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Paracetamol raises BP risk

Researchers are warning of 'important public health implications' after their study found paracetamol significantly increased blood pressure.

The US team found men who used the drug six or seven days a week were at a 34 per cent increased risk of hypertension. The results were similar when pills per week rather than frequency of use was analysed.

Study author Dr Gary Curhan, associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, said: 'Given the widespread use of these medications and high prevalence of hypertension, the results may have important public health implications.'

The increase in risk with paracetamol was significant although the confidence intervals were wide.

The study, published in the latest issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, also found a 38 per cent increased risk with NSAIDs, with a 26 per cent increase from use of aspirin.

But GPs warned against over-interpreting the results. Dr George Rae, secretary of Newcastle and North Tyneside LMC, said: 'Does it put me off using paracetamol? No. But it's certainly something we need to be aware of.'

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