Etodolac cannot be expected to substitute for corticosteroids or to treat corticosteroid insufficiency. Abrupt discontinuation of corticosteroids may lead to disease exacerbation. Patients on prolonged corticosteroid therapy should have their therapy tapered solely if a decision is made to discontinue corticosteroids.
The pharmacological activity of etodolac in reducing fever and inflammation may diminish the utility of these diagnostic signs in detecting complications of presumed non-infectious, painful conditions.
Borderline elevations of one or more liver tests may occur in up to 15% of patients taking NSAIDs including etodolac. These laboratory abnormalities may progress, may remain unchanged, or may be transient with continuing therapy. Notable elevations of ALT or AST (approximately three or more times the upper limit of normal) have been reported in approximately 1% of patients in clinical trials with NSAIDs. In addition, rare cases of severe hepatic reactions, including jaundice and fatal fulminant hepatitis, liver necrosis and hepatic failure, some of them with fatal outcomes, have been reported.
A patient with symptoms and/or signs suggesting liver dysfunction, or in whom an abnormal liver test has occurred, should be evaluated for evidence of the development of a more severe hepatic reaction while on therapy with etodolac. If clinical signs and symptoms consistent with liver disease develop, or if systemic manifestations occur (e.g., eosinophilia, rash, etc.), etodolac should be discontinued.
Anemia is sometimes seen in patients receiving NSAIDs including etodolac tablets. This may be due to fluid retention, occult or gross GI blood loss, or an incompletely described effect upon erythropoiesis. Patients on long-term treatment with NSAIDs, including etodolac tablets should have their hemoglobin or hematocrit checked if they exhibit any signs or symptoms of anemia.
NSAIDs inhibit platelet aggregation and have been shown to prolong bleeding time in some patients. Unlike aspirin, their effect on platelet function is quantitatively less, of shorter duration, and reversible. Patients receiving etodolac tablets, who may be adversely affected by alterations in platelet function, such as those with coagulation disorders or patients receiving anticoagulants, should be carefully monitored.
Patients with asthma may have aspirin-sensitive asthma. The use of aspirin in patients with aspirin-sensitive asthmas has been associated with severe bronchospasm which can be fatal. Since cross reactivity, including bronchospasm, between aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs has been reported in such aspirin-sensitive patients, etodolac should not be administered to patients with this form of aspirin sensitivity and should be used with caution in all patients with pre-existing asthma.
Information for Patients
Patients should be informed of the following information before initiating therapy with an NSAID and periodically during the course of on-going therapy. Patients should also be encouraged to read the NSAID Medication Guide that accompanies each prescription dispensed.
1. Cardiovascular Thrombotic Events
Advise patients to be alert for the symptoms of cardiovascular thrombotic events, including chest pain, shortness of breath, weakness, or slurring of speech, and to report any of these symptoms to their health care provider immediately (see WARNINGS).
2. Etodolac, like other NSAIDs, can cause GI discomfort and, rarely, serious GI side effects, such as ulcers and bleeding, which may result in hospitalization and even death. Although serious GI tract ulcerations and bleeding can occur without warning symptoms, patients should be alert for the signs and symptoms of ulcerations and bleeding, and should ask for medical advice when observing any indicative sign or symptoms including epigastric pain, dyspepsia, melena, and hematemesis. Patients should be apprised of the importance of this follow-up (see WARNINGS, GASTROINTESTINAL EFFECTS — RISK OF ULCERATION, BLEEDING, AND PERFORATION).
3. Serious Skin Reactions, including DRESS
Advise patients to stop taking etodolac immediately if they develop any type of rash or fever and to contact their healthcare provider as soon as possible [see WARNINGS].
4. Heart Failure And Edema
Advise patients to be alert for the symptoms of congestive heart failure including shortness of breath, unexplained weight gain, or edema and to contact their healthcare provider if such symptoms occur (see WARNINGS).
5. Patients should be informed of the warning signs and symptoms of hepatotoxicity (e.g., nausea, fatigue, lethargy, pruritus, jaundice, right upper quadrant tenderness, and “flu-like” symptoms). If these occur, patients should be instructed to stop therapy and seek immediate medical therapy.
