Either your web browser doesn't support Javascript or it is currently turned off. In the latter case, please turn on Javascript support in your web browser and reload this page. Free to read. Sir: Alternative and complementary medicine is popular in the United States, and interest in this type of medicine is growing.

Acetyl- l -carnitine ALC is a popular nutritional supplement used by patients with mood disorders, Alzheimer's disease, and other disorders. It is widely sold over the Internet as a safe and effective nutritional supplement. There is also a general perception among the public that nutritional supplements are safe, with few side effects. To our knowledge, there are no reports of ALC precipitating a psychiatric disorder.

We report the first case of ALC precipitating a psychotic episode in a person with a previous history of bipolar disorder. Case report. A, a year-old white man, admitted as an inpatient to our psychiatric unit in after he became floridly psychotic. He presented with auditory hallucinations of the devil and persecutory delusions regarding his brother and mother, who were his primary caregivers.

On admission, he demonstrated hostility and aggression toward the staff in the unit. He also was verbally threatening and physically assaultive toward staff. A had a long history of bipolar disorder dating back to early adulthood. He had been stabilized on lithium treatment and had been symptom free for more than 10 years.

His symptoms had reemerged about 2 years ago, and, prior to the current admission, the patient had been admitted 3 months ago for inappropriate sexual behaviors, which had been treated successfully with citalopram. He had been discharged on a treatment regimen of lithium, mg b. His condition was stable, and he had been doing very well for 4 weeks. Five days after ALC was started, the patient suddenly became psychotic. We believe that ALC was responsible for the precipitation of this current psychotic episode because of the temporal association of the onset of psychosis with the start of ALC treatment, the suddenness of the onset, and the severity of the psychosis, which was much greater than he had experienced in a long time.

ALC is a well-known nonessential organic nutrient. Because ALC is essential for the transport of long-chain fatty acids across the inner mitochondrial membrane, it has major importance in mitochondrial energy metabolism. ALC is easily transported across the blood-brain barrier and improves neuronal and repair mechanisms while modifying acetylcholine production in the central nervous system.

Esters of carnitine acetylcarnitine and propionylcarnitine have pharmacologic value by virtue of their antioxidant properties and ability to deliver readily oxidizable carbon units to mitochondria. Alzheimer's disease and depression in the elderly, ischemia-induced myocardial dysfunction in angina pectoris, human immunodeficiency virus infection, and diabetic neuropathies may respond positively to ALC administration.

Animal studies have shown that ALC administration persistently increases dopamine outflow in the nucleus accumbens.

Dopamine dysregulation in this pathway has been shown to cause psychotic symptoms. This dysregulation may arise through a process of sensitization, which, in animals, can be caused by repeated administration of dopamine-releasing drugs. The same process may occur in humans, and some individuals may be particularly sensitive to the effects of such drugs either for genetic reasons or through early environmental damage.

This case report illustrates the need for physicians to be aware of any complementary therapies that patients might be receiving and to routinely inquire about this during the initial interview.Forums New posts Search forums Google site search Popular content. Resources Latest reviews Search resources. Members Current visitors. Log in Register. Search titles only. Search Advanced search…. New posts. Search forums. Google site search. Popular content.

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Completely eliminated my severe anxiety symptoms with three supplements! Thread starter Hip Start date Jul 7, Tags anti-anxiety anxiety brain inflammation neuroinflammation. Hip Senior Member Jul 7, Messages 13, Likes 25, I had hellish, unrelenting generalized anxiety disorder for several years, and, having tried hundreds of supplements as well as SSRI drugs and TCA drugs in my frantic efforts to treat it, I recently found 3 supplements that seem to pretty much eliminate my anxiety!

acetyl l carnitine psychosis

NAG should not be confused with glucosamine sulfate, which will not work for this anti-anxiety purpose.Forums New posts Search forums Google site search Popular content. Resources Latest reviews Search resources. Members Current visitors. Log in Register. Search titles only. Search Advanced search….

Acetyl-L Carnitine Overview

New posts. Search forums. Google site search. Popular content. Log in. Phoenix Rising needs funds to operate : please consider donating to support PR.

