NSAIDs cause an increased risk of serious cardiovascular thrombotic events, including myocardial infarction, and stroke, which can be fatal. This risk may occur early in the treatment and may increase with duration of use. Celecoxib is contraindicated in the setting of coronary artery bypass graft surgery. NSAIDs cause an increased risk of serious gastrointestinal (GI) 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 and patients with a prior history of peptic ulcer disease and/or GI bleeding are at greater risk for serious GI events .
Medically reviewed on September 3, 2018
Commonly used brand name(s)
In the U.S.
Available Dosage Forms:
Therapeutic Class: Analgesic
Pharmacologic Class: Cyclooxygenase-2 Inhibitor
Uses For celecoxib
Celecoxib is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) used to treat mild to moderate pain and help relieve symptoms of arthritis (e.g., osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, or juvenile rheumatoid arthritis), such as inflammation, swelling, stiffness, and joint pain. However, celecoxib does not cure arthritis and will help you only as long as you continue to take it.
Celecoxib is also used to treat ankylosing spondylitis, which is a type of arthritis that affects the joints in the spine. Celecoxib may also be used to treat acute pain and menstrual cramps.
Celecoxib is available only with your doctor's prescription.
Before Using celecoxib
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For celecoxib, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to celecoxib or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated pediatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of celecoxib in children 2 years of age and older. However, safety and efficacy have not been established in children younger than 2 years of age.
Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of celecoxib in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related kidney or stomach problems, which may require caution.
|1st Trimester||C||Animal studies have shown an adverse effect and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR no animal studies have been conducted and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women.|
|2nd Trimester||C||Animal studies have shown an adverse effect and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR no animal studies have been conducted and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women.|
|3rd Trimester||D||Studies in pregnant women have demonstrated a risk to the fetus. However, the benefits of therapy in a life threatening situation or a serious disease, may outweigh the potential risk.|
There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.
Interactions with Medicines
Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are taking celecoxib, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.
Using celecoxib with any of the following medicines is not recommended. Your doctor may decide not to treat you with this medication or change some of the other medicines you take.
Using celecoxib with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
- Amtolmetin Guacil
- Bismuth Subsalicylate
- Choline Magnesium Trisalicylate
- Choline Salicylate
- Dabigatran Etexilate
- Ethacrynic Acid
- Flufenamic Acid
- Magnesium Salicylate
- Mefenamic Acid
- Niflumic Acid
- Nimesulide Beta Cyclodextrin
- Pentosan Polysulfate Sodium
- Phenyl Salicylate
- Protein C
- Salicylic Acid
- Sodium Salicylate
- Tenofovir Disoproxil Fumarate
- Tiaprofenic Acid
- Tolfenamic Acid
- Trolamine Salicylate
Using celecoxib with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
- Azilsartan Medoxomil
Interactions with Food/Tobacco/Alcohol
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.
Other Medical Problems
The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of celecoxib. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
- Anemia or
- Congestive heart failure or
- Edema (fluid retention or body swelling) or
- Heart attack, history of or
- Heart disease or
- Hypertension (high blood pressure) or
- Kidney disease, mild to moderate or
- Stomach ulcers or bleeding, history of or
- Stroke, history of—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
- Aspirin-sensitive asthma, history of or
- Aspirin sensitivity, history of or
- Kidney impairment, severe or
- Liver impairment, severe or
- Sulfa or sulfonamide allergy (e.g., sulfamethoxazole, Bactrim®, or Septra®)—Should not be used in patients with these conditions.
- Heart surgery (e.g., coronary artery bypass graft [CABG] surgery)—Celecoxib should not be used to relieve pain right before or after the surgery.
- Certain genetic conditions (poor CYP2C9 (a liver enzyme) metabolizers) or
- Liver disease, mild or moderate—Use with caution. You may need a reduced dose of celecoxib.
Proper Use of celecoxib
For safe and effective use of celecoxib, do not take more of it, do not take it more often, and do not take it for a longer time than your doctor ordered. Taking too much of celecoxib may increase the chance of unwanted effects.
Celecoxib should come with a Medication Guide. It is very important that you read and understand this information. Be sure to ask your doctor about anything you do not understand.
You may take celecoxib with or without food.
