Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Taking painkillers increases death risk, second heart attacks in survivors

Date:
September 10, 2012
Source:
American Heart Association
Summary:
Heart attack survivors who take common painkillers after a heart attack have a higher long-term risk of dying or having a second heart attack, according to a new study.

Heart attack survivors who take common painkillers after a heart attack have a higher long-term risk of dying or having a second heart attack, according to a new study published in Circulation, an American Heart Association journal.

The painkillers, known as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), include over-the-counter medicines such as ibuprofen and naproxen and prescription drugs such as Celebrex (celecoxib), which is used to treat conditions including arthritis.

"It is important to get the message out to clinicians taking care of patients with cardiovascular disease that NSAIDs are harmful, even several years after a heart attack," said Anne-Marie Schjerning Olsen, M.D., the study's lead author and a fellow in the cardiology department at Copenhagen University Hospital Gentofte in Denmark.

Schjerning Olsen and her colleagues used national hospital and pharmacy registries in Denmark to identify almost 100,000 people 30 or older who had a first heart attack between 1997 and 2009, and to see if they were prescribed NSAIDs afterwards.

Forty-four percent of the patients filled at least one NSAID prescription. Among those receiving an NSAID, risk of death from any cause was 59 percent higher one year after their heart attack, and 63 percent higher after five years.

Similarly, risk of having another heart attack or dying from coronary artery disease was 30 percent higher one year later and 41 percent higher after five years. The findings considered other illnesses and medication use in the NSAID patients, as well as differences in age, sex, income and year of hospitalization.

"The results support previous findings suggesting that NSAIDs have no apparent safe treatment window among heart attack patients, and show that coronary risk related to using the drugs remains high, regardless of the time that has passed since the heart attack," Schjerning Olsen said.

Normally, patients who have a heart attack face higher risk of death or another heart attack within the first year. But the extra risk is gone within five to 10 years.

Because the new study instead showed a persistently higher risk over at least five years for patients on the drugs, "long-term caution with any use of NSAIDS is advised in all patients after heart attack," Schjerning Olsen said.

A 2007 American Heart Association statement urged doctors to carefully weigh risks versus benefits when considering NSAID use in patients with a history or high risk of cardiovascular disease.

These data showed no difference in risk for men versus women. Because researchers used nationwide data, the findings extend across races, age, income groups and hospitals.

Researchers didn't test the drugs' effects in a controlled clinical trial, so the study didn't definitely show that NSAIDs, rather than other unknown factors, cause additional deaths or heart attacks. But the researchers consider NSAIDs the likely culprit behind the higher risk.

Use of NSAIDS should be limited and their over-the-counter availability should be re-evaluated, Schjerning Olsen said.

"Allowing a drug to be sold without prescription must be perceived by the general public as a strong signal of safety, and may be contrary in this case," she said.

Co-authors are: Emil L. Fosbøl, M.D., Ph.D.; Jesper Lindhardsen, M.D.; Fredrik Folke, M.D., Ph.D.; Mette Charlot, M.D., Ph.D.; Christian Selmer, M.D.; Jonas Bjerring Olesen, M.D.; Morten Lamberts, M.D.; Martin H. Ruwald, M.D.; Lars Køber, M.D., D.M.Sc.; Peter R. Hansen, M.D., Ph.D., D.M.Sc.; Christian Torp Pedersen, M.D., D.M.Sc. and Gunnar H. Gislason, M.D., Ph.D.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Heart Association. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal References:

  1. Emil L. Fosbøl et al. Long-term 1 cardiovascular risk of NSAID use according to time passed 2 after first-time myocardial infarction - A Nationwide Cohort Study. Circulation, 2012
  2. Anne-Marie Schjerning Olsen, Emil L. Fosbøl, Jesper Lindhardsen, Fredrik Folke, Mette Charlot, Christian Selmer, Jonas Bjerring Olesen, Morten Lamberts, Martin H. Ruwald, Lars Køber, Peter R. Hansen, Christian Torp-Pedersen, and Gunnar H. Gislason. Long-Term Cardiovascular Risk of NSAID Use According to Time Passed After First-Time Myocardial Infarction: A Nationwide Cohort Study. Circulation, 2012; DOI: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.112.112607

Cite This Page:

American Heart Association. "Taking painkillers increases death risk, second heart attacks in survivors." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 September 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120910161407.htm>.
American Heart Association. (2012, September 10). Taking painkillers increases death risk, second heart attacks in survivors. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120910161407.htm
American Heart Association. "Taking painkillers increases death risk, second heart attacks in survivors." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120910161407.htm (accessed July 23, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

AP (July 22, 2014) — Two federal appeals courts issued conflicting rulings Tuesday on the legality of the federally-run healthcare exchange that operates in 36 states. (July 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Newsy (July 22, 2014) — The new sci-fi thriller "Lucy" is making people question whether we really use all our brainpower. But, as scientists have insisted for years, we do. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Newsy (July 22, 2014) — Boston scientists have discovered a new way to create fully functioning human platelets using a bioreactor and human stem cells. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) — New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins