Normalization of zinc intake enhances neurological retrieval of patients suffering from ischemic strokes

Roberto Aquilani, Paola Baiardi, Marco Scocchi, Paolo Iadarola, Manuela Verri, Paolo Sessarego, Federica Boschi, Evasio Pasini, Ornella Pastoris, Simona Viglio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: The objective of this study was to investigate whether zinc (Zn2+) supplementation could contribute to neurological retrieval of patients suffering from strokes and low Zn2+ intake. Patients and methods: Twenty-six patients with subacute stroke, having adequate daily energy (≥ 24 kcal/kg/day) and protein (≥ 0.8 g/kg/day) intake (EPI) and Zn 2+ ingestion lower than two-thirds of the recommended allowance of 10 mg/day, were randomly allocated either to a control group (n = 13) or Zn 2+ group (n = 13) where Zn2+ supplementation consisted of 10 mg Zn2+/day. Neurological gravity was tested with the NIH stroke scale (NIHSS) at patient admission and after 30 days of protocol commencement. Results:At day 30, the improvement in NIHSS was higher in the zinc group than in the placebo (-4.7 ± 1.3 points versus -3.3 ± 1.1 points; P ≤ 0.02).NIHSS and Zn2+ intake were negatively correlated (r = -0.46; P ≤ 0.02). Conclusion: The normalization of Zn2+ intake in stroke patients with low mineral intake may enhance neurological recovery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)219-225
Number of pages7
JournalNutritional Neuroscience
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2009


  • Ischemic stroke
  • Rehabilitation
  • Zinc

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Neuroscience(all)


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