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How does this medicine work?

Celecoxib (sell-eh-cox-ihb) is a medicine used for pain and inflammation (swelling). It is given for arthritis to reduce pain, stiffness, and swelling. It may also be used to treat other conditions as determined by your doctor.

How should I give it?

Celecoxib comes in capsule form. Give it at regular times to keep a steady level in the bloodstream. Your child should be awake and alert when taking any medicine.

The capsule should be swallowed whole and not chewed or opened.

Are there any precautions about food or other medicines?

Celecoxib can usually be given with or without food.

Celecoxib may interact with blood thinners like warfarin (Coumadin®). Use of these medicines together may result in the need for extra blood tests. Other drug interactions may occur with fluconazole and ACE inhibitors (captopril, enalapril) resulting in a decrease of drug action or an increase in side effects.

Celecoxib should be avoided in patients with aspirin sensitivity or allergies to other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicines, such as ibuprofen (Motrin®) or naproxen (Naprosyn®).

Celecoxib should not be used in patients with allergies to sulfonamide-type medicines, such as Bactrim®.

Celecoxib should not be used with high doses of methotrexate because it may interfere with its elimination from the body.

Check with the doctor, nurse practitioner, or pharmacist before giving any other prescription or non-prescription medicines, herbs, or vitamins.

What should I do if a dose is missed?

If one dose is missed, give it as soon as remembered unless it is almost time for the next dose. Never give a double dose.

If your child vomits (throws up) within 30 minutes after receiving a dose, give it again. If your child vomits the second dose, do not repeat it again.

Call the doctor if your child misses or vomits 2 doses in a row.

What are the side effects?


  • nausea (upset stomach)
  • heartburn


  • swelling of the legs
  • increased blood pressure
  • fluid retention
  • liver changes
  • weight gain
  • fatigue (very tired)
  • dizziness


  • rash

When should I call the doctor?

Call your doctor at once if these signs of celecoxib toxicity appear:

  • severe or steady stomach pain
  • blood in the stool, urine, or vomit
  • swollen, puffy hands or feet
  • yellowing of skin or eyes
  • continued vomiting
  • signs of allergic reaction:
    • rash or hives
    • wheezing
    • trouble breathing - call 911

What else do I need to know?

Patients with asthma should check with the doctor before using celecoxib.

Celecoxib is not known to affect platelets. If your child has an infection there may not be a fever while he or she is taking celecoxib. If your child is on chemotherapy or has a compromised immune system (has a decreased ability to fight infection), check with the doctor before using celecoxib.

Do not use celecoxib during pregnancy.

You and your child should know the names of all the medicines he or she is taking. Share this information with anyone involved in your child's care.

Store celecoxib in its original container and away from direct sunlight or heat. Do not store in humid places, such as the bathroom.

Before giving the first dose, read the label. Be sure it is what was prescribed. After a refill, if the medicine looks different to you, ask your pharmacist about it before giving it.

Check the label and expiration date before giving each dose. Ask your pharmacist what to do with outdated or unused medicines. If there is no "take-back" program empty them into the trash.

Always make sure you have enough medicine on hand. Check the prescription bottle to see how many refills are left. If no refills are left, the pharmacist will need 2 or 3 days to contact the doctor to renew the prescription.

If too much or the wrong kind of medicine is taken, call the Poison Control Center toll-free at 1-800-222-1222. If your child is unconscious or has a seizure, call 911.


This sheet is not specific to your child but provides general information. If you have any questions, please call the clinic or pharmacy.

Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota
Patient/Family Education
2525 Chicago Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55404
Last reviewed 8/2015 ©Copyright

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This page is not specific to your child, but provides general information on the topic above. If you have any questions, please call your clinic. For more reading material about this and other health topics, please call or visit Children's Minnesota Family Resource Center library, or visit

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