Cox-II Inhibitors: Why They Can Work
and Their Potentially Fatal Secret.
Think of an earlier age and time when Ford's Model T car and folk remedies were abundant. There were few choices for pain relievers. Perhaps someone would offer whiskey to try to ease the pain. Salicylic acid, commonly known as aspirin, was introduced. People then had access to a drug which would mask their symptoms and more or less minimize their joint pains.
This worked quite well for a short period of time. Reports began coming in involving stomach bleeding, blood thinning, kidney problems, gastrointestinal damage, and other detrimental conditions. These symptoms occurred because of the "shotgun" way NSAIDS operate.
Today we are better educated. An article published in the New England Journal of Medicine regarding anti-inflammatory drugs both over-the-counter and prescription forms, including Motrin, Advil, Aleve, Aspirin, Ordus. Researchers determined that NSAIDS caused more than 20 others, cause more than 16,500 deaths and more than 103,000 hospitalizations each year throughout the U.S. Think about that every time you take a dose!
Why are NSAIDS fatal in some instances?
Several possible reasons for the deaths attributed to NSAIDS exist. First, let's look at the earliest generation of NSAIDS. These NSAIDS (non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) had a small influence on COX pathways, including COX-1 and the COX-2. Both pathways both regulate inflammation. NSAIDS works by specifically targeting the inhibition of COX-1 (known as cyclooxygenase, which is an enzyme) and basically ignoring COX-2.
To be totally accurate, NSAIDS mask the pain, but have other unintended side effects, due to the fact that COX-1 controls several functions of the kidney, stomach, and platelets. Present in many parts of the body, is the COX-1 enzyme, which NSAIDS blocks in various parts of the body. This is why when COX-1 is inhibited, "unintended and unwanted" side effects, such as ulcers, and stomach bleeding can occur.
Over time, other effects may also occur, which over time may lead to very severe problems such as strokes, heart attacks, and possibly even death. Instead of targeting the one body system responsible for inflammation, NSAIDS disrupts many body systems at the same time. Imagine that COX-1 uses a shotgun approach, but COX-2 uses a much more targeted attack. Problems develop when that targeted attack is initiated and the body naturally responds.
"Improved" COX-2 Drugs came along
The pharmaceutical industry proclaimed the development of COX-2 drugs as a breakthrough. They now had the ability to market and patent newer drugs including Celebrex® or Vioxx® that alleviated joint pain quickly. These COX-2 drugs became some of the best selling drug of all time. (And, they still are.) In theory, the effects targeted by COX-2 inhibition should solve the problems of NSAIDS.
This should provide an individual with all of the good effects of COX-1, without any of the nasty side effects. Their downside is that they are extremely expensive, costing $200 or more per MONTH in some instances. This can be compared to $30 per month for other therapies, including glucosamine, which has been proven to be more effective.
Yes, that's correct, individuals who are otherwise healthy . COX-2 drugs work wonderfully at relieving pain. But they can and do cause death. Many physicians are discovering the side effects these drugs can cause and no longer prescribe them. In some instances, less educated doctors just hear what the drug representatives advise them to prescribe, and they hand out prescriptions for these drugs based on those recommendations.
Thankfully for the patient's sake, many doctors are realizing that COX-2 inhibitors' cause and effect method of action has been proven fatal for many people taking COX-2 drugs.
Unbalanced! Checks vs Balances
Thousands of checks and balances are found within the human body. These are designed to prevent unbalances or extremes. Just imagine the number of systems that are working at this minute to keep optimal levels of oxygen, water, and glucose in your body. Many other chemicals are also required to be on demand, used on a second by second basis as needed. Operating in similar fashion is the COX-2 pathway.
When COX-2 enzymes are inhibited, they mask pain and inflammation, in effect bypassing COX-1's side effects. Sounds pretty good, right? COX-2's only downside is similar to COX-1. BLOOD CLOTTING is also mediated by COX-2. COX-2 can become fatal at this point. When minor trauma is experience such as a cut, blood vessels are severed. This can range from small capillaries found in the skin, to small tears in the your aorta, your largest blood vessel of all.
Bleeding of this nature cannot continue or death would result from a loss of blood. Within seconds the body releases an agent that causes clotting, binding the blood together, causing clots to form. This clotting agent stops the initial blood flow the hole is plugged" by the clotting agent. Two to three minutes later, the body begins to start the process which will stop this blood action. These processes both initiate at the same time, however the first finishes within seconds while the other completes in two to three minutes.
The second process is described as rate limiting. This process STOPS blood from clotting. Once the damages have been patched, the clotting ceases. By disrupting this process, COX-2 allows clotting to continue far longer than it should. Inside the body, clotting of this nature can prove fatal. A clot inside your heart can cause you to experience a heart attack. A clot in your brain can bring on a stroke. But, you do remember that COX-2 drugs work really great by masking joint pain, don't you?
Of course, not everybody will regularly have trauma to their blood vessels. (That's why COX-2 drugs are still available). However as we get older and simply as the end result of day to day living, tiny imperfections are more and more probable, as small clots are formed and blood vessels become increasingly less elastic, tearing more easily.
To our advantage, newer technologies have been found but these remain somewhat unknown, mainly due to the fact that patents cannot be obtained, making too little profit for the major pharmaceutical companies.
Glucosamine - How does it work?
Glucosamine has nothing to do with COX-1 or COX-2. Glucosamine works in an entirely differnet way. It is active at the basic level. In fact, the body already produces glucosamine in very small amounts. Because of this, Glucosamine cannot be patented. (Think about trying to patent testosterone.) Unfortunately when the body ages, its ability to produce glucosamine begins to ebb.
Years of wear and tear begins to overpower the self-healing abilities of the body. Bone spurs sometimes develop, cartilage begins breaking down, and joints can no longer absorb routine daily shocks. When left unchecked, joint replacements can be required, and excruciating pain or complete immobility occur. By consuming liquid glucosamine supplements of high quality, similar to Syn-flex or Flexicose, an individual can reduce soreness, promote healthy cartilage and lessen discomfort.
Flexicose and Syn-flex offer one of the most effective glucosamine-based products available today. Its unique formula of glucosamine, chondroitin (long chains of glucosamine), MSM and 10 other synergistic ingredients offer one of the most highly effective glucosamine products on today's market.
You Can Once Again Begin Promoting Healthy Cartilage - Naturally
One of the major building blocks of healthy cartilage is glucosamine. It has been found that Syn-flex and Flexicose supply the body with the necessary level of glucosamine. Wear and tear from decades of living cannot be relieved overnight, and Syn-flex and Flexicose take two to three weeks before the effect is felt.
Therefore, don't become discouraged when results do not appear immediately. Continue taking the daily dose of Flexicose. Do this for one month and then give it a review. You may also continue taking NSAIDS while weaning yourself off the drugs. You will see that you will be able to take smaller and smaller doses of NSAIDS, until finally you only need to take Flexicose or Syn-flex.
Give Flexicose and Syn-flex a fair time-period to work. Please remember, when you are using Flexicose or Syn-flex you're not simply masking your joint pain symptoms, you're getting to the bottom of the problem. Flexicose and Syn-flex work so well, and have none of the negative side effects brought on by COX-1 or COX-2 drugs. This is undoubtedly the most important issue of all.