Naproxen is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) used to relieve symptoms of arthritis (osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, or juvenile arthritis) such as inflammation, swelling, stiffness, and joint pain. Naproxen also helps relieve symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis, which is a type of arthritis that affects the joints in the spine. However, this medicine does not cure arthritis and will help you only as long as you continue to take it.

This medicine may also be used to treat mild to moderate pain, including acute gout and other painful conditions such as bursitis, tendonitis, or menstrual cramps.

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  • naproxen
  • Severity: Major
    You should check with your doctor immediately if any of these side effects occur when taking naproxen:

    More common:
    difficult or labored breathing
    feeling of indigestion
    itching skin
    large, flat, blue, or purplish patches in the skin
    pain in the chest below the breastbone
    shortness of breath
    skin eruptions
    stomach pain
    tightness in the chest
    Less common:
    bloody or black, tarry stools
    blurred or loss of vision
    burning upper abdominal or stomach pain
    cloudy urine
    decrease in urine output or decrease in urine-concentrating ability
    disturbed color perception
    double vision
    fast, irregular, pounding, or racing heartbeat or pulse
    halos around lights
    loss of appetite
    nausea or vomiting
    night blindness
    overbright appearance of lights
    pale skin
    pinpoint red or purple spots on the skin
    severe and continuing nausea
    severe stomach burning, cramping, or pain
    skin rash
    swelling or inflammation of the mouth
    troubled breathing with exertion
    tunnel vision
    unusual bleeding or bruising
    unusual tiredness or weakness
    vomiting of material that looks like coffee grounds
    weight loss
    back or leg pains
    bleeding gums
    blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin
    blood in the urine or stools
    blue lips and fingernails
    canker sores
    change in the ability to see colors, especially blue or yellow
    chest pain or discomfort
    clay-colored stools
    cold sweats
    cool, pale skin
    cough or hoarseness
    coughing that sometimes produces a pink frothy sputum
    cracks in the skin
    darkened urine
    decreased vision
    difficult, burning, or painful urination
    difficult, fast, or noisy breathing
    difficulty with swallowing
    dilated neck veins
    dry cough
    dry mouth
    early appearance of redness, or swelling of the skin
    excess air or gas in the stomach
    extreme fatigue
    eye pain
    fever with or without chills
    fluid-filled skin blisters
    flushed, dry skin
    frequent urination
    fruit-like breath odor
    greatly decreased frequency of urination or amount of urine
    hair loss
    high fever
    increased hunger
    increased sensitivity of the skin to sunlight
    increased sweating
    increased thirst
    increased urination
    increased volume of pale, dilute urine
    irregular breathing
    joint or muscle pain
    large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
    late appearance of rash with or without weeping blisters that become crusted, especially in sun-exposed areas of skin, may extend to unexposed areas
    light-colored stools
    loss of heat from the body
    lower back or side pain
    no blood pressure
    no breathing
    no pulse
    numbness or tingling in the hands, feet, or lips
    pain in the ankles or knees
    pain or burning in the throat
    pain or discomfort in the arms, jaw, back, or neck
    painful, red lumps under the skin, mostly on the legs
    pains in the stomach, side, or abdomen, possibly radiating to the back
    pale or blue lips, fingernails, or skin
    pounding in the ears
    puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
    rapid, shallow breathing
    red, irritated eyes
    red skin lesions, often with a purple center
    red-green color blindness
    redness or other discoloration of the skin
    redness, swelling, or soreness of the tongue
    scaly skin
    severe sunburn
    skin thinness
    slurred speech
    sore throat
    sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips or tongue or inside the mouth
    sores, welting, or blisters
    spots on your skin resembling a blister or pimple
    stiff neck or back
    stomach cramps or tenderness
    stomach upset
    swelling in the legs and ankles
    swelling of the face, fingers, feet, or lower legs
    swollen, painful, or tender lymph glands in the neck, armpit, or groin
    tiny bumps on the inner lining of the eyelid
    unexplained weight loss
    unpleasant breath odor
    watery or bloody diarrhea
    weakness or heaviness of the legs
    weight gain
    yellow eyes or skin
    If any of the following symptoms of overdose occur while taking naproxen, get emergency help immediately:

    Symptoms of overdose:
    Bleeding under the skin
    confusion about identity, place, and time
    muscle tremors
    Severity: Minor
    Some of the side effects that can occur with naproxen may not need medical attention. As your body adjusts to the medicine during treatment these side effects may go away. Your health care professional may also be able to tell you about ways to reduce or prevent some of these side effects. If any of the following side effects continue, are bothersome or if you have any questions about them, check with your health care professional:

    More common:
    Continuing ringing or buzzing or other unexplained noise in the ears
    hearing loss
    Less common:
    Acid or sour stomach
    change in hearing
    feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
    passing gas
    sensation of spinning
    stomach soreness or discomfort
    Appetite changes
    burning, crawling, itching, numbness, prickling, "pins and needles", or tingling feelings
    burning, dry, or itching eyes
    difficulty with moving
    discharge, excessive tearing
    general feeling of discomfort or illness
    lack or loss of strength
    menstrual changes
    muscle aching, cramping, stiffness, or weakness
    not able to concentrate
    redness, pain, or swelling of the eye, eyelid, or inner lining of the eyelid
    seeing, hearing, or feeling things that are not there
    shakiness in the legs, arms, hands, or feet
    swollen joints
    trembling or shaking of the hands or feet
    trouble getting pregnant
    trouble performing routine tasks
    trouble sleeping
    unable to sleep
    unusual drowsiness, dullness, or feeling of sluggishness
  • (oral suspension, oral tablet, oral delayed release tablet, oral tablet, extended release, oral capsule, compounding powder, oral and topical kit)