Indomethacin is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) prescribed to treat acute, painful attacks of gouty arthritis. It is one of the original NSAIDs in its class, gaining U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval in 1965.

Indomethacin can be effective as a gout treatment, but it is not useful for gout prevention.

History of Indomethacin

According to the American College of Rheumatology, the FDA has approved naproxen, indomethacin, and sulindac for the treatment of acute gout. Of the dozens of NSAIDs available on the market today, these three drugs are likely FDA-approved because they are more powerful than other NSAIDs, and are more affordable due to the expiration of patent rights.

Indocin is one of 70 different brand names for the generic drug indomethacin, the NSAID most commonly prescribed by doctors for gout.


Side Effects and Warnings Regarding Indomethacin

Indomethacin is a non-selective NSAID, which results in more possible side effects than some other NSAIDs. Common clinical side effects include:

  • Gastropathy (peptic ulcers and gastritis).
  • Nephropathy (kidney disease).
  • Liver dysfunction.
  • Central nervous system dysfunction.
  • Platelet dysfunction (reduced blood clotting).
  • Fluid overload in patients with congestive heart failure.

In addition, some people have experienced potentially fatal, allergic-type reactions to indomethacin.

The warning label for indomethacin instructs users not to drive a vehicle or operate heavy equipment — a warning you should definitely heed.

As a medication for gout, indomethacin is one of the most powerful NSAIDs on the market today. For this reason, it is fairly effective at knocking out a gout attack, but don’t be surprised if you end up with a stomach ulcer, dizziness, confusion, and/or bizarre nerve sensations.

Alternatives to Indomethacin

If your doctor prescribes indomethacin for gout attacks, you might ask about an alternative called a selective COX-2 inhibitor. These types of NSAIDs have fewer side effects than non-selective drugs like indomethacin.

You might also ask about using ibuprofen instead of a prescription drug. In my personal experience, ibuprofen is very effective when taken in combination with the all-natural ingredients in the Kill Gout Formula.

  Bottom Line:  Indomethacin (brand name Indocin) is a very powerful drug with the potential for serious side effects — avoid it if at all possible!