Interactions with ibuprofen
It’s important that you tell your health professional about all the medicines you are taking — including prescription, over-the-counter and complementary (herbal, ‘natural’, vitamins or mineral supplements) medicines — as they may interact with ibuprofen.
Keep a list of all your medicines and take it with you when you visit the doctor or pharmacist.
If you are taking low-dose aspirin for heart and circulatory problems (cardiovascular disease), you should avoid taking ibuprofen regularly as it may reduce the protective effect of aspirin. An occasional dose of an NSAID such as ibuprofen is not thought to do this. Talk to your doctor about whether it is safe for you to take these medicines together.
If you are taking ibuprofen, avoid taking aspirin or another NSAID for fever or pain relief, as it will increase the chance of side effects.
Medicines used to treat fungal infections such as fluconazole (e.g. Diflucan) and voriconazole (e.g. Vfend) may increase the chance of side effects with ibuprofen so you may need a lower dose of ibuprofen to prevent this from happening.
Ibuprofen (and all NSAIDs) can also interact with other groups (‘classes’) of medicines including:
- medicines that can increase the risk of bleeding (e.g. warfarin); talk to your doctor about alternative medicines for fever or pain relief. Find out more about how to treat a fever.
- medicines for high blood pressure (antihypertensives) and heart failure; ibuprofen and other NSAIDs can cause fluid retention and raise your blood pressure, so your doctor may need to monitor your condition more closely
- medicines that may affect kidney function (this may increase the chance of kidney problems with ibuprofen)
- medicines that are removed from the body via the kidney; NSAIDs can affect kidney function and so the amount of these other medicines in your body may rise more than it should, increasing your chance of side effects
- medicines that can raise potassium levels in your blood (e.g. ACE inhibitors, used to treat high blood pressure); NSAIDs such as ibuprofen can also raise your potassium levels, so your doctor may need to monitor your potassium levels more closely.
Always check with your doctor or pharmacist about whether your medicines are safe to take with ibuprofen. You can also read the consumer medicines information (CMI) leaflet for your medicine (if available).
Note about medicines names
Most medicines have two names: the active ingredient and the brand name. The active ingredient is the chemical in the medicine that makes it work. The brand name is the name given to the medicine by its manufacturer. There may be several brands that contain the same active ingredient. This website uses active ingredient names, with brand names in brackets. We also discuss medicines in groups or ‘classes’, when their effects or actions are very similar.