COCAINE USE AND HEART PROBLEMS
According to estimates by drug experts, about six percent of cocaine users have a heart attack and 30 percent a so-called angina pectoris attack (severe chest tightness), leading to a dangerous lack of blood in the heart muscle. Several effects are likely responsible for the heart damage. Under cocaine, heart rate and blood pressure rise sharply. This increases the oxygen demand of the heart. At the same time, cocaine can cause spasms of the coronary arteries and activate blood clotting. This carries serious risks of a heart attack.
Heart attacks in young people
"It is particularly fatal that even a single use can cause a heart attack," warns Prof. Dr. Med. Hans-Jürgen Becker, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the German Heart Foundation. Heart attacks in young people are particularly threatening. According to American studies, a quarter of heart attacks in young people (18 to 45 years) are due to cocaine.
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