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Cocaine – The ‘Perfect Heart Attack Drug’


So-called recreational cocaine users are more likely to have higher blood pressure, stiffer arteries and thicker heart muscle walls than non-users, says report.

Cocaine, and most other illegal drugs, can have a negative impact on the heart and when repeatedly used over time can cause cardiovascular abnormalities such as an arrhythmia and heart attacks.

An Australian study in 2012 was the first to recognise cardiovascular abnormalities in otherwise ‘healthy’ regular users of cocaine.

30-35% of users were found to have aortic stiffening and 18% had a greater thickness of the heart’s left ventricle wall, according to the study

There are three types of cocaine, Powder cocaine (coke), freebase and crack, all of which are highly addictive. They can temporarily speed up the way your body and mind works; it is a powerful stimulant which comes with short-lived effects but can have long term side effects.

If the user is injecting illegal drugs into their systems veins can collapse and infections in the heart valves and blood vessels can also occur. Cocaine can also have an adverse effect in the central nervous system which can affect the users consciousness, says the American Heart Association.

'We are repeatedly seeing young, ­otherwise fit individuals ­suffering massive heart attacks related to cocaine use.

'Despite being well-­educated professionals, they have no ­knowledge of the health ­consequences of regularly using cocaine. It’s the perfect heart ­attack drug.' Said Study leader Dr Gemma Figtree.

Source: The American Heart Association

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