Current supplies of naproxen hit by shortages

What you can do if this affects you

18 January 2019

There have been reports this week about a shortage of a list of 80 medicines – the most significant for people with axial SpA (AS) being naproxen, an anti-inflammatory which many people use to help manage their symptoms.

What is the problem?

Shortages of drugs are commonplace and can be down to a number of factors:

  • Increased global demand
  • Cost of raw materials
  • New regulatory requirements driving up costs
  • Fluctuations in exchange rates
  • Generic companies being unwilling to carry on selling unprofitable products.

At the moment it hasn’t been made clear exactly why naproxen shortages specifically are happening.

Is this related to Brexit?

No – it is more of a global problem than just a UK one.

What is NASS doing?

We will continue to monitor the problem and will work to discover the root cause. At the moment, however, it isn’t clear what this is.

What should I do if I can’t get naproxen?

Although we know that many people with axial SpA (AS) are prescribed naproxen, there are many other anti-inflammatory drugs available. We recommend that you ask your pharmacist to contact your GP to get a substitute prescribed. You could then make a GP appointment to discuss which might be the best alternative for you during this period of shortage.


Please contact our helpline (M-F, 9 am – 12 pm) if you have any questions: 020 8741 1515