The active ingredient in Aleve is the non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) naproxen sodium; each dose contains 220 milligrams of the drug. Aleve's inactive ingredients are magnesium stearate, povidone, FD&C blue #2 lake, polyethylene glycol, hypromellose, titanium dioxide, talc and microcrystalline cellulose.
Aleve is usually taken two to three times a day with water; patients taking Aleve should stay upright for 10 minutes after swallowing it. Unless a doctor specifically says otherwise, Aleve should not be taken in conjunction with other NSAIDs such as aspirin or ibuprofen. Because these drugs are similar to Aleve, the risk of side effects is increased when they're taken concurrently. Aleve shouldn't be taken during the last three months of pregnancy.
Other drugs that interact with Aleve include ACE inhibitors, angiotensin II receptor blockers, corticosteroids, lithium and diuretics. When taken with anti-platelet drugs or blood thinners, Aleve may increase the risk of bleeding.
Patients taking Aleve should stop taking it and consult a doctor if they vomit blood, have difficulty swallowing, develop heartburn, faint, have black or bloody stools, experience stomach pain or feel as if a pill is stuck in their throat. In addition, the patient should consult a doctor if a fever lasts longer than three days, if pain lasts more than 10 days, or if redness or swelling increases.