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Calcium supplements associated with increased risk of cardiovascular death in men but not women
  1. Mark J Bolland,
  2. Andrew Grey
  1. Department of Medicine, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand
  1. Correspondence to: Dr Mark J Bolland, Department of Medicine, University of Auckland, Private Bag 92019, Auckland 1042, New Zealand; m.bolland{at}auckland.ac.nz

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Implications for practice and research

  • Calcium supplements increase cardiovascular risk.

  • The role of calcium supplements in the management of osteoporosis should be reconsidered.

Context

In 2008, a randomised controlled trial (RCT) suggested that calcium supplements might increase the risk of cardiovascular events.1 Subsequent meta-analyses of RCTs examining calcium monotherapy and calcium and vitamin D confirmed these findings. In a pooled analysis of 13 RCTs of calcium with or without vitamin D (n=29 277) including 1391 patients with myocardial infarction (MI) or stroke,2 calcium increased the risk of MI by 25% and stroke by 15–20%. Xiao and colleagues explored this issue in the observational National Institutes of Health-American …

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