Kaiser Permanente Halts Prescriptions Of Bextra

The largest HMO in the United States has banned the dispensing of the arthritis painkiller Bextra made by Pfizer, because it could possibly up the risk of heart attacks and strokes in some patients. It's the first time Kaiser Permanente has banned the use of a drug approved by the US Food and Drug Administration. Bextra is in a family of drugs known as Cox-2 inhibitors, the same class as Celebrex, another Pfizer drug and Vioxx, which was withdrawn from the market in September by its maker Merck.

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