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Celebrex Side Effects

Celebrex (generic name, Celecoxib) belongs to a relatively new class of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) called "COX-2 inhibitors". It is typically prescribed for the relief of acute pain, menstrual cramps, and the pain and inflammation of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Like older NSAIDs such as Naprosyn and Motrin, Celebrex is believed to fight pain and inflammation by inhibiting the effect of a natural enzyme that is called COX-2. Unlike these older medications however, it does not interfere with a similar substance, called COX-1, which exerts a protective effect on the lining of the stomach. Celebrex is therefore less likely to cause the bleeding and ulcers that may sometimes accompany sustained use of the older NSAIDs.

Common Celebrex Side Effects

Side effects (if any) may vary from individual to individual and cannot be predicted. However, in clinical studies, the most common Celebrex side effects were indigestion, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. Less common side effects include back pain, dizziness, gas, insomnia, rash, runny nose, sore throat, swelling.

It is quite possible for side effects other than those listed here to occur. If this happens and/or if any seem particularly strange or bothersome, contact a healthcare provider.

Special Celebrex Precautions

Although Celebrex is known to be easy on the stomach, it still poses some degree of risk, especially if you've had a stomach ulcer or gastrointestinal bleeding in the past. If you've ever had any such problems, ensure the doctor is aware of it and be sure to alert the doctor if you develop any digestive problems or black, tarry stools while taking Celebrex.

You should not take Celebrex if you are allergic to sulfonamide drugs such as sulfadiazine, sulfisoxazole, Gantanol, and Thiosulfil. It should also be avoided if you've ever suffered an asthma attack, face and throat swelling, or skin eruptions after taking aspirin or other NSAIDs. If you find that you are allergic to Celebrex, you should not take it.

If you are taking a steroid medication for your arthritis, do not discontinue it abruptly when you begin therapy with Celebrex as Celebrex is not a substitute for such drugs.

Celebrex has been known to cause kidney or liver problems (particularly in people with an existing condition). If you have such a disorder, Celebrex should be taken with caution. If you develop symptoms of liver poisoning, stop taking Celebrex and see your doctor immediately. Warning signs include nausea, pain in the right side of the stomach, fatigue, itching, yellowish skin, and flu-like symptoms.

If you are prone to anemia (loss of red blood cells), ensure that the doctor is aware of this as Celebrex occasionally fosters this problem. Additionally, Celebrex sometimes causes water retention, which can aggravate swelling, high blood pressure, and heart failure. Use Celebrex with caution if you have any of these conditions.

Celebrex can harm a developing baby if taken during the third trimester, and its safety earlier in pregnancy has not been confirmed. Take it during pregnancy only if you feel the risk is justified. The safety and effectiveness of Celebrex is untested in children under 18.

If Celebrex is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Celebrex with any of the following drugs - ACE-inhibitors (a type of blood pressure and heart medication, including such drugs as Capoten, Vasotec, and Prinivil); Blood thinning agents such as Coumadin; Fluconazole (Diflucan); Furosemide (Lasix); Lithium (Eskalith, Lithobid); Thiazide diuretics (water pills) such as hydrochlorothiazide and Dyazide.

Warning: This information is intended to supplement, not be a substitute for the expertise and judgment of a doctor. Please consult a doctor for final and more detailed information about the possible side effects of this prescription medication.
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