Sign up for Englemed updates from TwitterSign up for Englemed updates from Facebook
Contact Englemed
Our contact email address.
We can provide a specialist, tailored health and medical news service for your site.
Click here for more information
RSS graphic XML Graphic Add to Google
About Englemed news services - services and policies.
Englemed News Blog - Ten years and counting.
Diary of a reluctant allergy sufferer - How the British National Health Service deals with allergy.
BookshopFor books on women's health, healthy eating ideas, mental health issues, diabetes, etc click here
Copyright Notice. All reports, text and layout copyright Englemed Ltd, 52 Perry Avenue, Birmingham UK B42 2NE. Co Registered in England No 7053778 Some photos copyright Englemed Ltd, others may be used with permission of copyright owners.
Disclaimer: Englemed is a news service and does not provide health advice. Advice should be taken from a medical professional or appropriate health professional about any course of treatment or therapy.
Home blood pressure monitors 'as good as professional'
Tues June 2nd - Home blood pressure monitoring is as likely to be as accurate as those in professional medical settings, according to a new study published today. More
Stillbirth associated with increased lupus risk
Tues June 2nd - Women who have had a stillbirth are four times more likely to develop lupus than those who had an uncomplicated live-birth, a new UK study has found. More
On 08/02/2018 David Kelly wrote:
Would you like to write a piece about this to be i... on Researchers unveil new pain re...
On 23/10/2017 Cristina Pereira wrote: on HIV breakthrough - MRC...
On 12/09/2017 Aparna srikantam wrote:
Brilliant finding! indeed a break through in under... on Leprosy research breakthrough...
On 01/07/2017 Annetta wrote:
I have been diagnosed with COPD for over 12 years.... on Seaweed plan for antimicrobial...
On 12/03/2017 Steph wrote:
The photo you have paired with this article is its... on 'Fat shaming' limits...

Blood-letting might prevent heart disease - theory

Wednesday May 30th, 2012

Letting blood was the staple of mediaeval physicians - and mostly it was counter-productive.

But a new study suggests something similar could help people facing what is known as metabolic syndrome - which precedes diabetes and can be caused by unhealthy diet and obesity.

Removing blood from these people - or even taking part in blood donation - could have significant benefits for people with metabolic syndrome, German researchers say.

Metabolic syndrome is a risk factor for diabetes and cardiovascular disease which is increasingly widespread. It causes insulin resistance, glucose intolerance, raised levels of blood fats, high blood pressure, and obesity.

It has been suggested that a build-up of iron may partly trigger metabolic syndrome. So Professor Andreas Michalsen of the Charite-University Medical Centre in Berlin, Germany, and colleagues carried out a study in which 33 metabolic syndrome patients had iron reduction through phlebotomy, or blood-letting. Outcomes were compared against 31 similar patients.

The iron-reduction patients had 300ml of blood removed at the start, then 250 to 500ml removed after four weeks.

Average systolic blood pressure fell significantly from 148.5 mmHg to 130.5 mmHg in the phlebotomy group, and non-significantly from 144.7 mmHg to 143.8 mmHg in the control group. However, insulin sensitivity did not change.

Phlebotomy also benefited blood glucose, glucose in the plasma, cholesterol levels and heart rate.

Results appear in the journal BMC Medicine today (May 30). The authors conclude: "In patients with metabolic syndrome, phlebotomy, with consecutive reduction of body iron stores, lowered blood pressure and resulted in improvements in markers of cardiovascular risk and glycaemic control.

"Blood donation may have beneficial effects for blood donors with metabolic syndrome."

Professor Michalsen added: "Blood donation may prevent not just diabetes but also cardiovascular disease for the obese. Obviously this treatment will not be suitable for people with anaemia, however for those eligible for treatment blood donation may prevent escalation of their condition."

Effects of phlebotomy-induced reduction of body iron stores on metabolic syndrome: Results from a randomized clinical trial. Houschyar, K. S. et al. BMC Medicine May 30 2012.

Tags: Diabetes | Diet & Food | Europe | Heart Health

Printer friendly page Printer friendly page

Comment on this article:

<a>,<b> & <p> tags allowed
Please enter the letters displayed:
(not case sensitive)