NSAIDs can significantly inhibit ovulation in women with mild musculoskeletal pain, a small study shows.
The study of 39 women of childbearing age taking NSAIDs for back pain found that only 6.3% (diclofenac), 25% (naproxen) and 27.3% (etoricoxib) ovulated, compared with 100% of the control group.
“After just ten days of treatment we saw a significant decrease in progesterone, a hormone essential for ovulation, across all treatment groups, as well as functional cysts in one third of patients,” said study investigator Professor Sami Salman, Department of Rheumatology, University of Baghdad, Iraq.
“These findings show that even short-term use of these popular, over-the-counter drugs could have a significant impact on a women’s ability to have children.
This needs to be better communicated to patients with rheumatic diseases, who may take these drugs on a regular basis with little awareness of the impact,” said Professor Salman.