The ANSM prohibits advertising for medicines containing 400 mg of ibuprofen because this dose would be responsible for serious adverse effects, such as gastro-digestive bleeding and kidney damage.
- Ibuprofen is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, a class of medications used to treat fever, pain, and inflammation.
- From April 2, the ANSM prohibits advertising to the general public for medicines containing 400 mg of ibuprofen.
- This dose risks causing serious adverse effects, including gastro-digestive bleeding or kidney damage.
From April 2, advertising to the general public for medicines containing 400 mg of ibuprofen will be banned, according to a communicated published by the National Agency for the Safety of Medicines and Health Products (ANSM). Television, printed newspapers, internet… Whatever the medium, you will no longer see these advertisements!
The ANSM recommends ibuprofen 200 mg as first-line treatment
Ibuprofen is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) commonly used in the treatment of fever, pain and inflammation. “Sixteen laboratories are involved in ibuprofen 400 mg, which represents around thirty brands of medicines”, explains Philippe Vella, medical director at the ANSM, to South West. It is, for example, marketed under the names Nurofen 400, Advil 400 or Spedifen 400.
With this decision, the ANSM is not targeting ibuprofen as a substance but the dose of 400mg. “Current recommendations for good use recommend taking ibuprofen at a dose of 200 mg as first intention, can we read in the press release. Despite the word of caution in advertisements to the general public “Use the lowest possible dose, ibuprofen exists at 200 mg”, these advertisements for medicines containing 400 mg of ibuprofen were not likely to encourage patients to start with the lowest dose of ibuprofen, i.e. 200 mg.”
Serious side effects of taking ibuprofen 400 mg
The ANSM notes serious adverse effects linked to taking ibuprofen 400 mg, “notably gastro-digestive bleeding and kidney damage, [qui]have increased alongside the number of advertisements to the general public for ibuprofen 400 mg and sales of these medicines containing ibuprofen 400 mg”.
Medications containing ibuprofen are usually available without a prescription. But, since December 2019, they are no longer freely accessible. The boxes are placed behind the pharmacist’s counter so that the pharmacist can chat with the patient and ensure that the medication is suitable for them.
From April 2, nothing changes at the counter but you will no longer see advertising for medications containing 400 mg of ibuprofen.