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Frequently Asked Questions

This quick reference guide can help you find answers to some of the more common questions that people with arthritis have. However, if you don’t find the answers you’re looking for here, talk to your doctor. He or she will be the best source for answering your questions.

Q1. What is arthritis?

A. Arthritis means "joint inflammation" and can affect people of all ages, races, and ethnic groups. The exact causes of most types of arthritis are unknown. Scientists are studying the role of factors such as genetics, lifestyle, autoimmune disorders, and environment in the various types of arthritis. The two most common forms of arthritis are osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA).

Q2. What's the difference between osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis?

A. Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of arthritis in the U.S., affecting nearly 27 million adults. While the exact cause of OA is unknown, it occurs when cartilage in joints breaks down over time. Often called "wear and tear" arthritis, OA is most commonly found in the knees, hips, hands, or spine, though it can occur in any joint.

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is the second most common form of arthritis. Unlike osteoarthritis, RA is an autoimmune disease. An autoimmune disease is when the body's defense system malfunctions and begins to mistakenly attack itself. In RA, white blood cells (which normally fight infection) attack the lining of a joint causing inflammation (swelling). This inflammation leads to a release of proteins that thicken the joint lining. The proteins can also damage the cartilage, bone tendons, and ligaments near the joint, eventually destroying the joint itself.

Patient-reported, doctor-diagnosed cases

Q3. How is arthritis diagnosed?

A. Diagnosing arthritis often requires a detailed medical history of current and past symptoms, physical examination, x-rays, and blood work. It is possible to be diagnosed with more than one form of arthritis at the same time.

Q4. How many people in the United States have arthritis?

A. Currently, an estimated 46 million Americans reported that their doctor told them they have some form of arthritis. Of that 46 million, 27 million have doctor-diagnosed osteoarthritis and 1.3 million have rheumatoid arthritis.

Q5. What is an arthritis flare?

A. An arthritis flare is a rapid increase in the severity of a person's arthritis symptoms.

Q6. What should I do if I think I have arthritis?

A. If you have pain, stiffness, or swelling in or around one or more of your joints, talk to your doctor. It is important to keep in mind that there are many forms of arthritis, and a specific diagnosis will help your doctor determine the proper treatment. The earlier you talk to your doctor, the earlier you can start managing your arthritis pain.

Q1. What is CELEBREX?

A. CELEBREX is a prescription NSAID (NonSteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug), a class of pain relievers that also reduces inflammation. Some NSAIDs come in both prescription and over-the-counter strength, but CELEBREX is only available by prescription. CELEBREX is FDA approved to treat the signs and symptoms of osteoarthritis (OA), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), and for the management of acute pain in adults.

Q2. Is CELEBREX a narcotic?

A. No, CELEBREX is not a narcotic.

Q3. How long has CELEBREX been on the market?

A. For over 15 straight years, prescription CELEBREX has been FDA approved to treat the signs and symptoms of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis in adults.

Q4. How do I know if CELEBREX is right for me?

A. When it comes to managing arthritis pain, you and your doctor need to balance the benefits with the risks. Whether CELEBREX is right for you can depend on your medical history, what medicines you are taking, and the severity and type of joint pain. You and your doctor can work together to decide the best option for you.

Q5. Has CELEBREX ever been taken off the market?

A. No. CELEBREX has never been taken off the market. It has been an arthritis treatment option for millions of patients for over 15 straight years. If you have additional questions, talk to your doctor or call the CELEBREX Customer Support Center at 1-888-678-2692.

Q6. Does CELEBREX contain aspirin?

A. No. CELEBREX does not contain aspirin, but you should not take CELEBREX if you have had an allergic reaction to aspirin or have aspirin-sensitive asthma.

Q7. How do I get CELEBREX?

A. CELEBREX is available by prescription only. So ask your doctor if CELEBREX is right for you.

Q8. Can CELEBREX be taken with low-dose aspirin?

A. If you are taking low-dose aspirin for your heart and need an NSAID pain reliever, CELEBREX can be used because it doesn't interfere with aspirin's antiplatelet effect. However, taking low-dose aspirin may not reduce the cardiovascular risk associated with NSAID use. With any NSAID, including CELEBREX, patients also taking aspirin are at an increased risk for stomach bleeding and ulcers.

