Background: Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH) may be depleted in chronic fatigue syndrome (SFC). The purpose of the study was to evaluate the efficacy of supplementation with NADH in these patients.
Material and methods: A double blind, placebo controlled, 3 month long clinical trial was conducted. The patients were randomized to oral NADH oral 20mg or placebo during the first two months. The intensity of the fatigue, functional performance, mood state, functional impact of the fatigue, quality of life, sleep quality, exercise capacity and functional reserve as well as the investigator's and patient's opinion on the efficacy of the intervention prior to and at 30, 60 and 90 days of the onset of the treatment were evaluated. A stress test was performed in the baseline visit and at 60 days (last day of the double blind treatment).
Results: A total of 86 patients, 77 of whom completed the study (mean age, 47 years, 72 women) were enrolled. No significant differences were found in most of the variable studied at the end of the study. Administration of NADH was associated to a decrease in anxiety condition of -1.0 points (p<0.05) and of -0.2 points (p=NS) in the placebo assigned group. Maximum heart rate after the stress test decreased a mean of -8.1l/min (p<0.05) in the NADH group and increased by +1.7l/min in the placebo group (p=0.73). No differences were found in the perception of efficacy with NADH and placebo, by the investigator and patients.
Conclusions: Administration of oral NADH was associated to a decrease in anxiety and maximum heart rate, after a stress test in patients with CFS. On the contrary, this treatment did not modify other clinical variables and the global functional performance.