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Review: celecoxib is as effective as other NSAIDs and leads to fewer gastrointestinal adverse effects

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 QUESTION: In patients with osteoarthritis (OA) or rheumatoid arthritis (RA), is celecoxib as effective as other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)? Does celecoxib have greater gastrointestinal (GI) safety than NSAIDs?

Data sources

Studies were identified by searching 3 electronic databases and by obtaining manufacturers’ reports of industry sponsored randomised controlled trials (RCTs).

Study selection

Studies were selected if they were double blind RCTs that compared celecoxib at a licensed therapeutic dose for ≥12 weeks with placebo or another NSAID in patients with active RA or OA.

Data extraction

1 reviewer extracted data from the original company trial reports. Multiple celecoxib treatment arms were combined for trials that randomised to ≥1 dose.

Main results

9 RCTS (15 187 patients) were included. 5 RCTs included a …

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  • For correspondence: Dr J J Deeks, Institute of Health Sciences, Headington, Oxford, UK. jon.deeks{at}

  • Sources of funding: Pfizer and Searle.