Indomethacin is used to relieve pain, swelling, and joint stiffness caused by arthritis, gout, bursitis, and tendonitis. Reducing these symptoms helps you do more of your normal daily activities. This medication is known as a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID).
If you are treating a chronic condition such as arthritis, ask your doctor about non-drug treatments and/or using other medications to treat your pain. See also Warning section.
How to use Indomethacin Suppository
Read the Medication Guide provided by your pharmacist before you start using indomethacin and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
If the suppository is too soft to insert, put it in cold water or refrigerate it for 30 minutes before removing the foil wrapper. Unwrap the foil and moisten the suppository with a little water. Lie down on your left side with right knee bent. Push the suppository into the rectum with your finger. Remain lying down for a few minutes, and avoid having a bowel movement for at least an hour to allow the drug to be completely absorbed.
The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. Adults should not use more than 200 milligrams per day. For children, dosage is also based on weight. The maximum dose for children is 4 milligrams per kilogram a day or 150 to 200 milligrams a day, whichever is less. To reduce your risk of side effects (such as stomachbleeding), use this medication at the lowest effective dose for the shortest possible time. Do not increase your dose or use it more often than prescribed. For ongoing conditions such as arthritis, continue using it as directed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor or pharmacist.
For certain conditions (such as arthritis), it may take up to 4 weeks of using this drug regularly before you get the full benefit.
If you are using this drug “as needed” (not on a regular schedule), remember that pain medications work best if they are used as the first signs of pain occur. If you wait until the pain has worsened, the medication may not work as well.
Tell your doctor if your condition worsens.
See also Warning section.
Upset stomach, heartburn, headache, drowsiness, or dizziness may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
This medication may raise your blood pressure. Check your blood pressure regularly and tell your doctor if the results are high.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: rectal irritation, bloody stools, feeling the need to have frequent bowel movements, easy bruising/bleeding, unexplained stiff neck, hearing changes (such as ringing in the ears), mental/mood changes (such as confusion, hallucinations), signs of kidney problems (such as change in the amount of urine), symptoms of heart failure (such as swelling ankles/feet, unusual tiredness, unusual/sudden weight gain).
This drug may rarely cause serious (possibly fatal) liver disease. Get medical help right away if you have any symptoms of liver damage, including: dark urine, persistent nausea/vomiting/loss of appetite, severe stomach/abdominal pain, yellowing eyes/skin.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
This medicine may be harmful if swallowed. If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. If accidentally swallowed, you may experience symptoms such as: severe stomach pain, vomit that looks like coffee grounds, extreme drowsiness, slow or shallow breathing, confusion, seizures.
Do not share this medication with others.
Laboratory and/or medical tests (such as blood pressure, complete blood count, liver and kidney function tests) may be performed periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.
Lifestyle changes (such as weight loss if needed, strengthening/conditioning exercises) may help improve your flexibility, range of motion, and joint function. Consult your doctor for specific instructions.