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Scand J Rheumatol. 2002;31(4):230-8.

A placebo and active comparator-controlled trial of rofecoxib for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.

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  • 1University Hospital, Maastricht, The Netherlands.



To evaluate the efficacy and tolerability of rofecoxib 25 mg and 50 mg once daily versus placebo and naproxen 500 mg twice daily in patients with RA.


Eligible patients were randomized (double-blind) to placebo (n = 289), rofecoxib 25 mg (n = 306), 50 mg (n = 286) once daily, or naproxen (n = 142) for 12 weeks. Efficacy assessments included the ACR core set, with prespecified primary endpoints: patient and investigator global assessments of disease activity, tender and swollen joint counts. Investigator-reported adverse experiences, routine laboratory and vital sign measurements were monitored.


Rofecoxib 25 mg, 50 mg, and naproxen provided similar treatment effects, significantly different from placebo, consistent with improvement, for all primary endpoints. Effects were evident at the earliest assessment (week 2) and sustained for 12 weeks. All treatments were generally well-tolerated.


Rofecoxib 25 mg once daily had similar efficacy to naproxen 500 mg twice daily (a standard dose). No additional benefit was seen with 50 mg rofecoxib.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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