A study out of Gentofte University Hospital in Hellerup, Denmark found that nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) pain relievers raise the risk of death and of heart disease in people who previously had no adverse health conditions.
Some of the risks are related to taking high doses but in many cases death occurred after people had been taking NSAID pain relievers for just a couple of weeks.
"The study's most disturbing finding: Diclofenac (brand names include Cataflam,Voltaren) is as risky as the now-banned Vioxx. Both diclofenac and Vioxx nearly doubled the risk of death from heart disease among healthy people in the Fosbol study."
Ibuprofen increased the risk of stroke by 30 percent. All NSAID pain relievers increased the risk of bleeding that could potentially be fatal.
In 2007, a panel for the American Heart Association said that taking NSAID pain relievers for chronic pain could increase the risk of stroke and heart attack.