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Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism
Volume 2012, Article ID 510483, 6 pages
Clinical Study

Effects of Oral L-Carnitine Supplementation on Lipid Profile, Anemia, and Quality of Life in Chronic Renal Disease Patients under Hemodialysis: A Randomized, Double-Blinded, Placebo-Controlled Trial

1Isfahan Kidney Diseases Research Center, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan 8168798847, Iran
2Biochemistry Department, School of Medicine, Jahrom University of Medical Sciences, Jahrom 7414846199, Iran
3Department of Emergency Medicine, Sina Hospital, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran 1473115447, Iran

Received 3 February 2012; Revised 22 March 2012; Accepted 6 April 2012

Academic Editor: Maurizio Muscaritoli

Copyright © 2012 Afsoon Emami Naini et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In patients on maintenance hemodialysis several factors reduce the body stored carnitine which could lead to dyslipidemia, anemia, and general health in these patients. We evaluated the effect of oral L-carnitine supplementation on lipid profiles, anemia, and quality of life (QOL) in hemodialysis patients. In a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial, end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients on hemodialysis received either L-carnitine 1 g/d (n=24) or placebo (27 patients) for 16 weeks. At the end of the study, there was a significant decrease in triglyceride (-31.1±38.7 mg/dL, P=0.001) and a significant increase in HDL (3.7±2.8 mg/dL, P<0.001) levels in the carnitine group. Decrease in total cholesterol (−6.6±16.0 mg/dL, P=0.075) and increase in hemoglobin (0.7±1.7 g/dL, P=0.081) concentrations in the carnitine group were not significant. There was no statistically significant changes in LDL in any group (P>0.05). Erythropoietin dose was significantly decreased in both the carnitine (-4750±5772 mg, P=0.001) and the placebo group (-2000±4296 mg, P<0.05). No improvement was observed in QOL scores of two groups. In ESRD patients under maintenance hemodialysis, oral L-carnitine supplementation may reduce triglyceride and cholesterol and increase HDL and hemoglobin and subsequently reduce needed erythropoietin dose without effect on QOL.