Anti-Inflammatory Drugs

The inflammatory response begins with a release of inflammatory chemicals into the extracellular fluid. Sources of these inflammatory mediators, the most important of which are histamine, prostaglandins, and cytokines, are injured tissue cells, lymphocytes, mast cells and blood proteins. The presence of these chemicals promote and further the reactions to inflammation, which are redness, heat, swelling, and pain.

Anti-inflammatory drugs block or suppress the inflammatory response, preventing or reducing the appearance of adverse reactions to the irritant. Diseases and cases such as asthma, arthritis, organ transplants, and surgical trauma, for example, are treated with non-steroidal or steroidal anti-inflammatory agents. Aspirin and some other anti-inflammatory drugs exert their analgesic effects by inhibiting prostaglandin synthesis.

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