Compare Naproxen vs. Voltaren

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Aleve
(Naproxen)

Voltaren
(Diclofenac Sodium)

Relieves pain, fever, and inflammation. Aleve (Naproxen) works well for mild to moderate pain and inflammation, and it lasts longer than other NSAIDs.Relieves pain and inflammation. Voltaren (Diclofenac Sodium) works well for pain and causes less upset stomach than other NSAIDs.
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Reviews & ratings
Button Group. All currently active
Button Group. All currently active
5.279615795090715Naproxen
Reviews for Aleve (Naproxen)
78%
of people say Aleve (Naproxen) is worth it
46%
say it works well
5%
say it's a big hassle
Reviews for Voltaren (Diclofenac Sodium)
73%
5% vs. Aleve (Naproxen)
68%
+22% vs. Aleve (Naproxen)
9%
4% vs. Aleve (Naproxen)
Side effects
NaproxenVoltaren

The Naproxen FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Naproxen side effects »
  • Application site contact dermatitis 29%
  • Application site rash 29%
  • Dry skin (application site) 27%
  • Application site dry skin 15%
  • Application site rash 15%
  • Application site reaction 14%
  • Any side effect 14%
  • Application site exfoliation 11%
  • Application site pruritus 7%
  • Contact dermatitis (application site) 7%
More Voltaren side effects »
How it works
NaproxenVoltaren
Aleve (Naproxen) is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). It blocks the inflammation process in your body, which relieves swelling and pain.Voltaren (Diclofenac Sodium) is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). It blocks the inflammation process in your body, which relieves swelling and pain.
Type of medication
NaproxenVoltaren
Pain reliever
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID)
Prescription or OTC
Pain reliever
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID)
Prescription only
Available as
NaproxenVoltaren
  • Pill
  • Delayed release tablet
  • Liquid
  • Extended release
  • Cream, gel, or ointment
  • Eye drops
Used for (click to learn more)
NaproxenVoltaren
Risk factors for serious side effects
NaproxenVoltaren
  • History of heart problems
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Smoking
  • History of stomach bleeding or ulcers
  • Age 60 years or older
  • Taking aspirin, NSAIDs, or blood thinners
  • Drinking more than 3 alcoholic beverages a day
  • Hemophilia
  • von Willebrand's disease
  • Low blood platelet count
  • Taking anticoagulant medications
  • Asthma
  • Rhinitis
  • Nasal polyps
  • Aspirin allergy
  • NSAID allergy
  • Kidney disease
  • Heart failure
  • Liver disease
  • Taking high blood pressure medications
  • Age 65 years or older
  • Women of childbearing age
Detailed Aleve (Naproxen) risks & warnings »
  • History of heart problems
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Being overweight or obese
  • Smoking
  • History of stomach bleeding or ulcers
  • Age 65 years or older
  • Hemophilia
  • von Willebrand's disease
  • Low blood platelet count
  • Also taking an anticoagulant medication
  • Asthma
  • Rhinitis
  • Nasal polyps
  • Aspirin allergy
  • NSAID allergy
  • Kidney disease
  • Heart failure
  • Liver disease
  • Taking diuretics
  • Taking ACE inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs)
  • Age 65 or older
  • History of high blood pressure
  • Taking water pills (diuretics)
  • Late pregnancy (more than 30 weeks)
Detailed Voltaren (Diclofenac Sodium) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy category
NaproxenVoltaren
CFDA pregnancy category (Weigh risks vs. benefits)

Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

See the FDA package insert
DFDA pregnancy category (Weigh risks vs. benefits)

Research studies with real people found harmful effects on unborn babies, but the benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

