Party cocaine use may cause heart attack

  • PTI, Melbourne
  • |
  • Updated: Nov 07, 2012 01:54 IST

Regular use of cocaine at parties causes stiffer arteries, higher blood pressure and thicker cardiac wall muscle, making it a “perfect heart attack drug”, a new study has found.

During a first-of-its-kind study, researchers have found that the combined effects of greater blood clotting, increased heart stress and more blood vessel constriction put users of cocaine at high risk of a spontaneous heart attack.

Australian researchers used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to measure the effects of cocaine in 20 otherwise healthy adults who chronically used the illegal substance.

Compared with 20 non-users, cocaine users had higher rates of multiple factors associated with higher risks of heart attack and stroke: 30% to 35% increase in aortic stiffening, 8 mm Hg higher systolic blood pressure and 18 per cent greater thickness of the heart's left ventricle wall.


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