Diclofenac Potassium: Package Insert and Label Information
DICLOFENAC POTASSIUM- diclofenac potassium tablet, film coated
Mylan Pharmaceuticals Inc.
WARNING: RISK OF SERIOUS CARDIOVASCULAR AND GASTROINTESTINAL EVENTS
Cardiovascular Thrombotic Events
- Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) cause an increased risk of serious cardiovascular thrombotic events, including myocardial infarction and stroke, which can be fatal. This risk may occur early in treatment and may increase with duration of use (see WARNINGS).
- Diclofenac potassium tablets are contraindicated in the setting of coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery (see CONTRAINDICATIONS, WARNINGS).
Gastrointestinal Bleeding, Ulceration, and Perforation
- NSAIDs cause an increased risk of serious gastrointestinal (GI) adverse events including bleeding, ulceration, and perforation of the stomach or intestines, which can be fatal. These events can occur at any time during use and without warning symptoms. Elderly patients and patients with a prior history of peptic ulcer disease and/or GI bleeding are at greater risk for serious GI events (see WARNINGS).
Diclofenac potassium tablets, USP are a benzeneacetic acid derivative. Diclofenac potassium tablets are available for oral administration. Diclofenac potassium, USP is a white to off-white or slightly yellowish crystalline powder and is sparingly soluble in water at 25ºC. The chemical name is Potassium [o -(2,6-dichloroanilino)phenyl] acetate. The molecular weight is 334.24. Its molecular formula is C14 H10 C12 KNO2, and it has the following structural formula:
The inactive ingredients in diclofenac potassium tablets include: anhydrous lactose, colloidal silicon dioxide, croscarmellose sodium, glyceryl triacetate, hypromellose, magnesium stearate, microcrystalline cellulose, polydextrose, polyethylene glycol, sodium lauryl sulfate and titanium dioxide.
Mechanism of Action
Diclofenac has analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and antipyretic properties.
The mechanism of action of diclofenac potassium tablets, like that of other NSAIDs, is not completely understood but involves inhibition of cyclooxygenase (COX-1 and COX-2).
Diclofenac is a potent inhibitor of prostaglandin synthesis in vitro. Diclofenac concentrations reached during therapy have produced in vivo effects. Prostaglandins sensitize afferent nerves and potentiate the action of bradykinin in inducing pain in animal models. Prostaglandins are mediators of inflammation. Because diclofenac is an inhibitor of prostaglandin synthesis, its mode of action may be due to a decrease of prostaglandins in peripheral tissues.
Diclofenac is 100% absorbed after oral administration compared to IV administration as measured by urine recovery. However, due to first-pass metabolism, only about 50% of the absorbed dose is systemically available (see Table 1). In some fasting volunteers, measurable plasma levels are observed within 10 minutes of dosing with diclofenac potassium tablets. Peak plasma levels are achieved approximately 1 hour in fasting normal volunteers, with a range of .33 to 2 hours. Food has no significant effect on the extent of diclofenac absorption. However, there is usually a delay in the onset of absorption and a reduction in peak plasma levels of approximately 30%.
Normal Healthy Adults(20-52 years)
Coefficient of Variation (%)
Absolute Bioavailability (%)
[N = 7]
[N = 65]
Oral Clearance (CL/F; mL/min)
[N = 61]
Renal Clearance (% unchanged drug in urine)
[N = 7]
Apparent Volume of Distribution (V/F; L/kg)
[N = 61]
Terminal Half-life (hr)
[N = 48]
The apparent volume of distribution (V/F) of diclofenac potassium is 1.3 L/kg.
Diclofenac is more than 99% bound to human serum proteins, primarily to albumin. Serum protein binding is constant over the concentration range (0.15-105 mcg/mL) achieved with recommended doses.
Diclofenac diffuses into and out of the synovial fluid. Diffusion into the joint occurs when plasma levels are higher than those in the synovial fluid, after which the process reverses and synovial fluid levels are higher than plasma levels. It is not known whether diffusion into the joint plays a role in the effectiveness of diclofenac.
