COX-2 Side Effects and COX-2 Heart Attacks
This page describes the side effects, including blood clots, strokes and heart attacks, associated with COX-2 drugs. These COX-2 side effects can lead to serious damage of the cardiovascular system.
The human body is constantly attempting to achieve a state of perfect balance. If we get too hot, the body tries to cool off through perspiration. When we get dehydrated, the body tries to retain as much water as possible. Research indicates that COX-1 and COX-2 enzymes, similarly, function to keep the body in balance. The important role both enzymes play in the heart and cardiovascular system became apparent through animal and other types of research.
While the specific effects on the heart are still not completely defined, it is known that COX-1 enzymes cause blood vessels to constrict and reduce blood flow. The enzymes also cause the blood to clot or cause thrombosis. COX-2 enzymes, on the other hand, do the opposite. They are known to cause blood vessels to dilate and to "break up" blood clots.
Since aspirin, ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) and acetaminophen (Tylenol) block both COX-1 and COX-2 enzymes equally, the cardiovascular side effects were minimized. However, when COX-2 inhibitors block only COX-2 enzymes, without inhibiting COX-1 enzymes as a balancing act, major damage can occur to the heart and cardiovascular system.
Patients at risk of cardiovascular problems (thromboembotic events) are at higher risks of heart attacks or strokes if they took a COX-2 inhibitor. Research shows the rate of serious heart diseases increases in such patients even more, if they took Vioxx.
If you or your loved one has developed cardiovascular symptoms after taking Vioxx, please contact a knowledgeable personal injury attorney. He or she will carefully evaluate your case to determine if compensation might be available. Many of the best Vioxx attorneys have excellent working relationships with legal professionals specializing in other areas of law. The latter lawyers can help you resolve a variety of situations, including those requiring counsel of a skilled car accident lawyer and/or DUI attorney, as well as situations arising from birth injury and other adverse medical events.