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Int Psychogeriatr. 2009 Feb;21(1):138-47. doi: 10.1017/S1041610208007904. Epub 2008 Oct 17.

Cognitive and psychiatric effects of vitamin B12 replacement in dementia with low serum B12 levels: a nursing home study.

Author information

  • 1Azheimer's Disease Research Unit, Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06510, USA. christopher.vandyck@yale.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The aim of this study is to determine whether B12 replacement would ameliorate cognitive and psychiatric symptoms in elderly subjects with dementia and low serum B12 levels.

METHODS:

A test group (n = 28) of nursing home residents with low serum B12 levels (<250 pg/mL) and a matched comparison group (n = 28) with normal serum B12 levels (>300 pg/mL) were evaluated by blinded raters while the test group received intramuscular (IM) B12 replacement therapy. All subjects were assessed at baseline, 8 weeks, and 16 weeks with the Dementia Rating Scale, Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale, and Geriatric Depression Scale.

RESULTS:

Although B12 replacement produced significant improvement in hematologic and metabolic parameters, it yielded no significant effect on cognitive or psychiatric variables. A few subjects evidenced notable individual treatment responses; however, these were not statistically more frequent than in the normal B12 group.

CONCLUSIONS:

These results suggest that B12 replacement is unlikely to benefit cognitive or psychiatric symptoms in the vast majority of elderly dementia patients with low serum B12 levels.

PMID:
18925978
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3523212
Free PMC Article

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