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Questions about COVID-19 Vaccines

  • Can I take ibuprofen/Advil if I am experiencing symptoms (e.g. aches and pains, fever) after a COVID-19 vaccination?

    Health authorities and scientific professional societies in Canada, USA and Europe, including Health Canada & CDC, recommend taking an over-the-counter medication, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, with possible pain or discomfort from a COVID-19 vaccination.

    Ibuprofen is indicated to treat symptoms of pain and fever as they occur. This is consistent with the clinical study approach used by Pfizer and Moderna for treating symptoms as they occur with their approved COVID-19 vaccines.

    You should carefully read and follow the instructions you receive when you get your COVID-19 vaccine. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist If you have any questions.

  • Can I take ibuprofen/Advil before getting my vaccine as a preventative measure against potential side effects?

    We do not recommend taking Advil to prevent any symptoms. It should always be used to relieve symptoms you’re already experiencing.

    The CDC recommends talking to your doctor about taking over-the-counter medicines, such as ibuprofen, to manage symptoms if they occur after a COVID-19 vaccination

  • I recently heard that pain relievers/ fever reducers like ibuprofen/Advil can suppress your immune response to the COVID-19 vaccine. Is this true?

    There is limited clinical data on how pain relievers/ fever reducers affect the immune response to vaccines, and it varies based on the type of vaccine and other factors. But the studies conducted to prove the safety and efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines give us helpful insight. People participating in those studies used OTC pain relievers and fever reducers, like ibuprofen, to treat mild side effects after injection. This has been the case in studies for both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines which showed efficacy of over 94%, implying that the use of medicines like ibuprofen did not blunt the immune response to the vaccine.

    Health authorities and scientific professional societies in Canada, USA and Europe, including Health Canada & CDC, recommend taking an over-the-counter medication, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, with possible pain or discomfort from a COVID-19 vaccination. You should carefully read and follow the instructions you receive when you get your COVID-19 vaccine. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist If you have any questions.

Information about Advil and Covid-19

Health Authorities Agree: Advil can be used to relieve pain and reduce fever caused by Covid-19*.

GSK is here to help you and your family. Ibuprofen/Advil is a leading over-the-counter fever and pain reliever that is used safely and effectively for over 35 years in 40 countries.* Safety remains our number one priority, and we support the scientific pursuit of evidence for ibuprofen/Advil’s safe use.

*When used as directed

What the Experts are Saying

What You Need to Know

We know you may have questions about using ibuprofen with COVID-19. We will continue to provide updates here to address the most common questions that we are hearing from you.

CDC's Chief Medical Officer for the COVID-19 Response Discusses Ibuprofen and COVID-19

History

Patients and doctors have trusted Advil to deliver powerful relief from several kinds of pain, including headache, muscle aches, minor arthritis and other joint pain, and backache for more than three decades. When used as directed, Advil is a safe and effective pain reliever.

Beyond its efficacy, our No. 1 priority is Advil’s safety. Patients and doctors across the globe have trusted Advil to provide powerful relief, safely. At GSK, we are proud of the millions of those we’ve helped along the way.

Questions about COVID-19 Symptoms

  • I recently read an article that said you shouldn’t take ibuprofen or other NSAIDs if you have coronavirus (COVID-19), is this true?

    People should speak with their doctor or pharmacist if they have any questions about treatment for their individual needs when seeking to prevent or manage symptoms or conditions.

    Consumer safety is our number one priority and we follow the guidance of leading public health authorities and medical experts. GSK Consumer Healthcare agrees with the latest guidance put forth by the World Health Organization (WHO), which states, “At present, based on currently available information, WHO does not recommend against the use of ibuprofen. We are also consulting with physicians treating COVID-19 and are not aware of reports of any negative side effects of ibuprofen, beyond the usual known side effects that limit its use in certain populations. WHO is not aware of published clinical or population-based data on this topic.”

    GSK is also aligned with the Health Canada statement distributed on March 20, 2020 which states, “There is no scientific evidence that establishes a link between ibuprofen, or other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and the worsening of COVID-19 symptoms.”

     

  • Should I stop taking ibuprofen/other NSAIDs?

    People should speak with their doctor or pharmacist if they have any questions about treatment for their individual needs when seeking to prevent or manage symptoms or conditions.

    Consumer safety is our number one priority and we follow the guidance of leading public health authorities and medical experts. GSK Consumer Healthcare agrees with the latest guidance put forth by the World Health Organization (WHO), which states, “At present, based on currently available information, WHO does not recommend against the use of ibuprofen. We are also consulting with physicians treating COVID-19 and are not aware of reports of any negative side effects of ibuprofen, beyond the usual known side effects that limit its use in certain populations. WHO is not aware of published clinical or population-based data on this topic.”

