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"Preventative" medication

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
On one of our trips last year we met some people who took pain killers every morning "just in case" and to ward off stiffness.

I'm not keen on the idea of filling my body with unnecessary chemicals but does anyone else do this? What are the benefits and what's the implication of taking things that you don't really need?
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Theres no point- you're body would surely begin to rely on the pain killers and then they wouldnt be as effective?

Just bloomin lazy in my opinion
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I agree, Nadenoodlee. Not a good idea. Take them when you need them.
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The only ones I've taken "just in case" are decongestants and a paracetamol. This is because although I can feel like my ears and tubes are fine, halfway up the mountain can get a very painful blockage due to inflamation and congestion. The paracetamol clears the inflammation and the decongestants er, decongest. I did it when I went about week after clearing a cold (as the effects can linger for that time). I took them just before the flight there, the climb into the Alps and the first cable car up. After that I decided I was safe.

Having fallen foul of stealth ear inflammation before (the pain can last a day or two), I didn't want to risk it again. I assume others are less susceptible, though.
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Nadenoodlee, My thoughts exactly....then again they were darksiders Wink

My solution is to make sure I've always got some in a pocket and grab a couple if and when I fall to ward off inflamation. But I'm always open to suggestions and if there's a good case for doing it another way I'd be happy to give it a try...
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homphomp wrote:
I'm not keen on the idea of filling my body with unnecessary chemicals but does anyone else do this? What are the benefits and what's the implication of taking things that you don't really need?


.............every night when away on the slopes from the hours of 6pm till 2am usually! The benefits are obvious while you're drinking, not so obvious in the morning, at that point my body needs polluting again with a load of fried food. NehNeh NehNeh NehNeh
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Dan, Very Happy Very Happy but surely those are necessary chemicals Puzzled
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Not sure the chemicals (or the stuff we discovered on the bottom of the jugs) put into FAXE (- the cheapo beer you find everywhere in France) are entirely necessary Puzzled Puzzled
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Not painkillers (unless I actually need them) but I do take anti-inflammatories every morning before ski-ing. Mainly because I've suffered badly from trapped nerves etc in my back and ski-ing usually sets it off - especially when I fall over (frequently !) Toofy Grin
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Normally by about my third day of skiing, I take Ibuprofen first thing in the morning.
This is purely to allow me to bend my knee enough to get out of bed.
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Wear The Fox Hat wrote:
Normally by about my third day of skiing, I take Ibuprofen first thing in the morning.
This is purely to allow me to bend my knee enough to get out of bed.


That's your age Very Happy I have the same problem which I address by having a fairly brisk walk after I finish skiing, it seems to help me. The worst thing of all is skiing all day and then driving home for an hour; when I get home I feel pretty stiff so I go for a walk round the village for 10 mins or so.
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I was advised by my GP that taking anti-inflammatories prophylactically certainly shouldn't do any harm, and may help prevent soreness at the end of the day. He did advise against excessive use of aspirin and paracetamol though (possible GI problems).
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masopa wrote:
I was advised by my GP that taking anti-inflammatories prophylactically certainly shouldn't do any harm, and may help prevent soreness at the end of the day. He did advise against excessive use of aspirin and paracetamol though (possible GI problems).


You mean things like ibuprofen I guess ? I'm not keen, they give me heartburn amongst other side-effects Very Happy
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Ibuprofen quite commonly cause heartburn, taking with meals can help with this,
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Excessive "consumption" of NSAIDs (non steroidal anti inflammatory drugs) like ibuprofen have long been associated with gastrointestinal problems; from serious complaints like GI bleeding, stomach ulcers down to heartburn. I would certainly not recommend taking them on the "off chance". Most are fast acting enough to take if & when problems occur. Ibuprofen gels are also useful for topical application - they don't go through your stomach so don't cause the same problems.
ise's, brisk walk is the best idea - it circulates the blood to your muscles & flushes out all the toxins that have accumulated during the day & make you ache the next day
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ise, unfortunately it's not my age, but a football injury from several years ago
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I have had G.O.R.D. for such a long time that the cells at the bottom end of my oesophagus have now changed permanently. My gastro enterologist is pretty anti aspirin, ibuprofen and most similar painkillers because they have such nasty side effects inside the stomach. Aspirin would never be certified if it was invented today. On the other hand some call it a 'wonder drug'.

I believe something called Celebrex is a relatively 'stomach-friendly' anti-inflamatory but it may be prescription only ?
I think Ski Bunny has it right - for most people have something handy for use as and when needed. Of course, for pre-exisiting conditions you might want to take something in advance but not on an empty stomach, please.
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Seems mad to me but when I took a friend (an orthopaedic surgeon and BASI ski instructor) snowboarding for the first time she dosed up on paracetemol before we headed out!


