Not sure how to cope without ibuprofen!?

I need some suggestions, please! I started a flare 3 or 4 days ago and I can't take ibuprofen or any NSAIDS because I have a stomach ulcer. I started 10 mg of prednisone a day but it's not helping enough with my severe arthritis pain. I see my specialist in a week, but just not sure how to function until then. I could take tramadol or hydrocodone but I don't think they help all that much, and they make me feel weird.

27 Replies

  • I can't take any NSAIDs either as they hurt my stomach even with omeprazole, the top of my stomach starts burning.

    I used to take paracetamol or tramadol but with little affect so am now on zomorph twice daily, I did try bupronorphine patches which I found great but had a skin reaction so reluctantly had to stop. It's hard if u have inflammation not just pain cos that's where the anti inflammatories are needed. As mine is caused by lupus I get minimal swelling if any at times.

    Maybe the Gp could up ur steroid dose til u see rheum??

  • The patches sound great. I will look into those! I have plenty of prednisone, so i just upped the dose myself out of desperation and will just tell the doc that's what I did (!?) 10 mg this mornong, and i have had a pretty good day. Thanks so much for the reply :)

  • No worries.

    I am always on 5mg Pred and up it to 15mg for a flare which usually does the trick you just have to make sure u reduce back carefully I usually go down to 10 for couple of days then back to 5.

    Tho at the moment I'm having a nightmare with my Dmards so not in a great way and had increased my Pred to 15daily but just want to eat on that dose! I've had to come back down as can't put anymore weight on! X

  • Yep, I think you're right-just up the prednisone for a while and then try to taper off again . I was all the way off of it for 6 months or so. Maybe I'll be able to get back to that again one day. It sure does give you cravings! But 10 mg yesterday and today got me feeling back to normal and I could go on a hike which is my therapy :) I hope your dmard situation improves. So many ups and downs. We've got to be so flexible and patient. Take care!

  • Hi

    I too can't take nsaids but I take co-codamal which gp prescribes as it's stronger than bought ones

  • Me too. You can buy co-codamol over the counter. I tend to rely on cold (or hot) packs during the day, and take just one dose of the prescription-only Zapain (which has more codeine in it) at night to get me off to sleep.

    Hope you feel better soon x

  • Thank you for the ideas! :)

  • Oh, never heard of that--i wonder if it's called something else here in the states. Thanks so much, I'll look into it!

  • Try the over the counter Co Codamol - I take one or two at night and they help me sleep too. Good luck

  • Thanks! :)

  • I have anaphylaxis when I take any NSAIDS and do not tolerate tramadol. So I just take acetaminophen on top of the prednisone and hydroxy. Warm baths help when it gets bad. I try drinking tea with turmeric in it, as well as exercise which is the last thing we want when hurting but gentle exercises help. I hope you feel better soon, I know when in the midst of it it doesn't seem like it will pass. ❤️Nan

  • Thank you so much Nan, for the kindness I feel in your post as well as the ideas!!!❤

  • I can't take NSAIDS either because of my stomach but for some reason, I have no problem taking Mobic\Meloxicam 7.5 and it doesn't mess with my stomach issues at all!

    BTW, Prednisone can exacerbate our illnesses so only take when you have a major issue, like swelling around your lungs. Dr.s will not tell you this!!

  • Thank you, I will look into meloxicam. And yes, i DREAD taking prednosone. i just lost the 100 lbs i gained over years of being on it.

  • You could try Diclofenac suppositories. I have used these, they work very well, and of course, your stomach is protected. Diclofenac is a strong anti-inflammatory and I was prescribed 50mg twice a day until it settled. Use a little KY to pop them in.

  • Oh, i never would have thought of that. Thanks!

  • Hi,

    I have severe arthritis pain,too.heating pads,massages etc.just help so much.

    i also had weird tummy problems,which were ,after tests,nothing you have them,too?my gp recommended a probiotic...and it pain in my hands and feet is greatly reduced.i believe the immune system is in the tummy.i had read this in pubmed articles,and now i believe it.PM me if you want the brand .keep in mind,our lupus is all dif for us...but i never would think something right in front of my eyes will help...but it did!!

    i can not take ibuprofen or tylenol etc. because they made my tummy hurt real bad.

    happy easter

    love dunkXXX

  • Thanks, Dunk! Man, the arthritis pain is the worst, right? Especially if its all over at the same time. Jaw, neck, shoulders, elbows hands, and on down. But right now I can be grateful it's not as bad as it has been at times. I will try a probiotic. That's an easy solution! I go through phases where I drink kefir everyday, and come to think about it, I DO feel better as a result. Thank you, and Happy Easter to you as well!!

  • hey,i read all the other lupies replies to your original question,and 1 stuck out for me....the suppository of diflocenac...i went and asked my md for it,as my tummy can not take the harshness orally,and my pharmicist is compounding it as i write this.

    i can not take this pain anymore.

    i told my pharmacist i can not have preservatives,dyes,additives in it,so she is using gelatin as its carrier.

    boy,i hope it helps!!

    i will keep in touch,because it may help you too!!!

    where are you in this bid vast world??

    sorry to admit this,but i am in the USA,home of the .......much love and peace


  • I've been put on Gabapentin Jorgenli for neuropathic pain as I cant take antiflammatories either. Had an ulcer in 2005 that needed surgery. I had shingles well over a year ago and am still getting sharp pains and some discomfort, its helping with sleep as well

    My gp thought some of my pain was from tendonitis and bursitis in hips and arms, I have osteoarthritis. Might be worth asking about it....

  • Joint pain is so trying! Thank you, I will ask the dr. About gabapentin. I'm glad it helps you!

  • Hope it helps if he prescribes it xxx

  • Thanks so much chrisj!

  • I can't take them either cause I have myeloma cancer and I have to protect my kidneys - I'm on buprenorphine patches and oromorth top up also now on pregabilin twice a day works great for nerve type pain and nortryptylline at night - for migraine I have sumatriptan that really helps ! But still say the best thing to help me sleep is a very hot bath with Epsom salts and then very hot water bottles - best wishes x

  • Oh gosh. Lupus and other difficult problems as well! I'm sorry . And I hope those medicines help You! The epsome salt bath is one of my favorite things too.

  • You need omega 3 in your life. Fish Olive oil n maybe some fish oil capsules.its really good n heathy good. Good for your joints

  • Hi Jorgenli,

    We published a blog article about pain management last month which you may find helpful. You can read it at

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