A study conducted by researchers at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland found that regular intake of paracetamol increases the risk of a heart attack for a quarter of Britons..
Experts have warned that long-term use of the over-the-counter pill could spell bad news for those with high blood pressure..
They said that taking two tablets of the pain reliever “Paracetamol” daily, increases the risk of heart attack or stroke by 20 percent for those who suffer from high blood pressure.
The researchers stressed that doctors should give the lowest dose possible for the shortest time, if people need it, to control the pain.
Dr Ian MacIntyre, a medical doctor in Scotland, said: ‘This is not about short-term use of paracetamol for headaches or fever, which is a good thing, but the study does suggest a newly discovered risk for people who take it regularly long-term, usually for chronic pain. “.
Paramedics often resort to giving paracetamol to those who suffer from long-term pain, instead of ibuprofen, because it is known to raise blood pressure..
But a study of 110 patients was published in the journal Circulation found to significantly increase blood pressure in people who already have high levels.
Experts said it only took days for blood pressure readings to start rising, and some patients in the trial also saw “very significant” increases in blood pressure..
But blood pressure was also quick to drop, once someone stopped taking the pills.
For his part, Professor James Deere said: “This study clearly shows that paracetamol – the most widely used drug in the world – raises blood pressure, which is one of the most important risk factors for heart attacks and strokes,” according to the British newspaper, “The Sun”.
“Physicians and patients together should consider the risks versus the long-term benefits of prescribing paracetamol.”