Anticonvulsant medications - valproic acid derivatives
Valproic acid anticonvulsant medication includes:
Valproic Acid and Derivatives (Depacon, Depakene, Depakote Delayed Release, and Depakote ER)
Osteoporosis (bone loss) is the main disease caused by insufficient calcium. Lack of calcium also may be linked with bone pain and spinal problems. Low levels can also cause:
- Muscle cramps
- Irregular heartbeat
Healthy people usually get enough carnitine because the body makes all it needs. But sometimes you can have low levels of carnitine. Being deficient in carnitine can cause:
- Muscle aches
- Heart problems
It is rare to have low levels of copper. Over time, low levels of copper can lead to:
- Changes in the structure and appearance of hair
- Heart damage
- Slow growth
- Problems with bone formation
- Osteoporosis (bone loss)
- Emphysema (lung disease)
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)
Niacin plays a key role in the body's metabolism. Low levels can lead to problems with the skin, digestive system, and nervous system. Symptoms include:
- Stomach problems
Severe deficiency can cause pellagra, a disease that can be life threatening if not treated. Symptoms of pellagra include:
- Inflammation of the skin
- Abdominal pain
Not getting enough selenium over a period of time may make you more susceptible to developing other conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, or liver disease. Low levels of selenium may be linked to problems with your:
- Digestive system
Vitamin B9 (Folic Acid)
Low levels of folic acid have been linked to:
- Heart disease
- Birth defects
- Colon cancer
Symptoms may include fatigue, mouth sores, swollen tongue, depression, and poor growth.
Vitamin D works with calcium to keep bones strong. Low levels of vitamin D can cause rickets in children and osteomalacia in adults, conditions where the bones get soft and thin. It can also raise the risk of osteoporosis. More recently, studies have linked low levels of vitamin D with:
- Weakened immune function
- Sleep problems
Signs and symptoms of low levels of zinc include:
- Loss of appetite or sense of taste
- Weakened immune system
- Slow growth
- Skin changes
- Being more susceptible to infection
The information presented here covers some of the nutrients that may be affected when you take certain medications. If you have the signs and symptoms listed, it does not always mean you have low levels of these nutrients. Many things affect the level of nutrients, including your:
- Medical history
As well as how long you have been taking the medication. Talk with your health care provider. They can best address your health care needs to determine whether you are at risk for low levels of any nutrients.
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- Last reviewed on 8/27/2014
- Steven D. Ehrlich, NMD, Solutions Acupuncture, a private practice specializing in complementary and alternative medicine, Phoenix, AZ. Review provided by VeriMed HealthCare Network. Also reviewed by the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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