What Is Celebrex Used For?
Celebrex treats several conditions that are related to pain and inflammation, such as arthritis, tendonitis, and painful menstrual periods. The drug works by blocking the COX-2 enzyme, which plays a role in pain and inflammation in the body. Researchers hope that one day, uses of Celebrex will involve treating certain types of cancer, such as melanoma.
Celebrex® (celecoxib) is a prescription medication that has been licensed to treat several conditions related to pain and inflammation. These approved uses for Celebrex include:
- Acute pain relief, such as for pain following a procedure or straining a muscle.
- Treatment of arthritis symptoms, including pain, stiffness, and swelling. Celebrex can be used to treat several different types of arthritis, such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis (including juvenile rheumatoid arthritis), and ankylosing spondylitis. The medication is not an arthritis cure, however.
- Treatment of painful menstrual periods.
Celebrex was previously approved to decrease the number of colon and rectal polyps in people with familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP), a hereditary condition that can cause hundreds of growths (called polyps) in the colon and rectum. People with FAP usually develop colon cancer and/or rectal cancer by their late 30s. However, Celebrex is no longer approved for this use.
Celebrex is part of a class of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) called COX-2 inhibitors. It works by blocking a particular enzyme (COX-2) that plays a role in pain and inflammation. Unlike other NSAIDs (such as ibuprofen and naproxen) that target both the COX-1 and the COX-2 enzymes, Celebrex only targets the COX-2 enzyme. The COX-1 enzyme plays an important role in protecting the lining of the stomach.