How Does Ibuprofen Work?


Quick Answer

According to Drugs.com, ibuprofen works by decreasing hormones that cause soreness and inflammation in the body. The uses of ibuprofen include pain relief from headaches, muscles aches, cramps and arthritis. Ibuprofen is available over the counter and by prescription.

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Full Answer

In 1955, the Boots Company discovered ibuprofen, notes Reckitt Benckiser, with contributions from Dr. Stewart Adams and his co-workers Colin Burrows and John Nicholson. In 1969, after further development and testing, the drug was made available by prescription in the United Kingdom. According to Wikipedia, in 1974, ibuprofen was made available in the Untied States by prescription only. Since 1984, the drug has been sold over the counter.

According to Drugs.com, side effects from ibuprofen use include hazy vision, diarrhea, rash, bloating and an upset stomach. MedlinePlus notes that individuals who take ibuprofen may be more at risk for a heart attack or a stroke than individuals who do not take the drug.

Ibuprofen is most often taken in pill form, but in June 2009, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Caldolor, the first injectable form of ibuprofen. As of 2014, Caldolor is available for use in hospitals only. The FDA states that the most common negative reactions to Caldolor include headache, gas, nausea and vomiting.

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