Review: Vitamin E, vitamin C, and possibly coenzyme Q10 are ineffective for preventing or treating cardiovascular disease: COMMENTARY

O'Malley, Patrick G.
May 2004
ACP Journal Club;May/Jun2004, Vol. 140 Issue 3, p73
Academic Journal
Laboratory and animal research has unveiled the role of oxidative processes in atherogenesis. Thus, a summary of human clinical antioxidant interventional data is of interest. Unfortunately, this well-done synthesis of the literature, indicates that antioxidant therapy in the form of vitamins C and E and coenzyme Q10 does not seem to substantially affect cardiovascular risk. This review was part of a larger work that helped inform the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommendations on vitamin use. Several potential explanations exist why antioxidant therapies have not been proven to affect clinical outcomes. First, these trials were done in patients who already had advanced atherosclerosis, before antioxidant therapy was initiated. It is possible that antioxidant therapy needs to be implemented at earlier stages of atherosclerosis development in order to inhibit its progression.


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