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Effects of L-Carnitine supplement on plasma coagulation and anticoagulation factors in hemodialysis patients.

Renal Failure 32(9):1109 (2010) PMID 20863217

Hypercoagulability is an important risk factor for thrombosis and its complications in hemodialysis patients. This study was designed to investigate the effects of l-carnitine supplement on plasma coagulation and anticoagulation factors in hemodialysis patients. Thirty-six hemodialysis patients were randomly assigned to either a carnitine or a placebo group. Patients in the carnitine group received 1000 mg/day oral l-carnitine for 12 weeks, whereas patients in the placebo group received a corresponding placebo. At baseline and the end of week 12, 5 mL blood was collected after a 12- to 14-hour fast and plasma fibrinogen concentration, activity of plasma protein C, coagulation factors V, VII, IX, and serum concentrations of tissue plasminogen activator (tPA), plasminogen activator inhibitor type-1 (PAI-1), free carnitine, and C-reactive protein (CRP) were measured. In the carnitine group, mean serum free carnitine concentration increased significantly to 150% of baseline (p < 0.001), whereas plasma fibrinogen and serum CRP had 98 mg/dL (p < 0.01) and 41% (p < 0.01) significant decreases, respectively, at the end of week 12 compared with baseline. The reductions were significant compared with the placebo group (p < 0.05). No significant differences were observed between the two groups with regard to mean changes of the activity of plasma protein C, coagulation factors V, VII, IX, and serum PAI-1 to tPA ratio. l-Carnitine supplement reduces serum CRP, a marker of systemic inflammation, and plasma fibrinogen, an inflammation-related coagulation factor, in hemodialysis patients. Therefore, l-carnitine may play an effective role in preventing cardiovascular diseases in these patients.

DOI: 10.3109/0886022X.2010.510617