Flector Patch

Pronunciation

Generic Name: diclofenac transdermal (dye KLOE fen ak)
Brand Names: Flector Patch

What is Flector?

Flector Patches contain diclofenac, a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). Diclofenac works by reducing hormones that cause inflammation and pain in the body.

Flector Patches are used to treat pain caused by minor sprains, strains, or bruising.

Flector may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Important information

Do not use Flector if you have ever had asthma or a severe allergic reaction caused by aspirin, diclofenac (Cataflam, Voltaren), or another non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). Do not use Flector just before or after having heart bypass surgery (also called coronary artery bypass graft, or CABG).

Before using Flector, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have heart disease, congestive heart failure, high blood pressure, a history of heart attack or stroke, a history of stomach ulcer or bleeding, liver or kidney disease, a blood clotting disorder, asthma or polyps in your nose, or if you smoke.

Slideshow: 2014 Update: First Time Brand-to-Generic Switches

While the risk of absorbing diclofenac into your bloodstream is low, an NSAID may cause life-threatening heart or circulation problems such as heart attack or stroke, especially if you use it long term.

Get emergency medical help if you have chest pain, weakness, shortness of breath, slurred speech, or problems with vision or balance while using Flector Patches.

This medicine may also cause serious effects on the stomach or intestines, including bleeding or perforation (forming of a hole). These conditions can be fatal and can occur without warning while you are using Flector, especially in older adults.

Call your doctor at once if you have symptoms of stomach bleeding such as black, bloody, or tarry stools, or coughing up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds.

Before using Flector Patch

While the risk of absorbing diclofenac into your bloodstream is low, an NSAID can cause life-threatening heart or circulation problems such as heart attack or stroke, especially if you use it long term.

This medicine may also cause serious effects on the stomach or intestines, including bleeding or perforation (forming of a hole). These conditions can be fatal and can occur without warning while you are using Flector, especially in older adults.

Do not use Flector if you have ever had asthma or a severe allergic reaction caused by aspirin, diclofenac (Cataflam, Voltaren), or another NSAID. Do not use Flector just before or after having heart bypass surgery (also called coronary artery bypass graft, or CABG).

If you have any of these other conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely use Flector Patches:

  • a history of drug allergies;

  • a history of heart attack, stroke, or blood clot;

  • heart disease, congestive heart failure, high blood pressure;

  • a history of stomach ulcer or bleeding;

  • liver or kidney disease;
  • a bleeding or blood clotting disorder;

  • asthma;

  • polyps in your nose; or

  • if you smoke.

FDA pregnancy category C. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. Using Flector during the last 3 months of pregnancy may harm the unborn baby. Do not use Flector during pregnancy unless your doctor has told you to. It is not known whether diclofenac passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use Flector without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

See also: Pregnancy and breastfeeding warnings (in more detail)

How should I use Flector Patch?

Use Flector Patches exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Using extra skin patches will not make the medication more effective. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

Apply the Flector skin patch directly to the area of pain. The Flector patch can be worn for up to 12 hours and then removed. Apply a new patch at that time if pain continues. Do not wear a skin patch while taking a bath or shower or while swimming.

Do not apply a Flector patch to an open skin wound, or on areas of eczema, infection, skin rash, or burn injury. Wash your hands after applying or removing a skin patch.

If the Flector patch falls off, try sticking it back on, or use medical tape to hold it on.

After removing a Flector patch fold it in half, sticky side in, and throw it away in a place where children or pets cannot get to it. Keep both used and unused Flector Patches out of the reach of children or pets.

If you use Flector long-term, your blood may need to be tested often. Your blood pressure may also need to be checked. Visit your doctor regularly.

The Flector transdermal patch may burn your skin if you wear the patch during an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging). Remove the patch before undergoing such a test.

Store Flector at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Do not take a skin patch out of the patch envelope until you are ready to use it. Reseal the envelope for storage.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Apply a Flector Patch as soon as you remember, and wear it for 12 hours before applying a new one. Do not use extra patches to make up the missed dose. Do not wear a Flector skin patch for longer than 12 hours.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

What should I avoid?

Avoid drinking alcohol. It may increase your risk of stomach bleeding.

Avoid taking aspirin, oral (pill form) diclofenac (Cataflam, Voltaren), or other NSAIDs without your doctor's advice. This includes ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn), indomethacin, piroxicam (Feldene), nabumetone (Relafen), etodolac (Lodine), and others.

Ask a doctor or pharmacist before using any over-the-counter cold, allergy, or pain medicine. Many combination medicines contain aspirin or other medicines similar to diclofenac (such as ibuprofen, ketoprofen, or naproxen). Taking certain products together can cause you to get too much of this type of medication. Check the label to see if a medicine contains aspirin, ibuprofen, ketoprofen, or naproxen. Avoid getting this medication near your eyes. If this does happen, rinse with water and call your doctor if you have eye irritation that lasts longer than 1 hour.

Flector side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to Flector: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Although the risk of serious side effects is low when diclofenac is applied to the skin, you should be aware of side effects that can occur if the medication is absorbed into your bloodstream.

Stop using Flector and call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • chest pain, slurred speech, problems with vision or balance, and feeling weak or short of breath;

  • bloody or tarry stools, coughing up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds;

  • fever, chills, body aches, flu symptoms;

  • pale or yellowed skin, dark colored urine, confusion;

  • swelling or rapid weight gain;

  • urinating less than usual or not at all;

  • nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);

  • skin rash, bruising, severe tingling, numbness, pain, muscle weakness;

  • fever, sore throat, and headache with a severe blistering, peeling, and red skin rash; or

  • the first sign of any skin rash, no matter how mild.

Less serious Flector side effects may include:

  • mild nausea, vomiting;

  • diarrhea, constipation;

  • upset stomach, heartburn, gas;

  • dizziness; or

  • mild itching, burning, redness, or other skin irritation where the patch was worn.

This is not a complete list of Flector side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

What other drugs will affect Flector Patch?

Tell your doctor about all other medicines you use, especially:

  • a blood thinner such as warfarin (Coumadin);

  • cyclosporine (Gengraf, Neoral, Sandimmune);

  • lithium (Eskalith, Lithobid);

  • methotrexate (Rheumatrex, Trexall);

  • a diuretic (water pill);

  • steroids (prednisone and others); or

  • heart or blood pressure medication such as benazepril (Lotensin), enalapril (Vasotec), lisinopril (Prinivil, Zestril), quinapril (Accupril), ramipril (Altace), and others.

It is not likely that other drugs you take orally or inject will have an effect on topically applied diclofenac. But many drugs can interact with each other. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about Flector.
  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use Flector only for the indication prescribed.
  • Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects.

Copyright 1996-2014 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 3.01. Revision Date: 2/17/2011 9:23:33 AM.

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