In the aftermath of the Vioxx recall and recently reported concerns with Celebrex and Bextra, more consumers are searching for natural approaches to joint health, according to Carol Simontacchi, MS, CCN, and author of the newly released book "Natural Alternatives to Vioxx, Celebrex, and other Anti-Inflammatory Prescription Drugs." Simontacchi provides information on chronic inflammation, which has recently been linked to a wide range of diseases, including Alzheimer’s, arthritis, cardiovascular disease, depression and even schizophrenia. (Related article: Merck did not Vioxx label changes to highlight risks of the drug)
In a separate study released recently, nearly two-thirds of patients who were taking a COX-2 inhibitor drugs prior to the Vioxx recall and Celebrex/Bextra study findings have abandoned this class of pain medication. Since their pain has not gone away and they are looking for other alternatives for pain relief (Related article: Pain relief medication guide), they are evaluating natural alternatives. It is important to point out that Cox-2 drugs like Vioxx, Celebrex, Bextra, Arcoxia, Prexige, Mobic, etc. all are lifestyle drugs. (Related article: Is Mobic a safe alternative?) They do nothing to treat the underlying diseases like arthritis; they merely provide temporary pain relief. Other studies have pointed out that over-the-counter pain relief drugs like Aleve and ibuprofen do an equally good job for most patients.
Simontacchi explores the myriad of influences that contribute to chronic inflammation, including diet, lifestyle and the frantic pace of modern life. Simontacchi addresses safety concerns surrounding pharmaceutical drugs for inflammation, particularly the increased likelihood of heart disease, and offers natural alternatives that have been proven effective for managing pain and swelling.
Simontacchi’s book also addresses specific natural supplements that work to diminish inflammation. From bromelain, a proteolytic enzyme and cat’s claw, a traditional South American herb, to the well-known glucosamine and SierraSil, a new mineral supplement, Simontacchi details the science and safety of these widely available natural remedies.
Natural Alternatives to Vioxx, Celebrex, and other Anti-Inflammatory Prescription Drugs is extremely timely in light of the controversy surrounding COX-2 inhibitors, the risks of increased heart disease, and a recent FDA Advisory Committee recommendation to allow Vioxx to return to the market.
Recommended article: Vioxx and Bextra decisions in doubt due to conflict of interest of FDA panel members