February 12, 2013
Powerful painkillers should be prescribed with caution
Researchers have claimed that the heart risks associated
with a certain type of painkiller outweigh any potential
Authors of a new study say diclofenac, a
non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug found to be widely used in
many countries around the world, should be removed from national
essential medicines lists and should no longer be marketed.
Researchers say there are safer alternatives.
Diclofenac is prescribed in the UK.
Maureen Talbot, our Senior Cardiac Nurse,
said: “The risks associated with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory
painkillers, which include diclofenac, have been known for some
years and they should always be prescribed with
“Anyone taking these painkillers should be
made aware of both their risks - especially of cardiovascular disease and internal bleeding -
and benefits in treating debilitating pain such as
that caused by arthritis.
“If you are taking these powerful drugs and
are worried, discuss your concerns with your GP or
pharmacist who will be able to help you decide whether the benefits
outweigh the risks.”
The latest research into diclofenac was
published in PLoS Medicine.