A randomized controlled trial to prevent post-operative atrial fibrillation by antioxidant reinforcement.
Atrial fibrillation is the most common abnormal heart rhythm. It may cause no symptoms, but is often associated with palpitations, fainting, chest pain, or congestive heart failure. AF may occur in episodes lasting from minutes to days (paroxysmal AF) or may be permanent in nature. AF can result in a reduction of cardiac output or formation of blood clots in the heart. The risk of stroke is increased fivefold in individuals with AF.
A randomised placebo controlled study that examined the effects of supplementary fish oil and the antioxidant vitamins E and C was undertaken . A total of 203 patients scheduled for on-pump cardiac surgery were randomized to placebo or supplementation with n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (2 g/day) (eicosapentaenoic acid:docosahexaenoic acid ratio 1:2), vitamin C (1 g/day), and vitamin E (400 IU/day). The primary outcome was the occurrence of post-operative atrial fibrillation. Secondary outcomes were the biomarkers related to oxidative stress and inflammation.
This safe, well-tolerated, and low-cost regimen, consisting of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids plus vitamins C and E supplementation, favourably affected post-operative atrial fibrillation, increased antioxidant potential, and attenuated oxidative stress and inflammation
J Am Coll Cardiol. 2013 Oct 15;62(16):1457-65. doi: 10.1016/j.jacc.2013.07.014. Epub 2013 Jul 31.