Generic Name: Indomethacin Brand Name(s): Generics only. No brands available.

Uses

What is indomethacin used for?

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

Indomethacin is used to treat moderate to severe osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gouty arthritis, or ankylosing spondylitis. Indomethacin is also used to treat shoulder pain caused by bursitis or tendinitis.

Extended-release indomethacin (Indocin SR) should not be used to treat gouty arthritis.

Indomethacin may also be used for purposes not listed in this indomethacin guide.

How should I take indomethacin?

Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not take this medicine in larger amounts or for longer than recommended. Use the lowest dose that is effective in treating your condition.

Do not crush, chew, break, or open an extended-release capsule. Swallow it whole.

If you take indomethacin for a long period of time, your doctor may want to check you on a regular basis to make sure this medicine is not causing harmful effects.

How do I store indomethacin?

Indomethacin is best stored at room temperature away from direct light and moisture. To prevent drug damage, you should not store indomethacin in the bathroom or the freezer. There may be different brands of indomethacin that may have different storage needs. It is important to always check the product package for instructions on storage, or ask your pharmacist. For safety, you should keep all medicines away from children and pets.

You should not flush indomethacin down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. It is important to properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist for more details about how to safely discard your product.

Precautions & warnings

What should I know before using indomethacin?

Before using this drug, tell your doctor if:

  • You are pregnant or breastfeeding. This is because, while you are expecting or feeding a baby, you should only take medicines on the recommendation of a doctor.
  • You are taking any other medicines. This includes any medicines you are taking which are available to buy without a prescription, such as herbal and complementary medicines.
  • You have allergy with any of active or inactive ingredients of indomethacin or other medications.
  • You have any other illnesses, disorders, or medical conditions.

Indomethacin can increase your risk of fatal heart attack or stroke, especially if you use it long term or take high doses, or if you have heart disease. Even people without heart disease or risk factors could have a stroke or heart attack while taking this medicine.

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

Indomethacin may also cause stomach or intestinal bleeding, which can be fatal. These conditions can occur without warning while you are using indomethacin, especially in older adults.

You should not use indomethacin if you have ever had an asthma attack or severe allergic reaction after taking aspirin or an NSAID.

Taking indomethacin 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 indomethacin.

Indomethacin can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while using this medicine.

Indomethacin is not approved for use by anyone younger than 14 years old.

Avoid drinking alcohol. It may increase your risk of stomach bleeding. Avoid taking aspirin while you are taking indomethacin.

Ask a doctor or pharmacist before using any cold, allergy, or pain medicine. Many medicines available over the counter contain aspirin or other medicines similar to indomethacin. Taking certain products together can cause you to get too much of this type of medication. Check the label to see if a medicine contains aspirin, ibuprofen, ketoprofen, or naproxen.

Ask your doctor before using indomethacin if you take an antidepressant such as citalopram, escitalopram, fluoxetine (Prozac), fluvoxamine, paroxetine, sertraline (Zoloft), trazodone, or vilazodone. Taking any of these medicines with an NSAID may cause you to bruise or bleed easily.

Is it safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding?

There isn’t enough information about the safety of using this indomethacin during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Please always consult with your doctor to weigh the potential benefits and risks before taking this indomethacin.

Side effects

What side effects can occur from indomethacin?

Common side effects may include:

  • Upset stomach
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Feeling tired or depressed
  • Ringing in your ears

Stop using indomethacin and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • Changes in your vision
  • Shortness of breath (even with mild exertion)
  • Swelling or rapid weight gain
  • The first sign of any skin rash, no matter how mild
  • Signs of stomach bleeding – bloody or tarry stools, coughing up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds
  • Liver problems – nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, tired feeling, flu-like symptoms, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes)
  • Kidney problems – little or no urinating, painful or difficult urination, swelling in your feet or ankles, feeling tired or short of breath
  • Low red blood cells (anemia) – pale skin, feeling light-headed or short of breath, rapid heart rate, trouble concentrating
  • Severe skin reaction – fever, sore throat, swelling in your face or tongue, burning in your eyes, skin pain followed by a red or purple skin rash that spreads (especially in the face or upper body) and causes blistering and peeling

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: sneezing, runny or stuffy nose; wheezing or trouble breathing; hives; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of a heart attack or stroke: chest pain spreading to your jaw or shoulder, sudden numbness or weakness on one side of the body, slurred speech, feeling short of breath.

Not everyone experiences these side effects. There may be some side effects not listed above. If you have any concerns about a side-effect, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.

Interactions

What drugs may interact with indomethacin?

Indomethacin may interact with other drugs that you are currently taking, which can change how your drug works or increase your risk for serious side effects. To avoid any potential drug interactions, you should keep a list of all the drugs you are using (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. For your safety, do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any drugs without your doctor’s approval.

