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Doctors' Answers to "Frequently Asked Questions" -Salsalate

These comments are made for the purpose of discussion and should NOT be used as recommendations for or against therapies or other treatments. An individual patient is always advised to consult their own physician.

General Information
Question: Could you give me info on the above mentioned medication?

Answer: Salsalate is an anti-inflammatory medication that has a half-life (or, time it takes the body to clear one half of the medication) of approximately 16 hours, according to the PhysicianŪs Desk Reference. Like aspirin, or indomethacin, this medication inhibits the production of certain hormones in the body that allow for, or produce inflammation. Unlike these other two drugs, however, salsalate does not have any effect on platelet (part of blood involved in clotting) grouping. This medication is often used in the setting of arthritis, particularly rheumatoid arthritis or degenerative arthritis. If you have symptoms of a viral infection, such as a žcoldÓ or the žfluÓ, or chicken pox, you should avoid this medication until you are better, and only on the advice of your health care provider. You should avoid other similar medications, such as indomethacin, ibuprofen, or aspirin, and if you are allergic to these other medications you may also be allergic to salsalate. If this is the case, make sure your health care provider is aware of this prior to taking this medication. Asthmatics may develop airway problems with this medication. There are many other medications that can interact with salsalate and effect the build up of it in your system. A careful review with your health care provider, of all of the medications you are taking, should be done whenever you are starting on this, or any new medication. Side effects include ringing in the ear (žtinnitusÓ), nausea, hearing difficulty, dizziness, rash, abdominal pain, shortness of breath, liver problems, low blood pressure, and kidney problems. As always, if you are experiencing a symptom that you feel may be related to a medication, visit your health care provider. He or she can determine whether the symptom is possibly due to the drug, and determine the best course of action to take.

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