Celebrex is used to treat many different forms of arthritis in patients. While this drug cannot cure these disorders, it can help relieve painful symptoms that make it difficult to function on a regular basis. Celebrex is available in a variety of strengths so it is important to read the instructions for your dose carefully so you can adequately understand the instructions involved. Some patients are given divided doses while others are given an extended release capsule that will help them manage their symptoms all day.
Indications and Usage
Celebrex is used to treat the symptoms of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis in adults, ankylosing spondylitis, acute pain and primary dysmenorrhea. Doses should be taken around the same time every day so that you can keep a steady stream of medication in your system. Doses do not need to be taken with food, but you should drink water with your dose to help your body absorb the medication. Tablets should not be broken, split or chewed when taken. Do not double up doses when you miss doses to avoid causing an adverse reaction or increasing your risk of side effects.
The recommended dose of Celebrex for adults treating osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis is 200 mg per day. This may be given in divided doses. Those treating juvenile rheumatoid arthritis are typically given 100 mg twice daily. Children under 25 kg may be restricted to 25-50 mg per day in divided doses. The minimum effective dose of Celebrex is 25 mg per day. Doses should not exceed 400 mg per day, and doses this large should not be given without strict doctor's supervision.
Celebrex increases the risk of cardiovascular events, including conditions such as heart attack or stroke which could be fatal. If you are at risk for these conditions or have already undergone a coronary artery bypass graft then you may not be able to take Celebrex.
Pregnant women should not use Celebrex during their third trimester. This drug may cause premature closure of the ductus arteriosus which can cause complications with your pregnancy. If you are using Celebrex to manage your symptoms, talk with your doctor about an alternative plan for your dosage before you reach this point.
Those who suffer from liver disease may not be able to use Celebrex, as this medication causes elevated liver enzymes. In rare cases severe hepatic reactions have occurred. Talk with your doctor about how to adjust your dose to cut down on this risk. If at any point you develop these conditions, stop taking Celebrex immediately.
Celebrex has also increased the risk of gastrointestinal adverse events including ulceration, bleeding or perforation of the stomach. Those already suffering from or at risk for these conditions will need to talk to their doctor about their potential risk when using Celebrex. Elderly patients are at a greater risk of developing gastrointestinal events while on Celebrex, so those in this age group should talk with their doctor about anything they can do to reduce this risk.
Celebrex Side Effects
Side effects to Celebrex can be serious, but are not particularly common. The most common side effects to occur in clinical trials include high blood pressure which occurred in 12.5 percent of users, diarrhea in up to 10.5 percent, fever in 9 percent, heartburn or indigestion in approximately 9 percent, upper respiratory tract infections in 8 percent, nausea and cough, each in 7 percent of users. These side effects were usually not severe and did not impact the patient's ability to use their prescription as instructed. If your side effects become severe or are impacting your daily life on a significant level, contact your doctor for advice on how to proceed.
Less common side effects, occurring in 2-6 percent of users include dizziness, gas, accidental injury, sore throat, sinus irritation or infection, vomiting and gastroesophageal reflux disease. Like the side effects mentioned above, these side effects are not usually serious, but you should inform your doctor if they occur to determine if you need to adjust your prescription.
In rare cases, patients have reported constipation, heartburn, middle ear infections, muscle pain, herpes, depression, hair loss or amemia. Given the rare occurrence of these side effects, it is difficult to determine if these were caused by the medication or another condition interacting with Celebrex. If you have a tendency to develop these types of conditions, inform your doctor so they can decide how to proceed.
Some less common side effects may be signs of a serious reaction. If you begin to develop liver damage, fluid retention, kidney problems or failure, swelling of the arms or legs, congestive heart failure, rapid weight gain, or congestive heart failure contact emergency medical services immediately. If you are already suffering from liver or kidney disease, discuss these risks with your doctor to determine whether or not it is safe for you to take Celebrex.
If you begin to develop itching, hives, swelling of the mouth or throat, or a rash you may be experiencing an allergic reaction to Celebrex. Should any of these effects come on suddenly, or if you begin to have trouble breathing contact emergency medical services or poison control immediately. Stop taking your medication and await a recommendation from a medical professional before you continue using Celebrex.
Children ages 2 to 17 should be cautious when taking Celebrex as they may be more susceptible to side effects than some other age groups. This group may also see less improvement in their arthritis conditions than some other groups who use this medication.
Celebrex is known for interacting with blood thinners such as warfarin. This combination causes an increased risk of bleeding, both internally and externally. Drugs containing P450 2C9 or metabolized 2D6 alongside your prescription may cause increased plasma levels which can lead to an adverse reaction to your medication. Using Celebrex alongside ACE-inhibitors may reduce the effects of the medication, and may increase the risk of acute renal failure in elderly patients. Concomitant use of Celebrex may also increase the risk of increasing lithium plasma levels. Talk with your doctor about these risks as well as any medications you are taking so you can adequately evaluate your risk.