Heart attack: these 2 drugs increase the risks during hot weather!

The thermometer is again close to the 40°C this summer in France. Problems related to high heat are increasing day by day. However, certain drugs also contribute to these complications. This is the result of a study conducted by German and American researchers in a journal of Nature cardiovascular research, August 1, 2022. The beta-blockers and antiplatelet drugs we were taking increase the risk of heart attack during a heat wave. Focus on this study.

A more difficult regulation of body temperature

Kai Chen, an assistant professor in the Department of Epidemiology (Environmental Health) at the Yale School of Public Health, is one of the pioneers for conducting this study. According to him, “patients taking these two drugs (aspirin and beta-blockers) have a higher risk (of heart attack). »

Upon further study on the subject, it find a lead in the body’s thermoregulation.

“We hypothesize that some of the drugs may make it difficult to regulate body temperature,” he points out.

Professor Chen has not completed his investigations on these two heart medications. However, he invites all patients who take them to remain vigilant, especially in these times of high heat.

2,494 cases of heart attacks listed

After Professor Chen’s work, other researchers became interested in multiplication cases of heart attack during hot weather. They therefore found that exposure to cold or heat increased the likelihood of trigger a heart attack in a patient.

They had noticed that the risk of heart attack due to high temperature had increased as soon as a certain threshold was exceeded. From 2 to 3°C above normal temperatures, many patients would have a seizure.

A team of German researchers has also looked into the case of some patients in Augsburg (in Germany) between the years 2001 to 2014. In all, these researchers examined the cases of 2494 patients who suffered a heart attack during hot weather (that is to say between May and September). The study thus revealed the relationship between the treatments followed, exposure to heat and the day of the heart attack.

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A risk of heart attack of 63 to 75%

The data collected by these researchers from the Yale School of Public Health supports Professor Chen’s expertise. Taking beta-blockers or anti-platelet agents (such as aspirin) would increase the risk of heart attack during hot weather. The complications concerned all the patients studied, whether they were younger or older.

Researchers achieved a staggering statistic :

  • Taking beta-blockers raised the risk of heart attack to 65%
  • Taking antiplatelet drugs would increase this risk to 63%
  • Taking beta-blockers and antiaggregants at the same time would increase the risk to 75%.

Should you change your medication in the event of a heat wave?

Certain medications sometimes worsen heat-related complications. It is however not a reason to stop neither modify nor interrupt a treatment yourself.

Such a decision is up to the attending physician who can carry out a specific assessment depending on the patient. He will decide whether to review the effect of certain drugs depending on the context.

But above all, self-medication is to be avoided absolutely. During a heat wave, even taking medication dispensed without a prescriptionmust go through the advice of a doctor.

This is for example the case of aspirin or paracetamol in case of fever or headache. Specialists say that these two drugs are not so effective during the heat wave. The first risks disturbing the thermoregulation of the body, while the second loses its effectiveness in case of heat stroke.

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The right measures to take in case of high temperatures

As soon as he starting to get hotkeep the right gestures to protect your health.
Take the time to read the instructions for your medications, the user guide for blood glucose meters or the reagents you use.

Always follow the storage and transport advice of your medical equipment or treatment in accordance with the instructions in the manual.

  • Do not take the initiative to modify or discontinue a treatment.
  • Stay hydrated throughout the day and eat enough.
  • Avoid direct exposure to heat and sunlight.
  • Make sure your home maintains a normal temperature as much as possible.
  • If in doubt, always seek the advice of your doctor or pharmacist.
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