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In reply—Ethanol Should Be Subjected to a Randomized Controlled Trial

      We appreciate Dr Keller’s interest in our recent meta-analysis on the effects of alcohol consumption.
      • Huang C.
      • Zhan J.
      • Liu Y.-J.
      • Li D.-J.
      • Wang S.-Q.
      • He Q.-Q.
      Association between alcohol consumption and risk of cardiovascular disease and all-cause mortality in patients with hypertension: a meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies.
      We agree that a large prospective randomized controlled trial will be the most valuable path to evaluate the effects of alcohol on all-cause mortality and cardiovascular health. Additionally, he proposed a creative idea of using ethanol capsules and placebo capsules for the randomized controlled trial. However, we are skeptical concerning the use of ethanol capsules. The blindness of the study design would not be guaranteed because the patients in the treatment arm may experience psychotic, cutaneous, or other effects.
      Nevertheless, we thank Dr Keller for his comments and suggestions. Certainly, future research is warranted to clarify the association between low to moderate alcohol use in patients at risk for cardiovascular disease, including those who have hypertension.

      Reference

        • Huang C.
        • Zhan J.
        • Liu Y.-J.
        • Li D.-J.
        • Wang S.-Q.
        • He Q.-Q.
        Association between alcohol consumption and risk of cardiovascular disease and all-cause mortality in patients with hypertension: a meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies.
        Mayo Clin Proc. 2014; 89: 1201-1210

      Linked Article

      • Ethanol Should Be Subjected to a Randomized Controlled Trial
        Mayo Clinic ProceedingsVol. 90Issue 1
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          The meta-analysis by Huang et al1 in the September 2014 issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings revealed an association between low to moderate ethanol consumption and reduced risk of cardiovascular disease and all-cause mortality (ACM) in hypertensive patients. This study adds additional observational evidence to support the hypothesis that there is a J-shaped curve for ACM vs ethanol consumption, with minimum ACM observed in persons with a low-level long-term ethanol intake of about 10 g/d (about 1 standard serving or drink).
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