JavaScript is disabled. For a better experience, please enable JavaScript in your browser before proceeding. Completely eliminated my severe anxiety symptoms with three supplements! Thread starter Hip Start date Jul 7, Tags anti-anxiety anxiety brain inflammation neuroinflammation. Hip Senior Member Jul 7, Messages 13, Likes 26, I had hellish, unrelenting generalized anxiety disorder for several years, and, having tried hundreds of supplements as well as SSRI drugs and TCA drugs in my frantic efforts to treat it, I recently found 3 supplements that seem to pretty much eliminate my anxiety!

NAG should not be confused with glucosamine sulfate, which will not work for this anti-anxiety purpose.

Note that NAG may be inadvisable in Lyme disease see here. NAG can also aggravate asthma. NAG is usually shellfish derived however Swanson NAG is derived from fermented yeast, though Swanson say they cannot guarantee it is shellfish free. NAG should not be taken if you are on the blood thinner warfarin see here. Glucosamine and likely NAG also may raise intraocular pressure see here. Flaxseed oil is best absorbed when taken with food.

This herb can be bought cheaply as turmeric powder for cooking. Turmeric is not to be confused with curcumin turmeric contains curcumin, but turmeric has many other active ingredients, including: ar-turmerone, demethoxycurcumin, bisdemethoxycurcumin, atlantone, and zingiberone; I suspect the ar-turmerone in turmeric may have the main anti-anxiety effect, as ar-turmerone is thought to reduce microglial activation.

So don't buy curcumin thinking it is turmeric; they are not the same.Y is remorseful over her recent aggressive behavior, and fears that her boyfriend will leave her. She denies suicidal and homicidal ideation and does not require inpatient psychiatric hospitalization. We strongly advise her to discontinue carnitine supplements and energy drinks and to limit her caffeine intake.

Because Ms. Patients predisposed to mania or psychosis may be more likely to respond adversely to nutritional supplements or energy drinks. Although temporal coincidence does not necessarily imply causality, in Ms. Individuals predisposed to mania or psychosis may be more likely to respond adversely after ingesting nutritional supplements or energy drinks.

She also might have a biologic predisposition to psychosis because of her family history of schizophrenia. Routinely ask patients about their use of weight loss products, energy drinks, and nutritional supplements.

The literature contains at least 1 other reported case of carnitine-induced psychosis. A patient with a history of bipolar disorder presented with auditory hallucinations, persecutory delusions, and verbally threatening and physically assaultive behavior 5 days after beginning nutritional supplements containing carnitine.

This may be a common but unrecognized cause of decompensation in psychiatric patients who take supplements. Physicians should routinely inquire about the use of weight loss products, energy drinks, and supplements, and patients should be educated about the risks, including potential to exacerbate pre-existing psychiatric disorders. Psychiatric effects of common weight loss supplements. The authors report no financial relationship with any company whose products are mentioned in this article or with manufacturers of competing products.

Skip to main content. Coronavirus News Center. Cases That Test Your Skills. A case of returning psychosis. Current Psychiatry. Clinical Point Patients predisposed to mania or psychosis may be more likely to respond adversely to nutritional supplements or energy drinks.

Clinical Point Routinely ask patients about their use of weight loss products, energy drinks, and nutritional supplements. Next Article: Reconsidering delusions.

L-Carnitine

Menu Menu Presented by. Menu Close. Depression, anxiety, agitation, aggression, psychosis 10 - Psychosis, severe depression, mania or agitation, hallucinations, sleep disturbance, suicidal ideation Euphoria, hypervigilance, insomnia, verbal and physical aggression, impulsive behavior 9Currently, there isn't enough evidence to know whether acetyl-L-carnitine helps improve fatigue associated with multiple sclerosis MS or not.

More study is needed.

Acetyl-L-carnitine is a form of L-carnitine, an amino acid that is found in nearly all cells of the body. L-carnitine plays a critical role in the production of energy from long-chain fatty acids.

acetyl l carnitine psychosis

In addition, it increases the activity of certain nerve cells in the central nervous system. Fatigue is a common symptom in people with multiple sclerosis. But the cause of the fatigue isn't well-understood. As for treating fatigue with acetyl-L-carnitine, some studies have suggested that supplements could ease MS-related fatigue in people with low blood levels of L-carnitine. Other research found that acetyl-L-carnitine works better than certain medications used to treat fatigue.

