WASHINGTON (AP) — The popular painkillers Celebrex, Bextra and Vioxx all pose a risk of heart trouble, but should be available to those who need them, advisers to the Food and Drug Administration said Friday.
The panel strongly favored keeping Celebrex on the market, split over Bextra and favored Vioxx — which is currently not on sale — by a vote of just 17-16.
“The data is very compelling,” Vioxx is substantially worse than the others, meeting chairman Alistair J.J. Wood of Vanderbilt University School of Medicine said.
The panelists voted 31-1 to keep Celebrex on sale and, after a revote, favored Bextra 17-13 with two abstaining.
I’ve read that some patients with severe arthritis were devistated when Vioxx was pulled, willing to trade an increased risk of heart disease for daily mobility.
Now, who’s going to prescribe these? Not ER docs. My guess it’ll be rheumatologists, and some internists with a long history with a patient, and even then, with billboards up with ‘Lawyer’ and ‘Vioxx’ in close proximity, restraint will be the order of the day.