Last edited by Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see? on Wed 19-05-04 11:30; edited 3 times in total
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playdreamer, welcome to Snowheads..........just had a look at your SITE......very nice!! Cool


Last edited by You need to Login to know who's really who. on Tue 18-05-04 16:20; edited 1 time in total
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Dan,
Quote:

just had a look at your nice, very nice!!

His/her very nice WHAT Puzzled
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Embarassed should concentrate while posting!
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My name's Mark and I have popped a few ibuprofen before now just to get past the getting out of bed phase, owing to some major aches after a heavy day. But it's under control and I can handle it.
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playdreamer, if you are going to pre-dose then your first day of snowboarding is an excellent time to do so.
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The Doctor is In!
I am alarmed by some of the comments here.

1. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are potent drugs with significant side effects at normal therapeutic dose (fancy language for saying they have real risks at recommended dose)

2. Paracetamol is not an NSAID. We remain unsure of how it works. It has no serious side effects at normal therapeutic dose.

For the risks of NSAIDS you can read the report to MDA by National Consumers League (2002).
If that aint scared you enough, and you’ve got 20 minutes to kill you can read POSTGRADUATE MEDICINE online.
Quote:
In the United States, gastrointestinal complications induced by nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) cause more than 100,000 hospitalizations and an estimated 16,500 deaths annually.......
Severe complications primarily include gastrointestinal hemorrhage, ulcer perforation, and bowel obstruction. Among long-term users of NSAIDs, the mortality rate from gastrointestinal complications is 0.22% per year
For a British perspective here is an article from Bandolier.

NSAID is a stupid name. It causes a lot of confusion. Who would call something by what it doesn't do? A better name would be Prostoglandin Inhibitors . Anti-inflammatory is also an unfortunate term. Just think of them as a type of painkiller.

Conclusion: it is not sensible to take NSAIDS without a proper indication. Regular ingestion just-in-case is ill-advised. If you do suffer a painful condition, try paracetamol first. If you have to use NSAIDS there is increasing evidence that the selective COX2 inhibitors (rofecoxib and celecoxib) are the Best Buy.
I ski with Vioxx in my backpack.
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Jonpim, good advice, however not too many of the GPs I know would give out Vioxx (expense) without good cause. i.e existing condition, injury, etc. Much more likely to give out Ibuprofen and Diclofenac though. My advice would be take Paracetamol IF you need to, NSAID's if you must (because of existing condition, or injury. However, occasional Ibuprofen is safe for most of us, just be cautious. Best thing to do is stretch muscles before and after exercise, and get fit before you go!!! And 'ask your pharmacist' before purchasing medicines for your trip. Will read that article when I get a mo at work tomorrow.
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As usual some good stuff from the Gasman Jonpim.
Quote:
A US study [17] puts the human impact of NSAID-related gastrointestinal deaths into perspective: the rate is higher than that found from cervical cancer, asthma or malignant melanoma.

Just one snippet from his link to Bandolier. Not nice things these over the counter chemistry sets. Definitely not to be munched like Smarties 'just in case'.

Any snowHeads suffered from gout ? Not funny at the best of times and inside a skiboot excrutiating. That's when you will really need something effective to deal with the problem. Not when you think you might take a tumble later.
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Dr. Jonpim ,
Excellent advice. And with respect to side effects, these may not be immediately apparent, unnecessary use of even the most allegedly 'benign' of drugs can do harm in the longer term... don't believe everything you read on the label!
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Having read all of the above, I don't think that there is any harm in taking a preventative dose of paracetamol (acetoaminophen in the USA, I think) on a daily basis to prevent aches, pains and stiffness. Also, from what I remember, paracetamol has a slightly different mode of action when taken regularly, rather than on an ad-hoc basis.

As for the NSAIDs, even the cox-2 selective inhibitors (Vioxx, rofecoxib etc) still have a significant chance of causing gastrointestinal side effects (vomiting blood etc), rising to the same level as the older NSAIDs if used regularly for a period of more than six months. Therefore all NSAIDs are probably best avoided unless there is a specific indication.
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 You know it makes sense.
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Jonpim, Thanks....you've confirmed my thoughts that I should keep my body chemical free unless I absolutely have to take something.

