My Arthritis Journey in a Double Blind Clinical Trial 6 Months Down
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My Arthritis Journey in a Double Blind Clinical Trial 6 Months Down

As a patient in a randomized, double blind, parallel-group study of cardiovascular safety in osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis patients with or at high risk for cardiovascular disease comparing Celecoxib with Naproxen and Ibuprofen, I have been in the study for six months now and am very happy with the care I receive from the nurse, technician, physician assistant at the office where the trial is run.

After joining the "Precision Study," a randomized, double blind, parallel-group study of cardiovascular safety in osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis patients with or at high risk for cardiovascualr disease comparing Celecoxib with Naproxen and Ibuprofen, I have six months under my belt. I have no idea which drug I am taking and neither do my counselors. What I do know is that Pfizer is running the study and the care I receive is wonderful.

Each time I attend the study, my blood is drawn and some times I must fast and other times it is not required. At my last scheduled visit, my numbers were a cause for concern, not that they were sending alarms, but there were some issues that they wanted to verify. So I was asked if I could come in for a between schedule blood test, just to make sure. My blood count was a bit low and in addition to the extra blood test, they gave me a test card to verify that my stool did not contain blood.

After returning from my last visit, the occult blood was negative and they will keep me posted on my recent blood test. I received my latest supply of pills which will cover a four month period until my next appointment in June. My protocol pills are three pills in the morining and three pills in the evening consisting of one unmarked capsule, one capsule shaped pill with 15 on one side, and one larger capsule shaped pill that I also take in the middle of the day. In addition to the pills which could be either Celebrex, Naproxen or Ibuprofen, they also supply me with Nexium to eliminate any intestinal problems that they may cause.

I am no stranger to Nexium, as I have been on this medication for ages for GERD and the last medication I took for my arthritis was Naproxen 500 mg. and the use of prescription pain patches called Flector patches. Now that I am on this study, the only thing I can take if I have any pain from a headache or pain unrelated to arthritis, I can take only Tylenol. I can no longer use the patches nor take anything else for the arthritis pain.

In addition to reporting all of my medications and being cleared by my doctor prior to the start of the trial, I must report any changes to my medications that occur while I am participating in the study. I will be having cataract surgery in two months and must advise them of any eye drops or other prescriptions I receive before or after the surgery.

At each visit, I must advise if my pain is better, worse or stayed the same since the previous visit. This time I said that it was no better or worse than the last time I was there. I was informed that they could increase my dosage of whatever drug I was on, but I declined. Having arthritis since my teenage years, I have good days and bad days and can usually predict the weather before precipitation occurs.

One thing I must say, the nurse who is my counselor is a wonderful person who I look forward to seeing when I go there. A doctor runs the operation, and the entire staff is just so kind and considerate. There is a lab on the premises and if the technician is not available, my nurse takes my blood. There is a physician assistant who examined me before the start of the trial and called me in for the off-schedule blood test. When I was there this last time, I complained of what I thought was a pulled muscle, and the physician assistant checked it and did not see anything wrong. All in all my first six months of this clinical trial has been a pleasant experience, and I receive fifty-dollars for each visit, the pills, and great care.

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Comments (8)

A job well done share, very informative.

I hope it works out well for you hon

Will you be notified of the outcome of this study as to which medicine worked best. Do you also have to keep a food diary of what you eat between each test?

No food diary is required, and as for the outcome, it is a few years away. But interesting questions, Sam. Thanks also for the encouragement from Ron and Carol! xoxoxo

Buzzed up on twitter and facebook.

Thank-you for documenting your experience with this study. Good information here, take care.

A very interesting and informative experience. Many people suffer from arthritis. Thank you so much for sharing.

Chris, Christy and Francois, thanks so much for your kind comments, will be doing another update in the near future!!! Thanks for the RT's and votes!!! xoxoxo