I had read some positive effects for acetyl-L-carnitine on fatigue in MS patients, based on a double-blinded study. I had also had some non-MS friends claim some energy benefits. The abstract on the MS study is below, I'm sure it has already been posted elsewhere.
I thought I would give it a go, starting with 250 mg with the idea of walking up to 1g total/day (in 4 250 mg increments), taking 250 mg for about five days, and then doubling it, etc. I was fully not really expecting to feel any different, since the dose used in the trial below was 1 g. However, after just 2-3 days at 250 mg, I noticed that I had more energy, at least relatively speaking, if not totally up to par. I was surprised at the level of effect at even the low dose I took.
Anybody else experience this?
J Neurol Sci. 2004 Mar 15;218(1-2):103-8. Related Articles, Links
Comparison of the effects of acetyl L-carnitine and amantadine for the treatment of fatigue in multiple sclerosis: results of a pilot, randomised, double-blind, crossover trial.
Tomassini V, Pozzilli C, Onesti E, Pasqualetti P, Marinelli F, Pisani A, Fieschi C.
Department of Neurological Sciences, University of Rome "La Sapienza", viale dell' Universita 30, Rome 00185, Italy.
Treatment with acetyl L-carnitine (ALCAR) has been shown to improve fatigue in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome, but there have been no trials on the effect of ALCAR for treating fatigue in multiple sclerosis (MS). To compare the efficacy of ALCAR with that of amantadine, one of the drugs most widely used to treat MS-related fatigue, 36 MS patients presenting fatigue were enrolled in a randomised, double-blind, crossover study. Patients were treated for 3 months with either amantadine (100 mg twice daily) or ALCAR (1 g twice daily). After a 3-month washout period, they crossed over to the alternative treatment for 3 months. Patients were rated at baseline and every 3 months according to the Fatigue Severity Scale (FSS), the primary endpoint of the study. Secondary outcome variables were: Fatigue Impact Scale (FIS), Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and Social Experience Checklist (SEC). Six patients withdrew from the study because of adverse reactions (five on amantadine and one on ALCAR). Statistical analysis showed significant effects of ALCAR compared with amantadine for the Fatigue Severity Scale (p = 0.039). There were no significant effects for any of the secondary outcome variables. The results of this study show that ALCAR is better tolerated and more effective than amantadine for the treatment of MS-related fatigue.
Randomized Controlled Trial