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Taking Advil or Aleve Really Trigger a Heart Attack?

Can Taking Advil or Aleve Really Trigger a Heart Attack?

A recent study links the two!

Do you reach for Advil or Aleve when you head starts pounding or your back starts hurting?

You may not even be thinking twice before you gulp the pills down: Those non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAIDs) drugs are available over the counter, so you don’t have to worry, right?

NSAIDs are not be as harmless as you may think. Taking NSAIDs will increase your risk of a heart attack based upon a meta-data analysis of studies comprising nearly 450,000 people published in the journal British Medical Journal concluded.  For example, within one week of starting to take ibuprofen (like Advil), the risk of experiencing a heart attack increased by 48 percent, the researchers found.  Overall, the risk of heart attack due to any kind of NSAID—including naproxen, or Aleve— increased by 20 to 50 percent.

Prior studies have linked NSAIDs to increased clotting of the blood, which, of course, could cause a blockage that can trigger a heart attack.  The author Michèle Bally, Ph.D., of the University of Montreal noted that “NSAIDs can cause water and sodium retention,” she says. “Over time, that can cause small changes in your blood pressure. Even increases of as little as 2 to 3 millimeters of mercury (mm HG) over time can be sufficient to trigger a heart attack.”

While the numbers are scary, it’s important to put them into perspective, says Bally. Your absolute heart attack risk depends on many factors, like family history, blood pressure, cholesterol, and whether you smoke or have diabetes.

So let’s say you have a 1 percent risk of having a heart attack.  Using NSAIDs would up your absolute risk of heart attack to 1.2 to 1.5 percent, she says.  Still, that is an increase. So it’s important to talk to your doctor to help you quantify your heart attack risk before starting on NSAIDs, Bally says.

So instead of running to the bottle of pills, run to Dr. Sean at Milam Chiropractic in Tustin.  Chiropractic has been proven to increase your lung capacity which reduces stress on your cardiovascular system as well as help relieve the cause your pain.  The pills are just a dangerous Band-Aid masking the problem. 

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