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Advantages of L-carnitine in Treating Hepatitis C

Yesterday, I covered a study that suggested L-carnitine protects mitochondrial function in liver cells. In my second post of my L-carnitine binge, researchers evaluated the efficacy of L-carnitine on alleviating anemia, thrombocytopenia and leukopenia, and minimizing dose reductions in patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) in treatment with Interferon a (IFN-a) plus ribavirin.

HCV patients were divided into two groups over a 12 month period. Group A received Peg-IFN-a 2b plus ribavirin plus L-carnitine, and Group B received Peg-IFN-a and ribavirin. Red cell count, hemoglobin, white cell count, platelets, bilirubin, alanine aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), and viremia were tested in all subjects.

After 12 months, group A compared to group B differences were observed in AST, ALT, viremia, hemoglobin, red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. In group A compared to group B there was improvement of sustained virological response, while relapses were also fewer.

The researchers concluded, "L-carnitine supplementations may modulate erythropoiesis, leucopoiesis and thrombocytopoiesis, and may be useful in patients treated for HCV. L-carnitine treatment may have the potential to offer sustained virological response while preventing over treatment."

So the last two studies I covered would seem to suggest L-carnitine could be beneficial to those with various liver issues.

Source: L-carnitine supplementation improves hematological pattern in patients affected by HCV treated with Peg interferon-α 2b plus ribavirin (full-text)

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  1. that is interesting...now, as someone searching for answers to end the nausea, how does one get "L-carnitine?" can i just ask my doc for some?

  2. In North America, you should be able to buy L-carnitine at most (if not all) health food stores.

    Specifically in Canada, you may need to wait a few weeks to see this on the shelves since there is usually a bit of a lag period between the change in regulations and market accessibility,

    Not sure about the US, but in Canada, the only time you need a prescription for L-carnitine is if you're specifically treating L-carnitine deficiency (in which case you'd get it from a pharmacy).


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