Five diclofenac metabolites have been identified in human plasma and urine. The metabolites include 4′-hydroxy-, 5-hydroxy-, 3′-hydroxy-, 4′, 5-dihydroxy- and 3′-hydroxy-4′-methoxy-diclofenac. The major diclofenac metabolite, 4′-hydroxy-diclofenac, has very weak pharmacologic activity. The formation of 4’-hydroxy-diclofenac is primarily mediated by CYP2C9. Both diclofenac and its oxidative metabolites undergo glucuronidation or sulfation followed by biliary excretion. Acylglucuronidation mediated by UGT2B7 and oxidation mediated by CYP2C8 may also play a role in diclofenac metabolism. CYP3A4 is responsible for the formation of minor metabolites, 5-hydroxy- and 3’-hydroxy-diclofenac. In patients with renal dysfunction, peak concentrations of metabolites 4′-hydroxy- and 5-hydroxy-diclofenac were approximately 50% and 4% of the parent compound after single oral dosing compared to 27% and 1% in normal healthy subjects.
Diclofenac is eliminated through metabolism and subsequent urinary and biliary excretion of the glucuronide and the sulfate conjugates of the metabolites. Little or no free unchanged diclofenac is excreted in the urine. Approximately 65% of the dose is excreted in the urine and approximately 35% in the bile as conjugates of unchanged diclofenac plus metabolites. Because renal elimination is not a significant pathway of elimination for unchanged diclofenac, dosing adjustment in patients with mild to moderate renal dysfunction is not necessary. The terminal half-life of unchanged diclofenac is approximately 2 hours.
The pharmacokinetics of diclofenac potassium tablets have not been investigated in pediatric patients.
Pharmacokinetic differences due to race have not been identified.
Hepatic metabolism accounts for almost 100% of diclofenac potassium tablets elimination, so patients with hepatic disease may require reduced doses of diclofenac potassium tablets compared to patients with normal hepatic function.
Diclofenac pharmacokinetics has been investigated in subjects with renal insufficiency. No differences in the pharmacokinetics of diclofenac have been detected in studies of patients with renal impairment. In patients with renal impairment (inulin clearance 60-90, 30-60, and < 30 mL/min; N = 6 in each group), AUC values and elimination rate were comparable to those in healthy subjects.
Drug Interactions Studies
When co-administered with voriconazole (inhibitor of CYP2C9, 2C19 and 3A4 enzyme), the Cmax and AUC of diclofenac increased by 114% and 78%, respectively (see PRECAUTIONS: Drug Interactions).
When NSAIDs were administered with aspirin, the protein binding of NSAIDs were reduced, although the clearance of free NSAID was not altered. The clinical significance of this interaction is not known. See Table 2 for clinically significant drug interactions of NSAIDs with aspirin (see PRECAUTIONS: Drug Interactions).
INDICATIONS AND USAGE
Carefully consider the potential benefits and risks of diclofenac potassium tablets and other treatment options before deciding to use diclofenac potassium tablets. Use the lowest effective dose for the shortest duration consistent with individual patient treatment goals (see WARNINGS: Gastrointestinal Bleeding, Ulceration, and Perforation).
Diclofenac potassium tablets are indicated:
- For treatment of primary dysmenorrhea
- For relief of mild to moderate pain
- For relief of the signs and symptoms of osteoarthritis
- For relief of the signs and symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis
Diclofenac potassium tablets are contraindicated in the following patients:
- Known hypersensitivity (e.g., anaphylactic reactions and serious skin reactions) to diclofenac or any components of the drug product (see WARNINGS: Anaphylactic Reactions, Serious Skin Reactions).
- History of asthma, urticaria, or allergic-type reactions after taking aspirin or other NSAIDs. Severe, sometimes fatal, anaphylactic reactions to NSAIDs have been reported in such patients (see WARNINGS: Anaphylactic Reactions, Exacerbation of Asthma Related to Aspirin Sensitivity).
