Efficacy of folic acid supplementation in stroke prevention: a meta-analysis

Xiaobin Wang, Xianhui Qin, Hakan Demirtas, Jianping Li, Guangyun Mao, Yong Huo, Ningling Sun, Lisheng Liu, Xiping Xu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: The efficacy of treatments that lower homocysteine concentrations in reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease remains controversial. Our aim was to do a meta-analysis of relevant randomised trials to assess the efficacy of folic acid supplementation in the prevention of stroke. Methods: We collected data from eight randomised trials of folic acid that had stroke reported as one of the endpoints. Relative risk (RR) was used as a measure of the effect of folic acid supplementation on the risk of stroke with a random effect model. The analysis was further stratified by factors that could affect the treatment effects. Findings: Folic acid supplementation significantly reduced the risk of stroke by 18% (RR 0·82, 95% CI 0·68-1·00; p=0·045). In the stratified analyses, a greater beneficial effect was seen in those trials with a treatment duration of more than 36 months (0·71, 0·57-0·87; p=0·001), a decrease in the concentration of homocysteine of more than 20% (0·77, 0·63-0·94; p=0·012), no fortification or partly fortified grain (0·75, 0·62-0·91; p=0·003), and no history of stroke (0·75, 0·62-0·90; p=0·002). In the corresponding comparison groups, the estimated RRs were attenuated and insignificant. Interpretation: Our findings indicate that folic acid supplementation can effectively reduce the risk of stroke in primary prevention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1876-1882
Number of pages7
JournalLancet
Volume369
Issue number9576
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2 2007
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Efficacy of folic acid supplementation in stroke prevention: a meta-analysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this

    Wang, X., Qin, X., Demirtas, H., Li, J., Mao, G., Huo, Y., Sun, N., Liu, L., & Xu, X. (2007). Efficacy of folic acid supplementation in stroke prevention: a meta-analysis. Lancet, 369(9576), 1876-1882. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(07)60854-X