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Side Effects & Adverse Reactions

Cardiovascular Effects

Cardiovascular Thrombotic Events

Clinical trials of several COX-2 selective and nonselective NSAIDs of up to three years duration have shown an increased risk of serious cardiovascular (CV) thrombotic events, myocardial infarction, and stroke, which can be fatal. All NSAIDs, both COX-2 selective and nonselective, may have a similar risk. Patients with known CV disease or risk factors for CV disease may be at greater risk. To minimize the potential risk for an adverse CV event in patients treated with an NSAID, the lowest effective dose should be used for the shortest duration possible. Physicians and patients should remain alert for the development of such events, even in the absence of previous CV symptoms. Patients should be informed about the signs and/or symptoms of serious CV events and the steps to take if they occur.

There is no consistent evidence that concurrent use of aspirin mitigates the increased risk of serious CV thrombotic events associated with NSAID use. The concurrent use of aspirin and an NSAID does increase the risk of serious GI events (see WARNINGS: Gastrointestinal Effects - Risk of Ulceration, Bleeding, and Perforation).

Two large, controlled, clinical trials of a COX-2 selective NSAID for the treatment of pain in the first 10 to 14 days following CABG surgery found an increased incidence of myocardial infarction and stroke (see CONTRAINDICATIONS).


NSAIDs, including naproxen tablets, can lead to onset of new hypertension or worsening of preexisting hypertension, either of which may contribute to the increased incidence of CV events. Patients taking thiazides or loop diuretics may have impaired response to these therapies when taking NSAIDs. NSAIDs, including naproxen tablets, should be used with caution in patients with hypertension. Blood pressure (BP) should be monitored closely during the initiation of NSAID treatment and throughout the course of therapy.

Congestive Heart Failure and Edema

Fluid retention, edema, and peripheral edema have been observed in some patients taking NSAIDs. Naproxen tablets should be used with caution in patients with fluid retention, hypertension, or heart failure.

Gastrointestinal Effects- Risk of Ulceration, Bleeding, and Perforation

NSAIDs, including naproxen tablets, can cause serious gastrointestinal (GI) adverse events including inflammation, bleeding, ulceration, and perforation of the stomach, small intestine, or large intestine, which can be fatal.

These serious adverse events can occur at any time, with or without warning symptoms, in patients treated with NSAIDs. Only one in five patients, who develop a serious upper GI adverse event on NSAID therapy, is symptomatic. Upper GI ulcers, gross bleeding, or perforation caused by NSAIDs occur in approximately 1% of patients treated for 3 to 6 months, and in about 2% to 4% of patients treated for one year. These trends continue with longer duration of use, increasing the likelihood of developing a serious GI event at some time during the course of therapy. However, even short-term therapy is not without risk. The utility of periodic laboratory monitoring has not been demonstrated, nor has it been adequately assessed. Only 1 in 5 patients who develop a serious GI adverse event on NSAID therapy is symptomatic.

NSAIDs should be prescribed with extreme caution in those with a prior history of ulcer disease or gastrointestinal bleeding. Patients with a prior history of peptic ulcer disease and/or gastrointestinal bleeding who use NSAIDs have a greater than 10-fold increased risk for developing a GI bleed compared to patients with neither of these risk factors.

Other factors that increase the risk for GI bleeding in patients treated with NSAIDs include concomitant use of oral corticosteroids or anticoagulants, longer duration of NSAID therapy, smoking, use of alcohol, older age, and poor general health status. Most spontaneous reports of fatal GI events are in elderly or debilitated patients and therefore, special care should be taken in treating this population. To minimize the potential risk for an adverse GI event in patients treated with an NSAID, the lowest effective dose should be used for the shortest possible duration. Patients and physicians should remain alert for signs and symptoms of GI ulceration and bleeding during NSAID therapy and promptly initiate additional evaluation and treatment if a serious GI adverse event is suspected. This should include discontinuation of the NSAID until a serious GI adverse event is ruled out. For high risk patients, alternate therapies that do not involve NSAIDs should be considered.

Epidemiological studies, both of the case-control and cohort design, have demonstrated an association between use of psychotropic drugs that interfere with serotonin reuptake and the occurrence of upper gastrointestinal bleeding. In two studies, concurrent use of an NSAID or aspirin potentiated the risk of bleeding (see PRECAUTIONS: Drug Interactions). Although these studies focused on upper gastrointestinal bleeding, there is no reason to believe that bleeding at other sites may be similarly potentiated.

