UM study finds no benefit in a popular heart supplement

November 09, 1999

A popular nutritional supplement taken by many patients with congestive heart failure has no effect on improving heart function or relieving symptoms, a University of Maryland Medical Center study shows. The results will be presented at the 72nd Annual Scientific Sessions of the American Heart Association on November 10 in Atlanta, Georgia. The supplement, coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is taken by many heart failure patients and can cost up to $47 a bottle.

"We found no clear benefit to patients who used coenzyme Q10," says Stephen Gottlieb, M.D, director of the cardiac care unit at the University of Maryland Medical Center and associate professor of medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. "There was absolutely no change in how much blood the heart could pump or how much the patients could exercise after taking coenzyme Q10."

Coenzyme Q10 is an over-the-counter nutritional supplement that is touted as a treatment for congestive heart failure. Dr. Gottlieb said he became curious about the supplement's effectiveness after many of his patients began taking them.

For the study, 46 patients who were moderately to severely ill with heart failure were given either CoQ10 or a placebo for six months, along with their standard heart medicine. The study was double blinded so neither the patients nor the researchers knew what treatment was given until the study ended. The researchers found that there was no difference in heart function between the two groups and the supplements had no effect in relieving symptoms.

Congestive heart failure is the inability of the heart to pump enough blood to the lungs and the rest of the body. Symptoms include difficulty breathing, fatigue or shortness of breath even at rest. It also can cause a build-up of blood behind the heart leading to swelling in the legs, feet, ankles and liver.

Dr. Gottlieb says chronic illnesses often motivate people to try different therapies that may be expensive and unproven. "However, based on our findings, people should be aware the CoQ10 has no detectable benefit to heart failure patients," says Meenakshi Khatta, M.S., C.R.N.P., a nurse practitioner with the Heart Failure Program at the University of Maryland Medical Center who will present the results of the CoQ10 study at the AHA meeting.

University of Maryland Medical Center

Related Heart Failure Articles from Brightsurf:

Top Science Tip Sheet on heart failure, heart muscle cells, heart attack and atrial fibrillation results
Newly discovered pathway may have potential for treating heart failure - New research model helps predict heart muscle cells' impact on heart function after injury - New mass spectrometry approach generates libraries of glycans in human heart tissue - Understanding heart damage after heart attack and treatment may provide clues for prevention - Understanding atrial fibrillation's effects on heart cells may help find treatments - New research may lead to therapy for heart failure caused by ICI cancer medication

Machining the heart: New predictor for helping to beat chronic heart failure
Researchers from Kanazawa University have used machine learning to predict which classes of chronic heart failure patients are most likely to experience heart failure death, and which are most likely to develop an arrhythmic death or sudden cardiac death.

Heart attacks, heart failure, stroke: COVID-19's dangerous cardiovascular complications
A new guide from emergency medicine doctors details the potentially deadly cardiovascular complications COVID-19 can cause.

Autoimmunity-associated heart dilation tied to heart-failure risk in type 1 diabetes
In people with type 1 diabetes without known cardiovascular disease, the presence of autoantibodies against heart muscle proteins was associated with cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) imaging evidence of increased volume of the left ventricle (the heart's main pumping chamber), increased muscle mass, and reduced pumping function (ejection fraction), features that are associated with higher risk of failure in the general population

Transcendental Meditation prevents abnormal enlargement of the heart, reduces chronic heart failure
A randomized controlled study recently published in the Hypertension issue of Ethnicity & Disease found the Transcendental Meditation (TM) technique helps prevent abnormal enlargement of the heart compared to health education (HE) controls.

Beta blocker use identified as hospitalization risk factor in 'stiff heart' heart failure
A new study links the use of beta-blockers to heart failure hospitalizations among those with the common 'stiff heart' heart failure subtype.

Type 2 diabetes may affect heart structure and increase complications and death among heart failure patients of Asian ethnicity
The combination of heart failure and Type 2 diabetes can lead to structural changes in the heart, poorer quality of life and increased risk of death, according to a multi-country study in Asia.

Preventive drug therapy may increase right-sided heart failure risk in patients who receive heart devices
Patients treated preemptively with drugs to reduce the risk of right-sided heart failure after heart device implantation may experience the opposite effect and develop heart failure and post-operative bleeding more often than patients not receiving the drugs.

How the enzyme lipoxygenase drives heart failure after heart attacks
Heart failure after a heart attack is a global epidemic leading to heart failure pathology.

Novel heart pump shows superior outcomes in advanced heart failure
Severely ill patients with advanced heart failure who received a novel heart pump -- the HeartMate 3 left ventricular assist device (LVAD) -- suffered significantly fewer strokes, pump-related blood clots and bleeding episodes after two years, compared with similar patients who received an older, more established pump, according to research presented at the American College of Cardiology's 68th Annual Scientific Session.

Read More: Heart Failure News and Heart Failure Current Events is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to