
  • bleeding/clotting problems
  • growths in the nose (nasal polyps)
  • rectal/anal bleeding

Kidney problems can sometimes occur with the use of NSAID medications, including diclofenac. Problems are more likely to occur if you are dehydrated, have heart failure or kidney disease, are an older adult, or if you take certain medications (see also Drug Interactions section). Drink plenty of fluids as directed by your doctor to prevent dehydration and tell your doctor right away if you have a change in the amount of urine.

Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products).

This drug may make you dizzy. Alcohol or marijuana (cannabis) can make you more dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs alertness until you can do it safely. Talk to your doctor if you are using marijuana (cannabis).

This medicine may cause stomach bleeding. Daily use of alcohol and tobacco, especially when combined with this medicine, increases your risk for stomach bleeding. Limit alcohol and stop smoking. Ask your doctor or pharmacist about how much alcohol you may safely drink.

This medication may make you more sensitive to the sun. Limit your time in the sun. Avoid tanning booths and sunlamps. Use sunscreen and wear protective clothing when outdoors. Tell your doctor right away if you get sunburned or have skin blisters/redness.

Older adults may be at greater risk for stomach/intestinal bleeding, kidney problems, heart attack, and stroke while using this drug.

Before using this medication, women of childbearing age should talk with their doctor(s) about the benefits and risks (such as miscarriage, trouble getting pregnant). Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or if you plan to become pregnant. During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. It is not recommended for use during the first and last trimesters of pregnancy due to possible harm to the unborn baby and interference with normal labor/delivery.

This drug passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

Drug Interactions

Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.

Some products that may interact with this drug include:

  • aliskiren
  • ACE inhibitors (such as captopril, lisinopril)
  • angiotensin II receptor blockers (such as losartan, valsartan)
  • cidofovir
  • corticosteroids (such as dexamethasone, prednisone)
  • lithium
  • methotrexate
  • "water pills" (diuretics such as furosemide)

This medication may increase the risk of bleeding when used with other drugs that also may cause bleeding. Examples include anti-platelet drugs such as clopidogrel, "blood thinners" such as dabigatran/enoxaparin/warfarin, among others.

Check all prescription and nonprescription medicine labels carefully since many medications contain pain relievers/fever reducers (aspirin, NSAIDs such as celecoxib, ibuprofen, ketorolac). These drugs are similar to diclofenac and may increase your risk of side effects if taken together. However, if your doctor has directed you to take low-dose aspirin to prevent heart attack or stroke (usually at dosages of 81-325 milligrams a day), you should continue taking the aspirin unless your doctor instructs you otherwise. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details.

Overdose

This medicine may be harmful if swallowed. If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Alberta residents can call PADIS (Poison and Drug Information Service) 24 hours a day at 1-800-332-1414. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may include: severe stomach pain, slow/shallow breathing, seizures, change in the amount of urine.

Notes

Do not share this medication with others.

This medication has been prescribed for your current condition only. Do not use it later for another pain unless your doctor directs you to do so. A different medication may be necessary in that case.

Laboratory and/or medical tests (such as complete blood count, liver and kidney function tests, blood pressure) should be performed periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details. Keep all doctor appointments and lab visits so your therapy can be monitored closely.

Lifestyle changes (such as weight loss if needed, strengthening/conditioning exercises) may help improve your flexibility and joint function. Consult your doctor for specific instructions.

Missed Dose

If you are prescribed this drug on a regular schedule (not just "as needed") and you miss a dose, use it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose. Use your next dose at the regular time. Do not double the dose to catch up.

If you have questions about missing a dose or you don't have more medication, contact your healthcare provider or pharmacist. For help between 5 p.m. and 9 a.m., call 1-800-332-1414 and press 2 for the Medication and Herbal Preparation Advice Line.

Storage

Store at room temperature away from light and moisture. Keep all medications away from children and pets.

Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company.

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.

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