Common Painkillers Linked to Heart Attack Risk

May 19, 2017 in STSMPT

The British Medical Journal recently published a large study showing a link between taking common painkillers and an increased risk of heart attack. Familiar over-the-counter medications used in this study include ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) and naproxen (Aleve). Both of these raised the likelihood of experiencing a heart attack anywhere from 20 to 50 percent compared with non-users. The risk was greatest during the first month of medication use and with higher doses. Moreover, the study authors observed a decline in risk in as little as one day after discontinued use of the painkillers. In addition, common prescription pain medicine was also used in the study.


Researchers believe changes in blood pressure or effects on kidney function from the use of painkillers could contribute to the heart attack risk. The team suggests potential benefits as well as harms need to be weighed before relying on these drugs as a treatment option. Physical therapy has proven beneficial for chronic pain conditions, various injuries, and before and after surgeries. Give us a call to discuss your individual circumstances today.


Source: Bally M, Dendukuri N, Rich B. Risk of acute myocardial infarction with NSAIDs in real world use: bayesian meta-analysis of individual patient data. BMJ, 2017;357:j1909.

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