I mentioned a while ago that I was taking Celebrex in a last-ditch attempt to find some prescription help for the knee. My OS isn’t a big fan and explained why he doesn’t typically prescribe Celebrex. Then he went on to say that a handful of his patients with cartilage degeneration had found some relief with the medicine, so he thought it might be worth a try since I can’t stomach any of the narcotics that were prescribed, and the injections didn’t work. We plain don’t have other options.
At first, I didn’t think there were any side effects. It was the first medicine that didn’t make me nauseous or otherwise destroy my GI system. (I would much rather deal with daily pain than some of the GI problems caused by the prescription narcotics and NSAIDs that I’ve had in the past.)
I started having weird symptoms over the last three or four weeks. My shins itch like crazy, and there is no rash (which made me think I really was going crazy). I thought maybe the pool water was drying out my skin, and I started slathering on the lotion (“It rubs the lotion on its skin, or it gets the hose again.” Anyone?). I wasn’t convinced that was the problem because I’ve been swimming for more than six months now with no issues, but I didn’t have any other ideas. Then, a little over two weeks ago, I started having extreme dry mouth. At first, I thought I was dehydrated–simply not drinking enough water. The dry mouth persisted for a few days and grew bad enough that I had to try to figure out the problem because drinking 100 oz of water a day wasn’t getting rid of the dry mouth. My tongue was sticking to the roof of my mouth and my teeth, and it was getting raw.
Turns out, both itching and dry mouth are potential side effects of Celebrex. I finished the last of my prescription, so I’m going to wait to get a refill. I’ll see if the itching and dry mouth go away. I might not ever get a refill because I can’t tell for sure that the Celebrex was helping my knee. Even without side effects, there is absolutely no reason to take a drug that’s not helping. We’ll see. In the meantime, I’ll just keep swimming.