The COX-2 drugs, currently Celebrex, are in a class of drugs known as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
This class also includes ibuprofen, naproxen and diclofenac, among others. The prior authorization program is important for drugs like COX-2 inhibitors. They are no more effective than the other drugs in the NSAID class to treat inflammation and reduce pain — and they are more expensive. For most patients, the other, less expensive NSAIDS are a safe and effective treatment choice.
However, clinical studies show COX-2 drugs may cause fewer ulcers for patients who are at high risk for ulcers. Together, based on the patient's medical history, the patient and the doctor can decide which NSAID drug is most appropriate.