John Smith, PAGB Chief Executive, said:
“This observational study analysed claims of hospitalised heart attack patients with an average age of 72 years. The study was unable to identify the use of over-the-counter (OTC) NSAIDs in patients and prescribed medicine often contains a higher dosage than OTC medicines, which would typically be used by younger people, at lower doses and for shorter durations than those prescribed.
“The study does not prove a cause and effect relationship and the authors admit there are several limitations, including missing information about the severity of the acute respiratory infection. More research is needed to clarify the associated risk, for example what impact illness severity can have and if patients who have suffered a previous heart attack are more susceptible.
“It is important for people with heart failure or other long term conditions to speak to a pharmacist and always read the label before taking any OTC medicine to check for any potential drug interactions or health concerns.”