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Flexiseq vs Voltarol: Which gel is the best?

Mohommed Essop-Adam
Reviewed by Mohommed Essop-AdamReviewed on 30.10.2023 | 5 minutes read

If you're looking for an anti-inflammatory pain reliever or something to deal with joint pain and stiffness, Flexiseq and Voltarol are ideal products to use. Both products are similar, but also have some key differences which might impact your decision on which to choose.

In this article, we take a closer look at both products to help you make an educated decision on which one is right for you.

What is Flexiseq?

Flexiseq is a gel that is drug free and can be used for osteoarthritis, which is the most common form of arthritis. It is especially useful for targeting pain in the knee.

Flexiseq contains tiny lipid spheres called Sequessome vesicles (SEQ Tech). These spheres change their shape and pass through the skin as it dries on the surface of the area it has been applied to. They pass into the joints and lubricate the surface of the cartilage to help ease pain and stiffness.

What is Voltarol?

Voltarol is a Diclofenac gel that is used as an anti-inflammatory pain reliever.

Diclofenac is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug. It uses Emulgel technology to reach deep into the skin to deliver the core ingredient diclofenac to the affected area. It provides a cooling effect to the applied area helping to sooth pain and inflammation.

Does Flexiseq or Voltarol have better ingredients

The key difference between Flexiseq and Voltarol is that Flexiseq contains alcohol and phosphatidylcholine, and is drug free. Voltarol is not drug free, containing diclofenac sodium, an active ingredient that reduces swelling. As a result, Voltarol can be a more powerful pain reliever and anti-inflammatory.

Though, both are effective anti-inflammatory medications that can be used to help treat joint pain.

Diclofenac is only intended for people aged over 14 years of age, and should not be taken for more than 7 days in a row. Like all medications, do not take them if you have previously had an allergic reaction to the medication, if you have severe kidney or liver problems, or if you have other medications or medical conditions where you would normally discuss with your doctor or pharmacist before starting a new treatment.

Flexiseq Ingredients:

  • Aqua, Phosphatidylcholine, Alcohol, Glycerin, Carbomer, Polysorbate 80, Disodium phosphate, Sodium hydroxide, Benzyl alcohol, Methylparaben, Ethylparaben, Linalool, Disodium EDTA, Sodium phosphate, Sodium metabisulfite, BHT

Voltarol Ingredients:

  • The active substance is diclofenac diethyl ammonium. Each gram of gel contains 23.2mg of diclofenac diethyl ammonium.
  • The other ingredients (excipients) are butylhydroxytoluene, carbomer, cocoyl caprylocaprate, diethylamine, isopropyl alcohol, liquid paraffin, macrogol cetostearyl ether, oleyl alcohol, propylene glycol, perfume and purified water

The ingredients in both products can help to varying degrees with joint pain but there are significantly more risks when taking diclofenac as it's a stronger medication.

How quickly do Flexiseq and Voltarol work?

Flexiseq should be applied 2 times a day and can begin to relieve pain in around 2 days. It can take a week for the full effects of the treatment to be noticeable.

Voltarol gels usually take 1 to 2 days to work and it depends on the level of joint stiffness you are treating. Depending on which formulation, you can apply either twice a day or up to 4 times a day. The amount of gel required each time depends on the size of the area you're treating.

How long does pain relief last?

With Flexiseq, it is possible for joint pain to come back after stopping treatment for a few days, as the phospholipids degrade in the body and stop alleviating the pain and inflammation.

Voltarol 12 Hour Joint Pain Relief Gel will provide pain relief for around 12 hours and if applied twice daily (morning and evening), it can give all day pain relief.

It does have more possible side effects than Flexiseq however as and is only to be used by people over 14 years of age and should not be used for longer than 7 consecutive days.

Does Flexiseq or Voltarol have more side effects?

As with any medication, there is always the possibility of some side effects when taking either Flexiseq or Voltarol.

Lets take a look at some of the common side effects associated with these medications.

Flexiseq side effects

In the majority of people, it's very unlikely that Flexiseq gels will cause any side effects, although it can cause minor skin irritation such as:

Voltarol possible side effects

Voltarol has a higher chance of causing side effects than Flexiseq as it is a diclofenac-based product. Some of the most common side effects include:

  • Headaches
  • Feeling dizzy
  • Nausea
  • Drowsiness
  • Vomiting
  • Indigestion

Voltarol can cause irritation to the lining of the stomach and this is most likely to occur when it is taken for multiple days.

Before taking Voltarol, you should also make sure none of the following are applicable. You should avoid taking it if:

  • You've had a previous allergic reaction to any medication containing diclofenac
  • You have severe kidney or liver problems
  • You are asthmatic and have not taken any anti-inflammatories previously as they can potentially cause an acute asthma attack
  • You are pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • You have a known stomach ulcer or inflammatory bowel disease, avoid taking diclofenac unless your doctor has recommended it

You should speak to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any concerns about taking this medication.

Can I use Voltarol with Flexiseq ?

You're able to use Voltarol alongside Flexiseq, however they should not be used in combination at the same time. If you are using Flexiseq, you should give it 4-6 hours before applying Voltarol if you want to use both treatments to target your joint pain

In summary, is Flexiseq or Voltarol better?

Flexiseq and Voltarol are fairly similar products. Neither medication is categorically better than the other, and they are both suitable to use as a joint relief gel. However, there are some differences between them that may sway your decision, for example, whether you are looking for a drug-free, or drug-based treatment.

Voltarol is drug-based, contains diclofenac, whereas Flexiseq is drug-free. The implications of this is that Voltarol can be more effective for pain relief, however, as a drug-based treatment, can come with more potential side effects.

If you are unsure about which treatment is best for you, we're here to help. Please get in touch with our caring team of medical experts to find out more.

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Mohommed Essop-Adam
Reviewed by Mohommed Essop-Adam
Reviewed on 30.10.2023
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