NSAIDs should be given with care to patients with a history of inflammatory bowel disease (ulcerative colitis, Chrohn’s disease) as their condition may be exacerbated.

Renal Effects

Long-term administration of NSAIDs has resulted in renal papillary necrosis and other renal injury. Renal toxicity has also been seen in patients in whom renal prostaglandins have a compensatory role in the maintenance of renal perfusion. In these patients, administration of a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug may cause a dose-dependent reduction in prostaglandin formation and, secondarily, in renal blood flow, which may precipitate overt renal decompensation. Patients at greatest risk of this reaction are those with impaired renal function, hypovolemia, heart failure, liver dysfunction, salt depletion, those taking diuretics and angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs), and the elderly. Discontinuation of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug therapy is usually followed by recovery to the pretreatment state (see WARNINGS: Advanced Renal Disease).

Advanced Renal Disease

No information is available from controlled clinical studies regarding the use of naproxen tablets in patients with advanced renal disease. Therefore, treatment with naproxen tablets is not recommended in these patients with advanced renal disease. If naproxen tablets therapy must be initiated, close monitoring of the patient’s renal function is advisable and patients should be adequately hydrated.

Anaphylactoid Reactions

As with other NSAIDs, anaphylactoid reactions may occur in patients without known prior exposure to naproxen tablets. Naproxen tablets should not be given to patients with the aspirin triad. This symptom complex typically occurs in asthmatic patients who experience rhinitis with or without nasal polyps, or who exhibit severe, potentially fatal bronchospasm after taking aspirin or other NSAIDs (see CONTRAINDICATIONS and PRECAUTIONS: Preexisting Asthma). Emergency help should be sought in cases where an anaphylactoid reaction occurs. Anaphylactoid reactions, like anaphylaxis, may have a fatal outcome.

Skin Reactions

NSAIDs, including naproxen tablets, can cause serious skin adverse events such as exfoliative dermatitis, Stevens-Johnson Syndrome (SJS), and toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN), which can be fatal. These serious events may occur without warning. Patients should be informed about the signs and symptoms of serious skin manifestations and use of the drug should be discontinued at the first appearance of skin rash or any other sign of hypersensitivity.


In late pregnancy, as with other NSAIDs, naproxen tablets should be avoided because it may cause premature closure of the ductus arteriosus.

Legal Issues

There is currently no legal information available for this drug.

FDA Safety Alerts

There are currently no FDA safety alerts available for this drug.

Manufacturer Warnings

There is currently no manufacturer warning information available for this drug.

FDA Labeling Changes

There are currently no FDA labeling changes available for this drug.


Carefully consider the potential benefits and risks of naproxen tablets, USP and other treatment options before deciding to use naproxen tablets, USP. Use the lowest effective dose for the shortest duration consistent with individual patient treatment goals (see WARNINGS).

Naproxen, USP as naproxen tablets, USP is indicated:

For the relief of the signs and symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis
For the relief of the signs and symptoms of osteoarthritis
For the relief of the signs and symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis
For the relief of the signs and symptoms of juvenile arthritis
For relief of the signs and symptoms of tendonitis
For relief of the signs and symptoms of bursitis
For relief of the signs and symptoms of acute gout
For the management of pain
For the management of primary dysmenorrhea


There is currently no drug history available for this drug.

Other Information

Naproxen, USP is a proprionic acid derivative related to the arylacetic acid group of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

The chemical name for naproxen, USP is (S)-6-methoxy-α-methyl-2-naphthaleneacetic acid. Naproxen, USP has the following structure:

Formula Structure

Naproxen, USP has a molecular weight of 230.26 and a molecular formula of C14H14O3.

Naproxen, USP is an odorless, white to off-white crystalline substance. It is lipid-soluble, practically insoluble in water at low pH and freely soluble in water at high pH. The octanol/water partition coefficient of naproxen, USP at pH 7.4 is 1.6 to 1.8.

Naproxen, USP is available as white tablets containing 250 mg of naproxen, USP, white tablets containing 375 mg of naproxen, USP and white tablets containing 500 mg of naproxen, USP for oral administration. The inactive ingredients are croscarmellose sodium, povidone and magnesium stearate.

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