Products that may interact with this drug are:

  • Cyclosporine
  • Lithium
  • Methotrexate
  • Probenecid
  • A blood thinner (warfarin, Coumadin, Jantoven)
  • Heart or blood pressure medication, including a diuretic or “water pill”
  • Steroid medicine (such as prednisone)

Does food or alcohol interact with indomethacin?

Indomethacin may interact with food or alcohol by altering the way the drug works or increase the risk for serious side effects. Please discuss with your doctor or pharmacist any potential food or alcohol interactions before using this drug.

What health conditions may interact with indomethacin?

Indomethacin may interact with your health condition. This interaction may worsen your health condition or alter the way the drug works. It is important to always let your doctor and pharmacist know all the health conditions you currently have.

Health conditions that may interact with this drug are:

  • Heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Smoke
  • A history of heart attack, stroke, or blood clot
  • A history of stomach ulcers or bleeding
  • Asthma
  • Liver or kidney disease
  • Fluid retention

Dosage

The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. You should ALWAYS consult with your doctor or pharmacist before using indomethacin.

What is the dose of indomethacin for an adult?

Usual Adult Dose for Acute Gout:

The recommended dose is 50 mg orally or rectally 3 times a day.

Duration of therapy: Until gout attack has resolved.

Usual Adult Dose for Bursitis:

Immediate-release capsules and suspension: The recommended dose is 75 to 150 mg orally per day in 3 or 4 divided doses.

Suppository: The recommended dose is 50 mg rectally up to 3 times a day.

Extended Release: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally once or twice a day.

Usual Adult Dose for Tendonitis:

Immediate-release capsules and suspension: The recommended dose is 75 to 150 mg orally per day in 3 or 4 divided doses.

Suppository: The recommended dose is 50 mg rectally up to 3 times a day.

Extended Release: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally once or twice a day.

Usual Adult Dose for Pain:

The recommended dose is 20 mg orally 3 times a day or 40 mg orally 2 to 3 times a day.

Usual Adult Dose for Rheumatoid Arthritis:

Immediate-release capsules and suspension:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 25 mg orally 2 or 3 times a day.
  • Maintenance dose: Adjust dose as needed and tolerated in increments of 25 mg or 50 mg weekly until satisfactory response or maximum dose is achieved.
  • Maximum single dose: The recommended dose is 100 mg.
  • Maximum daily dose: The recommended dose is 200 mg.

Suppository:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 50 mg rectally once a day.
  • Maintenance dose: The recommended dose is 50 to 200 mg rectally per day in divided doses.
  • Maximum single dose: The recommended dose is 100 mg.
  • Maximum daily dose: The recommended dose is 200 mg per day.

Extended-release:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally once a day.
  • For patients currently receiving immediate-release at 150 mg per day: Initial dose: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally twice a day .

Usual Adult Dose for Ankylosing Spondylitis:

Immediate-release capsules and suspension:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 25 mg orally 2 or 3 times a day.
  • Maintenance dose: Adjust dose as needed and tolerated in increments of 25 mg or 50 mg weekly until satisfactory response or maximum dose is achieved.
  • Maximum single dose: The recommended dose is 100 mg.
  • Maximum daily dose: The recommended dose is 200 mg.

Suppository:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 50 mg rectally once a day.
  • Maintenance dose: The recommended dose is 50 to 200 mg rectally per day in divided doses.
  • Maximum single dose: The recommended dose is 100 mg.
  • Maximum daily dose: The recommended dose is 200 mg per day.

Extended-release:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally once a day.
  • For patients currently receiving immediate-release at 150 mg per day: Initial dose: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally twice a day.

Usual Adult Dose for Osteoarthritis:

Immediate-release capsules and suspension:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 25 mg orally 2 or 3 times a day.
  • Maintenance dose: Adjust dose as needed and tolerated in increments of 25 mg or 50 mg weekly until satisfactory response or maximum dose is achieved.
  • Maximum single dose: The recommended dose is 100 mg.
  • Maximum daily dose: The recommended dose is 200 mg.

Suppository:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 50 mg rectally once a day.
  • Maintenance dose: The recommended dose is 50 to 200 mg rectally per day in divided doses.
  • Maximum single dose: The recommended dose is 100 mg.
  • Maximum daily dose: The recommended dose is 200 mg per day.

Extended-release:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally once a day.
  • For patients currently receiving immediate-release at 150 mg per day: Initial dose: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally twice a day.

What is the dose of indomethacin for a child?

Usual Pediatric Dose for Patent Ductus Arteriosus:

Dosing depends on age of neonate at time of therapy; A course of therapy is defined as 3 IV doses given at 12 to 24 hour intervals.

Age at first dose: Less than 48 hours:

  • First dose: The recommended dose is 0.2 mg/kg IV.
  • Second dose: The recommended dose is 0.1 mg/kg IV.
  • Third dose: The recommended dose is 0.1 mg/kg IV.

Age at first dose: 2 to 7 days:

  • First dose: The recommended dose is 0.2 mg/kg IV.
  • Second dose: The recommended dose is 0.2 mg/kg IV.
  • Third dose: The recommended dose is 0.2 mg/kg IV.

Age at first dose: Over 7 days:

  • First dose: The recommended dose is 0.2 mg/kg IV.
  • Second dose: The recommended dose is 0.25 mg/kg IV.
  • Third dose: The recommended dose is 0.25 mg/kg IV.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Rheumatoid Arthritis:

2 to 14 years:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 1 to 2 mg/kg/day orally in divided doses.
  • Maximum dose: The recommended dose is 3 mg/kg/day or 150 to 200 mg/day, whichever is less; limited data supports a maximum of 4 mg/kg/day.

Over 14 years:

Immediate-release capsules and suspension:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 25 mg orally 2 or 3 times a day.
  • Maintenance dose: Adjust dose as needed and tolerated in increment of 25 mg or 50 mg weekly until satisfactory response or maximum dose is achieved.
  • Maximum single dose: The recommended dose is 100 mg.
  • Maximum daily dose: The recommended dose is 200 mg.

Suppository:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 50 mg rectally once a day
  • Maintenance dose: The recommended dose is 50 to 200 mg rectally per day in divided doses
  • Maximum single dose: The recommended dose is 100 mg.
  • Maximum daily dose: The recommended dose is 200 mg per day.

Extended-release:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally once a day.
  • For patients currently receiving immediate-release at 150 mg per day: Initial dose: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally twice a day.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Ankylosing Spondylitis:

Over 14 years:

Immediate-release capsules and suspension:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 25 mg orally 2 or 3 times a day.
  • Maintenance dose: Adjust dose as needed and tolerated in increment of 25 mg or 50 mg weekly until satisfactory response or maximum dose is achieved.
  • Maximum single dose: The recommended dose is 100 mg.
  • Maximum daily dose: The recommended dose is 200 mg.

Suppository:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 50 mg rectally once a day.
  • Maintenance dose: The recommended dose is 50 to 200 mg rectally per day in divided doses.
  • Maximum single dose: The recommended dose is 100 mg.
  • Maximum daily dose: The recommended dose is 200 mg per day.

Extended-release:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally once a day.
  • For patients currently receiving immediate-release at 150 mg per day: Initial dose: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally twice a day.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Osteoarthritis:

Over 14 years:

Immediate-release capsules and suspension:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 25 mg orally 2 or 3 times a day.
  • Maintenance dose: Adjust dose as needed and tolerated in increment of 25 mg or 50 mg weekly until satisfactory response or maximum dose is achieved.
  • Maximum single dose: The recommended dose is 100 mg.
  • Maximum daily dose: The recommended dose is 200 mg.

Suppository:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 50 mg rectally once a day.
  • Maintenance dose: The recommended dose is 50 to 200 mg rectally per day in divided doses.
  • Maximum single dose: The recommended dose is 100 mg.
  • Maximum daily dose: The recommended dose is 200 mg per day.

Extended-release:

  • Initial dose: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally once a day.
  • For patients currently receiving immediate-release at 150 mg per day: Initial dose: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally twice a day.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Bursitis:

Over 14 years:

Immediate-release capsules and suspension: The recommended dose is 75 to 150 mg orally per day in 3 or 4 divided doses.

Suppository: The recommended dose is 50 mg rectally up to 3 times a day.

Extended Release: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally once or twice a day.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Tendonitis:

Over 14 years:

Immediate-release capsules and suspension: The recommended dose is 75 to 150 mg orally per day in 3 or 4 divided doses.

Suppository: The recommended dose is 50 mg rectally up to 3 times a day.

Extended Release: The recommended dose is 75 mg orally once or twice a day.

How is indomethacin available?

Indomethacin is available in the following dosage forms and strengths:

  • Capsule: 25 mg; 50 mg; 75 mg; 25 mg/5 mL; 1 mg; 20 mg; 40 mg

What should I do in case of an emergency or overdose?

In case of an emergency or an overdose, call your local emergency services or go to your nearest emergency room.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose of indomethacin, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your regular dose as scheduled. Do not take a double dose.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Review Date: July 19, 2017 | Last Modified: July 19, 2017

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