The use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs in sports

Keywords: nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, NSAIDs, sports medicine

Abstract

Of all medication, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are the most commonly used in athletes. The high consumption rates seen in sporting disciplines such as soccer and endurance sports suggest that in addition to treating injuries, NSAIDs could be used in an attempt to enhance performance. There are discordant findings in human studies that probe the benefit of NSAIDs in improving the quality of muscle or as ergogenic agents. Therefore, there is a paucity of clinical evidence that demonstrates the value of the use of NSAIDs for purposes beyond pain modulation. The inhibition of NSAIDs required for normal physiological functions by NSAIDs leads to the emergence of gastrointestinal, renal and cardiovascular side effects, which consequentially could reduce the quality of life of athletes. As such, the routine recommendation for the use of NSAIDs for the acceleration of muscle healing and performance enhancement is not justified.

Author Biographies

N Schellack, University of Pretoria

Department of Pharmacology, University of Pretoria, South Africa

K Ncube, University of Pretoria

Department of Pharmacology, University of Pretoria, South Africa

Published
2021-05-06
Section
Reviews