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Stay Away From New Merck Painkiller

Looks like my hero, FDA whistleblower Dr. David Graham, was right again about the health-harming potential of Arcoxia (etoricoxib), Merck's newest replacement for its heart-stopping pain reliever Vioxx.

A number of noted scientists, including Graham, are concerned about the very mixed reviews of Arcoxia. For one, it was compared to an older drug (Voltaren) that raises heart risks like Arcoxia, rather than the debatably "safer" naproxen (Aleve). Also, more study patients quit taking Arcoxia due to elevated blood pressure. And, congestive heart failure was more common among patients receiving higher doses of Arcoxia.

Perhaps, the scientific community's not-so-warm reception to Arcoxia may explain why Merck is now limiting its FDA request to two dose levels for osteoarthritis, rather than a range of treatments, including rheumatoid arthritis.

Just another reason to remind you, there are several natural and protective ways to treat your pain without resorting to a potentially toxic drug like Arcoxia.

Forbes.com November 13, 2006

American Heart Association November 13, 2006

Yahoo News November 13, 2006