Study: Vitamin E may slow functional decline in Alzheimer's patients
Vitamin E was found to be effective in abating clinical progression
Vitamin E, at one time a "fad" cure-all may have found new use as a tool against Alzheimer\'s disease. vitamin E was revealed to be effective in abating clinical progression. The drug memantine has also been found to be effective in patients with Alzheimer's disease and moderately severe dementia.
Researchers discovered that participants taking vitamin E had slower functional decline than those taking placebo, with the annual rate of decline lowered by 19 percent.
Researchers studied the effectiveness and safety of vitamin E, memantine and the combination for dealing with functional decline in patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease. Participants were given either 2,000 IU/day of vitamin E, 20 mg/d of memantine, the combo or placebo.
Researchers discovered that participants taking vitamin E had slower functional decline than those taking placebo, with the annual rate of decline lowered by 19 percent. Neither memantine nor the combo of vitamin E and memantine revealed clinical benefit in this trial. These findings were based on the Alzheimer's Disease Cooperative Study/Activities of Daily Living Inventory score.
More importantly, caregiver time - nurses and orderlies who must attend to the needs of those suffering from Alzheimer\'s were lowered by approximately two hours per day in the vitamin E group.
This study also offered information on reported safety issues of vitamin E, with findings from previous trials resulting in decreased prescribing for patients with Alzheimer's disease.
"In contrast to the conclusion drawn from a 2005 meta-analysis of vitamin E, which showed that high-dose vitamin E (= 400 IU/d) may increase the risk of all-cause mortality, we found no significant increase in mortality with vitamin E," the authors wrote. "The annual mortality rate was 7.3 percent in the alpha tocopherol group vs. 9.4 percent for the placebo group."
Decline in actions related with everyday life are being increasingly looked upon as a significant determinant of both patient quality of life and social and economic costs.
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