Table 2

Type, severity, and localisation of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) toxicity

Side effects Onset and development
Mild side effects
 • DyspepsiaWithin hours, often regressive despite maintenance of treatment
 •  Gastrointestinal erosions (stomach > duodenal bulb)
Moderate side effects
 • Iron-deficiency anaemia
 •  Gastrointestinal ulcers (stomach and intestine) Rare <6 weeks
 •  Scarring (antrum and duodenal bulb)
Serious complications
•  Severe gastrointestinal bleeding (stomach >duodenal bulb >oesophagus, small, and large intestine)Rare <6 weeks of treatment. Progressive increase in a near linear fashion during long term treatment
 •  Acute perforation (duodenal bulb >colon)
• Gastric outlet obstruction
  • The predominant localisations are listed in parentheses.