Why it's doneBy Mayo Clinic staff
In chelation therapy, a dose of a medication called ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA) is delivered through an intravenous (IV) line. This medication seeks out and binds to minerals in your bloodstream. Once the medication binds to the minerals, it creates a compound that leaves your body in your urine.
Chelation therapy is a proven treatment for lead or mercury poisoning. Some doctors think that chelation therapy could begin to reverse heart disease by binding to the calcium in the plaques clogging your arteries and sweeping it away. No study has proved that this process actually works.
- Fuster V, ed. et al. Hurst's The Heart. 13th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2011. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=5. Accessed Jan. 4, 2013.
- Questions and answers: The NIH trial of EDTA chelation therapy for coronary heart disease. National Institutes of Health. www.nhlbi.nih.gov/news/press-releases/supplement/questions-and-answers-the-nih-trial-of-edta-chelation-therapy-for-coronary-heart-disease.html. Accessed Jan. 3, 2013.
- Results of the trial to assess chelation therapy (TACT). American Heart Association. http://my.americanheart.org/idc/groups/ahamah-public/@wcm/@sop/@scon/documents/downloadable/ucm_446204.pdf. Accessed Jan. 3, 2013.
- Fihn SD, et al. 2012 ACCF/AHA/ACP/AATS/PCNA/SCAI/STS guideline for the diagnosis and management of patients with stable ischemic heart disease: Executive summary. Journal of the American College of Cardiology. 2012;60:2566.