ketorolac side effects and drug information

Have you ever wondered why your doctor prescribed ketorolac after you have undergone surgery? It’s because this medication can relieve the pain of operation or other painful procedures. Ketorolac is a member of a medicine group commonly referred to as NSAIDs or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. But unlike narcotics, this medication will never develop a physical or mental dependence. But there are instances that Ketorolac will be administered together with narcotics for a better result. 

PubChem CID 3826
Trade name Sprix, Acular, Toradol etc
ChEMBL Id 469
ChemSpider ID 3694
Molar mass 255.27 g/mol
CAS ID 74103-06-3
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What You Should Know About Ketorolac

Like some other medicines, Ketorolac can bring side effects and risks if the medication will not be managed correctly. The different side effects can become worse if the dosage is increased, and the length of treatment will be prolonged. You should never take this medication for more than five days. Before taking this medicine, you must consult your doctor and discuss its benefits and risks for your condition. Ketorolac will only be available to you with a doctor’s prescription. 

Ketorolac can be administered to a patient through the following dosage form:

  • Tablet
  • Solution

Side Effects

Various side effects will be experienced while taking this medicine. The most common of them are vomiting, upset stomach, nausea, constipation, dizziness, gas, diarrhea, and drowsiness. These side-effects might feel normal to you, but if they get worse or persistent, you have to inform your doctor right away. Your medical provider may have prescribed this medication because they believe that the benefits are more valuable than its risks. From previous studies, most people who are taking Ketorolac haven’t experienced severe side-effects during their medication.

Other things that you should remember while taking Ketorolac are the following:

  1. There is a high chance that this medication will raise your blood pressure. That’s why it is advised that you monitor your blood pressure regularly throughout your medication. If the results are consistently high, inform your doctor promptly.
  2. If you experience any of these serious side effects, you must inform your doctor as well: fast heartbeat, fainting, changes with hearing, persistent headache, mood/mental changes, changes with vision, stomach pain, and symptoms of heart failure. 
  3. If you experience any of these rare yet severe side effects, you must inform your doctor right away: signs of kidney problems, easy bleeding, symptoms of meningitis, easy bleeding or bruising, and signs of infection. 
  4. In rare cases, this medication can develop severe liver disease. If you experience the symptoms of liver problems like stomach upset, dark urine, yellowing eyes/skin, and persistent vomiting/nausea, you need to seek medical help immediately. 
  5. There are cases of a severe allergic reaction related to this drug. Some of them are trouble with breathing, rashes, severe drowsiness, and itching/swelling. If you experience any of these rare side effects, talk to your doctor immediately. 

As you take your Ketorolac as prescribed by your doctor, make sure that you examine your body’s reaction as well to avoid serious side effects of your medication. 

Dosage and Administration of Ketorolac

Here some of the vital information that you need to remember while taking Ketorolac:

  • This medication must be taken by mouth every four to six hours and with an 8-ounce glass of water. Your doctor may give you a different instruction for the drugs’ administration.
  • It is recommended that you keep yourself from laying down 10 minutes after you have taken the medication for fainting. If you experience an upset stomach, you have to take Ketorolac with milk, food, or an antacid.
  • Your dosage will be based on your medical condition and your body’s response to the treatment. If you want to avoid the risk of side effects, choose to take this drug at the lowest effective dosage for the shortest time possible.
  • Never change your dosage without asking for the advice of your doctor. You should not take the medication as frequently as you want and don’t go beyond the recommended 5-day period.
  • If the pain continues after five days, you should talk to your doctor and request for other medications that can be effective for your condition.

As per the doctor’s recommendation, Ketorolac must be taken as soon as you experience the pain. If you have waited for the pain to get worse, this medication may not be as effective as it should be. 

Drug Interaction 

If you are taking other medicines, make a list, and share it with your doctor. Include everything from the prescribed and nonprescribed drugs like Doryx down to the herbal products that you are taking every day. You should never stop, start, or change the dosage of your existing medicines without talking to your doctor. Your drug interaction may be altered with the way your medication works and if there is a sign of severe side effects. 

Some noted products that could interact with Ketorolac are angiotensin II receptor blockers (e.g., losartan, valsartan), ACE inhibitors (e.g., captopril, lisinopril), methotrexate, lithium, corticosteroids, probenecid (e.g., prednisone). And other medicines that could affect the kidneys (e.g., cidofovir, “water pills”/diuretics such as furosemide.

