The most frequent type of adverse reaction occurring with ibuprofen tablets is gastrointestinal. In controlled clinical trials the percentage of patients reporting one or more gastrointestinal complaints ranged from 4% to 16%.
In controlled studies when ibuprofen tablets were compared to aspirin and indomethacin in equally effective doses, the overall incidence of gastrointestinal complaints was about half that seen in either the aspirin- or indomethacin-treated patients.
Adverse reactions observed during controlled clinical trials at an incidence greater than 1% are listed in the table. Those reactions listed in Column one encompass observations in approximately 3,000 patients. More than 500 of these patients were treated for periods of at least 54 weeks. Still other reactions occurring less frequently than 1 in 100 were reported in controlled clinical trials and from marketing experience. These reactions have been divided into two categories: Column two of the table lists reactions with therapy with ibuprofen tablets where the probability of a causal relationship exists: for the reactions in Column three, a causal relationship with ibuprofen tablets has not been established.
Reported side effects were higher at doses of 3200 mg/day than at doses of 2400 mg or less per day in clinical trials of patients with rheumatoid arthritis. The increases in incidence were slight and still within the ranges reported in the table.
|Incidence Greater Than 1% (but less than 3%) Probable Causal Relationship||Precise Incidence Unknown (but less than 1%) Probable Causal Relationship**||Precise Incidence Unknown (but less than 1%) Causal Relationship Unknown**|
|* Reactions occurring in 3% to 9% of patients treated with ibuprofen tablets. (Those reactions occurring in less than 3% of the patients are unmarked.)|
|** Reactions are classified under “Probable Causal Relationship (PCR) ” if there has been one positive rechallenge or if three or more cases occur which might be causally related. Reactions are classified under “Causal Relationship Unknown ” if seven or more events have been reported but the criteria for PCR have not been met.|
|Nausea*, epigastric pain*, heartburn*, diarrhea, abdominal distress, nausea and vomiting, indigestion, constipation, abdominal cramps or Pain, fullness of GI tract (bloating and flatulence)||Gastric or duodenal ulcer with bleeding and/or perforation, gastrointestinal hemorrhage, melena, gastritis, hepatitis, jaundice, abnormal liver function tests; pancreatitis|
|CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM|
|Dizziness*, headache, nervousness||Depression, insomnia, confusion, emotional liability, somnolence, aseptic meningitis with fever and coma (see PRECAUTIONS)||Paresthesias, hallucinations, dream abnormalities, pseudo-tumor cerebri|
|Rash* (including maculopapular type), pruritus||Vesiculobullous eruptions, urticaria, erythema multiforme, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, alopecia||Toxic epidermal necrolysis, photoallergic skin reactions neuritis, cataracts|
|Tinnitus||Hearing loss, amblyopia (blurred and/or diminished vision, scotomata and/or changes in color vision) (see PRECAUTIONS)||Conjunctivitis, diplopia, optic neuritis, cataracts|
|Neutropenia, agranulocytosis, aplastic anemia, hemolytic anemia (sometimes Coombs positive), thrombocytopenia with or without purpura, eosinophilia, decreases in hemoglobin and hematocrit (see PRECAUTIONS)||Bleeding episodes (eg epistaxis, menorrhagia)|
|Decreased appetite||Gynecomastia, hypoglycemic reaction, acidosis|
|Edema, fluid retention (generally responds promptly to drug discontinuation) (see PRECAUTIONS)||Congestive heart failure in patients with marginal cardiac function, elevated blood pressure, palpitations||Arrhythmias (sinus tachycardia, sinus bradycardia)|
|Syndrome of abdominal pain, fever, chills, nausea and vomiting; anaphylaxis; bronchospasm (see CONTRAINDICATIONS)||Serum sickness, lupus erythe- matosus syndrome. Henoch-Schonlein vasculitis, angioedema|
|Acute renal failure (see PRECAUTIONS), decreased creatinine clearance, polyuria, azotemia, cystitis, Hematuria||Renal papillary necrosis|
|Dry eyes and mouth, gingival ulcer, rhinitis|
Approximately 1 ½ hours after the reported ingestion of from 7 to 10 ibuprofen tablets (400 mg), a 19-month old child weighing 12 kg was seen in the hospital emergency room, apneic and cyanotic, responding only to painful stimuli. This type of stimulus, however, was sufficient to induce respiration. Oxygen and parenteral fluids were given; a greenish-yellow fluid was aspirated from the stomach with no evidence to indicate the presence of ibuprofen. Two hours after ingestion the child’s condition seemed stable; she still responded only to painful stimuli and continued to have periods of apnea lasting from 5 to 10 seconds. She was admitted to intensive care and sodium bicarbonate was administered as well as infusions of dextrose and normal saline. By four hours post-ingestion she could be aroused easily, sit by herself and respond to spoken commands. Blood level of ibuprofen was 102.9 μg/mL approximately 8 ½ hours after accidental ingestion. At 12 hours she appeared to be completely recovered.
In two other reported cases where children (each weighing approximately 10 kg) accidentally, acutely ingested approximately 120 mg/kg, there were no signs of acute intoxication or late sequelae. Blood level in one child 90 minutes after ingestion was 700 μg/mL — about 10 times the peak levels seen in absorption-excretion studies.
A 19-year old male who had taken 8,000 mg of ibuprofen over a period of a few hours complained of dizziness, and nystagmus was noted. After hospitalization, parenteral hydration and three days bed rest, he recovered with no reported sequelae.
In cases of acute overdosage, the stomach should be emptied by vomiting or lavage, though little drug will likely be recovered if more than an hour has elapsed since ingestion. Because the drug is acidic and is excreted in the urine, it is theoretically beneficial to administer alkali and induce diuresis. In addition to supportive measures, the use of oral activated charcoal may help to reduce the absorption and reabsorption of ibuprofen tablets.
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