What are the Benefits of Celebrex?


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Table of Contents


I. What are the Uses of Celebrex?

II. Who can use Celebrex?

III. Treating Arthritis with Celebrex

IV. Is Celebrex Effective?

V. Possible Side Effects of Celebrex


What are the Uses of Celebrex?

Celebrex (celecoxib) is a multi-functional drug used for the treatment of several arthritic conditions. Having arthritis can significantly impact your everyday activities like climbing stairs or walking from a parking lot to your workplace. Around 23 percent of adults in the United States have some form of arthritis, so the use of Celebrex can be incredibly beneficial to patients' well-being. Read on to learn more about the effectiveness of Celebrex for arthritis today.

Who can use Celebrex?

The type of arthritis you have depends on a combination of factors, including genetics, environmental, and lifestyle. Along with arthritis, Celebrex can also treat menstrual cramps and short-term pain. Celebrex can be used for the following forms of arthritis.

Osteoarthritis: This the most common form of arthritis, also known as “wear and tear” arthritis. This type usually occurs with age when the joints become overused. Obesity may also cause osteoarthritis, causing pain and stiffness in the hips, feet, and spine.

a doctor putting a brace on a person’s wrist

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA): RA is an autoimmune disease that involves the immune system attacking the joints. RA can cause inflammation, severe joint damage, and disfigurement if left untreated. Pain, stiffness, and swelling may occur in the shoulders, knees, ankles, feet, hands, and wrists.

Ankylosing spondylitis: This a rare type of arthritis that causes pain and stiffness in the spine. It may also affect the lower back, neck, and joints in other parts of the body. There is no cure, but medications may ease symptoms. 

Treating Arthritis with Celebrex

Celebrex belongs to a class of drugs known as NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs). NSAIDs work by blocking an enzyme called cyclooxygenase (COX) to reduce chemicals that cause pain and inflammation. NSAIDs prevent these enzymes from forming and reduce arthritic pain. 

When inflammation is reduced, you will be able to perform daily activities more effectively. Over-the-counter NSAIDs like aspirin may reduce mild pain, but serious arthritic conditions require a higher dosage. If you feel like your arthritis pain is getting more intense, you may want to talk to your doctor. They will likely perform a physical exam and x-rays to get a look at your joint condition. If the bones of your joints are grinding against each other, severe pain may occur. In this case, you may be prescribed a stronger NSAID like Celebrex. 

Is Celebrex Effective?

There are many NSAIDs on the market, so what makes Celebrex more effective than other arthritis medications? The American Family Physician published a study to test the effectiveness and safety of using Celebrex for rheumatoid arthritis. The review of Celebrex included eight double-blind, randomized group trials with 3,988 participants with RA.

two older people walking down a country lane

The patients received 200 or 400 mg of Celebrex a day. The results showed a 15 percent improvement of self-reported pain in the patients after 12 weeks. The study found that Celebrex caused fewer gastroduodenal ulcers (at least 3mm in size) than traditional NSAIDs. 

This study only mentions Celebrex for RA, but there are several benefits to using Celebrex instead of traditional over-the-counter pain relievers. Those who take Celebrex do not experience the function of blood platelets and do not reduce clotting. This is different from other NSAIDs that may increase bleeding. 

Possible Side Effects of Celebrex 

Like many medications, Celebrex (celecoxib) may cause some side effects. These effects can be mild to severe, depending on several factors. Side effects depend on your prior health conditions and other medications you may be taking. The majority of common Celebrex side effects go away within a few days or a couple of weeks but talk to your doctor if you notice side effects becoming more severe.

Mild side effects:

  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Gas
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Upper respiratory infections (like a common cold)
  • Indigestion

Severe side effects:

  • High blood pressure (headache, dizziness, and chest pain)
  • Heart failure and edema (fluid retention)
  • Muscle pain or cramps
  • Anemia (fatigue, weakness, pale skin, or gums)
  • Kidney problems
  • Liver problems

Older adults may have more digestive problems with this drug than younger patients. Doctors may start older adults on lower doses to monitor their condition for any unusual side effects. An allergic reaction may also occur in some cases, so talk to your doctor if you experience a widespread rash, blistering skin, itchiness, or flushing.

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