In 2005 the popular pain reliever – Vioxx – was abruptly taken off the market due to safety concerns. Since then, there have been a lot of questions raised about other drugs in the class called COX-2 inhibitors – like Celebrex and Bextra – and whether the alternatives are as good or as safe.
Three large studies published in the March 17, 2005 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine help to clarify these questions. It turns out that other COX-2 inhibitors are also potentially dangerous. The COX-2 inhibitors are anti-inflammatory pain relievers similar to the over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, etc) and naproxen (Naprosyn, Aleve, etc), but seem to have a little less chance of stomach irritation. They quickly became top sellers. Interestingly, randomized studies have shown that the COX-2 inhibitors do not relieve pain any better than the cheaper alternatives – ibuprofen or naproxen. Researchers in the three studies of the COX-2 inhibitors looked at the long-term and short-term safety of these drugs. In all cases, they found an increased risk of heart attacks and strokes in patients taking a COX-2 inhibitor compared with placebo.
FDA strengthens warning of heart attack and stroke risk for over the counter pain relievers – July 2015. FDA added a boxed warning to prescription drug labels for this risk in 2005. More recent data and information are prompting FDA to update NSAID labeling. Today we know that the risk of heart attack and stroke may occur early in treatment, even in the first weeks. “There is no period of use shown to be without risk,” says Judy Racoosin, M.D., M.P.H., deputy director of FDA’s Division of Anesthesia, Analgesia, and Addiction Products.
Achieving pain relief…
#1 Decrease sugar intake – Chronic pain is usually related to too much sugar intake. Sugar intake is responsible to promoting generalized inflammation. This inflammation is the common thread of all chronic diseases, such as hypertension, diabetes, obesity, and cancer. Replacing B vitamins, magnesium and trace minerals may eliminate sugar cravings.
#2 Regular Sleep – People who do not rest well have more pain. Magnesium deficiency is commonly associated with dysfunctional sleep patterns.
#3 Forgive others – forgiveness is a choice, not a feeling. Choosing to forgive does not mean forgetting or justifying bad behavior. Forgiveness cuts off the bitterness power supply.