I didn't realise that NSAID's were so dangerous, we're constantly bombarded with the need to take care with paracetamol that I think people take these as a "safer" alternative. I'm definitely going to treat them with a little more respect!
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Johpim’s spot on, trust me NSAIDS can really f***-oop yer GI system! And anyone who feels the need to pre-medicate before hitting the slopes needs to take a look at their fitness, technique, and mental condition first.

I know many of us have pre-existing physical limitations (some of you know a few of mine) but we should address these far more aggressively with pre-emptive physio and training as opposed to chemical support that will do nothing reduce further injury and stands a good chance of debilitating us further.

As for those that insist of wearing joint supports, it’s very rare that proper diagnosis and properly applied remedial treatment and exercise will not promote a return to normal function and strength. There are too many people of my acquaintance who adjust their lives down to suit an injury and not take the time and effort to overcome and cure it! I hasten to add that there are also people who labour through immense pain and restriction to keep enjoying their sport, you’ll also find that these people work far harder to do this than those who strap on their knee supports as a matter of habit.

Get a good fitness assessment, get in the gym (etc.), take some lessons, then most of us will never need to pre-medicate.
Wear body armour and a helmet as the more obvious means of preventative medicine.

Lastly, we all need to become more aware of the medication, pharmaceutical residues and by products that are being flushed into our environment and into our food chains (one of the few good reasons for drinking French bottled mineral water).

(usual contents of day pack: Ibuprofen, Tubigrip, chemical ice/heat pack, survival blanket)
Crying or Very sad rant over! Wink
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Codicil: As a boarder, the only conceivable thing that can feel pain is my butt and I have discovered a wonderful Dutch made topical ointment, some sort of plant extract I’m given to understand, My Dutch is woeful and I can’t understand the instructions but it seems to mention the unintentional dangers to others of “De passieve flatulentie”. Never mind, my butt seems to be remarkably happy and I’m sure that no-one else will notice. Madeye-Smiley
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Wait, so it prevents your cracked cheeks from getting bruised by inflating your trousers?
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Masque, did u buy that in Amsterdam?
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Jonpim, I know you aren't NHS online, but I have an ancient stock of something called Indocid (I think) that I take very occasionally for inflamation from all sorts of causes including arthritis and gout. Is it one of those NSAIDs you mentioned? They do work like magic, but generally I stick to the homphomp, philosophy that chemicals are for cleaning the loo with, not swallowing.
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Chris Bish, yes Indocid is. One of the earlier and nastier ones as regards effects on the stomach, I suspect Jonpim will confirm. Voltaren is another or maybe a brand name for the same thing. Sodium Diclofenac is also not very gut-friendly. You have my sympathy as a fellow gout sufferer (only very occasionally these days, touch wood). If you need something to take the sting out of it, I'd suggest asking your quack for one of the newer ones
Quote:

If you have to use NSAIDS there is increasing evidence that the selective COX2 inhibitors (rofecoxib and celecoxib) are the Best Buy.

Water is the best chemical you can take for gout and many other things.
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Chris Bish wrote:
but generally I stick to the homphomp, philosophy that chemicals are for cleaning the loo with, not swallowing.


I agree. When I go skiing I try to bring a chiropractor with me, very useful for clearing up problems. Last year I landed on my head of a jump in Arinsal and was fairly sore. A few clicks later that night had me sorted for the rest of the week! Not everyone can afford this luxury but having a chiropractor girlfriend helps!!
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kuwait_ian, Thanks. I am a very rare visitor to a doctor, but do seem to be struggling lately, probably because I am trying to play serious cricket at my ludicrously advanced age. Not to mention my ludicrously advanced weight.
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Chris Bish, I am also of a certain age and circumferentially challenged.
The infamous Atkins diet took 10 kgs off me in 2 months. No problems. Felt great going skiing without that excess baggage. And the low carbs seem to help with acid refluxing too. A friend of mine found the same thing.
Dr. A does warn of possible uric acid problems so I took some Zyloric (Alapurinol) for a while but I found the amounts of water I was drinking sufficient to flush out all the nasties.
I'm now a chemical-free zone for the first time in ages. Don't like popping pills but sometimes you have to. Enjoy the cricket season. Cool
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Chris Bish, serious cricket.............what's this Puzzled Ours only gets serious if someone knocks over the PIMMS!!! mind you managed to score 98 and take 4 wickets off 18 overs on Saturday - felt very sore on Sunday as it was the first game!!!! Think i'll retire for the season now Toofy Grin
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Chris Bish, from my experience NHS online would give you the exact opposite advice to Jonpim, they have told many of my (and ny hubbies) customers/patients to visit thier pharmacy and get some Ibuprofen, when it was inappropriate or contraindicated for them .
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