diclofenac sodium - misoprostol

By GD Searle

What is this medication for?

This product contains two medications: diclofenac and misoprostol. Diclofenac belongs to the class of medications known as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). It works by lowering the amount of a natural chemical involved in the inflammatory response to disease and injury, thus alleviating inflammation, swelling, and pain. Misoprostol helps to protect the stomach from irritation and stomach ulcers that can be caused by diclofenac.

Diclofenac - misoprostol is used for the treatment of symptoms of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis (such as inflammation and pain) in people at high risk of developing NSAID-induced stomach or intestinal ulcers and their complications.

Your doctor may have suggested this medication for conditions other than those listed here. As well, some forms of this medication may not be used for all of the conditions discussed here. If you are not sure why you are taking this medication, speak to your doctor. Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor.

Do not give this medication to anyone else, even if they have the same symptoms as you do. It can be harmful for people to take this medication if their doctor has not prescribed it.

What form(s) does this medication come in?

Arthrotec® is available as:

  • delayed-release tablets
    • 50 mg diclofenac with 200 µg misoprostol
    • 75 mg diclofenac with 200 µg misoprostol
Some medications may have other generic brands available. Always ask your doctor or pharmacist about the safety of switching between brands of the same medication.

How should I use this medication?

Osteoarthritis: The recommended adult dose is diclofenac - misoprostol is 50 mg (referring to the diclofenac portion of the medication) taken 3 times a day. Alternatively, your doctor may prescribe 50 or 75 mg taken twice daily.

Rheumatoid arthritis: The recommended dose is 50 mg taken 3 to 4 times daily. Alternatively, your doctor may prescribe 50 or 75 mg taken twice daily.

Diclofenac - misoprostol can be taken with food to minimize the occurrence of diarrhea.

This medication should be swallowed whole. Do not chew, split, crush, or dissolve this medication.

Diclofenac - misoprostol should be used at the lowest possible dose and for the shortest possible period of time needed to relieve symptoms.

Many things can affect the dose of medication that a person needs, such as body weight, other medical conditions, and other medications. If your doctor has recommended a dose different from the ones listed here, do not change the way that you are taking the medication without consulting your doctor.

It is important to take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. If you miss a dose, take it as soon as possible and continue with your regular schedule. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one. If you are not sure what to do after missing a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist for advice.

Store this medication at room temperature, protect it from light and moisture, and keep it out of the reach of children.

Who should NOT take this medication?

Do not use this medication if you:

  • are allergic to diclofenac, misoprostol, other prostaglandins, or any of the ingredients of this medication
  • are pregnant
  • have asthma, hives, or allergic-type reactions after taking aspirin or other NSAIDs (e.g., naproxen, ibuprofen, diclofenac, celecoxib)
  • have recently undergone heart surgery known as coronary artery bypass graft (CABG)
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The contents of this health site are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition.

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