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Cocaine "has deadly consequences"

Anyone who takes cocaine is at risk of suffering deadly consequences, UK experts have said, as a study revealed 3% of sudden deaths are linked to the drug.

Fotini Rozakeas of the British Heart Foundation said: "The reality is that there are risks every time you use it.

"Cocaine can have devastating effects on the user including heart attacks, life-threatening heart rhythms, strokes and even sudden death.

"The potential deadly consequences from cocaine use can happen to anyone who takes it, even in previously young healthy people with no history of heart disease."

The charity said that the report, published in the European Heart Journal, showed that the image of cocaine as a "safe party drug" needed to be dispelled.

The findings were compiled using data from Spain, although researchers said that the results should apply to Europe as a whole.

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British Heart Foundation