6. Patients should be informed of the signs of an anaphylactoid reaction (e.g. difficulty breathing, swelling of the face or throat). If these occur, patients should be instructed to seek immediate emergency help (see WARNINGS).
7. Fetal Toxicity
Inform pregnant women to avoid use of etodolac and other NSAIDs starting at 30 weeks gestation because of the risk of the premature closing of the fetal ductus arteriosus. If treatment with etodolac is needed for a pregnant woman between about 20 to 30 weeks gestation, advise her that she may need to be monitored for oligohydramnios, if treatment continues for longer than 48 hours [see WARNINGS; FETAL TOXICITY, PRECAUTIONS; PREGNANCY].
Because serious GI tract ulcerations and bleeding can occur without warning symptoms, physicians should monitor for signs or symptoms of GI bleeding. Patients on long-term treatment with NSAIDs should have their CBC and a chemistry profile checked periodically for signs or symptoms of anemia. Appropriate measures should be taken in case such signs of anemia occur. If clinical signs and symptoms consistent with liver or renal disease develop, systemic manifestations occur (e.g., eosinophilia, rash, etc.) or if abnormal liver tests persist or worsen, etodolac should be discontinued.
Reports suggest that NSAIDs may diminish the antihypertensive effect of ACE-inhibitors. This interaction should be given consideration in patients taking NSAIDs concomitantly with ACE-inhibitors (see WARNINGS).
The concomitant administration of antacids has no apparent effect on the extent of absorption of etodolac. However, antacids can decrease the peak concentration reached by 15% to 20% but have no detectable effect on the time-to-peak.
When etodolac is administered with aspirin, its protein binding is reduced, although the clearance of free etodolac is not altered. The clinical significance of this interaction is not known; however, as with other NSAIDs, concomitant administration of etodolac and aspirin is not generally recommended because of the potential of increased adverse effects.
Cyclosporine, Digoxin, Methotrexate
Etodolac, like other NSAIDs, through effects on renal prostaglandins, may cause changes in the elimination of these drugs leading to elevated serum levels of cyclosporine, digoxin, methotrexate, and increased toxicity. Nephrotoxicity associated with cyclosporine may also be enhanced. Patients receiving these drugs who are given etodolac, or any other NSAID, and particularly those patients with altered renal function, should be observed for the development of the specific toxicities of these drugs. NSAIDs, such as etodolac, should not be administered prior to or concomitantly with high doses of methotrexate. NSAIDs have been reported to competitively inhibit methotrexate accumulation in rabbit kidney slices. This may indicate that they could enhance the toxicity of methotrexate. In general, caution should be used when NSAIDs are administered concomitantly with methotrexate.
Etodolac has no apparent pharmacokinetic interaction when administered with furosemide or
hydrochlorothiazide. Nevertheless, clinical studies, as well as postmarketing observations have shown that etodolac can reduce the natriuretic effect of furosemide and thiazides in some patients with possible loss of blood pressure control. This response has been attributed to inhibition of renal prostaglandin synthesis. During concomitant therapy with NSAIDs, the patient should be observed closely for signs of renal insufficiency or failure (see WARNINGS, RENAL EFFECTS), as well as to assure diuretic efficacy.
Etodolac has no apparent pharmacokinetic interaction when administered with glyburide.
NSAIDs have produced an elevation of plasma lithium levels and a reduction in renal lithium clearance. The mean minimum lithium concentration increased 15% and the renal clearance was decreased by approximately 20%. These effects have been attributed to inhibition of renal prostaglandin synthesis by the NSAID. Thus, when NSAIDs and lithium are administered concurrently, subjects should be observed carefully for signs of lithium toxicity. Careful monitoring of lithium levels is advised in the event NSAID dosage adjustments are required.
Phenylbutazone causes increase (by about 80%) in the free fraction of etodolac. Although in vivo studies have not been done to see if etodolac clearance is changed by co-administration of phenylbutazone, it is not recommended that they be co-administered.
Etodolac has no apparent pharmacokinetic interaction when administered with phenytoin.
