The Killer Painkiller; Scientists Link Ibuprofen to Risk of Heart Attacks

Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland), June 10, 2005 | Go to article overview

The Killer Painkiller; Scientists Link Ibuprofen to Risk of Heart Attacks


IBUPROFEN has become the latest popular drug linked with possible killer side- effects.

Researchers have found people who take it are 25 per cent more likely to suffer a heart attack.

Elderly people are most at risk with one in every 1000 of those taking the drug suffering an attack, research shows.

Ibuprofen is one of the most popular painkillers in the UK, with 46 tons sold every year.

Footballers and other sports people use it to treat swelling and pain in their joints.

The drug also reduces fever and is used in dozens of popular over- the-counter cold and flu remedies.

The non steroidal anti-inflammatory was developed by US firm Upjohn Company and first sold in Britain in 1969.

Ibuprofen is a generic name and in Britain it is marketed under brands such as Nurofen, Brufen, Advil and Novaprin.

Researchers from Nottingham University compared the health records of almost 10,000 patients, including a number from Scotland.

They were all aged between 20 and 100 and had recently suffered heart attacks People who used anti-inflammatory drugs containing Ibuprofen three months before their attacks were found to be most at risk.

The findings were adjusted to allow for other heart attack risk factors including age, obesity and smoking habits.

The group found another popular drug Diclofenac - also known as Cataflam and Voltaren - increased heart attack risk by 55 per cent.

They found that one in every 521 patients taking this drug were likely to suffer heart complications.

Diclofenac is used to treat arthritis, period pain and joint infections.

The group say the drugs cause heart complications because they inhibit enzymes in the bloodstream from working properly. …

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