Celebrex and Lyrica for Arthritis?

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Are you worried about the side effects that may occur from taking Celebrex and Lyrica for arthritis? If so, you’re not alone, as the list of sides effects for both products is quite daunting. Celebrex is related to the drug Vioxx, which itself was taken off the shelf because of its attribution to a number of deaths.

Here is the official list of side effects for Celebrex:
Important Safety Information
Cardiovascular Risk
• CELEBREX may cause an increased risk of serious cardiovascular (CV) thrombotic events, myocardial infarction, and stroke, which can be fatal. All nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) may have a similar risk. This risk may increase with duration of use. Patients with CV disease or risk factors for CV disease may be at greater risk.
• CELEBREX is contraindicated for the treatment of perioperative pain in coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery.

Gastrointestinal Risk
• NSAIDs, including CELEBREX, cause an increased risk of serious gastrointestinal adverse events including bleeding, ulceration, and perforation of the stomach or intestines, which can be fatal. These events can occur at any time during use and without warning symptoms. Elderly patients are at greater risk for serious gastrointestinal events.
CELEBREX is contraindicated in patients with active gastrointestinal bleeding; in patients who have demonstrated allergic-type reactions to sulfonamides; or in patients who have experienced asthma, urticaria, or allergic-type reactions after taking aspirin or other NSAIDs.
Use the lowest effective dose for the shortest duration consistent with individual patient treatment goals.
As with all NSAIDs, CELEBREX can lead to the onset of new hypertension or worsening of pre-existing hypertension, either of which may contribute to the increased incidence of CV events. Blood pressure should be monitored closely with all NSAIDs.
Fluid retention and edema have been observed in some patients taking NSAIDs, including CELEBREX. NSAIDs should be used with caution in patients with fluid retention or heart failure.
NSAIDs, including CELEBREX, may diminish the antihypertensive effect of angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors and angiotensin II antagonists, and in some patients can reduce the natriuretic effect of furosemide and thiazides.
In patients who are elderly, volume-depleted (including those on diuretic therapy), or with compromised renal function, co-administration of NSAIDs, including selective COX-2 inhibitors, with ACE inhibitors, may result in deterioration of renal function, including possible acute renal failure. Discontinuation of NSAID therapy is usually followed by recovery to the pretreatment state.
CELEBREX can be used with low-dose aspirin. There is no consistent evidence that concurrent use of aspirin mitigates the increased risk of serious CV thrombotic events associated with NSAID use.
Concomitant administration of aspirin with CELEBREX increases the rate of GI ulceration or other complications, compared with use of CELEBREX alone.
Treatment with NSAIDs, including CELEBREX, is not recommended in those patients with advanced renal disease. In addition, NSAIDs may cause renal toxicity.
Serious skin reactions such as exfoliative dermatitis, Stevens Johnson syndrome, and toxic epidermal necrolysis have been reported in patients receiving CELEBREX. These reactions can be fatal. They can occur without warning and in patients without prior known sulfa allergy. CELEBREX should be discontinued at the first appearance of skin rash, mucosal lesions, or any other sign of hypersensitivity.
Rare cases of anaphylactic reactions and angioedema have been reported in patients receiving CELEBREX. Patients should seek immediate emergency assistance if they have swelling of the face or throat or have difficulty breathing.
CELEBREX should be avoided in late pregnancy.
NSAIDs, including CELEBREX, should be used with caution in pediatric patients with systemic onset JRA, due to the risk of disseminated intravascular coagulation.

Here is the official list of side effects for Lyrica:
LYRICA is not for everyone. LYRICA may cause serious, even life threatening, allergic reactions. Stop taking LYRICA and call your doctor right away if you have any signs of a serious allergic reaction. Some signs are swelling of your face, mouth, lips, gums, tongue, throat or neck or if you have any trouble breathing or have a rash, hives or blisters.
Drugs used to treat seizures increase the risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior. LYRICA may cause suicidal thoughts or actions in a very small number of people, about 1 in 500. Patients, family members or caregivers should call the doctor right away if they notice suicidal thoughts or actions, thoughts of self harm, or any unusual changes in mood or behavior. These changes may include new or worsening depression, anxiety, restlessness, trouble sleeping, panic attacks, anger, irritability, agitation, aggression, dangerous impulses or violence, or extreme increases in activity or talking. If you have suicidal thoughts or actions, do not stop LYRICA without first talking to your doctor.
LYRICA may cause swelling of your hands, legs and feet, which can be serious for people with heart problems. LYRICA may cause dizziness and sleepiness. You should not drive or work with machines until you know how LYRICA affects you. Also, tell your doctor right away about muscle pain or problems along with feeling sick and feverish, or any changes in your eyesight including blurry vision or if you have any kidney problems or get dialysis.
Some of the most common side effects of LYRICA are dizziness, blurry vision, weight gain, sleepiness, trouble concentrating, swelling of your hands and feet, dry mouth, and feeling “high.” If you have diabetes, tell your doctor about any skin sores.
You may have a higher chance for swelling and hives if you are also taking angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors so tell your doctor if you are taking these medications. You may have a higher chance of swelling of your hands or feet or gaining weight if you are also taking certain diabetes medicines. Do not drink alcohol while on LYRICA. You may have a higher chance for dizziness and sleepiness if you take LYRICA with alcohol, narcotic pain medicines, or medicines for anxiety.
Before you start LYRICA, tell your doctor if you are planning to father a child, or if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. If you have had a drug or alcohol problem, you may be more likely to misuse LYRICA.
In studies, a specific type of blood vessel tumor was seen in mice, but not in rats. The meaning of these findings in humans is not known.
Do not stop taking LYRICA without talking to your doctor. If you stop suddenly you may have headaches, nausea, diarrhea, trouble sleeping, increased sweating, or you may feel anxious. If you have epilepsy, you may have seizures more often.

Both Celebrex and Lyrica are quite popular, and of course should you wish to explore getting off of them and trying something else, you should do so in consultation with your personal health physician; this is especially important in the case of Lyrica due to the possibility of resultant seizures. There are natural alternatives, such as glucosamine and chondroitin, and these alternatives lack the large lists of nasty side effects. In fact, a recent study found that these two supplements matched Celebrex in the positive qualities for treating arthritis.

Dr. Allen Sawitzke was coauthor of this recent study that tracked the results of glucosamine and chondroitin on the effects of knee osteoarthritis suffered by 606 patients living in France, Germany, Poland, and Spain. Treatment with these two supplements was found to be just as effective as treatment based on celecoxib (which includes Celebrex). One caveat is that the quality of glucosamine and chondroitin is more closely monitored in Europe than it is in the United States. Should you decide to try these two supplements, try to find a reputable manufacturer of supplements.

An added bonus to taking glucosamine and chondroitin is that they are cheaper than Celebrex, typically less than a fourth of the cost.

You have options in the treatment of arthritis, and it pays to explore the many possibilities.

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