• Entry
  • Reader's guide
  • Entries A-Z
  • Subject index

Anti-inflammatory drugs, or nonnarcotic analgesics, are medications used to relieve pain by reversing the inflammatory process. This class of medicines includes the broad categories of steroid-based medications and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Through differing mechanisms, these drugs work to decrease the four cardinal signs of inflammation (heat, redness, swelling, pain, and loss of function) by interfering with a key chemical pathway that leads to inflammation. All anti-inflammatory drugs interfere in one way with this chemical pathway, and this leads to a decrease in the production of pro-inflammatory proteins called prostaglandins, including closely related compounds. These medications are used to treat mild to moderate pain, inflammation, and fever.

Prostaglandin Synthesis

When sampling from the fluid in an injured tissue, it is common to find high levels of

    • Loading...
    locked icon

    Sign in to access this content

    Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

    • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
    • Read modern, diverse business cases
    • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles