What pain killers can I use after HA ... - British Heart Fou...

British Heart Foundation

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What pain killers can I use after HA and stents


Is there really no solution for a chronic pain sufferer (back,shoulder and neck pain)who was on NSAID for 26 years. Had heart attack and 4 stents, now allowed NO NSAIDs. Quality of life is suffering more with the pain than the HA. Diclofenec was the most successful of the anti inflammatory s but I have been told Naproxen is the best for cardiac px's.

Currently using topical gels with paracetamol, the TV adverts are wrong!!! No use at all especially as can only use twice a day.

Before my heart attack very active, golf, cycling, walking now struggling to do anymore than the rehab classes. Anybody know any different options. Had traction, acupuncture, tens machine and osteopath. Not even allowed large quantities of alcohol to numb the pain as detrimental to heart drugs.

23 Replies

Pain medication works differently on different people. Please ask your doctor for the best pain medication. It may help to get a packet of smarties, separate the colours, try one colour three times a day on day one, different colour the next day and on on..... There was a TV programme many people were given dummy pills for 6 weeks all felt better after 6 weeks and no pain!!!!!

MichaelJHHeart Star in reply to sandybrown

Apparently the red ones are the most effective! :)

Kimkat in reply to sandybrown

Not sure it works when you’re actually aware that they are dummy pills 😂😂

MichaelJHHeart Star

You need to get with your GP as some may interact with your heart medication. I cannot tolerate ibrufen and co-codamol, etc. and was prescribed tramadol for coccygodynia! It was painful. :(

bertngrace in reply to MichaelJH

Thanks MichaelJH, I have been on Tramadol previously and didnt react well to it. I dont seem to function well on any opoids. As for the placebo effect, I may as well ask an imaginary entity in the sky to help. Although the same as sandybrown I have read alot about the placebo effect on some people. You have to have faith and would need to be part of a trial.

This is a genuine thing as I cannot believe that there is no option apart from increasing your chance of a heart attack again. Pharmacists, GP's, Nurses and consultants seem unable to give me an answer. Maybe I am "looking for the holy grail!"

Cheers for your replies.

MichaelJHHeart Star in reply to bertngrace

Tramadol is one of those drugs where half the people can tolerate it and the other half cannot. One tablet knocks my girlfriend out (two induce a zombie like trace) whilst I can take two four times a day and the only effect is pain relief.

bertngrace in reply to MichaelJH

I am the same as your girlfriend, my wife found me zombielike on the sofa. No pain but not a functioning member of society. Cheers

Krazie in reply to bertngrace

Tramadol is useless for more than mild pain. In my case, anyway. It works very well for one of my son's.

For your chronic pain have you tried sports therapy massage in conjunction with daily stretches? It's transformed my life from being barely able to walk more than 25m at a time to now walking 10km in comfort. Good luck, I hope you find something that works for you soon.

bertngrace in reply to HBP1

Hi HBP1, I have been stretching daily for 20 years and also going to yoga classes. Previously before HA very active, had 4 stents heart muscle healthy the only thing stopping me getting back to full fitness is the constant pain in my back and neck. Happy to try anything but the cost of Osteopath/massages etc especially as currently I am off work....

Thanks for your comments though, maybe I just need to try a different Osteopath/Massager.

HBP1 in reply to bertngrace

Finding the right therapist for you is key, it took a couple of goes, but the lady I see now is brilliant.

Hi hope you're feeling a little better. I've been told that diclofenic can exacerbate heart problems, I was taken off it by GP and given naproxen instead, I agree it's not as good as diclofenic but perhaps it's a safer option. If it's nerve damage amitriptyline is very good at night but you will need to speak to GP to see if there's any interaction with your other medication take care

bertngrace in reply to Shwmae

Hi Shwmae, had amitriptyline, gabapentin (both ineffective as better for neurological probs)and naproxen previously. Diclofenec the most efficient for me but you are right I heard naproxen is the better of the two for heart conditions but I am afraid that GP's etc dont want to prescribe anything. I am trying to find out if anyone has heard of anything different. There doesnt seem to be any case studies with anything different and people just return to Diclo and increase their chances of another HA.

Thanks for commenting

Perhaps your GP should be referring you to pain management, works for me.

bertngrace in reply to Kimkat

Last went to a pain clinic 22 years ago so I am sure things have changed.

From rereading my posts it sounds like I am just not in a positive place at the moment. Going to see GP about blood pressure so will mention again.

Thanks for all the support.

I am in the same boat. I have chronic lumbar spinal pain and was on Diclofenec for years. Before my heart issues kicked in my GP took me off Diclofenec and replaced it with Naproxen. That just took the edge off. After my angioplasty and 3 stents I was told I could bleed to death if I took any NSAIDs.

No options for me now except I keep moving. I am as active as I can be and having done core stability exercises for years has helped. If you get a good physio who specialises in spinal issues it can be a blessing. Good luck to you. I know what a struggle this can be.

bertngrace in reply to Jaycey

Hi Jaycey, it just seems astonishing to me that there is no alternative and the DR's just concentrate on the HA and not the quality of life for the px. Its very disappointing but if that is the best we can do then its back to yoga for me. Struggling to see how I am going to work though as on my feet all day. I am glad things are working for you and as I said earlier I am probably just going through a period where I cannot see the light etc.

Thanks for the reply and good luck.

Jaycey in reply to bertngrace

Just keep trying in terms of getting active. I had a very good osteopath who did deep massage and acupuncture as well as gentle manipulation. And the core stability does help eventually. This is really a tough one. What does your GP say?

You MUST ask your doctor. I've lived with chronic pain for 18 years and take strong opiates. They are not a problem with my heart tablets. Like you- heart attack and stents. If they were to stop my painkilller I simply could not go on; the pain is far too severe.

bertngrace in reply to Qualipop

I agree with you Qualipop but I am a complete space cadet on opiates and would prefer to be able to function. Chronic pain since 1990. You have my sympathy. I had a good mix of pain relief and exercise before the HA but now finding it difficult to exercise, vicious circle. I'll get there.

Best of luck. It's a horrid situation to be in

Have you tried wearing a magnetic bracelet ( something like the bioflow)

It may also be worth having a look at the homeopathic remedy Arnica Montana, as it is very useful as a pain killer X

Hi Gundoglady, yep tried magnetic,copper pretty much everything over the last 28 years. Just received my first delivery of Hemp Oil so will keep you all updated on how that goes. Another good class at rehab today so being mobile always makes me feel better.


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