- In the setting of coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery (see WARNINGS: Cardiovascular Thrombotic Events).
Cardiovascular Thrombotic Events
Clinical trials of several COX-2 selective and nonselective NSAIDs of up to three years duration have shown an increased risk of serious cardiovascular (CV) thrombotic events, including myocardial infarction (MI) and stroke, which can be fatal. Based on available data, it is unclear that the risk for CV thrombotic events is similar for all NSAIDs. The relative increase in serious CV thrombotic events over baseline conferred by NSAID use appears to be similar in those with and without known CV disease or risk factors for CV disease. However, patients with known CV disease or risk factors had a higher absolute incidence of excess serious CV thrombotic events, due to their increased baseline rate. Some observational studies found that this increased risk of serious CV thrombotic events began as early as the first weeks of treatment. The increase in CV thrombotic risk has been observed most consistently at higher doses.
To minimize the potential risk for an adverse CV event in NSAID-treated patients, use the lowest effective dose for the shortest duration possible. Physicians and patients should remain alert for the development of such events, throughout the entire treatment course, even in the absence of previous CV symptoms. Patients should be informed about the symptoms of serious CV events and the steps to take if they occur.
There is no consistent evidence that concurrent use of aspirin mitigates the increased risk of serious CV thrombotic events associated with NSAID use. The concurrent use of aspirin and an NSAID, such as diclofenac, increases the risk of serious gastrointestinal (GI) events (see WARNINGS: Gastrointestinal Bleeding, Ulceration, and Perforation).
Status Post Coronary Artery Bypass Graft (CABG) Surgery
Two large, controlled, clinical trials of a COX-2 selective NSAID for the treatment of pain in the first 10-14 days following CABG surgery found an increased incidence of myocardial infarction and stroke. NSAIDs are contraindicated in the setting of CABG (see CONTRAINDICATIONS).
Observational studies conducted in the Danish National Registry have demonstrated that patients treated with NSAIDs in the post-MI period were at increased risk of reinfarction, CV-related death, and all-cause mortality beginning in the first week of treatment. In this same cohort, the incidence of death in the first year post-MI was 20 per 100 person years in NSAID-treated patients compared to 12 per 100 person years in non-NSAID exposed patients. Although the absolute rate of death declined somewhat after the first year post-MI, the increased relative risk of death in NSAID users persisted over at least the next four years of follow-up.
Avoid the use of diclofenac potassium tablets in patients with a recent MI unless the benefits are expected to outweigh the risk of recurrent CV thrombotic events. If diclofenac potassium tablets are used in patients with a recent MI, monitor patients for signs of cardiac ischemia.
Gastrointestinal Bleeding, Ulceration, and Perforation
NSAIDs, including diclofenac, cause serious gastrointestinal (GI) adverse events including inflammation, bleeding, ulceration, and perforation of the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, or large intestine, which can be fatal. These serious adverse events can occur at any time, with or without warning symptoms, in patients treated with NSAIDs. Only one in five patients, who develop a serious upper GI adverse event on NSAID therapy, is symptomatic. Upper GI ulcers, gross bleeding or perforation caused by NSAIDs occurred in approximately 1% of patients treated for 3-6 months, and in about 2%-4% of patients treated for one year. However, even short-term therapy is not without risk.
Risk Factors for GI Bleeding, Ulceration, and Perforation
Patients with a prior history of peptic ulcer disease and/or GI bleeding who use NSAIDs had a greater than 10-fold increased risk for developing a GI bleed compared to patients without these risk factors. Other factors that
increase the risk of GI bleeding in patients treated with NSAIDs include longer duration of NSAID therapy, concomitant use of oral corticosteroids, aspirin, anticoagulants, or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs); smoking, use of alcohol, older age, and poor general health status. Most postmarketing reports of fatal GI events occurred in elderly or debilitated patients. Additionally, patients with advanced liver disease and/or coagulopathy are at increased risk for GI bleeding.
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