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Drug Interactions With Three Commonly Used Over-the-Counter Pain Medications 
 
by Robbi Erickson August 18, 2005

Aspirin

Aspirin is used as a pain reliever, a fever reducer, and as a blood thinner. If you have had an allergic reatction to any other pain medications or fever reducers you do not want to take aspirin as it could trigger an allergic reaction. Also, children and teenagers should not take aspirin when they have the chickenpox as this could lead to brain and liver damage also known as Reye’s Syndrome. Pregnant women should also be careful when taking aspirin, as it has been shown to cause birth defects and fetal death. It is especially important for pregnant women not to take aspirin during their last trimester, unless specifically advised by their doctor to do so. Aspirin can also interact with the following drugs:

1. Acetazolamide

Acetazolamide, used as a glaucoma treatment, can lead to the development of both acetazolamide and salicylate toxicity.

2. Charcoal

Charcoal acts as a neutralizing agent for aspirin and should be administered immediately after an overdose of aspirin.

3. Dipyridamole

Dipyridamole is normally used in conjunction with aspirin to help prevent blood clots form forming in the blood stream. Dipyridamole has a tendency to decrease the body’s ability to metabolize aspirin, which in turn can lead to higher aspirin levels in the person’s blood.

4. Ginko biloboa

Ginko biloboa is an over-the-counter substance used for memory and concentration improvement. It has a tendency to impair the clotting ability of a person who also takes aspirin, and it could possibly lead to hemorrhagic problems.

5. Griseofulvin

Griseofulvin, used for the treatment of skin infections like jock itch, will reduce plasma salicylate levels when taken in conjunction with aspirin.

6. Methylprednisolone

Methylprednisolone, a corticosteroid, may reduce your salicylate levels and increase your glomerular filtration rates. This fluctuation in body mechanisms may cause aspirin to remain in the blood longer causing patients to overdose accidentally even when following the directed dose schedule.

7. Nitroglycerin

The effectiveness of Nitroglycerin, used to widen blood vessels to allow for blood to flow through them more easily, may be impaired by the use of aspirin.

8. Oral contraception agents

Oral contraception agents may also reduce the effectiveness of aspirin.

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