Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Vitamin C and E supplements do not reduce risk for blood pressure disorders of pregnancy

09.04.2010
Taking vitamin C and E supplements starting in early pregnancy does not reduce the risk for the hypertensive disorders and their complications that occur during pregnancy, according to a study by a National Institutes of Health research network.

The supplements notably failed to reduce the risk of preeclampsia, a potentially fatal form of hypertension in pregnancy. The findings are in contrast to suggestions in some previous small studies that the vitamins could reduce the risk of preeclampsia. Those studies were not confirmed in subsequent larger studies.

The NIH study, the largest to date and one in which treatment was started earliest in pregnancy, also showed no reduction in pregnancy-associated hypertension and its complications.

"The study results effectively rule out vitamin C and E supplements as a means to prevent the hypertensive disorders seen in pregnancy," said Alan E. Guttmacher, M.D., acting director of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), one of the NIH Institutes that provided funding for the study.

Major funding for the study was also provided by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, with additional funding provided by the National Center for Research Resources' Clinical and Translational Science Awards program, both of the NIH.

The findings appear in the April 8 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

The study was conducted at 16 sites within the NICHD's Maternal–Fetal Medicine Units (MFMU) Network. The article's first author was James M. Roberts, M.D., of the Departments of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Pittsburgh.

The study included only women giving birth for the first time, a group at higher risk for developing hypertensive disorders of pregnancy. In general, the women were healthy and did not have high blood pressure, protein in the urine (an indication of stress on the kidneys), or gestational diabetes (a form of diabetes that emerges in pregnancy). The researchers enrolled over 10,000 women, starting in the ninth to 16th weeks of pregnancy, and followed them to delivery. The women also received daily supplements of vitamins C and E or a placebo.

"In the United States, obstetricians generally recommend that pregnant women take a multivitamin formulated for pregnancy, especially if they aren't eating a well-balanced diet," said study co-author Catherine Y. Spong, M.D., chief of NICHD's Pregnancy & Perinatology Branch and program scientist for the MFMU Network. "In our study, participants took supplements containing higher doses of vitamins C and E—about 10 times the amount in typical prenatal vitamins—in addition to any pregnancy vitamins they may have been taking."

Based on earlier studies, researchers theorized that vitamins C and E might reduce the chances of preeclampsia by preventing damage from molecules known as free radicals— byproducts of the body's use of oxygen. The theory held that free radicals could prevent the placenta from developing properly and interfere with blood flow from the mother to the baby. Although the current findings neither support nor contradict the idea that free radical damage can lead to preeclampsia, Dr. Spong said, they do show that treatment with vitamins C and E will not prevent the condition.

The combined rates of pregnancy-associated hypertension, seizure, protein in the urine, preeclampsia, blood or liver abnormalities, loss of the pregnancy, an underweight baby and preterm delivery did not differ statistically between the two groups. The combined rate of complications was 6.1 percent among those taking the study vitamins and 5.7 percent of those taking the placebo.

Moreover, the study did not detect any statistical difference in preeclampsia between the two groups: 7.2 percent among women taking vitamins versus 6.7 percent among those who took the placebo.

Dr. Spong added that the results are welcome for the clarity they provide.

"These results are very useful," Dr. Spong said. "In this case, it shows us that what originally appeared to be a promising treatment did not actually offer any benefit clinically."

Robert Bock | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.nih.gov

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Real-time feedback helps save energy and water
08.02.2017 | Otto-Friedrich-Universität Bamberg

nachricht The Great Unknown: Risk-Taking Behavior in Adolescents
19.01.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Positrons as a new tool for lithium ion battery research: Holes in the electrode

22.02.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

New insights into the information processing of motor neurons

22.02.2017 | Life Sciences

Healthy Hiking in Smart Socks

22.02.2017 | Innovative Products

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>