Oral supplementation of Vitamin C reverses haemostatic dysfunction in chronic smokers.
Vitamin C is a strong reducing agent and also known to be an antioxidant in vitro and in vivo. It has been suggested that haemostatic dysfunction may be a consequence of excess formation of free radicals. The present study is aimed at estimating the effects of oral vitamin C supplementation on bleeding time (BT), whole blood clotting time (WBCT), total platelet count (TPC), prothrombin time (PT) and activated partial thromboplastin time with kaolin (APTTK) in chronic smokers. The study comprised of 100 chronic smokers and 100 non-smokers (controls). Base line blood samples were collected from all the subjects. One 500 mg tablet of vitamin C (Mekophar ®) was orally administered daily to all the subjects for two consecutive weeks. At the end of two weeks, blood samples were collected from only 156 subjects (78 chronic smokers and 78 controls) who turned up. Standard haemostatic procedures were used. Results showed that BT. WBCT, PT and APTTK coagulation markers were significantly decreased (p<0.05) in chronic smokers and TPC was significantly increased (p<0.05) when compared with non-smokers. Result also showed the effect of vitamin C in the baseline and post-test results in controls was not significant (p>0.05) in all the parameters used. Oral vitamin C supplementation significantly increased (p<0.05) BT, WBCT, PT and APTTK and a significant decreased TPC in the chronic smokers compared with their baseline values (p<0.05). The study has shown that oral vitamin C has beneficial effect on haemostatic dysfunction in chronic smokers.