Pine bark, CoQ10 improves heart failure

June 22, 2011 at 9:38 PM
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CHIETI, Italy, June 22 (UPI) -- Pycnogenol, or pine bark, and Coenzyme Q10 in combination helped treated heart failure patients be more physically energetic, researchers in Italy found.

"Many conditions that lead to heart failure cannot be reversed, but heart failure can often be medically managed with good results," Dr. Gianni Belcaro, a lead researcher of the study at Chieti-Pescara University in Italy, says in a statement. "This study shows that a combination of Pycnogenol and Coenzyme Q10 -- PycnoQ10 -- offers an effective, natural solution as adjunct for heart health management."

The 12-week single-blinded, placebo-controlled observational study -- conducted at Chieti-Pescara University in Italy, and investigated PycnoQ10 - in 53 patients ages 54-68 with mild to moderate hypertension and stable congestive heart failure.

Patients recruited had been diagnosed with heart failure with an ejection fraction lower than 40 percent of their original capacity. All patients were taking prescribed heart medication and most used three or more drugs for heart failure treatment.

Half received capsules with a combination of 15 milligrams Pycnogenol and 50 milligrams of Coenzyme Q10 from Kaneka. The second group received placebo capsules in addition to their heart medications.

The study, published in Panminerva Medica, found the group that got PycnoQ10 showed decreased blood pressure and heart rate. Patients' exercise capacity improved, heart ejection fraction improved and distal edema -- swelling in the leg evaluated. The study showed decreased blood pressure and heart rate and distal edema decreased significantly to 72 percent.

The control remained the same for the same metrics, or worsened.

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