Table 1

 Baseline characteristics of study participants

AllVitamin E groupPlacebo group
BMI = body mass index; FEV1 = forced expiratory volume in 1 second; FVC = forced vital capacity; PD20 = dose of methacholine provoking a fall in FEV1 of 20% or more; PEF = peak expiratory flow.
*Expressed as beclomethasone equivalent dose (1000 μg budesonide or 500 μg fluticasone equivalent to 1000 μg beclomethasone).
No of participants723537
Mean (SD) age (years)47.9 (8.9)48.4 (8.4)47.5 (9.4)
Male, n (%)33 (46)16 (46)17 (46)
Mean (SD) BMI (kg/m2)26.8 (7.6)25.6 (4.5)28.0 (9.6)
Mean (SD) duration of asthma (years)26.3 (14.1)24.5 (14.4)28.0 (13.7)
Median (range) daily inhaled steroid dose (μg)*400 (100–2000)400 (100–2000)400 (200–1000)
Number on long acting β2 agonists19712
Mean (SD) FEV1 (l)2.51 (0.66)2.48 (0.61)2.53 (0.71)
Mean (SD) FEV1 (% predicted)77 (16)78 (17)77 (15)
Geometric mean (SD) PD200.77 (4.55)0.86 (4.63)0.69 (4.53)
Mean (SD) morning PEF (l/min)416 (77)416 (65)416 (88)
Median (range) daily bronchodilator use (puffs/24 hours)0 (0–12)0 (0–12)0 (0–12)
Median (range) daytime symptom score0 (0–3)0 (0–3)0 (0–2)
Median (range) night time symptom score0 (0–2)0 (0–2)0 (0–2)
Mean (SD) vitamin E intake (mg)7.27 (3.55)6.84 (2.50)7.66 (4.29)
Mean (SD) serum vitamin E (μmol/l)26.8 (8.2)27.4 (10.4)26.1 (5.4)