The ability of chelating agents to remove calcium from arteries has been studied and was not found to show different outcomes compared to placebo.
Of course more studies would be welcomed but currently people seem to rely on anecdotal evidence more than anything else.
People make the most absurd causal relationships in their heads which they then present as fact. It truly is fascinating.
Luckily there hasn't been too many deaths associated with EDTA chelation therapy, at least in medically supervised settings.
1: Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2002;(4):CD002785.Links
Chelation therapy for atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease.Villarruz MV, Dans A, Tan F.
4050 - G Bigasan Street, Palanan 1235, Makati City, Philippines. firstname.lastname@example.org
BACKGROUND: Chelation therapy is being promoted and practiced all over the world as a form of alternative medicine in the treatment of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. It has been recommended as a safe, relatively inexpensive and non-surgical method of restoring blood flow in atherosclerotic vessels. At present the benefit of chelation therapy remains controversial at best. OBJECTIVES: The objective of this review is to assess the effects of ethylene diamine tetraacetic acid (EDTA) chelation therapy on clinical outcomes among patients with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. SEARCH STRATEGY: The reviewers searched the Cochrane Peripheral Vascular Diseases Group Trials Register, (last searched July 2002), the Cochrane Controlled Trials Register, (Cochrane Library Issue 2, 2002), MEDLINE and EMBASE for published articles and other relevant articles. Studies were also requested through correspondence with known Filipino practitioners of the procedure. SELECTION CRITERIA: Studies were included if they were randomized controlled trials of EDTA chelation therapy versus placebo or no treatment in patients with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. Main outcome measures considered included either total or cause-specific mortality, non-fatal cardiovascular events, direct or indirect measurement of disease severity, subjective measures of improvement or adverse events. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: Two reviewers (MVV, FT) extracted data and assessed trial quality independently. Unresolved issues were considered by a third reviewer (ALD). Discrepancies were discussed until a consensus was reached. Authors were contacted for additional information. MAIN RESULTS: A total of five studies was included in the review. Mortality, non-fatal events, and cerebrovascular events were not reported in any of the studies. Four of the studies, with a total recruitment rate of 250 participants, showed no significant difference in the following outcomes: direct or indirect measurement of disease severity and subjective measures of improvement. One of the studies, which included only 10 patients, was interrupted prematurely, because of an apparent treatment effect. However, relevant data were not available in the report and have been requested from the authors. REVIEWER'S CONCLUSIONS: At present, there is insufficient evidence to decide on the effectiveness or ineffectiveness of chelation therapy in improving clinical outcomes of patients with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. This decision must be preceded by conducting randomized controlled trials that would include endpoints that show the effects of chelation therapy on longevity and quality of life among patients with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease.
1: Natl Med J India. 2006 Jan-Feb;19(1):24-6.Links
Role of EDTA chelation therapy in cardiovascular diseases.Shrihari JS, Roy A, Prabhakaran D, Reddy KS.
Department of Cardiology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Ansari Nagar, New Delhi, India.
Chelation therapy is a widely practised mode of treatment for atherosclerotic cardiovascular diseases all over the world. However, evidence for the utility of this therapy is limited and conflicting. We did a systematic review of the literature. The reference listings of the articles, obtained from a Pubmed search using relevant keywords, were searched for additional related articles. Most of the evidence supporting the use of EDTA chelation therapy is from case reports, small series or uncontrolled, open-label clinical trials. The published randomized controlled trials include few patients and their results are of limited value. Uncontrolled studies have reported symptomatic improvements but the few controlled trials suggest that these benefits are due to a placebo effect. The available data do not support the use of chelation in cardiovascular diseases. This therapy should be used only in the context of a research trial including patients who have failed to respond to conventional treatment.
PMID: 16570682 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]