Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Abstract: Hydroxycut hepatotoxicity: A case series and review of liver


Dietary supplements represent an increasingly common
source of drug-induced liver injury. Hydroxycut is
a popular weight loss supplement which has previously
been linked to hepatotoxicity, although the individual
chemical components underlying liver injury remain
poorly understood. We report two cases of acute
hepatitis in the setting of Hydroxycut exposure and
describe possible mechanisms of liver injury. We also
comprehensively review and summarize the existing
literature on commonly used weight loss supplements,
and their individual components which have demonstrated
potential for liver toxicity. An increased effort to
screen for and educate patients and physicians about
supplement-associated hepatotoxicity is warranted.


Dara, L., Hewett, J., & Lim, J.K. (2008). Hydroxycut hepatotoxicity: A case series and review of liver. World Journal of Gastroenterology, 14(45), 6999-7004.

My Take

First of all, here are definitions that will be helpful...
hepatotoxicity- The quality or condition of being toxic or destructive to the liver.
hepatitis- inflammation of the liver, caused by a virus or a toxin and characterized by jaundice, liver enlargement, and fever.

The authors are trying to associate liver problems with consuming hydroxycut, but I don't think you can make this causal conclusion because N=2, and this is just a case study rather than an experiment. Instead hydroxycut is correlated with liver problems, but as mentioned in the paper, we are not sure why. On the other hand, the paper does an okay job at listing and briefly explaining the ingredients (Garcinia Cambogia, Chromium, and Camelia Sinensis) that may cause damage to the liver.


Jose Antonio PhD said...
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Jose Antonio PhD said...

This study, if you can call it that, comes to conclusions based on an n of 1. Why the investigators chose 'Hydroxycut' as the supposed cause and not the other actual drugs he was taking is a bit bizarre.

Billy said...

Has anyone tried homeopathic growth hormone oral spray? I hear it's legal for over the counter sales and is very gentle on the system.