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COX-2 Inhibitor Increases Risk of Heart Attack in Low-risk Seniors

Armen Hareyan's picture

Heart Attack and Seniors

New research published in the online version of the Annals of Internal Medicine documents an increased risk of heart attack with one of the COX-2 inhibitors used in elderly adults with no previous history of heart attack, a group previously considered low risk.

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The study, sponsored by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and conducted by researchers at the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) in Montreal, examined the relationship between the use of all nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and the risk of heart attack in 113,927 Quebec senior citizens. Only one of these agents, a COX-2 inhibitor called Vioxx, a new class of NSAIDs, carried a greater risk of heart attack.

"Many believe that COX-2 inhibitors increase the chance of a heart attack in high-risk groups, for example people who have already suffered a heart attack," explains primary author Linda L