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Anti Inflammatory drugs

PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2007 4:19 am
by Dabonza
Hi I have a question. I went to my GP for a check up on how Im going with my back and he gave me some Celebrex which are anti-inflammatory tablets. My question for anyone who might know is,

Are anti-inflammatory drugs only for pain reduction (through reducing inflammation) or does reducing that inflammation help the body heal better or something?

Please elaborate.

PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2007 10:31 am
by cygnet
Hi Dabonza,

I'm not a doctor, but my understanding of anti-inflammatory drugs is that they reduce pain and inflammation. Inflammation is a response by your immune system to injury or illness.

The inflamed part, muscle or nerve, whatever the case is, may feel hot, swollen, and painful. If the inflammation is fighting off germs, it's helping your body to heal. If it is from an injury, it's also helping your body heal, but reducing the amount of inflammation can help you feel better as you heal.

Sometimes inflammation can be chronic, lasting even after the injury has healed. In that scenario, anti-inflammatory drugs might help break the cycle of inflammation and inactivity and allow a person to be more active (such as doing back exercises, aerobic exercise or PT) which I've read can help control chronic inflammation.

I have sciatica, and was told by my doctor that anti-inflammatories like NSAIDs and cortisone can help an inflamed nerve, which actually swells up when it is inflamed, to reduce in size. Sometimes, when the nerve gets smaller, the sciatica symptoms improve because there is more room around the nerve and it is not being pinched as much.

I also imagine that the inflammation brings white blood cells to the area, and they help to absorb the herniated part of a disc that is pinching the nerve. So in that way for example, inflammation does help healing.