Narrative Summary of Recently Published Literature on Intravenous Ibuprofen

Clin Ther. 2020 Jul;42(7):1210-1221. doi: 10.1016/j.clinthera.2020.05.004. Epub 2020 Jun 3.


Purpose: This is a narrative review of the published literature on IV ibuprofen (IVIB) as one of the drugs used in multimodal pain management in inpatients and outpatients pre- and postoperatively and for nonsurgical pain or fever.

Methods: The efficacy, concurrent opioid use, pharmacokinetic properties, tolerability, stress response, and postoperative recovery with IVIB, which were investigated in 9 clinical studies, are presented in this narrative review. In total, 1062 adult patients and healthy volunteers were included in these 9 studies; 757 of these subjects received IVIB, and the remaining 305 received either placebo or a comparator medication.

Findings: The plasma ibuprofen level with IVIB was twice that with oral ibuprofen, and patients experienced less postoperative pain, decreased opioid use, improved quality of recovery, and reduced postsurgical fatigue and surgical stress response, and used less over-the-counter medication.

Implications: Overall, preemptive IVIB should be considered in the analgesic regimen for the management of pre- and postoperative pain, as it has a favorable safety profile, with fewer associated adverse events and serious adverse events, significantly lower levels of perioperative cytokines and catecholamines, and improved peri- and postoperative pain control with a decreased use of opioid medications.

Keywords: NSAID; fever; multimodal pain management; perioperative analgesia; postoperative analgesia; surgical pain.

Publication types

  • Review