How Anti-inflammatory Drugs Can Cause Back Pain

If you know anyone who is suffering from back pain, you know how debilitating it can be. Although most people assume the pain is due to an accident or injury, pain in the back or neck is often caused by inflammation, which is a fancy way of saying that the body is overwhelmed by a trigger, causing inflammation.

What are anti-inflammatory drugs, and how do they work 

Medications like ibuprofen, naproxen, and aspirin can be classified as anti-inflammatory drugs. They help reduce swelling and ease pain. They work by targeting specific proteins in the body called prostaglandins. Prostaglandins are chemical messengers that signal pain and inflammation. These drugs interfere with the production of prostaglandins in the body.

Inflammation is a normal, protective response in our bodies. It’s your body’s way of warding off infections and injuries, as well as helping to heal wounds. Unfortunately, however, inflammation sometimes gets out of control, leading to a host of acute and chronic conditions, including arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, and cancer. To control inflammation, some doctors and health care providers prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs (often called NSAIDs). These drugs can ease pain, reduce inflammation, and help control the symptoms of these and other conditions.

The side effects of anti-inflammatory drugs

When patients take anti-inflammatory drugs, they can expect side effects. Some of these are mild, such as stomach pain or diarrhea. But many are far more serious. Studies show that inflammation plays a role in heart disease development, cancer, and diabetes. So, if you or someone you know is taking an anti-inflammatory drug, you should be aware of the side effects of these drugs.

Each year, millions of people turn to anti-inflammatory drugs to battle the aches, pains, and symptoms of arthritis, asthma, and ulcerative colitis. These drugs, such as ibuprofen, naproxen, and aspirin, provide relief for many patients, but a new report released by the Institute for Safe Medication Practices warns of the potentially serious side effects these drugs can have on the liver.

Many medications are used to treat illnesses, and some of these medications have side effects. For example, a side effect of the cholesterol-lowering medication is a lowered desire to eat. Unfortunately, other medications, like aspirin, ibuprofen, and anti-inflammatory drugs, which treat pain, fever, and inflammation, can also cause side effects. Some of these side effects can be serious, including heart attack and stroke.

How anti-inflammatory drugs can cause back pain 

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are a class of drugs that are commonly used to relieve pain and inflammation. While they are generally effective, NSAIDs can sometimes cause side effects, including back pain.

NSAIDs work by blocking the production of certain chemicals that contribute to inflammation. This can help to reduce pain and swelling. However, NSAIDs can also block other chemicals that are needed for normal joint function. This can lead to joint stiffness, decreased range of motion, and other problems.

NSAIDs can also irritate the stomach lining, which can lead to gastrointestinal side effects such as heartburn, indigestion, and nausea. In some cases, they can also cause ulcers.

If you experience back pain while taking NSAIDs, it is important to speak with your doctor. You may need to adjust your dosage or switch to a different medication.

The types of back pain that anti-inflammatory drugs can cause 


  • Acute low back pain
  • Chronic low back pain
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis

There are many different types of anti-inflammatory drugs, and each one works differently. But they all have the same goal: to reduce inflammation. Inflammation is a process that happens when your body is trying to heal itself. It can cause pain, swelling, and redness.

Some of the most common anti-inflammatory drugs are:

  • Aspirin
  • Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin)
  • Naproxen (Aleve)

These drugs are available over the counter, which means you don’t need a prescription to buy them. They’re also relatively inexpensive. But they can have side effects, so it’s important to talk to your doctor before you start taking them. If you’re looking for additional treatment options for back pain, you can check out clinical trials at Power.

What to do if you’re experiencing back pain caused by anti-inflammatory drugs 

Back pain is uncomfortable yet a common occurrence. If you’ve developed a chronic condition, you may rely on anti-inflammatory medications to help ease the pain. Unfortunately, these medications can cause serious side effects, including back pain. There are steps you can take to minimize the pain, such as taking breaks from sitting or lying down and sleeping in a reclining chair to keep the spine in proper alignment.

The bottom line on anti-inflammatory drugs and back pain

There are many different types of anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and each one works a little differently. But the bottom line is that they all can help relieve pain and inflammation. If you’re dealing with back pain, there’s a good chance that your doctor will recommend an NSAID at some point. And while these medications can be very effective, it’s important to understand how they work and what the potential risks are. NSAIDs work by inhibiting the production of certain chemicals that cause inflammation. This can help to reduce pain and swelling. But NSAIDs also have some potentially serious side effects, so they’re not appropriate for everyone.

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