Cardiovascular risks of calcium supplements in women

BMJ 2008; 336 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.39463.394468.80 (Published 31 January 2008)
Cite this as: BMJ 2008;336:226

Get access to this article and all of bmj.com for the next 14 days

Sign up for a 14 day free trial today

Access to the full text of this article requires a subscription or payment. Please log in or subscribe below.

  1. Graeme Jones, professor of rheumatology and epidemiology,
  2. Tania Winzenberg, postdoctoral research fellow
  1. 1Menzies Research Institute, Hobart, Tas, Australia 7000
  1. g.jones@utas.edu.au

    Increased risk of myocardial infarction outweighs the reduction in fractures

    Calcium is an important component of bone, and a sufficient intake of calcium is needed for bone homoeostasis. Calcium supplements can reduce the risk of fractures in elderly women who are deficient in calcium and vitamin D, but data on the risk of adverse effects on cardiovascular outcomes have so far been inconclusive. In their accompanying paper, Bolland and colleagues report a preplanned secondary analysis of their randomised controlled trial of calcium supplements in 1471 postmenopausal women. They analysed the effect of calcium supplements on myocardial infarction, stroke, and sudden death.1

    Calcium and vitamin D supplements have been shown to reduce the risk of hip fractures in elderly institutionalised women who are deficient in calcium and vitamin D.2 More recent large trials based in the community have been negative, but this may have been the result of poor adherence,3 which is particularly important for calcium to be effective. Benefit has been …

    Get access to this article and all of bmj.com for the next 14 days

    Sign up for a 14 day free trial today

    Access to the full text of this article requires a subscription or payment. Please log in or subscribe below.

    Article access

    Article access for 1 day

    Purchase this article for £20 $30 €32*

    The PDF version can be downloaded as your personal record

    * Prices do not include VAT

    THIS WEEK'S POLL