You should check the labels of your prescribed and nonprescribed medicine since some of them might contain pain relievers. Some of your existing medication might be working like Ketorolac, and it can increase the development of side effects if you take them together. Honestly discuss your condition with your doctor so that you can avoid more serious problems with your health.

Warnings and Precautions

There is a certain list of medicines that you should not take together with the Ketorolac because it can increase the possibility of unwanted side effects. The following are the medicines that you need to avoid if you start using Ketorolac. You can only consume them if your doctor or pharmacist has told you to do so.

  • Aspirin or other salicylates
  • Diclofenac (e.g., Voltaren®)
  • Diflunisal (e.g., Dolobid®)
  • Etodolac (e.g., Lodine®)
  • Fenoprofen (e.g., Nalfon®)
  • Floctafenine (e.g., Idarac®)
  • Flurbiprofen (e.g., Ansaid®)
  • Ibuprofen (e.g., Motrin®)
  • Indomethacin (e.g., Indocin®)
  • Ketoprofen (e.g., Orudis®)
  • Meclofenamate (e.g., Meclomen®)
  • Mefenamic acid (e.g., Ponstel®)
  • Nabumetone (e.g., Relafen®)
  • Naproxen (e.g., Naprosyn®)
  • Oxaprozin (e.g., Daypro®)
  • Phenylbutazone (e.g., Butazolidin®)
  • Piroxicam (e.g., Feldene®)
  • Sulindac (e.g., Clinoril®)
  • Tenoxicam (e.g., Mobiflex®)
  • Tiaprofenic acid (e.g., Surgam®)
  • Tolmetin (e.g., Tolectin®)
  • Zomepirac (e.g., Zomax®)

If you start feeling drowsy or dizzy while taking this medicine, you should keep yourself from doing activities that could bring you in danger, such as using machines, driving, or taking the stairs. As much as possible, find a place where you can rest and ask assistance from those people around you. 

Overdose and Contraindications

When you find a person who was overdosed with Ketorolac or exhibiting the signs of serious side effects such as trouble breathing or passing out, you need to ask for an emergency medical intention immediately. You can call 911 or the poison control center right away.  

Other important things that you must keep in mind when it comes to Ketorolac are:

  • You should never share this medication with other people. The dosage and the schedule of the drug’s administration were carefully based on your condition through medical tests and laboratory exams. That’s why your medicine must only be kept for you.
  • If you experience another medical condition in the future, you should never take this medication without consulting the advice of your doctor. Ketorolac can bring serious side effects if it is used irresponsibly.
  • In case you missed a dose of Ketorolac, you can take it as soon as you remembered it. But if the schedule of the next dose is already near, you must skip the missed dose and only take the next dose at the right time. You should never consume two doses to catch up on your schedule.

Clinical Pharmacology

This kind of medication can only be administered for short-term treatment of moderate to serious pain in adults. In most common situations, it is prescribed before or after a medical procedure to reduce the pain and speed up the patient’s recovery. They can perform their day to day activities comfortably. Ketorolac is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, and it works by preventing your body’s production of a natural substance that causes inflammation. It decreases the chances of pain, swelling, and fever.

A person should never use Ketorolac for a long-term condition like arthritis. 

Medication Guide of Ketorolac

If you are taking a ketorolac tablet:

  • To avoid the chances of an upset stomach, you should eat a meal or a snack before you take a tablet or ketorolac. Taking an antacid will also bring the same effect to your body.
  • You have to drink a full glass of water with this medication. After taking medicine, wait for 15-30 minutes before you lie down. Failing to follow these instructions may result in trouble with swallowing.

If you are taking ketorolac injection:

  • This form of medication can be done at home, but you have to listen to your medical provider as they teach you the right way to do it. Make sure that you understand every instruction given to you to avoid problems with your medication.
  • If you want to use this medication safely and effectively, you should never consume it more than what was prescribed and instructed to you. Doing this could increase the possibility of serious side effects and can lead to fatality. 

Ketorolac must only be used under the guidance of a doctor or a medical professional. To avoid the risk of side effects, never save any leftover of the medicine and never share it with other people.