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THE DRUG THAT WAS VIOXX

Written By: BLUR LOTERIA

Want a new cure for your illness? Think again. We have enough drugs to give us more than just headaches. Some drugs will not reveal its true and long term effect until you start to feel it more often.

We all know that drugs have side effects. How can it cure one part of your body without affecting the other parts? Drugs that are swallowed do not target only the part they are intended to cure. They are transported by our blood so they can go anywhere inside our body. We should be more aware of the drugs that relieve us of certain ailments but can cause us a more complicated disease in the future.

Are you familiar with Vioxx? It has been on the headlines for days. This controversial drug was used by about two million people worldwide.

Vioxx is prescribed to relieve osteoarthritis, rheumatic arthritis and acute pain. Produced by Merck & Co., it comes in a liquid and pill form. It is a non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). NSAIDs refer to drugs with analgesic, antipyretic and anti-inflammatory effects, which reduce pain, fever and inflammation, such as muscle strain or sprain. They are sometimes called non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents or NSAIAs. Examples of which are aspirin and ibuprofen.

Vioxx also belongs to a class of drugs called COX-2 (cyclooxygenase) inhibitors. Cyclooxygenase is an enzyme that controls inflammation. The Vioxx works by blocking COX-2 enzymes in the body that trigger pain and inflammation. COX-2 has been a major source of relief from arthritis pain, which afflicts tens of millions of people in the world.

In 2002, the company received complaints regarding their product. Market studies confirmed that Vioxx raises the risks of serious cardiovascular events including heart attacks and strokes, as well as other life-threatening side effects, such as, blood clots, angina and nonbacterial meningitis, severe intestinal damage, ulcerations and bleeding, and kidney damage. Other minor side effects include flu symptoms, weakness, loss of appetite, rash or pail skin, swelling of hand feet and other extremities.

It was not until September 30, 2004 that Merck officially announced of voluntary recall of Vioxx from all markets worldwide.

So, here is a lesson we have to learn. We can not trust any drug, even if it is produced by leading companies. You will never know what it is going to cause you. Always ask for a doctors prescription. Learn from experience and do not just go for new things that come your way. Its very risky, especially if it concerns your health.

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