Q9. Does CELEBREX increase the risk of high blood pressure?

A. As with all prescription NSAIDs, CELEBREX can lead to the onset or worsening of high blood pressure. Please be sure to discuss all preexisting medical conditions with your doctor.

Q10. Who should not take CELEBREX?

A. CELEBREX should not be taken by anyone with a history of allergic-type reactions to sulfonamides, a history of asthma, skin reactions, or other allergic reactions to aspirin or other NSAIDs, or who has recently undergone heart surgery, or in late-stage pregnancy. Do not take CELEBREX if you have bleeding in the stomach or intestine.

Q1. What is an NSAID?

A. NSAID stands for nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug.

Q2. Do all prescription NSAIDs have the same cardiovascular warning?

A. Yes. All prescription NSAIDs, like CELEBREX, ibuprofen, naproxen, and meloxicam have the same cardiovascular warning. They may all increase the chance of heart attack or stroke that can lead to death.

Q3. Do all prescription NSAIDs have the same warnings for serious stomach and intestine side effects?

A. All prescription NSAIDs, including CELEBREX, have the same warning for serious stomach and intestine problems. They may cause ulcers and bleeding, which can occur without warning and may cause death.

Q4. Are there any differences in other stomach side effects between CELEBREX and other prescription NSAIDs?

A. In fact, in clinical studies, a lower percentage of arthritis patients on CELEBREX reported stomach upset, including indigestion, abdominal pain, and nausea versus prescription ibuprofen and naproxen.

Q5. How are prescription NSAIDs different from acetaminophen?

A. Both NSAIDs and acetaminophen relieve pain. However, NSAIDs inhibit the production of certain substances in the body that cause inflammation while acetaminophen does not. Additionally, they have different side-effect profiles.

Q1. Is exercise recommended for people who have arthritis?

A. Always talk to your doctor before starting any exercise routine. Physical activity can help to relieve arthritis pain and stiffness.

Q2. How important is losing weight in treating arthritis pain?

A. If you're overweight, losing weight is often recommended by doctors who treat arthritis. Losing weight can relieve extra stress placed on joints and reduce the pain felt in those joints. In fact, for every pound lost, a person relieves about four pounds of stress on his or her knees. A healthier diet combined with exercise can help lose weight. However, talk to your doctor before beginning any exercise program.

Q3. Who is eligible for Pfizer's RxPathways™ Program?

A. If you are uninsured or need help paying for your medication, Pfizer has programs that can help. To find out if you're eligible, call 1-866-706-2400 or try www.PfizerRxPath.com

Q4. I want to start an exercise program to help manage my pain. What should I do?

A. The first thing you'll want to do is talk to your doctor. He or she will be able to tell you general types of exercise that are compatible with your physical condition and overall health. Your doctor may also be able to refer you to a physical therapist who is trained to help people with arthritis.

Q1. How are you supposed to take CELEBREX?

A. Your doctor will have prescribed a specific dose for you based on your diagnosis. Please contact your doctor for further dosing instructions, and use as he or she instructs you. To learn more, go to Taking CELEBREX.

Q2. Do I take CELEBREX with or without food?

A. You can take CELEBREX with or without food. However, it's good to establish a daily routine for taking CELEBREX, so find a time that works best for you and try to stick with it.

Q3. How long do I have to stay on CELEBREX?

A. Talk to your doctor about your treatment plan. CELEBREX should always be taken as prescribed, at the lowest dose possible, for the shortest time needed. However, if you have any side effects, tell your doctor immediately as he or she may have to change your treatment. Call your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions about your treatment.

Q4. What do I do if I think I may have taken too much CELEBREX?

A. Please call your doctor or go to an emergency care facility if you are concerned that you may have exceeded the recommended dosage of CELEBREX.

Q5. Can I take two CELEBREX at once (or per day) if one is not working?

A. You should not increase or change your dosage without consulting with your doctor for dosing information.

Q6. Are there any foods to avoid while taking CELEBREX?

A. Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, continue your normal diet.

Q7. Do I need to avoid alcohol or smoking while taking CELEBREX?

A. Drinking alcohol and/or smoking increases the risk of getting an ulcer or stomach bleeding. Be sure to let your doctor know if you consume alcoholic drinks or smoke.

