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High Doses of NSAIDs Raise Risk of Heart Failure

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- New research shows that high doses of common pain relievers may increase your risk for cardiovascular issues.

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs -- known as NSAIDs -- are among the most common pain-relief medicines in the world, including aspirin, ibuprofen and naproxen. Millions of Americans take those drugs or the number of prescription painkillers classified as NSAIDs every day, but new research shows that use of NSAIDs can increase your risk of heart failure, perhaps even double it.

The study, published in The Lancet, analyzed studies including over 353,000 people and found that all of the NSAIDs together roughly doubled the risk of heart failure. The risk was highest among people who already had underlying risk factors for heart disease.

The researchers did point out that the overall risk is relatively small and that the true danger of NSAIDs is only seen in high doses. Anyone who frequently uses high doses of these pain killers is urged to speak to a doctor.

Aspirin, interestingly, works to prevent the formation of blood clots, which can cause heart attacks. Other NSAIDs do not work to prevent blood clots.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

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