Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Calcium Supplements May Increase Heart Attacks In Older Women

Date:
January 17, 2008
Source:
British Medical Journal
Summary:
New research suggests that calcium supplements may increase the risk of heart attack in healthy postmenopausal women. Calcium supplementation is commonly prescribed to postmenopausal women to maintain bone health, and some data suggest that it might protect against vascular disease by lowering levels of bad cholesterol in the blood. But evidence for this theory is lacking, so researchers investigated the effect of calcium supplementation on heart attack (myocardial infarction), stroke, and sudden death.

New research suggests that calcium supplements may increase the risk of heart attack in healthy postmenopausal women.

Calcium supplementation is commonly prescribed to postmenopausal women to maintain bone health, and some data suggest that it might protect against vascular disease by lowering levels of bad cholesterol in the blood.

But evidence for this theory is lacking, so researchers at the University of Auckland investigated the effect of calcium supplementation on heart attack (myocardial infarction), stroke, and sudden death.

Their analysis involved 1,471 healthy postmenopausal women aged 55 years or over who had previously taken part in a study to assess the effects of calcium on bone density and fracture rates.

The women were randomly allocated to a daily calcium supplement or placebo. Dietary calcium intake was assessed and women were seen every six months over five years.

Adverse events were recorded at each visit. Heart attacks were more commonly reported in the calcium group. The occurrence of any three vascular events (heart attack, stroke or sudden death) was also more common in this group.

Because of the potential importance of these findings, the authors checked hospital admissions and reviewed all death certificates for study participants to identify any unreported events.

With these added events, heart attacks remained more common in the calcium group (36 events in 31 women versus 22 events in 21 women on placebo). Rates for heart attack, stroke or sudden death were also increased in this group (76 events in 60 women versus 54 events in 50 women on placebo) although these event rates were of borderline significance.

These findings are not conclusive, but suggest that high calcium intakes might have an adverse effect on vascular health and are concerning, say the authors. If confirmed by other studies, this effect could outweigh any beneficial effects of calcium on bone.

In the meantime, this potentially detrimental effect should be balanced against the likely benefits of calcium on bone, particularly in elderly women, they conclude.

This research was published January 16 on the British Medical Journal website.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

British Medical Journal. "Calcium Supplements May Increase Heart Attacks In Older Women." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 January 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080116193102.htm>.
British Medical Journal. (2008, January 17). Calcium Supplements May Increase Heart Attacks In Older Women. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080116193102.htm
British Medical Journal. "Calcium Supplements May Increase Heart Attacks In Older Women." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080116193102.htm (accessed September 2, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Snack Attack: Study Says Action Movies Make You Snack More

Snack Attack: Study Says Action Movies Make You Snack More

Newsy (Sep. 2, 2014) You're more likely to gain weight while watching action flicks than you are watching other types of programming, says a new study published in JAMA. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

Newsy (Sep. 2, 2014) The U.N. says the problem is two-fold — quarantine zones and travel restrictions are limiting the movement of both people and food. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctors Fear They're Losing Battle Against Ebola

Doctors Fear They're Losing Battle Against Ebola

AP (Sep. 2, 2014) As a third American missionary is confirmed to have contracted Ebola in Liberia, doctors on the ground in West Africa fear they're losing the battle against the outbreak. (Sept. 2) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tech Giants Bet on 3D Headsets for Gaming, Healthcare

Tech Giants Bet on 3D Headsets for Gaming, Healthcare

AFP (Sep. 2, 2014) When Facebook acquired the virtual reality hardware developer Oculus VR in March for $2 billion, CEO Mark Zuckerberg hailed the firm's technology as "a new communication platform." Duration: 02:24 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins