Table of Contents > Drug > Diclofenac (Topical) Print

Diclofenac (Topical)

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Notes
Related terms
Uses
Dosing
Safety
Author information

Notes

    Related terms
    • Brand Names: U.S.: Flector®;Pennsaid®;Solaraze®;Voltaren® Gel
    • Brand Names: Canada: Pennsaid®;Voltaren® EmulgelT

    Uses
    • It is used to ease pain and swelling.
    • It is used to treat arthritis.
    • It is used to treat precancerous skin wounds. It may take 1 month to see the full effect.
    • Diclofenac blocks chemicals that cause pain and swelling.

    Dosing

    How to take

    • Do not take this drug by mouth. Use on your skin only. Keep out of your mouth, nose, and eyes (may burn).
    • Wash your hands before and after use.
    • Do not wash your hands after use if putting on the hand.
    • Clean affected part before use. Make sure to dry well.
    • Skin gel:
    • Put a thin layer on the affected skin and rub in gently.
    • Do not use sunscreen or other drugs on affected part.
    • Skin patch:
    • Put patch on clean, dry, healthy skin.
    • Do not bathe, shower, or swim after putting on.
    • If the patch falls off, put a new one on.
    • If the patch loosens, put tape over it to hold it in place.
    • Skin solution:
    • Put on clean, dry, healthy skin.
    • Use 10 drops at a time. Repeat until a total of 40 drops has been put on knee. You may put right on the knee or on the hand and then onto the knee.
    • Spread evenly on front, back, and side of knee.
    • Let dry before covering with clothing.
    • Do not bathe, shower, or swim for 30 minutes after applying.
    • You may use cosmetics, lotions, insect repellant, sunscreen, or other skin drugs after the skin has dried.
    • Do not use heat or bandages on the treated part.

    Missed Dose

    • Put on a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
    • If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
    • Do not put on 2 doses or extra doses.

    Storage

    • Store at room temperature. Do not freeze gel.
    • Protect gel from heat.
    • After you take off a skin patch, be sure to fold the sticky sides of the patch to each other.
    • Throw away unused patches when they are no longer needed. Take them from the pouch, take off liner, and fold in half.

    Safety



    Warnings

    • This drug may raise the chance of heart attack, stroke, and high blood pressure. This has been seen with long-term use or at urgent times (right after heart surgery). Use care if you have risks for heart disease (high blood pressure, high cholesterol, overweight, high blood sugar (diabetes), cigarette smoking, man older than 40 years of age, other family members with early heart disease, woman after change of life).
    • Do not use this drug right before or after heart bypass surgery.
    • This drug may raise the chance of ulcers or bleeding from the stomach or bowel. Talk with the doctor.
    • Sometimes drugs are not safe when you take them with certain other drugs. Taking them together can cause bad side effects. This is one of those drugs. Be sure to talk to your doctor about all the drugs you take.
    • Please read the medication guide.

    Avoid

    • If you have an allergy to diclofenac or any other part of this drug.
    • Tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs. Make sure to tell about the allergy and what signs you had. This includes telling about rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
    • Do not use on skin that has any problems.

    Precautions

    • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
    • Check all drugs you are taking with your doctor. This drug may not mix well with some other drugs.
    • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant.
    • Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding.
    • Skin gel, skin solution:
    • Do not use coverings (bandages, dressings, make-up) unless told to do so by your doctor.
    • You may get sunburned more easily. Avoid sun, sunlamps, and tanning beds. Use sunscreen and wear clothing and eyewear that protects you from the sun.
    • Skin patch:
    • The patch may have metal. Take off the patch before an MRI.

    Side Effects

    • Skin irritation.
    • Itching.

    Monitoring

    • Change in the health problem being treated. Is it better, worse, or about the same?

    Contact a healthcare provider

    • If you think there was an overdose, call your local poison control center or ER right away.
    • Signs of a very bad reaction to the drug. These include wheezing; chest tightness; fever; itching; bad cough; blue or gray skin color; seizures; or swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat.
    • Chest pain or pressure.
    • Change in strength on 1 side is greater than the other, trouble speaking or thinking, change in balance, or blurred eyesight.
    • Any bruising or bleeding.
    • Very bad skin irritation.
    • Any rash.
    • Side effect or health problem is not better or you are feeling worse.

    General Statements

    • If you have a very bad allergy, wear an allergy ID at all times.
    • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
    • Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
    • Most drugs may be thrown away in household trash after mixing with coffee grounds or kitty litter and sealing in a plastic bag.
    • In Canada, take any unused drugs to the pharmacy. Also, visit http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/hl-vs/iyh-vsv/med/disposal-defaire-eng.php#th to learn about the right way to get rid of unused drugs.
    • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
    • Call your doctor for help with any side effects. If in the U.S., you may also call the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or if in Canada, you may also call Health Canada's Vigilance Program at 1-866-234-2345.
    • Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including OTC, natural products, or vitamins.

    Author information
    • Copyright © 1978-2013 Lexi-Comp Inc. All rights reserved.

    Copyright © 2011 Natural Standard (www.naturalstandard.com)


    The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.

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