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CARPHOLOGY by Rajendra

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Calcium supplementation in healthy postmenopausal women is associated with an increase in vascular event rates. This is the finding of a randomised, placebo controlled trial from New Zealand, which enrolled 1471 postmenopausal women (mean age 74). Myocardial infarction was more commonly reported in the calcium group than in the placebo group (45 events in 31 women vs 19 events in 14 women, p = 0.01). The composite end point of myocardial infarction, stroke, or sudden death was also more common in the calcium group (101 events in 69 women vs 54 events in 42 women, p = 0.008). The authors point out that their study is small for a study with vascular end points and that the cohort comprised elderly (10% aged more than 80 at baseline) and white participants, so the findings are not necessarily generalisable to other ages and racial groups. But they do give one pause for thought.

BMJ 2008;336:262–6.


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