Cardiovascular risk, hypertension, and NSAIDs

Curr Pain Headache Rep. 2007 Dec;11(6):428-35. doi: 10.1007/s11916-007-0229-x.


During the past 2 years, a great deal of evaluation has been conducted on the cardiovascular (CV) effects of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and selective cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 inhibitors. This review focuses on the effects of the NSAIDs and COX-2 inhibitors on blood pressure and CV events. Clinical trial databases for NSAIDs and COX-2 inhibitors have shown varying levels of destabilization of blood pressure control in treated hypertensive patients as well as variable incident rates of the development of arrhythmias, congestive heart failure, myocardial infarction, and stroke. Nonselective and COX-2 selective NSAIDs can be used carefully in arthritis patients with hypertension and stable CV disorders (excluding congestive heart failure and moderate to severe kidney dysfunction) when the individual clinical benefit of anti-inflammatory therapy outweighs the CV and gastrointestinal risk.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / adverse effects*
  • Antihypertensive Agents / therapeutic use
  • Blood Pressure / drug effects
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / chemically induced*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / epidemiology
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Cyclooxygenase 2 Inhibitors / adverse effects*
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / complications*
  • Hypertension / drug therapy
  • Prostaglandin-Endoperoxide Synthases / physiology
  • Risk


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • Antihypertensive Agents
  • Cyclooxygenase 2 Inhibitors
  • Prostaglandin-Endoperoxide Synthases