Vitamin C For the Common Cold Should Not Be Rejected on The Basis of Old and Erroneous Articles
Dr Harri Hemila MD. PhD responded to the CAM article in Allergy and Clinical Immunology  stating-
Mainardi et al reviewed the use and effects of complementary and alternative medicines on respiratory symptoms. They stated that early studies on vitamin C did not demonstrate an effect on the duration or intensity of the common cold, and as a support to this statement, they referred to 2 articles from 1975.[2,3]
and Goes on to say:
Instead of referring to 3-decade-old articles that have been shown to be erroneous 1 decade ago. There is firm evidence that regular vitamin C supplementation shortens the duration of colds that occur during the supplementation period, but the practical significance of this finding is not clear.
The authors respond by stating that their review looked at this area in light of an historical perspective but go on to say:
However, we do agree with the spirit of Dr Hemilä’s letter, which reflects that there is increasing evidence that “regular vitamin C supplementation shortens the duration of colds that occur during the supplementation period.” However, as they also conclude, “the practical significance of this finding is not clear” and thus remains to be determined.
1. Mainardi T, Kapoor S, Bielory L. Complementary and alternative medicine: herbs, phytochemicals and vitamins and their immunologic effects. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2009;123:283-94. View Prior Post
2. Karlowski TR, Chalmers TC, Frenkel LD, Kapikian AZ, Lewis TL, Lynch JM. Ascorbic acid for the common cold: a prophylactic and therapeutic trial. JAMA 1975;231:1038-42. View Abstract
3. Dykes MHM, Meier P. Ascorbic acid and the common cold: evaluation of its efficacy and toxicity. JAMA 1975;231:1073-9.
4. Hemila¨ H, Douglas RM, Chalker EB, Treacy B. Vitamin C for preventing and treating the common cold. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2007;(3):CD000980. View Abstract
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