This new study showed that even in patients with the most severe classes of heart failure, CoQ10 supplementation can restore deficient CoQ10 levels, extending life span and improving quality of life. The study, begun in 2003, included only the most severely affected patients (those in the New York Heart Association class III or IV).1 In addition to their regular medication, study subjects were randomly assigned to receive either 100 mg of CoQ10 or placebo 3 times daily. Each patient was followed up with a wide variety of outcomes measures for two years.
After only three months of supplementation, the researchers detected a trend towards reduced levels of proBNP, a marker of heart failure severity that is released from over-worked heart muscle cells.1,2 At two years, significantly more treated patients had improved their heart failure class than did placebo recipients.
But the study’s main endpoint measurement was the most dramatic indicator of success. Only 14% of patients in the supplemented group had a major adverse cardiac event (defined as unplanned hospitalization for worsening heart failure, death from a cardiovascular cause, urgent heart transplantation, or artificial mechanical heart support), while 25% of those in the placebo group had a major cardiac event.1 In statistical terms, that produced a “hazard ratio” of 2.0—meaning the untreated patients had twice the risk of a major cardiac event!
Compared with control patients, those taking CoQ10 experienced significantly fewer cardiovascular deaths and hospitalizations for worsening heart failure. The difference in death rate from all causes between the CoQ10 and placebo groups was striking. Subjects on placebo had twice the rate of death compared to those taking CoQ10.1 And, unlike most drug studies, there were significantly fewer adverse events in the supplemented group than in the placebo group.
This study was the first ever to show that CoQ10 supplementation in advanced heart failure improves survival, while slashing hospitalization rates. It highlights the importance of regular supplementation with this cardiac “fuel additive” for anyone with heart failure or its risk factors, such as endothelial dysfunction, hypertension, and a history of a heart attack. Studies have shown that CoQ10 improves each of these risk factors for heart failure.
1. Mortensen S, Kumar A, Filipiak K, et al. The effect of coenzyme Q10 on morbidity and mortality in chronic heart failure. Results from the Q-SYMBIO study. European Journal of Heart Failure. 2013;15(S1):S20.
2. Maisel AS, Krishnaswamy P, Nowak RM, et al. Rapid measurement of B-type natriuretic peptide in the emergency diagnosis of heart failure. N Engl J Med. 2002 Jul 18;347(3):161-7.