If you cannot swallow the capsule, you may open it and pour the medicine to a teaspoon of cool or room temperature applesauce. This mixture must be swallowed right away without chewing and followed with a glass of water to make sure all of the mixture is swallowed.
Any medicine that has been mixed with applesauce may be stored in a refrigerator and used within 6 hours.
The dose of celecoxib will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of celecoxib. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.
The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.
- For oral dosage form (capsules):
- For acute pain or pain during menstruation:
- Adults—At first, 400 milligrams (mg). A second dose of 200 mg can be taken if needed on the first day. Then, 200 mg two times a day as needed.
- Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
- For ankylosing spondylitis or osteoarthritis:
- Adults—200 milligrams (mg) once a day or 100 mg two times a day. Your doctor may increase your dose if needed.
- Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
- For rheumatoid arthritis or juvenile rheumatoid arthritis:
- Adults—100 to 200 milligrams (mg) two times a day.
- Children 2 years of age and older and weighing more than 25 kilograms (kg)—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The dose is usually 100 milligrams (mg) two times a day.
- Children 2 years of age and older and weighing less than 25 kilograms (kg)—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The dose is usually 50 milligrams (mg) two times a day.
- Children younger than 2 years of age—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
- For acute pain or pain during menstruation:
If you miss a dose of celecoxib, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.
Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.
Precautions While Using celecoxib
It is very important that your doctor check the progress of you or your child at regular visits. This will allow your doctor to see if the medicine is working properly and to decide if you should continue to take it. Blood and urine tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects.
Celecoxib may raise your risk of having a heart attack or stroke. This is more likely in people who already have heart disease. People who use celecoxib for a long time might also have a higher risk.
Celecoxib may cause bleeding in your stomach or intestines. These problems can happen without warning signs. This is more likely if you or your child have had a stomach ulcer in the past, if you smoke or drink alcohol regularly, are over 60 years of age, are in poor health, or using certain other medicines (such as steroids or a blood thinner).
Using this medication in certain patients under the age of 18 for the treatment of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis may increase the risk of disseminated intravascular coagulation (bleeding problem). Talk with your doctor if you have concerns about this .
Serious skin reactions can occur with celecoxib. Stop using celecoxib and check with your doctor right away if you or your child have any of the following symptoms while taking celecoxib: blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin; chills; cough; diarrhea; fever; itching; joint or muscle pain; red skin lesions; sore throat; sores, ulcers, white spots in the mouth or on the lips; or unusual tiredness or weakness.
Taking two or more of the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) together on a regular basis may increase the chance of unwanted effects. Also, taking acetaminophen, aspirin or other salicylates, or ketorolac (e.g., Toradol) regularly while you are taking a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug may increase the chance of unwanted effects. The risk will depend on how much of each medicine you take every day, and on how long you take the medicines together. If your doctor tells you to take these medicines together on a regular basis, follow his or her directions carefully. However, do not take acetaminophen or aspirin or other salicylates together with celecoxib for more than a few days, and do not take any ketorolac (e.g., Toradol) while you are taking celecoxib, unless your doctor has directed you to do so and is following your progress.
Some possible warning signs of serious side effects that can occur during treatment with celecoxib may include black, tarry stools; decreased urination; severe stomach pain; skin rash; swelling of the face, fingers, feet, or lower legs; unusual bleeding or bruising; unusual weight gain; vomiting of blood or material that looks like coffee grounds; or yellow eyes and skin. Also, signs of serious heart problems could occur such as chest pain, tightness in the chest, fast or irregular heartbeat, or unusual flushing or warmth of the skin. Stop taking celecoxib and check with your doctor immediately if you notice any of these warning signs.
Celecoxib may cause a serious type of allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. Although this is rare, it may occur more often in patients who are allergic to aspirin, other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), or sulfonamide-type drugs. Anaphylaxis can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention. The most serious signs of this reaction are very fast or irregular breathing, gasping for breath, wheezing, or fainting. Other signs may include changes in color of the skin of the face; very fast but irregular heartbeat or pulse; hive-like swellings on the skin; and puffiness or swellings of the eyelids or around the eyes. If these effects occur, get emergency help at once. Ask someone to drive you to the nearest hospital emergency room. If this is not possible, do not try to drive yourself. Call an ambulance, lie down, cover yourself to keep warm, and prop your feet higher than your head. Stay in that position until help arrives.
