Meta-analysis affirms benefit for CoQ10 supplementation in heart failure
Tuesday, December 18, 2012. The results of a meta-analysis published online on December 5, 2012 in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition indicate that supplementing with coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is associated with an improvement in ejection fraction in men and women with congestive heart failure. Congestive heart failure occurs when the heart fails to pump in an efficient manner. The condition is assessed by measuring ejection fraction, which represents the fraction of blood pumped out of heart's ventricles each time it contracts.
For their analysis, Domnica Fontino and colleagues at Tulane University selected 13 randomized, controlled trials involving CoQ10 supplementation that reported ejection fraction or New York Heart Association (NYHA) functional classification of congestive heart failure patients (which classifies the extent of the disease on a scale of I-IV). Coenzyme Q10 doses ranged from 60 to 300 milligrams per day, which were given for 4 to 28 weeks.
Pooled analysis of a total of 395 participants found an average net increase in ejection fraction of 3.67 percent among those supplemented with CoQ10 in comparison with control groups. New York Heart Association classification among CoQ10-supplemented subjects also improved slightly, although the researchers did not consider it significant and note that only a small number of studies included in the analysis reported NYHA classification as an outcome. In subgroup analyses, CoQ10-associated improvements in ejection fraction were significant in studies with low as well as high proportions of men, and in those involving younger or older ages. Further analysis determined that improvement was significant only among those whose ejection fraction was at least 30 percent before treatment with CoQ10.
"To our knowledge, of the meta-analyses performed to date, our meta-analysis was the most comprehensive with 13 studies," the authors announce. "Only one previous meta-analysis has examined the effect of CoQ10 supplementation on the NYHA classification, and it reported a change of 20.09 in the NYHA classification, which correlated to an improvement (a decrease in severity) that was similar to our findings."
"Our meta-analysis suggested that CoQ10 supplementation may be beneficial for patients with CHF; however, additional, well-designed studies that include more diverse populations are needed," they conclude. They add that there is currently a trial underway that is evaluating the effect of CoQ10 on cardiovascular morbidity and mortality over a two year period.