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SCI/TECH: Another Pain Reliever Proves Unsafe

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posted on Dec, 17 2004 @ 09:07 AM
Pfizer, which produces several leading Rx medications, has announced a link between Celebrex and heart problems. This comes on the heels of another Pfizer drug, Bextra, being found by the FDA to be unsafe for bypass surgery patients. Both Celebrex and Bextra are cox-2 inhibitors, as is the recently recalled Vioxx (not a Pfizer product). Neither Celebrex nor Bextra is being recalled at this time.
NEW YORK - Pfizer Inc. says it has found an increased risk of heart problems with patients taking its painkiller Celebrex, a drug that is in the same class as the Vioxx, which was pulled from the market in September because of safety concerns.

Pfizer announced Friday that it found the increased risk in one of two long-term cancer prevention trials, while the other trial showed no increased risk. The company was conducting the trials as part of an effort to find a new application for the drug.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

The reaction to this is a little disconcerting. Not just one, but an entire class of drugs perhaps is proving unsafe, and so far it is somewhat difficult to find any information about it online. Run it through a search engine and all you get is lawyers webpages- very little news. On top of that, the FDA has not stepped in to force a recall, even though Pfizer has admitted that the drug is unsafe and this comes on the heels of the recall of a similiar drug. I can only hope that this will be dealt with quickly and appropriately.
This also creates serious financial problems in an industry that most would agree is already far too expensive. Pfizer stock has taken a blow from this news and this will likely get worse if the FDA takes the appropriate action of banning Celebrex.
I believe that both in terms of cost and of safety this story highlights the need for some centralized control of the pharmacuetical industry.

[edit on 17-12-2004 by The Vagabond]

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