Diclofenac Gel is used to treat pain in certain joints (e.g., in the knees or hands) caused by osteoarthritis. It might also be used by your doctor in other cases as he deems fit.
Following the dosage instructions of your doctor is the best way to use any medication. If you are unsure or do not remember the instructions then you may read the dosing card for more detailed information.
Do not use it on red, peeling and swollen skin; open wounds and infected skin.
Massage the gel gently into the skin of the affected area. Leave it to dry for 10 minutes.
After using the dosage card fold the dosing card putting the used side on the inside and keep it away from children and pets
Wash your hands after applying the medicine if your hands are not the area to be treated with Diclofenac gel.
Do not shower or bandage or wash the area for atleast an hour after using the gel.
Drug Class and Mechanism
Diclofenac Gel is classified as an NSAID. It helps to block certain substances in the body that cause inflammation. It only relieves the symptoms of pain and inflammation and does not treat the disease.
Despite your best attempts at remembering, if you still miss out on a dose, then take it as soon as you remember about it. But keep in mind that you will have to adjust your next dose by spacing it out by 4 to 5 hours. If this is not possible, then the best thing to do would be to skip the missed dose and continue with your normal dosage schedule.
Never try to compensate for the missed dose by taking a double dose together. It may cause adverse effects.
Store Diclofenac Gel at room temperature, between 68 and 77 degrees F (20 and 25 degrees C). Always keep it in a cool dark place that is not directly exposed to sources of heat or moisture and sunlight. Protect it from kids and pets.
Doctors advise against using Diclofenac Gel if you are allergic to any ingredient in it or if you have conditions like severe allergic reaction (e.g., severe rash, hives, trouble breathing, growths in the nose, dizziness) to aspirin or an NSAID (e.g., celecoxib, ibuprofen); recently had or will be having bypass heart surgery; severe kidney problems; the last 3 months of pregnancy.
Diclofenac Gel may increase the risk of getting dizziness or drowsiness. This risk greatly increases if you combine it with alcoholic beverages. So please avoid them while using Diclofenac Gel. Also, avoid undertaking any tasks which require mental alertness (driving, handling heavy machinery etc).
Using the medicine in high doses for a long time can lead to serious stomach ulcers or bleeding, the chances of which increase with the consumption of alcohol and smoking. If you experience any severe stomach or back pain; black, tarry stools; vomit that looks like blood or coffee grounds; or unusual weight gain or swelling you should contact a doctor.
Do not swallow the medicine in any case. Use it externally.
Do not consume aspirin if you are using the medicine. Also do not use sunscreens, lotions, insect repellants, or other topical medicines on the area treated with the gel.
Doctors may prescribe certain laboratory tests to determine how you have responded to treatment and to gauge the severity of the side effects of Diclofenac Gel. Please Keep all lab appointments and do not miss any tests.
If you are in the last 3 months of your pregnancy then consult your doctor before using Diclofenac Gel to discuss any possible threats to the unborn baby.
If you are a nursing mother and breast feed your baby, then too, seek consultation before using Diclofenac Gel as some drugs are excreted in the breast milk and may enter the baby.
Most medications have some kind of side effects associated with them. The commonest of these side effects are temporary and mild and fade away without any special attention.
This includes mild irritation at the application site.
However, in some cases, these mild side effects may persist or become bothersome. In such cases, seek medical attention.
Also, in some rare cases, it may lead to severe side effects like severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; trouble breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); bloody or black, tarry stools; change in the amount of urine produced; chest pain; confusion; dark urine; depression; fainting; fast or irregular heartbeat; fever, chills, or persistent sore throat; mental or mood changes; numbness of an arm or leg; one-sided weakness; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin; ringing in the ears; seizures; severe headache or dizziness; severe or persistent irritation at the application site; severe or persistent stomach pain or nausea; severe vomiting; shortness of breath; sudden or unexplained weight gain; swelling of hands, legs, or feet; unusual bruising or bleeding; unusual joint or muscle pain; unusual tiredness or weakness; vision or speech changes; vomit that looks like coffee grounds; yellowing of the skin or eyes.
Seek medical attention if you notice any of these side effects.
Side effects that are not listed here may also occur.