    GSK is also aligned with the Health Canada statement distributed on March 20, 2020 which states, “There is no scientific evidence that establishes a link between ibuprofen, or other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and the worsening of COVID-19 symptoms.”

    Our pain relief portfolio includes well-established medicines used by millions of consumers around the world that, when used as labeled, are safe to reduce fever and provide pain relief. All medicines are strictly regulated to ensure their use complies with local healthcare authority requirements.

  • What are GSK’s guidelines regarding the use of ibuprofen or other NSAIDs in patients with suspected coronavirus (COVID-19)?

    We are not aware of any scientific evidence that directly links worse outcomes in patients suffering from COVID-19 infection with the use of ibuprofen or other anti-inflammatories. People should speak with their doctor or pharmacist if they have any questions about treatment for their individual needs when seeking to prevent or manage symptoms or conditions.

    Consumer safety is our number one priority and we follow the guidance of leading public health authorities and medical experts. GSK Consumer Healthcare agrees with the latest guidance put forth by the World Health Organization (WHO), which states, “At present, based on currently available information, WHO does not recommend against the use of ibuprofen. We are also consulting with physicians treating COVID-19 and are not aware of reports of any negative side effects of ibuprofen, beyond the usual known side effects that limit its use in certain populations. WHO is not aware of published clinical or population-based data on this topic.”

    Our pain relief portfolio includes well-established medicines used by millions of consumers around the world that, when used as labeled, are safe to reduce fever and provide pain relief. All medicines are strictly regulated to ensure they comply with local healthcare authority requirements.

    This is an emerging and rapidly evolving situation and because consumer safety is our number one priority, we are closely monitoring statements from the public health authorities and medical experts.

  • Does ibuprofen or other anti-inflammatory medicines increase the risk of getting coronavirus (COVID-19)?

    No, ibuprofen and other anti-inflammatories do not increase your risk of getting coronavirus (COVID-19) and we are not aware of any scientific evidence that directly links worse outcomes in patients suffering from COVID-19 infection with the use of ibuprofen or other anti-inflammatories.

    Consumer safety is our number one priority. Our pain relief portfolio includes well-established medicines used by millions of consumers around the world that, when used as labeled, are safe to reduce fever and provide pain relief. All medicines are strictly regulated to ensure its use complies with local healthcare authority requirements.

  • Is ibuprofen safe to use with children when treating the symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19)?

    We are not aware of any scientific evidence that directly links a worse outcome in children suffering from COVID-19 infection when treated with ibuprofen or other anti-inflammatories. Parents need to follow the labels for the specific products, including age and dosage instructions. Parents should speak with their doctor or pharmacist, if they have any questions about treatment for their children needs when seeking to prevent or manage symptoms or conditions.

  • Should I take cold & flu medicines that contain ibuprofen?

    Consumer Healthcare makes non-prescription (OTC) medicines containing ibuprofen both as single active ingredient and in combinations with other actives. Products containing ibuprofen together with nasal decongestants and/or antihistamines are indicated only for the relief of cold and flu symptoms.

    People should speak with their doctor or pharmacist, if they have any questions about treatment for their individual needs when seeking to prevent or manage symptoms or conditions.

  • What is GSK’s position regarding the use of Ibuprofen/Advil to help treat the symptoms of COVID-19?

    Ibuprofen is listed as an essential medicine in the WHO guidelines for treating pain and fever associated with mild COVID-19. (Clinical Management of COVID-19 Interim Guidance). The CDC, FDA and NIH continue to acknowledge the lack of scientific evidence connecting ibuprofen with worsening COVID-19. As always, we advise people speak directly with their doctor or healthcare provider regarding individual treatment needs.

  • Has GSK’s statement regarding the use of ibuprofen/Advil in patients with suspected COVID-19 changed?

    No, ibuprofen/Advil can be used safely and effectively to relieve pain and reduce fever in COVID-19 patients based on the growing body of evidence and general medical consensus.* *When used as directed

  • What are health agencies saying about the use of Ibuprofen/Advil to treat COVID-19 symptoms?

    Health agencies, medical experts, and other global public health authorities have already acknowledged the lack of scientific evidence that NSAIDs worsen COVID-19 symptoms (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)World Health Organization (WHO), U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and European Medicines Agency (EMA)).

Resources

As a leader in the OTC pain category, GSK Consumer Healthcare is committed to consumer safety, and we are constantly re-evaluating the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation alongside public health authorities and medical experts across the globe.

We commit to keeping you updated with the latest information regarding use of our product. Below is the latest information from these health agencies on the topic: