Generic Name: ibuprofen (EYE bue PROE fen)
Brand Names: Advil, Genpril, IBU, Midol, Motrin, Nuprin

What is Motrin?

Motrin (ibuprofen) is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). It works by reducing hormones that cause inflammation and pain in the body.

Motrin is used to reduce fever and treat pain or inflammation caused by many conditions such as headache, toothache, back pain, arthritis, menstrual cramps, or minor injury.

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

Important information

Motrin may cause life-threatening heart or circulation problems such as heart attack or stroke, especially if you use it long term. Do not use Motrin just before or after heart bypass surgery (coronary artery bypass graft, or CABG).

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

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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 taking Motrin, 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.

Do not take more Motrin than is recommended. An overdose of ibuprofen can cause damage to your stomach or intestines. Use only the smallest amount of Motrin needed to get relief from your pain, swelling, or fever.

Before taking this medicine

Do not use Motrin just before or after heart bypass surgery (coronary artery bypass graft, or CABG).

Motrin may 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 taking Motrin, especially in older adults.

You should not use Motrin if you are allergic to ibuprofen, aspirin or other NSAIDs.

Ask a doctor or pharmacist if it is safe for you to take this medication if you have:

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

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

  • a history of stomach ulcers or bleeding;

  • asthma;

  • polyps in your nose;

  • liver or kidney disease;
  • systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE);

  • a bleeding or blood clotting disorder; or

  • if you smoke.

FDA pregnancy category D. Taking Motrin during the last 3 months of pregnancy may harm the unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using Motrin. It is not known whether ibuprofen passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby. Do not give Motrin to a child without the advice of a doctor.

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

How should I take Motrin?

Use Motrin exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

Do not take more Motrin than is recommended. An overdose of ibuprofen can cause damage to your stomach or intestines. The maximum amount of ibuprofen for adults is 800 milligrams per dose or 3200 mg per day (4 maximum doses). Use only the smallest amount of Motrin needed to get relief from your pain, swelling, or fever. Take Motrin with food or milk to lessen stomach upset. Shake the oral suspension (liquid) well just before you measure a dose. To be sure you get the correct dose, measure the liquid with a marked measuring spoon or medicine cup, not with a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.

The Motrin chewable tablet must be chewed before you swallow it.

If you take Motrin for a long period of time, your doctor may want to check you on a regular basis to make sure this medication is not causing harmful effects. Do not miss any scheduled visits to your doctor.

Store Motrin at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Do not allow the liquid medicine to freeze.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Since Motrin is taken as needed, you may not be on a dosing schedule. If you are taking the medication regularly, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222. Overdose symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, drowsiness, black or bloody stools, coughing up blood, shallow breathing, fainting, or coma.

What should I avoid?

Avoid taking Motrin if you are taking aspirin to prevent stroke or heart attack. Motrin can make aspirin less effective in protecting your heart and blood vessels. If you must use both medications, take the Motrin at least 8 hours before or 30 minutes after you take the aspirin (non-enteric coated form). Ask a doctor or pharmacist before using any other cold, allergy, or pain medicine. Ibuprofen and other NSAIDs are contained in many combination medicines. Taking certain products together can cause you to get too much ibuprofen. Check the label to see if a medicine contains ibuprofen or similar NSAIDs (aspirin, naproxen, ketoprofen).

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

Motrin side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to Motrin: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Stop taking Motrin and seek medical attention or call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • chest pain, weakness, shortness of breath, slurred speech, problems with vision or balance;

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

  • 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);

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

  • bruising, severe tingling, numbness, pain, muscle weakness; or

  • severe headache, neck stiffness, chills, increased sensitivity to light, and/or seizure (convulsions).

Less serious Motrin side effects may include:

  • upset stomach, mild heartburn, diarrhea, constipation;

  • bloating, gas;

  • dizziness, headache, nervousness;

  • skin itching or rash;

  • blurred vision; or

  • ringing in your ears.

This is not a complete list of 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 Motrin?

Ask your doctor before using an antidepressant such as citalopram (Celexa), escitalopram (Lexapro), fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem, Symbyax), fluvoxamine (Luvox), paroxetine (Paxil), or sertraline (Zoloft). Taking any of these medicines with Motrin may cause you to bruise or bleed easily.

Before taking Motrin, tell your doctor about all other medicines you use, especially:

  • aspirin or other NSAIDs such as naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn, Naprelan, Treximet), celecoxib (Celebrex), diclofenac (Arthrotec, Cambia, Cataflam, Voltaren, Flector Patch, Pennsaid, Solareze), indomethacin (Indocin), meloxicam (Mobic), and others;

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

  • lithium (Eskalith, Lithobid);

  • diuretics (water pills) such as furosemide (Lasix);

  • methotrexate (Rheumatrex, Trexall);

  • steroids (prednisone and others); or

  • a blood thinner such as warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven).

This list is not complete and other drugs may interact with Motrin. 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 Motrin.
  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use Motrin 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: 16.01. Revision Date: 3/28/2011 9:56:19 AM.

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