Using celecoxib during the later part of pregnancy can harm your unborn baby. If you think you have become pregnant while using the medicine, tell your doctor right away.
Tell your doctor if you or your child have unexplained weight gain or edema (fluid retention or body swelling) with celecoxib.
Before having any kind of surgery or medical tests, tell your doctor that you are taking celecoxib. It may be necessary for you to stop treatment for a while, or to change to a different nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug before your procedure.
Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.
Celecoxib Side Effects
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
- skin rash
- sore throat
- swelling of the face, fingers, feet, or lower legs
Less common or rare
- Abnormal growth in the breast
- arm, back, or jaw pain
- bloody or black, tarry stools
- blurred vision
- burning feeling in the chest or stomach
- burning or stinging of the skin
- burning, tingling, numbness, or pain in the hands, arms, feet, or legs
- chest pain or discomfort
- chest tightness or heaviness
- congestion in the chest
- dry mouth
- fast or irregular heartbeat
- heavy bleeding
- heavy non-menstrual vaginal bleeding
- high blood pressure
- increased hunger
- increased thirst
- increased urination
- loss of appetite
- loss of consciousness
- muscle aches and pains
- nerve pain
- painful blisters on the trunk of body
- painful cold sores or blisters on the lips, nose, eyes, or genitals
- pale skin
- redness or swelling in the ear
- sensation of pins and needles
- soreness or redness around the fingernails and toenails
- stabbing pain
- stiff neck
- stomach pain (severe)
- tenderness in the stomach area
- troubled breathing with exertion
- unexplained weight loss
- unusual bleeding or bruising
- unusual tiredness or weakness
- unusual weight gain
- vomiting of blood or material that looks like coffee grounds
Incidence not known
- Area rash
- changes in skin color
- clay-colored stools
- dilated neck veins
- light-colored stools
- pale or a bluish color skin of the fingers or toes
- slurred speech
- sores, welting, or blisters
- sudden and severe inability to speak
- unpleasant breath odor
- weakness in the arm or leg on one side of the body
- yellow eyes and skin
Get emergency help immediately if any of the following symptoms of overdose occur:
Symptoms of overdose
- Continuing thirst
- headache, severe or continuing
- shortness of breath
- sudden decrease in the amount of urine
- troubled breathing
- weight gain
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:
- Back pain
- inability to sleep
- pain or burning in the throat
- stuffy or runny nose
- bleeding after defecation
- bloody or cloudy urine
- breast pain
- bone deformity
- buzzing or ringing noise in the ears
- change in sense of taste
- decrease in height
- decreased appetite
- difficult, burning, or painful urination
- difficulty with moving or walking
- difficulty with swallowing
- excessive muscle tone, muscle tension, or tightness
- excessive tearing
- feeling of pressure
- hair loss
- increased sweating
- itching, lumps, numbness, pain, rash, redness, scarring, soreness, stinging, swelling, tenderness, tingling, ulceration, or warmth at site
- itching of the vagina or genital area
- joint or muscle pain or stiffness
- large, flat, blue, or purplish patches in the skin
- loss of energy or weakness
- loss of hearing
- muscle pain increased
- muscle stiffness
- numbness or tingling in the fingers or toes
- pain during sexual intercourse
- pain in the back, ribs, arms, or legs
- pounding heartbeat
- puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
- redness or swelling in the arms or legs
- sensitivity of the skin to sunlight
- severe sunburn
- straining while passing stool
- sudden sweating and feelings of warmth
- swelling or inflammation of the mouth
- thick, white vaginal discharge with no odor or with a mild odor
- thinning of the hair
- trouble with swallowing
- troubled breathing
- uncomfortable swelling around anus
- unexplained weight loss
- voice changes
- warmth on the skin
- weakness or heaviness of the legs
Incidence not known
- Bleeding gums
- blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin
- large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
- loss of sense of smell
- pinpoint red spots on the skin
- red or irritated eyes
- red skin lesions, often with a purple center
- shakiness and unsteady walk
- sores, ulcers, or white spots in the mouth or on the lips
- stomach cramps
- swelling of the neck
- trembling, or other problems with muscle control or coordination
- watery or bloody diarrhea
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
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- Drug class: cox-2 inhibitors
Other brands: Celebrex