Q8. Do I have to swallow the capsules whole?

A. If you 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 take immediately with water.

Q9. What should I do if I forget to take a dose?

A. Always take CELEBREX as prescribed by your doctor. If you miss a dose, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

Q10. What do I do if I'm taking other medications?

A. It is very important to tell your doctor and pharmacist about any medications, both over-the-counter and prescription, that you are taking. You should also tell your doctor about any herbal and nutritional supplements you take.
It's a good idea to make a list of everything you are taking, and share it with your doctor. In particular, be sure to tell your doctor if you are taking:
  • ACE inhibitors and Angiotensin II Antagonists
  • Warfarin or similar agents
  • Fluconazole
  • Furosemide
  • Lithium
  • Methotrexate
  • Aspirin
  • Other NSAIDs

Q11. Can I take over-the-counter pain relievers while taking CELEBREX?

A. It is always a good idea to ask your doctor about any over-the-counter medicines and herbal or nutritional supplements you are taking or thinking about taking. CELEBREX is an NSAID. Many over-the-counter pain relievers are also NSAIDs. They should be avoided while taking CELEBREX, due to a potential increased risk of side effects.

Q12. How should I store my CELEBREX?

A. Store your CELEBREX at room temperature. Keep out of reach of children and pets. Throw away your medicine if it is expired or if you no longer use it.

Scroll for Important Safety Information and Indications.

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

All prescription NSAIDs, like CELEBREX, ibuprofen, naproxen, and meloxicam have the same cardiovascular warning. They may all increase the chance of heart attack or stroke that can lead to death. This chance increases if you have heart disease or risk factors for it, such as high blood pressure or when NSAIDs are taken for long periods.

CELEBREX should not be used right before or after certain heart surgeries.

Serious skin reactions, or stomach and intestine problems such as bleeding and ulcers, can occur without warning and may cause death. Patients taking aspirin and the elderly are at increased risk for stomach bleeding and ulcers.

Tell your doctor if you have:

  • A history of ulcers or bleeding in the stomach or intestines
  • High blood pressure or heart failure
  • Kidney or liver problems

CELEBREX should not be taken in late pregnancy.

Do not take CELEBREX if you have bleeding in the stomach or intestine, or you've had an asthma attack, hives, or other allergic reactions to aspirin, any other NSAID medicine or certain drugs called sulfonamides.

Life threatening allergic reactions can occur with CELEBREX. Get help right away if you've had swelling of the face or throat or trouble breathing.

Prescription CELEBREX should be used exactly as prescribed at the lowest dose possible and for the shortest time needed.

INDICATIONS

CELEBREX is indicated for the relief of the signs and symptoms of osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and ankylosing spondylitis, and for the management of acute pain in adults.

Have a question? Call us at 1-888-678-2692.

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Scroll for Important Safety Information and Indications.

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

All prescription NSAIDs, like CELEBREX, ibuprofen, naproxen, and meloxicam have the same cardiovascular warning. They may all increase the chance of heart attack or stroke that can lead to death. This chance increases if you have heart disease or risk factors for it, such as high blood pressure or when NSAIDs are taken for long periods.

CELEBREX should not be used right before or after certain heart surgeries.

Serious skin reactions, or stomach and intestine problems such as bleeding and ulcers, can occur without warning and may cause death. Patients taking aspirin and the elderly are at increased risk for stomach bleeding and ulcers.

Tell your doctor if you have:

  • A history of ulcers or bleeding in the stomach or intestines
  • High blood pressure or heart failure
  • Kidney or liver problems

CELEBREX should not be taken in late pregnancy.

Do not take CELEBREX if you have bleeding in the stomach or intestine, or you've had an asthma attack, hives, or other allergic reactions to aspirin, any other NSAID medicine or certain drugs called sulfonamides.

Life threatening allergic reactions can occur with CELEBREX. Get help right away if you've had swelling of the face or throat or trouble breathing.

Prescription CELEBREX should be used exactly as prescribed at the lowest dose possible and for the shortest time needed.

INDICATIONS

CELEBREX is indicated for the relief of the signs and symptoms of osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and ankylosing spondylitis, and for the management of acute pain in adults.