A "loading dose" refers to an initially higher dose of a medication before dropping down to a lower maintenance dose.  It is sometimes given in order to give a more immediate effect in acute situations.  It is often given at the start of the treatment then reduced as the treatment continues. One example of a medication that our doctors may give a loading dose is for an NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory) medication called Meloxicam.  The smaller dosage is 7.5 mg per day, but the maximum dose can go up to 15 mg per day.  In some situations, the doctor may determine that a higher initial dose is initially necessary to decrease acute inflammation (and in turn give pain relief), but then once this inflammation is reduced, the lesser dose may be appropriate.  In this case, the loading dose is actually just 2 tablets of the medication for 4 days, then go back to 1 tablet once a day.  We find that the extra dosages help with working on knocking out that pain!