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Etodolac: Osteoarthritis Drug Uses, Dosage & Side Effects

What is etodolac? What is etodolac used for?

Etodolac belongs to a class of drugs called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Other members of this class include ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil, Nuprin, etc.), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn), indomethacin (Indocin), nabumetone (Relafen) and numerous others. These drugs are used for the management of mild to moderate pain, fever, and inflammation. They work by reducing the levels of prostaglandins which are chemicals that are responsible for pain and the fever and tenderness that often occur with inflammation.

Etodolac used to treat osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and acute pain. It blocks the enzyme that makes prostaglandins (cyclooxygenase), resulting in lower concentrations of prostaglandins. As a consequence, inflammation, pain and fever are reduced.

The FDA approved etodolac in January 1991.

Is etodolac available as a generic drug?


Do I need a prescription for etodolac?


What are the side effects of etodolac?

The most common side effects from etodolac are:

NSAIDs reduce the ability of blood to clot and therefore increase bleeding after an injury. Etodolac also may cause stomach and intestinal bleeding and ulcers. Sometimes, stomach ulceration and intestinal bleeding can occur without any abdominal pain.
Black, tarry stools, weakness, and dizziness upon standing may be the only signs of the bleeding. People who are allergic to other NSAIDs should not use etodolac. NSAIDs reduce the flow of blood to the kidneys and impair function of the kidneys. The impairment is most likely to occur in patients who already have impairment of kidney function or congestive heart failure, and treatment with NSAIDs in these patients should be done cautiously. Individuals with asthma are more likely to experience allergic reactions to etodolac and other NSAIDs.

Other important side effects of NSAIDs include:

What is the dosage for etodolac?

The recommended doses for general pain relief when using immediate release capsules or tablets are 200-400 mg every 6-8 hours.

Arthritis is managed with 600-1000 mg given in 2 or 3 divided doses daily.

The maximum recommended dose is 1000 mg daily. Total daily doses exceeding 1000 mg have not been adequately evaluated; however, some patients may benefit from a total daily dose of 1200 mg.

The recommended dose when using extended relief tablets is 400-1000 mg once daily. Doses above 1200 mg have not been evaluated.

Etodolac should be taken with food and 8-12 oz of water to avoid stomach related side effects.

Is etodolac safe to take if I’m pregnant or breastfeeding?

It is not known whether etodolac is excreted in
human milk.

What else should I know about etodolac?

What preparations of etodolac are available?

  • Capsules: 200 and 300 mg;
  • Tablets: 400 and 500 mg;
  • Extended Release: 400, 500 and 600 mg.
How should I keep etodolac stored?

Capsules and tablets of etodolac should be stored at room temperature, between 15 C to 30 C (59 F to 86 F).


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