L carnitine help for thalassemia
Effect of L-carnitine on the physical fitness of thalassemic patients.
Ann Hematol. 2007 January. El-Beshlawy A, El Accaoui R, Abd El-Sattar M, Gamal El-Deen MH, Youssry I, Shaheen N, Hamdy M, El-Ghamrawy M, Taher A. Department of Pediatrics, New Children Hospital, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.
Poor physical fitness is a common problem among patients with thalassemia. The main objective of this study is to assess the effect of the administration of oral L-carnitine on exercise tolerance and physical fitness in patients with thalassemia major. Thirty patients followed up at the New Cairo University Children Hospital were included in this study. Clinical, laboratory, and cardiopulmonary exercise testing were performed before and after 6 months of oral L-carnitine therapy (50 mg per kg per day). The oxygen consumption, cardiac output, and oxygen pulse at maximal exercise significantly increased after L-carnitine therapy. However, there was no significant change in minute ventilation and ventilatory equivalent of carbon dioxide. There was also significant increase in the blood transfusion intervals after L-carnitine administration. However, there was no significant change in hemoglobin concentration. L-Carnitine seems to be a safe and effective adjunctive therapeutic approach in thalassemic patients. It improves their cardiac performance and physical fitness. The younger the patients are, the higher is the degree of improvement in their exercise parameters.
Comments: For long term use we suggest using a much lower dosage of 5 to 10 mg per kilogram body weight.