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Taurine supplementation confers benefit for cramps in patients with chronic liver disease

06 Sep 2018

Oral supplementation with taurine is safe and effective in the management of muscle cramps in patients with chronic liver disease, yielding significant reductions in the frequency, duration and intensity of cramps, according to a study.

A total of 49 chronic liver disease patients who had 3 muscle cramp episodes were randomized to receive either taurine supplementation or placebo for 4 weeks then crossed to the alternative arm. Taurine was introduced in a stepped fashion to minimize any potential gastrointestinal side effects: one 500-mg capsule twice daily for 2 weeks and two 500-mg capsules twice daily for the remaining 2 weeks.

Primary outcomes of frequency, duration and intensity of muscle cramps were recorded by the patients themselves. Biochemical parameters, such as serum taurine and methionine levels, were measured at each time point.

Only 30 patients (mean age 54.7 years; 70 percent male) completed the study. Oral taurine resulted in increased serum taurine levels (p<0.001). No adverse side effects associated with supplementation were recorded.

Supplementation dosing of 2 g/day for 2 weeks led to significant reductions in cramp frequency (seven cramp episodes; p=0.03), duration (89 minutes; p=0.03) and severity (1.4 units on a Likert scale; p<0.004) compared with placebo.

The present data suggest that taurine be considered as a safe and effective intervention in the management of muscle cramps in patients with chronic liver disease, researchers said. A daily supplementation dosing of 2 g/day can be safely prescribed to alleviate the painful muscle cramps experienced by patients with cirrhosis.

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Most Read Articles
Roshini Claire Anthony, 04 Apr 2019

In addition to an intensive weight loss programme, the use of continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) could improve absolute weight loss in individuals with obesity and obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA), according to a study presented at ENDO 2019.

Yesterday
The ketogenic and Modified Atkin’s diets are effective treatments for children with refractory epilepsy of genetic aetiology, a new study suggests.
2 days ago
Extremely premature neonates who have been exposed to pre-eclampsia in utero are at high risk of developing severe respiratory distress syndrome and severe bronchopulmonary dysplasia, according to a study.
Pearl Toh, Yesterday
A contraceptive vaginal system (Annovera) releasing a combination of segesterone acetate and ethinyl estradiol (SA/EE) effectively inhibits ovulation up to a year even at low systemic levels of SA, reports a review study presented at ENDO 2019.