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Will taking naproxen increase my risk of heart problems?

Q) My GP is talking of replacing meloxicam with naproxen, but my limited research suggests that this may increase the risk of heart problems. I have psoriatic arthritis and have been taking meloxicam on and off since 1995. Any advice?
Charles Gauton, Chelmsford, Essex (Spring 2011)

A) I think your GP wants to change meloxicam to naproxen because there's evidence that naproxen is better for your heart (in relative terms – all non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) carry a risk of heart disease but this risk varies between drugs. This became apparent when rofecoxib, Vioxx, was incriminated). I think taking these drugs is a personal issue. Some drugs suit some people better than others. When taking any drug you also have to weigh up the advantages (the benefits the drug gives you) with the disadvantages (usually the side-effects). I think perhaps you need to discuss this further with your GP.

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