Anti-inflammatory Medications, Salicylates

Anti-inflammatory Medications

  • Aspirin
    (Anacin®[OTC]; Arthritis Foundation® Pain Reliever [OTC]; Ascriptin®[OTC]; Aspergum®[OTC]; Asprimox®[OTC]; Bayer® Aspirin [OTC]; Bayer® Buffered Aspirin [OTC]; Bayer® Low Adult Strength [OTC]; Bufferin®[OTC]; Buffex®[OTC]; Cama® Arthritis Pain Reliever [OTC]; Easprin®; Ecotrin® Low Adult Strength [OTC]; Ecotrin®[OTC]; Empirin®[OTC]; Extra Strength Adprin-B®[OTC]; Extra Strength Bayer® Enteric 500 Aspirin [OTC]; Extra Strength Bayer® Plus [OTC]; Halfprin® 81®[OTC]; Heartline®[OTC]; Regular Strength Bayer® Enteric 500 Aspirin [OTC]; St Joseph® Adult Chewable Aspirin [OTC]; ZORprin®)


Depleted levels of iron may lead to anemia and weakened immune function. In the event of anemia, symptoms include dizziness, fatigue, shortness of breath, pale skin color, and possibly irregular heartbeat.

Note: Iron loss is secondary to bleeding.


Symptoms of potassium deficiency include loss of appetite, nausea, drowsiness, feelings of apprehension, excessive thirst, irrational behavior, fatigue, muscle pain and weakness (usually of the lower limbs); severe cases may lead to irregular heartbeat.

Vitamin B9 (Folic Acid)

Low levels of folic acid have been linked to anemia, heart disease, and birth defects.

Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid)

Vitamin C deficiency may include bruising, fever, anemia, emotional changes, swollen and bleeding gums, fatigue, lethargy, jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes), increased susceptibility to infections, slow wound healing, and swelling of the lower limbs. Severe deficiency leads to scurvy, a disorder that affects muscles and bones and is potentially fatal. However, scurvy is rare these days because of the wide availability of vitamin C from dietary sources.

Editorial Note

The selected depletions information presented here identifies some of the nutrients that may be depleted by certain medications. The signs and symptoms associated with nutrient deficiency may also indicate conditions other than nutrient deficiency. If you are experiencing any of the signs or symptoms mentioned, it does not necessarily mean that you are nutrient deficient. Nutrient depletion depends upon a number of factors, including your medical history, diet, and lifestyle as well as the length of time you have been taking the medication. Please consult your healthcare provider; he or she can best assess and address your individual healthcare needs, and determine if you are at risk for nutrient depletions from these medications as well as others not listed here.

Supporting Research

Ames BN. Micronutrient deficiencies: A major cause of DNA damage. Ann NY Acad Sci. 2000;889:87-106.

Carr AC, Frei B. Toward a new recommended dietary allowance for vitamin C based on antioxidant and health effects in humans. Am J Clin Nutr 1999;69:1086-1087.

Coffey G. and Wilson CWM. Ascorbic acid deficiency and aspirin-induced haematemesis. BM J. 1975;1:208.

Covington T, ed. Nonprescription Drug Therapy Guiding Patient Self-Care. St. Louis, Mo: Facts and Comparisons; 1999: 467-545.

Lawrence, VA, et al. Aspirin and folate binding: in vivo and in vitro studies of serum binding and urinary excretion of endogenous folate. J Lab Clin Med. 1984;103:944-948.

Leonards JH. and Levy G. Gastrointestinal blood loss during prolonged aspirin administration. N Engl J Med. 1973;289:1020-1022.

National Research Council. Recommended Dietary Allowances. 10th ed. Washington, DC: National Academy Press; 1989.

Selhub, J, et al. Inhibition of folate enzymes by sulfasalazine. J Clin Invest. 1978;61:221-224.

Smith MJH. and Smith PK. eds. The Salicylates: A Critical Bibliographic Review. New York, Interscience, 1966.

Wilson JD. Vitamin deficiency and excess. In: Fauci AS, Braunwald E, Isselbacher KJ, et al, eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine. 14th ed. New York: McGraw-Hill Companies Health Professional Division; 1998:483-485.

Review Date: October 2000
Reviewed By: All depletions monographs have been reviewed by a team of experts including Derrick M. DeSilva, Jr., MD, Raritan Bay Medical Center, Perth Amboy, NJ; Jacqueline A. Hart, MD, Department of Internal Medicine, Newton-Wellesley Hospital, Harvard University and Senior Medical Editor, A.D.A.M., Inc., Boston, MA; John Hinze, PharmD, NMD, Woodbine, IA; Ruth Marlin, MD, Medical Director and Director of Medical Education, Preventive Medicine Research Institute, Sausalito, CA; Brian T Sanderoff, PD, BS in Pharmacy, Clinical Assistant Professor, University of Maryland School of Pharmacy; President, Your Prescription for Health, Owings Mills, MD; Leonard Wisneski, MD, FACP, George Washington University, Rockville, MD; Ira Zunin, MD, MPH, MBA, President and Chairman, Hawaii State Consortium for Integrative Medicine, Honolulu, HI.

Copyright © 2004 A.D.A.M., Inc

The publisher does not accept any responsibility for the accuracy of the information or the consequences arising from the application, use, or misuse of any of the information contained herein, including any injury and/or damage to any person or property as a matter of product liability, negligence, or otherwise. No warranty, expressed or implied, is made in regard to the contents of this material. No claims or endorsements are made for any drugs or compounds currently marketed or in investigative use. This material is not intended as a guide to self-medication. The reader is advised to discuss the information provided here with a doctor, pharmacist, nurse, or other authorized healthcare practitioner and to check product information (including package inserts) regarding dosage, precautions, warnings, interactions, and contraindications before administering any drug, herb, or supplement discussed herein.

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