Arthritis medications taken by up to one in four US adults may contain harmful ingredients that aren’t printed on their labels, health officials warn.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) spent 10 years evaluating the ingredients in over-the-counter arthritis and pain medications and found that 22 contain active ingredients like corticosteroids and muscle relaxants.
The agency warned that not labeling these ingredients could put the 58 million Americans with arthritis at risk for serious health issues, such as kidney and liver problems. It could also prove dangerous for those already taking medications with those ingredients.
‘It is clear from the results of our decade of testing that retailers and distributors, including online marketplaces, do not effectively prevent these types of potentially harmful products from being sold to consumers,’ the FDA wrote.
‘FDA cannot test all products on the market that contain potentially harmful hidden ingredients. Enforcement actions and consumer advisories for tainted products only cover a small fraction of the tainted over-the-counter products on the market.’
Many of the 22 affected products have been advertised and sold in retail stores and online marketplaces like Etsy and Amazon. They can contain undisclosed ingredients in the NSAID, steroid, and muscle relaxant families
The FDA warned that not labeling ingredients like NSAIDs, steroids, and muscle relaxants could put the 58 million Americans with arthritis at risk for serious health issues. It could also prove dangerous for those already taking medications with those ingredients
‘Even if a product is not included in this list, consumers should exercise caution before using these types of arthritis and pain management products.’
Many of the affected products have been advertised and sold in retail stores and online marketplaces like Etsy and Amazon. They can contain undisclosed ingredients in the NSAID, steroid, and muscle relaxant families.
NSAIDs are medications used to reduce inflammation and treat inflammatory conditions like arthritis, headaches, and muscle injuries. Common examples that could be hidden in arthritis medications include ibuprofen, naproxen, diclofenac, piroxicam, and ketorolac.
The FDA warned that these could interact with other medications and raise the risk of certain health conditions, such as heart issues and liver injury. Additionally, the agency has also warned that pregnant women should avoid taking NSAIDs for the first half of pregnancy.
Corticosteroids are also anti-inflammatory medications that can treat severe arthritis and other types of pain. Dexamethasone and prednisone are two of the most common examples. When taken for long periods of time or at high doses, they can lead to extreme fatigue, muscle weakness, loss of appetite, and weight loss, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK).
Unlike anabolic steroids, which are synthetic variations of male sex hormones that promote muscle growth, corticosteroids are used to treat health conditions like allergies, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and autoimmune disorders.
Muscle relaxants treat muscle pain and swelling, as well as injuries like lower back pain. These can lead to sedation, dizziness, and low blood pressure.
Arthritis is the swelling or tenderness of one or more joints. There are more than 100 subtypes, and the most common are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
The most common symptoms are pain, redness, heat, stiffness, diminished range, and swelling in the joints. Federal data suggests that 25 million adults have to limit their daily activities due to arthritis symptoms, and that number is expected to grow by 2040.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the condition affects 24 percent of US adults, which is about 54 million. The condition is most common in adults over the age of 65. The CDC estimates that half of US adults over 65 have the condition, while nearly one-third of those ages 45 to 65 have been diagnosed.
Treatment includes OTC and prescription medications and managing activity. When taken at high doses, they can lead to sedation and dizziness. They have also been shown to lower blood pressure, which can lead to weakness, fainting, blurry vision, and nausea.
Osteoarthritis, the most common form, is a degenerative disease that breaks down joint tissues over time. Another common type, rheumatoid arthritis (RA), is an autoimmune disease in which a person’s immune system attacks healthy cells within the body’s joints, leading to swelling and inflammation. RA can also cause heart, lung and eye problems.
The FDA encouraged consumers to report adverse effects to its MedWatch reporting program.
Source: | This article originally belongs to Dailymail.co.uk
Content source – www.soundhealthandlastingwealth.com