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Celebrex (celecoxib) is a painkiller in the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) family. It is similar to other NSAIDs, such as paracetamol or ibuprofen, but more powerful and often longer lasting in smaller doses.
It works by reducing inflammation in the body, which in turn reduces the pain, tenderness, fever and swelling associated with inflammation.
The medication may be taken regularly over a long period or occasionally on an as-needed basis. When being used as-needed, it is most effective when taken at the earliest onset of pain.
Celebrex comes in capsules, which are easy to take; food is optional but may help ease nausea. Capsules may be opened and the medication mixed in with food or drink, if desired. Taking with fatty foods will slow absorption and delay effects.
Dosage depends largely on the condition being treated, but other factors may influence dosage strength, such as weight, age, other medications being taken or other medical considerations. For the most commonly treated ailments, a rough guideline is as follows:
Doses may be taken all at once or be split into two smaller doses, depending on preference or whichever method is more effective. Celebrex reaches maximum effectiveness about 3 hours after it is taken.
Side effects are much more likely at higher dosage levels and when the medication is taken regularly for long periods. Regular checkups are encouraged if taking Celebrex for more than a few weeks; doctor exams may catch developing side effects that don't show symptoms until the condition is severe.
Precautions & Side Effects
Some preexisting conditions put patients at a greater risk of experiencing serious side effects, particularly when there is a history of:
Additionally the medication may interact with a number of other drugs; check with a doctor or pharmacist if unsure of safety.
Patients with a history of allergic reactions to other NSAIDs are more likely to experience such a reaction to Celebrex, and should use with extreme caution the first few times. However, many individuals with allergies to other NSAIDs are able to take Celebrex with no problems.
Side effects are very similar to those experienced with any NSAID. The most common side effects are typically mild and not cause for concern:
Many of the above side effects will be reduced if Celebrex is taken with food. Breaking a single large does into two smaller doses may also help.
Occasionally more serious side effects develop. Stop taking the medication until speaking with doctor if experiencing:
In some individuals, NSAIDs cause an increase in blood pressure, especially when taken long term. This is an often overlooked side effect, but worth keeping in mind if there is a history of high blood pressure, or a sudden unexplained rise in blood pressure after treatment begins. This is not permanent; effects will reverse when treatment ends.
No current Rx required
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Medicines have benefits and some have risks. Always read the label and use only as directed. If symptoms persist or you have side effects see your health professional.