But additional studies have had inconclusive results, showing a possible, but not statistically significant, benefit to acetyl-L-carnitine in MS-related fatigue. Although acetyl-L-carnitine generally has few or mild side effects, it can interfere with blooding-thinning medications and other drugs. So, if you decide to try acetyl-L-carnitine or any other dietary supplement, be sure to talk with your doctor first.

Jerry W. Swanson, M. Mayo Clinic does not endorse companies or products. Advertising revenue supports our not-for-profit mission. Any use of this site constitutes your agreement to the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy linked below.

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Make an appointment. Visit now. Explore now. Choose a degree. Get updates. Give today. Request Appointment. Acetyl-L-carnitine: Can it relieve MS fatigue? Products and services. Free E-newsletter Subscribe to Housecall Our general interest e-newsletter keeps you up to date on a wide variety of health topics. Sign up now. I've read that the dietary supplement acetyl-L-carnitine may reduce fatigue in multiple sclerosis.

Is this true? Answer From Jerry W. With Jerry W. Show references Multiple sclerosis-related fatigue. Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database. Accessed June 22, Sir: Alternative and complementary medicine is popular in the United States, and interest in this type of medicine is growing. Acetyl- l -carnitine ALC is a popular nutritional supplement used by patients with mood disorders, Alzheimer's disease, and other disorders.

It is widely sold over the Internet as a safe and effective nutritional supplement.

acetyl l carnitine psychosis

There is also a general perception among the public that nutritional supplements are safe, with few side effects. To our knowledge, there are no reports of ALC precipitating a psychiatric disorder. We report the first case of ALC precipitating a psychotic episode in a person with a previous history of bipolar disorder.

Case report. A, a year-old white man, admitted as an inpatient to our psychiatric unit in after he became floridly psychotic. He presented with auditory hallucinations of the devil and persecutory delusions regarding his brother and mother, who were his primary caregivers.

On admission, he demonstrated hostility and aggression toward the staff in the unit. He also was verbally threatening and physically assaultive toward staff. A had a long history of bipolar disorder dating back to early adulthood.

acetyl l carnitine psychosis

He had been stabilized on lithium treatment and had been symptom free for more than 10 years. His symptoms had reemerged about 2 years ago, and, prior to the current admission, the patient had been admitted 3 months ago for inappropriate sexual behaviors, which had been treated successfully with citalopram.

He had been discharged on a treatment regimen of lithium, mg b. His condition was stable, and he had been doing very well for 4 weeks. Five days after ALC was started, the patient suddenly became psychotic. We believe that ALC was responsible for the precipitation of this current psychotic episode because of the temporal association of the onset of psychosis with the start of ALC treatment, the suddenness of the onset, and the severity of the psychosis, which was much greater than he had experienced in a long time.

ALC is a well-known nonessential organic nutrient. Because ALC is essential for the transport of long-chain fatty acids across the inner mitochondrial membrane, it has major importance in mitochondrial energy metabolism.

ALC is easily transported across the blood-brain barrier and improves neuronal and repair mechanisms while modifying acetylcholine production in the central nervous system.Medically reviewed by Drugs. Last updated on Aug 17, Acetyl-L-carnitine is also known as ALC. It is used by some people with high blood sugar to help with cholesterol as well as nerve pain, such as tingling in their hands and feet. Others have used it to help stop cell damage.

It may also help to improve appetite and increase energy levels. Some people use it to improve mood. People with blood vessel problems in their legs have used it to help them walk better and to walk with less pain. ALC may also help people with low carnitine levels to have a more normal level in their blood. Always check with your doctor before you use a natural product.

Some products may not mix well with drugs or other natural products. Keep hard candies, glucose tablets, liquid glucose, or juice on hand for low blood sugar.

Signs of a very bad reaction. These include wheezing; chest tightness; fever; itching; bad cough; blue skin color; seizures; or swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat. Go to the ER right away. Signs of low blood sugar. These include hunger, dizziness, shaking, a fast heartbeat, confusion, or sweating. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your healthcare provider. Only your healthcare provider has the knowledge and training to provide advice that is right for you.

This information does not endorse any natural products or similar treatments, therapies, or life-style choices as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information. It does NOT include all information about natural products, possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to you.

You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about your health and treatment options. All rights reserved. Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.