See the FDA package insert
Alcohol
No specific alcohol-related info.No specific alcohol-related info.
Food
  • It needs to be taken with food to avoid getting an upset stomach.
  • Take it with a meal or a snack to prevent an upset stomach.
  • If taking Voltaren (Diclofenac Sodium) by mouth, take it with a meal or a snack to prevent an upset stomach.
Kidneys and liver
  • It can cause serious kidney and stomach problems (like ulcers and bleeding) the longer you take it.
  • Can hurt your kidneys, so don't use it if you have a history of kidney problems.
  • Aleve (Naproxen) is an NSAID that can lower kidney function or cause damage. Taking the lowest dose for the shortest amount of time lowers your risk. Your doctor should check your kidney function if you take Aleve (Naproxen) for any amount of time.
  • Can lower kidney function or cause permanent kidney damage. These problems are more likely the longer you take it.
  • Can affect your kidneys' ability to work as well.
  • Voltaren (Diclofenac Sodium), and similar medications in the NSAID family, can lower kidney function or cause permanent kidney damage. Taking the lowest dose for the shortest amount of time necessary can lower your risk of kidney problems. It's important to get lab tests to check your kidney function periodically if you use Voltaren (Diclofenac Sodium) for long periods of time.
Sex
No specific sex-related info.No specific sex-related info.
Sleep
No specific sleep-related info.No specific sleep-related info.
Weight
No specific weight-related info.No specific weight-related info.
Upsides and benefits
NaproxenVoltaren
  • Works well to relieve pain, swelling, and fevers.
  • Good for menstrual cramps, toothaches, body aches, and mild arthritis pain.
  • Lasts longer than Ibuprofen, so you can take it less often.
  • Aleve (Naproxen) works as well as Aspirin and Indomethacin to treat arthritis pain, and causes fewer stomach problems.
  • Although not without side effects, it's been around for a long time and is generally safe for short-term use.
  • Works well to relieve pain and inflammation from osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Good for muscle aches and pains.
  • May treat arthritis pain better than other similar medicines (NSAIDs).
  • Can cause less upset stomach than other NSAIDs like ibuprofen (Advil).
  • It's also available as a gel that you put on your skin. If it's hard for you to swallow pills, this could be a good option.
  • If you're only using the gel, you won't have the same side effects that you would while taking Voltaren (Diclofenac Sodium) by mouth.
Downsides and risks
NaproxenVoltaren
  • It needs to be taken with food to avoid getting an upset stomach.
  • Can't be taken by pregnant women.
  • It can cause serious kidney and stomach problems (like ulcers and bleeding) the longer you take it.
  • Like all NSAIDs, it can raise your risk of having blood clots, heart attack, or stroke.
  • Can cause serious stomach problems like inflammation, ulcers, and bleeding. The chances that a stomach problem will occur is worse the longer you take this medication, but it can happen at any time while taking it.
  • Can lower kidney function or cause permanent kidney damage. These problems are more likely the longer you take it.
  • Like all NSAIDs, it can raise your risk of having blood clots, heart attack, or stroke.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
NaproxenVoltaren
  • Starts relieving pain in 30 to 60 minutes.
  • Take it with a meal or a snack to prevent an upset stomach.
  • Can make you bruise or bleed more easily and it can also cause stomach ulcers.
  • Don't take it with other blood thinners, like aspirin, unless your doctor tells you it's safe.
  • Can hurt your kidneys, so don't use it if you have a history of kidney problems.
  • If taking Voltaren (Diclofenac Sodium) by mouth, take it with a meal or a snack to prevent an upset stomach.
  • Can cause stomach ulcers, especially if taking it by mouth often.
  • Can make you bruise or bleed more easily. You shouldn't take any other 'blood thinner' medications unless your doctor tells you it's safe.
  • Don't use it the first two weeks after a heart surgery.
  • Can affect your kidneys' ability to work as well.
  • If using the skin (topical) gel, use the dosing card it comes with to make sure you measure the correct dose. You also won't have many of the same side effects that you would if taking Voltaren (Diclofenac Sodium) by mouth.
Learn more
More about NaproxenSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
More about VoltarenSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert