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Doctor's health warning to anyone that takes paracetamol on a regular basis

Doctor's health warning to anyone that takes paracetamol on a regular basis

Doctor Semiya Aziz warned that people may want to reconsider their reliance on the over-the-counter drug.

If you pop paracetamol on a regular basis, a doctor has warned that you might want to reconsider your go-to remedy for your aches and pains.

The painkiller is one of the most popular over-the-counter drugs people rely on to help stifle their bodies suffering, but a recent study has suggested Brits need to be wary of long-term use.

Although you can easily pick it up in your local supermarket or get it prescribed by a health professional, taking too much paracetamol over a prolonged period can have dangerous, and even deadly, consequences. Take a look at this:

During Friday's (23 February) episode of This Morning, Dr. Semiya Aziz joined the hosts of the ITV show to discuss the risks of using the tablets for a long time.

She began: "Currently, we know paracetamol in the lowest effective dose over a short period of time - for headaches, for fevers - is absolutely fine."

However, long-term use can cause a myriad of symptoms such as tiredness, breathlessness, anaemia, liver damage, kidney damage, and may even cause the person's fingers and lips to turn blue.

According to the NHS, it is safe to take paracetamol regularly for many years as long as you do not take more than the recommended dose.

Aziz explained that a recent study revealed there was a likelihood that another worrying issue could arise for people who take paracetamol for lengthy spells, such as those who suffer from chronic pain or conditions such as arthritis.

Taking paracetamol regularly over prolonged periods could wreak havoc on your health, a GP warned.
Getty stock photo

The GP said: "A recent study has come out with the fact that people who are taking paracetamol on a long-term basis regularly can have an increase in their blood pressure.

"We know that has been the case for people who have been on anti-inflammatories, for example, ibuprofen, aspirin, but paracetamol can cause an increase in blood pressure for those who are on it for longer periods of time.

"So what all the studies are suggesting is that, yes, you can have paracetamol for short periods of time but if you are on it long-term, go and speak to your health care professional and discuss it with them.

"Because high blood pressure can result in an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, heart attacks and strokes."

What a cheery segment to watch mid-morning, eh?

But all jokes aside, Aziz's warning shouldn't be taken lightly.

Doctor Semiya Aziz encouraged people to be wary.

Research by the British Heart Foundation, which was conducted by the University of Edinburgh, was published in 2022 warning that long-term users should 'opt for the lowest effective dose for the shortest possible time'.

The study found that those who took paracetamol routinely saw a 'significant' spike in their blood pressure, which in turn increases the risk of heart disease or stroke by around 20 percent.

Principal Investigator Professor David Webb, Chair of Therapeutics and Clinical Pharmacology at the University of Edinburgh, said of the results: "We would recommend that clinicians start with a low dose of paracetamol, and increase the dose in stages, going no higher than needed to control pain.

"Given the substantial rises in blood pressure seen in some of our patients, there may be a benefit for clinicians to keep a closer eye on blood pressure in people with high blood pressure who newly start paracetamol for chronic pain."

Featured Image Credit: ITV / Getty Stock Image

Topics: Health, UK News, News, This Morning