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July 17, 1987

Blood Pressure and Calcium Supplementation

Author Affiliations

University of Naples

University of Naples

JAMA. 1987;258(3):326. doi:10.1001/jama.1987.03400030042025

To the Editor.—  Given the controversy over possible effects of calcium supplementation on high blood pressure,1-4 rigorously designed and carefully presented studies are needed to answer such a basic question as whether oral calcium does or does not lower high blood pressure. In this regard, we wish to comment on the article by Lyle et al.5The authors' choice of a normotensive population, with an average baseline blood pressure below 120/75 mm Hg, does not appear to be appropriate for providing the answer to this question, despite the finding of "statistically significant" falls in blood pressure of 2.3 to 2.8 mm Hg. Furthermore, the presentation of the data is puzzling: since the placebo and calcium groups within each racial group were comparable in terms of blood pressure, age, body weight, and plasma and urinary variables, the need for adjusting the data on blood pressure, urinary variables, and even