Over the years, The Arthritis Center of Reno has done its share of clinical trials on Cox-2 inhibitors. None of those trials involved Bextra, but the center still perscribes it, and Dr. Malin Prupas says he's been getting calls today from patients who want to know what they do now that the drug has been pulled from the market.
Dr. Malin Prupas, Rheumatologist, "We would urge people not to make any rash decisions don't just stop your drug therapy. We are getting experience with this, last September with Vioxx, I can remember several patients who ran into trouble by stopping their drug abruptly. They need to go in and see their doctor and talk about different options."
Dr. Prupas says the news comes as a surprise to him...in part because the pharmaceutical rep for the drug just stocked their shelves with samples a couple of days ago.
The F-D-A says they pulled Bextra from the shelves because there was inadequate data on the cardiovascular safety after long term use of the drug. And there are reports of serious and potentially life-threatening skin rashes.
Doctor Prupas says he's seen some minor skin rashes and things like that, but nothing too serious.
But F-D-A action doesn't just affect Bextra. The agency is also calling for the strongest possible warnings about the increased risk of heart attack and stroke associated with COX 2-inhibitors including Celebrex and Vioxx.
This decision is based on advise two months ago from an F-D-A panel which said Vioxx posed the greatest heart risk, Celebrex seemed to have the fewest cardiovascular side affects among the COX-2 inhibitor drugs.