The effects of warfarin and NSAIDs on GI bleeding are synergistic, such that users of both drugs together have a risk of serious GI bleeding higher than that of users of either drug alone. Short-term pharmacokinetic studies have demonstrated that concomitant administration of warfarin and etodolac results in reduced protein binding of warfarin, but there was no change in the clearance of free warfarin. There was no significant difference in the pharmacodynamic effect of warfarin administered alone and warfarin administered with etodolac as measured by prothrombin time. Thus, concomitant therapy with warfarin and etodolac should not require dosage adjustment of either drug. However, caution should be exercised because there have been a few spontaneous reports of prolonged prothrombin times, with or without bleeding, in etodolac-treated patients receiving concomitant warfarin therapy. Close monitoring of such patients is therefore recommended.
Drug/Laboratory Test Interactions
The urine of patients who take etodolac can give a false-positive reaction for urinary bilirubin (urobilin) due to the presence of phenolic metabolites of etodolac. Diagnostic dip-stick methodology, used to detect ketone bodies in urine, has resulted in false-positive findings in some patients treated with etodolac. Generally, this phenomenon has not been associated with other clinically significant events. No dose relationship has been observed.
Etodolac treatment is associated with a small decrease in serum uric acid levels. In clinical trials, mean decreases of 1 to 2 mg/dL were observed in arthritic patients receiving etodolac (600 to 1000 mg/day) after 4 weeks of therapy. These levels then remained stable for up to 1 year of therapy.
Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, and Impairment of Fertility
No carcinogenic effect of etodolac was observed in mice or rats receiving oral doses of 15 mg/kg/day (45 to 89 mg/m2, respectively) or less for periods of 2 years or 18 months, respectively. Etodolac was not mutagenic in in vitro tests performed with S. typhimurium and mouse lymphoma cells as well as in an in vivo mouse micronucleus test. However, data from the in vitro human peripheral lymphocyte test showed an increase in the number of gaps (3 to 5.3% unstained regions in the chromatid without dislocation) among the etodolac-treated cultures (50 to 200 mcg/mL) compared to negative controls (2%); no other difference was noted between the controls and drug-treated groups. Etodolac showed no impairment of fertility in male and female rats up to oral doses of 16 mg/kg (94 mg/m2 ). However, reduced implantation of fertilized eggs occurred in the 8 mg/kg group.
Use of NSAIDs, including etodolac, can cause premature closure of the fetal ductus arteriosus and fetal renal dysfunction leading to oligohydramnios and, in some cases, neonatal renal impairment. Because of these risks, limit dose and duration of etodolac use between about 20 and 30 weeks of gestation, and avoid etodolac use at about 30 weeks of gestation and later in pregnancy [see WARNINGS; FETAL TOXICITY].
Premature Closure of Fetal Ductus Arteriosus
Use of NSAIDs, including etodolac, at about 30 weeks gestation or later in pregnancy increases the risk of premature closure of the fetal ductus arteriosus.
Oligohydramnios/Neonatal Renal Impairment
Use of NSAIDs at about 20 weeks gestation or later in pregnancy has been associated with cases of fetal renal dysfunction leading to oligohydramnios, and in some cases, neonatal renal impairment.
Data from observational studies regarding other potential embryofetal risks of NSAID use in women in the first or second trimesters of pregnancy are inconclusive.
Data from observational studies regarding other potential embryofetal risks of NSAID use in women in the first or second trimesters of pregnancy are inconclusive. In animal reproduction studies, isolated occurrences of alterations in limb development were found and included polydactyly, oligodactyly, syndactyly, and unossified phalanges in rats and oligodactyly and synostosis of metatarsals in rabbits. These were observed at dose levels (2 to 14 mg/kg/day) close to human clinical doses. However, the frequency and the dosage group distribution of these findings in initial or repeated studies did not establish a clear drug or dose-response relationship. Animal reproduction studies are not always predictive of human response. Based on animal data, prostaglandins have been shown to have an important role in endometrial vascular permeability, blastocyst implantation, and decidualization. In animal studies, administration of prostaglandin synthesis inhibitors such as etodolac, resulted in increased pre- and post-implantation loss. Prostaglandins also have been shown to have an important role in fetal kidney development. In published animal studies, prostaglandin synthesis inhibitors have been reported to impair kidney development when administered at clinically relevant doses.
