Are you taking drugs?

If you are a senior tennis player, odds are you take some anti-inflammatory and/or painmeds killers on a regular basis. But what is the right pill for the problem?

A few years back, I had some severe tennis elbow pain; and of course, rather than taking time off from playing to let it heal, I took Ibuprofen before and iced it after. My self-dosage of the pills got up to what I believe is the maximum dose of four pills taken four times a day (16 pills a day!).

While it controlled the pain and allowed me to continue playing, I eventually started getting stomach pains and quit.

I was generally “pill-free” for a couple of years, till last year’s shoulder problem (caused by the Luxilon strings). For that, the doctor suggested I take Aleve/Naproxen; because they last 12 hours: one (maximum two) pill in the morning WITH FOOD, and one (maximum two) with dinner.

And now, for some hip pain and general muscle soreness, I take one Aleve/Naproxen in the morning and one at night.

The question is: what is the best pill for the most common ailments?

What if you have inflammation with some kind of wrist, elbow, or shoulder tendonitis… what should you take in what dosage?

Or, what if you just have regular joint (arthritis) or muscle pain from overuse… what pill and dosage is right for that?

Any thoughts????

3 thoughts on “Are you taking drugs?

  1. Hello George: My wife, Nancy, has had two hip replacements with the most recent in June. She takes 2 Aleeve with breakfast and is free of any pain all day. The hip replacement is called the “minimally invasive” type with a small cut on the front side of her leg. It is muscle pain and not bone related. She now plays 4-5 times/week.

    hi Gene – hope all is well with you. tks geo

  2. I am a pharmacist. There is no single “best” medicine. Choices depend upon various factors including the ailment and the patient. For mild pain relief Tylenol is probably the best choice for most people. It’s effective, safe and doesn’t upset the stomach. It is broken down by the liver so it may not be good if you have liver disease or if you drink a lot of booze. But Tylenol is not anti-inflammatory; if you have swelling with your pain, Advil/Aleve may be a better choice. They may cause stomach upset and should be taken with food. They should not be taken if you have ulcers or history of ulcers. They are broken down in the kidneys so be sure your kidneys are working properly for your age. There is sometimes an issue if you’re taking blood thinners (Coumadin) – you can see that it gets complicated especially when talking about seniors, who may be taking multiple medicines. If you have any doubt about which is the best for you I encourage you to talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

    Bill – great! thanks for that perspective (my father too was a pharmacist). geo

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