Celebrex facts and overview

Every year approximately 200,000 Americans die from prescription drug reactions.


  • On December 17 th , 2004 , the results of a study showed that the painkiller Celebrex could increase the potential for heart attacks, strokes or even death, by 300%.
  • Celebrex is one of the top 10 selling drugs in the United States .
  • Celebrex is projected to produce U.S. sales of more then $3 billion this year.
  • 27 million Celebrex prescriptions were written last year alone.
  • On December 20, 2004 , the FDA mandated that Pfizer pull all Celebrex advertising from TV, radio, newspapers, and magazines.
  • Celebrex was the first of Pharmacia’s COX-2 inhibitors.


The CELEBREX ® arthritis drug entered the U.S. market in 1999 with record sales within the first fifteen weeks. It did not take long for people to begin to question the “super aspirin” as reports linking CELEBREX ® to death and serious side effects began to come in just three months on the market.

Celebrex is in a class of drugs called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Celebrex works by reducing substances that cause inflammation, pain, and fever in the body.

Celebrex is used to reduce pain, inflammation, and stiffness caused by osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Celebrex is also used to reduce the number of adenomatous colorectal polyps in familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP), to treat acute pain, and to treat pain associated with menstruation.

A study has been uncovered that found, “The number of Celebrex patients suffering heart attacks was almost four times that of those taking a placebo.” The study was conducted by Pfizer in 1999. The study was never published and was not submitted to the FDA until several years later.

Celebrex is in the same class of drugs (Cox 2 Inhibitors) as Vioxx. Recently Vioxx was withdrawn from the market due to safety concerns due to an increased risk of heart attack and stroke. Even in light of the withdraw, Celebrex has yet to be taken off of the market, despite the serious concerns with heart and skin problems. According to Pfizer, “Celebrex is the world’s most prescribed arthritis drug.” It has been prescribed to 27 million Americans. Pfizer stopped advertising the drug; however the drug is still available.

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