Wednesday, January 5, 2005
Just as the full extent of the problems caused by pain relievers Vioxx and Celebrex comes to light, a study by Baylor Medical School confirms a long-standing suspicion that less powerful anti-inflammatory medicines, such as ibuprofen and aspirin, may also cause serious small intestinal damage. While it's obvious to anyone who's taken Advil or Tylenol regularly that these drugs can upset or irritate one's stomach, this study indicates that the damage may be much more serious and widespread than previously thought.
So now, doctors and patients content with avoiding the recently-revealed cardiovascular dangers of Vioxx and Celebrex must now take into account the impact of the "safer" aspirin and ibuprofen. At some point, the FDA will need to allow arthritis sufferers to weigh the benefits of these drugs vis-a-vis their dangers and proceed accordingly, rather than banning them wholesale.