Celebrex (generic: celecoxib) is a prescription medicine used to treat pain, arthritis, and painful menstrual periods. Celebrex belongs to a group of medications called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). It works by blocking a substance called COX-2 that causes pain and inflammation.
Celebrex is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) available by prescription only. It is used for relief of the signs and symptoms of:
- osteoarthritis (OA)
- rheumatoid arthritis (RA)
- juvenile rheumatoid arthritis (JRA)
- ankylosing spondylitis (AS)
- short-term pain (acute pain) in adults
- painful menstruation
This medication may be prescribed for other uses. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Common Celebrex side effects include:
- abdominal pain
- upset stomach
- gas or bloating
- upper respiratory infection
Less frequent, more serious side effects may occur. See "Drug Precautions". Some of these side effects include:
- heart attack
- high blood pressure
- heart failure from body swelling (fluid retention)
- kidney problems including kidney failure
- bleeding and ulcers in the stomach and intestine
- low red blood cells (anemia)
- life-threatening skin reactions
- life-threatening allergic reactions
- liver problems including liver failure
- asthma attacks in people who have asthma
Get emergency help right away if you have any of the following symptoms:
- shortness of breath or trouble breathing
- chest pain
- weakness in one part or side of your body
- slurred speech
- swelling of the face or throat
Stop taking Celebrex and call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of the following symptoms:
- more tired or weaker than usual
- your skin or eyes look yellow
- stomach pain
- flu-like symptoms
- vomit blood
- there is blood in your bowel movement or it is black and sticky like tar
- skin rash or blisters with fever
- unusual weight gain
- swelling of the arms and legs, hands and feet
This is not a complete list of Celebrex side effects. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Especially tell your doctor if you take:
- warfarin (Coumadin) and other "blood thinners" or anticoagulants
- other NSAIDs such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn)
- amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone)
- angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors such as benazepril (Lotensin), captopril (Capoten), enalapril (Vasotec), fosinopril (Monopril), lisinopril (Prinivil, Zestril), moexipril (Univasc), perindopril (Aceon), quinapril (Accupril), ramipril (Altace), and trandolapril (Mavik)
- angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs) such as azilsartan (Edarbi), candesartan (Atacand), eposartan (Teveten), irbesartan (Avapro), losartan (Cozaar), olmesartan (Benicar), telmisartan (Micardis), valsartan (Diovan)
- certain antidepressants (mood elevators)
- atazanavir (Reyataz)
- oral steroids
- clopidogrel (Plavix)
- codeine (in some cough medications and some pain medications)
- dextromethorphan (in some cough medications)
- diuretics ('water pills')
- efavirenz (Sustiva)
- fluconazole (Diflucan)
- fluvastatin (Lescol)
- lithium (Eskalith, Lithobid)
- certain medications for mental illness
- metoprolol (Lopressor, Toprol XL)
- metronidazole (Flagyl)
- mexiletine (Mexitil)
- ondansetron (Zofran)
- propafenone (Rhythmol)
- ritonavir (Norvir, in Kaletra)
- sulfamethoxazole (Bactrim, Septra)
- sulfinpyrazone (Anturane)
- tamoxifen (Nolvadex)
- timolol (Blocadren, Timolide, in some eye drops)
- tramadol (Ultram)
- zafirlukast (Accolate)
This is not a complete list of Celebrex drug interactions. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Celebrex is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). NSAID medicines may increase the chance of a heart attack or stroke that can lead to death.
This chance increases:
- with longer use of NSAID medicines
- in people who have heart disease
Celebrex and other NSAID medicines should never be used right before or after a heart surgery called a "coronary artery bypass graft (CABG)."
Celebrex and other NSAID medicines can cause ulcers and bleeding in the stomach and intestines at any time during treatment. Ulcers and bleeding:
- can happen without warning symptoms
- may cause death
The chance of a person getting an ulcer or bleeding increases with:
- taking medicines called "corticosteroids" and "anticoagulants"
- longer use
- drinking alcohol
- older age
- having poor health
Celebrex and other NSAID medicines should only be used:
- exactly as prescribed
- at the lowest dose possible for your treatment
- for the shortest time needed
Do not take an NSAID medicine:
- if you had an asthma attack, hives, or other allergic reaction with aspirin or any other NSAID medicine
- for pain right before or after heart bypass surgery
Medicines can interact with certain foods. In some cases, this may be harmful and your doctor may advise you to avoid certain foods. In the case of Celebrex there are no specific foods that you must exclude from your diet when receiving Celebrex.
Before receiving Celebrex, tell your healthcare provider:
- about all of your medical conditions.
- about all of the medicines you take. NSAIDs and some other medicines can interact with each other and cause serious side effects. Keep a list of your medicines to show to your healthcare provider and pharmacist.
- if you are pregnant. NSAID medicines should not be used by pregnant women late in their pregnancy.
- if you are breastfeeding. Talk to your doctor.
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. Celebrex may harm your unborn baby, especially if taken during the third trimester.
Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. Celebrex may be excreted in human milk in low amounts. The manufacturer recommends breastfeeding women use caution when taking Celebrex. You and your doctor will need to decide it is safe for you to take Celebrex while breastfeeding.
- Take Celebrex capsules by mouth at the same time each day.
- Celebrex is usually taken once or twice daily.
- This medication can be taken with or without food.
- Swallow Celebrex capsules whole. Do not break, chew, or crush capsules.
- For people who have difficulty swallowing capsules, the contents of a Celebrex capsule can be added to applesauce. Carefully empty the entire capsule contents onto a level teaspoon of cool or room temperature applesauce and swallow right away with water.
- To get the most benefit from Celebrex, take it exactly as prescribed by your doctor.
- Do not stop taking Celebrex without discussing it with your doctor.
For relief of the signs and symptoms of OA the recommended oral dose is 200 mg per day administered as a single dose or as 100 mg twice daily.
For relief of the signs and symptoms of RA the recommended oral dose is 100 to 200 mg twice daily.
Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis
For the relief of the signs and symptoms of JRA the recommended oral dose for pediatric patients (age 2 years and older) is based on weight. For patients ≥10 kg to ≤25 kg the recommended dose is 50 mg twice daily. For patients >25 kg the recommended dose is 100 mg twice daily.
For the management of the signs and symptoms of AS, the recommended dose of Celebrex is 200 mg daily in single (once per day) or divided (twice per day) doses. If no effect is observed after 6 weeks, a trial of 400 mg daily may be worthwhile. If no effect is observed after 6 weeks on 400 mg daily, a response is not likely and consideration should be given to alternate treatment options.
Management of Acute Pain and Treatment of Primary Dysmenorrhea
The recommended dose of Celebrex is 400 mg initially, followed by an additional 200 mg dose if needed on the first day. On subsequent days, the recommended dose is 200 mg twice daily as needed.
If you take too much Celebrex, call your local Poison Control Center or seek emergency medical attention right away.
Celebrex capsules are available in the following strengths: 50 mg, 100 mg, 200 mg, and 400 mg.
Active ingredient: celecoxib
Inactive ingredients: croscarmellose sodium, gelatin, lactose monohydrate, magnesium stearate, povidone, sodium lauryl sulfate.
Store this medication in the original, tightly sealed container. Keep Celebrex at room temperature, away from excess heat and moisture.
Keep this and all medications out of the reach of children.
WARNING: CARDIOVASCULAR AND GASTROINTESTINAL RISKS
- Celebrex may cause an increased risk of serious cardiovascular 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 cardiovascular disease or risk factors for cardiovascular disease may be at greater risk.
- Celebrex is contraindicated for the treatment of peri-operative pain in the setting of coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery.
- 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.