L-Carnitine And The Heart
Keywords:L-Carnitine And The Heart
Cardiac Ischaemia may be defined as a deficiency in cardiac energy supply rela-
tive to energy demand. In coronary artery disease (CAD), Oxygen supply is limited
due to coronary obstruction so energy production is not enough to meet the energy
demands for work. Several reports involving about 2500 patients of CAD where
carnitine was administered for upto 1 year show some beneficial effects. There is re-
duction in ischaemia showing "educed ST-segment depression and angina, greater
effort tolerance and decreased need of cardiac drugs, Carnitine can cause overall im-
provement in cardiac performance in patients with CAD as well as in cardiomyopathy.
More studies are necessary to demonstrate whether carnitine can scavenge free radi-
cals apart from its beneficial effect on fatty acid metabolism. Side effects of carnitine are mild nausea and vomiting and doses upto 2g/day in 3 divided doses may not have any side effects. Intravenous L-carnitine acts rapidly and has no side effects.