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Popular painkiller linked to heart attack and stroke, PPB warns

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By Judith Gicobi

The Pharmacy and Poisons Board has cautioned Kenyans against using Diclofenac as a pain reliever for an extended period of time without a prescription.

The board links the widely used pain reliever to heart attacks and strokes. Diclofenac is used to treat arthritis-related joint stiffness, edema, and general body pain.

The drug is referred to as a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). “Use of diclofenac is no longer recommended for patients with a history of heart failure or circulatory problems that restrict blood flow to their limbs,” Siyoi said.

Smokers, as well as individuals with high blood cholesterol or diabetes, should seek a doctor’s prescription prior to taking diclofenac. “If you are on long term diclofenac treatment, you will need to have your treatment reviewed to ensure that it is still safe for you,” the CEO said.

He further stated that diclofenac should only be prescribed and utilized by a properly trained healthcare provider.

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