The estimated background risk of major birth defects and miscarriage for the indicated population(s) is unknown. All pregnancies have a background risk of birth defect, loss, or other adverse outcomes. In the U.S. general population, the estimated background risk of major birth defects and miscarriage in clinically recognized pregnancies is 2% to 4% and 15% to 20%, respectively.
Fetal/Neonatal Adverse Reactions
Premature Closure of Fetal Ductus Arteriosus:
Avoid use of NSAIDs in women at about 30 weeks gestation and later in pregnancy, because NSAIDs, including etodolac, can cause premature closure of the fetal ductus arteriosus (see WARNINGS; FETAL TOXICITY).
Oligohydramnios/Neonatal Renal Impairment
If an NSAID is necessary at about 20 weeks gestation or later in pregnancy, limit the use to the lowest effective dose and shortest duration possible. If etodolac treatment extends beyond 48 hours, consider monitoring with ultrasound for oligohydramnios. If oligohydramnios occurs, discontinue etodolac and follow up according to clinical practice (see WARNINGS; FETAL TOXICITY).
There are no adequate, well-controlled studies in pregnant women. Etodolac tablets should be used in pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.
Premature Closure of Fetal Ductus Arteriosus:
Published literature reports that the use of NSAIDs at about 30 weeks of gestation and later in pregnancy may cause premature closure of the fetal ductus arteriosus.
Oligohydramnios/Neonatal Renal Impairment:
Published studies and postmarketing reports describe maternal NSAID use at about 20 weeks gestation or later in pregnancy associated with fetal renal dysfunction leading to oligohydramnios, and in some cases, neonatal renal impairment. These adverse outcomes are seen, on average, after days to weeks of treatment, although oligohydramnios has been infrequently reported as soon as 48 hours after NSAID initiation. In many cases, but not all, the decrease in amniotic fluid was transient and reversible with cessation of the drug. There have been a limited number of case reports of maternal NSAID use and neonatal renal dysfunction without oligohydramnios, some of which were irreversible. Some cases of neonatal renal dysfunction required treatment with invasive procedures, such as exchange transfusion or dialysis.
Methodological limitations of these postmarketing studies and reports include lack of a control group; limited information regarding dose, duration, and timing of drug exposure; and concomitant use of other medications. These limitations preclude establishing a reliable estimate of the risk of adverse fetal and neonatal outcomes with maternal NSAID use. Because the published safety data on neonatal outcomes involved mostly preterm infants, the generalizability of certain reported risks to the full-term infant exposed to NSAIDs through maternal use is uncertain.
Labor and Delivery
In rat studies with NSAIDs, as with other drugs known to inhibit prostaglandin synthesis, an increased incidence of dystocia, delayed parturition, and decreased pup survival occurred. The effects of etodolac on labor and delivery in pregnant women are unknown.
Trace amounts of some NSAIDs have been reported in human milk. It is not known whether etodolac is excreted in human milk. Because many drugs are excreted in human milk and because of the potential for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants from etodolac, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing or to discontinue the drug taking into account the importance of the drug to the mother.
Safety and effectiveness in pediatric patients below the age of 18 have not been established.
As with any NSAID, caution should be exercised in treating the elderly (65 years and older) and when increasing the dose (see WARNINGS).
In etodolac clinical studies, no overall differences in safety or effectiveness were observed between these patients and younger patients. In pharmacokinetic studies, age was shown not to have any effect on etodolac half-life or protein binding, and there was no change in expected drug accumulation. Therefore, no dosage adjustment is generally necessary in the elderly on the basis of pharmacokinetics (see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY, SPECIAL POPULATIONS).
Elderly patients may be more sensitive to the antiprostaglandin effects of NSAIDs (on the gastrointestinal tract and kidneys) than younger patients (see WARNINGS). In particular, elderly or debilitated patients who receive NSAID therapy seem to tolerate gastrointestinal ulceration or bleeding less well than other individuals, and most spontaneous reports of fatal GI events are in this population. Etodolac is eliminated primarily by the kidney. Because elderly patients are more likely to have decreased renal function, care should be taken in dose selection, and it may be useful to monitor renal function (see WARNINGS, RENAL EFFECTS).
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