This information will help you identify medications that contain aspirin and other NSAIDs. It’s important to stop taking these medications before many cancer treatments.
Aspirin, other NSAIDs (such as ibuprofen), and vitamin E can increase your risk of bleeding during cancer treatment. These medications affect your platelets (blood cells that clot to prevent bleeding). Read the section “Examples of Medications” to see if your medications contain aspirin, other NSAIDs, or vitamin E.
If you take aspirin, medications that contain aspirin, other NSAIDs, or vitamin E, tell your healthcare provider. They will tell you if you need to stop taking the medication(s) before your treatment. You will also find instructions in the information about your treatment.
Before Your Surgery
If you’re having surgery, follow the instructions below. If your healthcare provider gives you other instructions, follow those instead.
- Stop taking medications that contain vitamin E 10 days before your surgery or as directed by your healthcare provider.
- Stop taking medications that contain aspirin 7 days before your surgery or as directed by your healthcare provider. If you take aspirin because you’ve had a problem with your heart or you’ve had a stroke, talk with your healthcare provider before you stop taking it.
- Stop taking NSAIDs 48 hours (2 days) before your surgery or as directed by your healthcare provider.
Before Your Radiology Procedure
If you’re having a radiology procedure (including Interventional Radiology, Interventional Mammography, Breast Imaging, and General Radiology), follow the instructions below. If your healthcare provider gives you other instructions, follow those instead.
- Stop taking medications that contain vitamin E 10 days before your procedure or as directed by your healthcare provider.
- If your healthcare provider tells you to stop taking aspirin, stop taking it 5 days before your procedure or as directed by your healthcare provider. If you take aspirin because you’ve had a problem with your heart or you’ve had a stroke, talk with your healthcare provider before you stop taking it.
- Stop taking NSAIDs 24 hours (1 day) before your procedure or as directed by your healthcare provider.
Before and During Your Chemotherapy
Chemotherapy can lower your platelet count, which can increase your risk of bleeding. Whether you’re just starting chemotherapy or have been getting it, talk with your healthcare provider before taking aspirin or NSAIDs.Back to top
Examples of Medications
Medications are often called by their brand name. This can make it hard to know their ingredients. To help you identify medications that contain aspirin, other NSAIDs, and vitamin E, please read the lists below.
These lists include the most common products, but there are others. Check with your healthcare provider if you aren’t sure. Always be sure your healthcare provider knows all of the medications you’re taking, both prescription and over-the-counter (not prescription).
|Aggrenox®||Cama® Arthritis Pain Reliever||Heartline®||Robaxisal® Tablets|
|Arthritis Pain Formula||Easprin®||Lanorinal®||Salocol®|
|Arthritis Foundation Pain Reliever®||Ecotrin® (most formulations)||Lortab® ASA Tablets||Sodol®|
|ASA Enseals®||Empirin® Aspirin (most formulations)||Magnaprin®||Soma® Compound Tablets|
|ASA Suppositories®||Epromate®||Marnal®||Soma® Compound with Codeine Tablets|
|Ascriptin® and Ascriptin A/D®||Equagesic Tablets||Micrainin®||St. Joseph® Adult Chewable Aspirin|
|Asprimox®||Excedrin® Extra-Strength Analgesic Tablets and Caplets||Norgesic Forte® (most formulations)||Synalgos®-DC Capsules|
|Axotal®||Excedrin® Migraine||Norwich® Aspirin||Tenol-Plus®|
|Azdone®||Fiorgen®||PAC® Analgesic Tablets||Trigesic®|
|Bayer® (most formulations)||Fiorinal® (most formulations)||Orphengesic®||Talwin® Compound|
|BC® Powder and Cold formulations||Fiortal®||Painaid®||Vanquish® Analgesic Caplets|
|Bufferin® (most formulations)||Gelpirin®||Panasal®||Wesprin® Buffered|
|Buffets II®||Genprin®||Percodan® Tablets||Zee-Seltzer®|
|Advil®||Duexis®||Mefenamic Acid||PediaCare Fever®|
|Bayer® Select Pain Relief Formula Caplets||Ibuprofen||Nabumetone||Toradol®|
|Amino-Opt-E||Aquavit||E-400 IU||E complex-600|
|Aquasol E||D’alpha E||E-1000 IU Softgels||Vita-Plus E|
Most multivitamins contain vitamin E. If you take a multivitamin, check the label.Back to top
Acetaminophen (Tylenol®) is generally safe to take during your cancer treatment. It doesn’t affect platelets, so it won’t increase your chance of bleeding. But, talk with your healthcare provider before taking acetaminophen if you’re getting chemotherapy.
|Aceta® with Codeine||Excedrin P.M.®||Primlev®||Vicodin®|
|Acetaminophen with Codeine||Fiorcet®||Repan®||Wygesic®|
|Aspirin-Free Anacin®||Lorcet®||Roxicet®||Xartemis XR®|
|Arthritis Pain Formula® Aspirin-Free||Lortab®||Talacen®||Xodol®|
|Endocet®||Panadol®||Tylenol® with Codeine No. 3|
Acetaminophen is safe when used as directed. But, there’s a limit to how much you can take in 1 day. It’s possible to take too much acetaminophen without knowing because it’s in many different medications.
Always read and follow the label on the product you’re taking. Acetaminophen is a very common ingredient found in over-the-counter and prescription medications. It’s often an ingredient in pain relievers, fever reducers, sleep aids, and cough, cold, and allergy medications.
The full name acetaminophen isn’t always written out. Look for the common abbreviations listed below, especially on prescription pain relievers.
Common Abbreviations for Acetaminophen
Don’t take more than 1 medication that contains acetaminophen at a time without talking with a member of your healthcare team.Back to top