The article was professionally consulted by Specialist Doctor II Ho Viet Le Diem - General Internal Medicine - Department of Examination & Internal Medicine - Vinmec Central Park International General Hospital.
Vitamin A is used in the treatment, control, prevention and improvement of diseases, eye-related syndromes, skin diseases,... However, vitamin A supplementation can also cause some adverse effects. unwanted side effects.
1. How much vitamin A is needed by the body?
Vitamin A is important for the eyes, immune system and helps prevent many different diseases. The amount of vitamin A provided to the body is mainly through food and vitamin supplements. The body's daily need for vitamin A is: Men: 3,000UI. Female: 2,300UI. Pregnant and lactating women: 3,000UI. Children: 2,000UI.
When the diet does not provide enough vitamin A or when there are some infectious diseases such as measles, diarrhea, respiratory infections, ... will cause vitamin A absorption disorder, leading to vitamin A deficiency in the body, causing night blindness, dry eyes, skin diseases,... Severe cases can lead to blindness. And advice for people with vitamin A deficiency is to supplement vitamin A from food. If the source of vitamin A from food does not meet the body's needs, parents can give vitamin A to the baby as prescribed by the doctor. Dosage of vitamin A: Children 6-11 months old: take 100,000 units. Children 12 months and older: take 200,000 units.
2. Side effects when taking vitamin A
Some side effects that may occur after children are given vitamin A are: Common: Children vomiting, diarrhea, bloating, fontanel bulge. The child has local difficulty breathing, headache, swelling, itchy skin, swelling of the face or lips, allergies. These symptoms usually only last for 1-2 days and are not dangerous to the child's health.
Rare: Increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Bleeding in the lungs, blurred vision, bone pain. Changes in immune function. Chronic hepatitis, liver scarring. Cough, fever, cracked nails, cracked lips. Decreased thyroid function. Hair loss, osteoporosis, skin pigmentation disorders. Jaundice.
3. Note when supplementing vitamin A for the body
Before taking vitamin A, users need to inform their doctor about the medicines they are using, their allergies, existing diseases and current health conditions such as pregnancy, impending surgery, ... to receive appropriate advice.
Some drugs such as cholestyramine, neomycin, liquid paraffin reduce the body's ability to absorb vitamin A. Therefore, users pay attention not to use them together. Oral contraceptives may increase plasma vitamin A concentrations, affecting fertility. Avoid combining vitamin A with a retinoid group (substances with a chemical formula similar to vitamin A) because it will cause many harms due to long-term use of high doses of vitamin A. Do not arbitrarily use vitamin A without a doctor's prescription if you are in the following conditions: Rosacea, acute eczema, breastfeeding, pregnancy, acute dermatitis,... In case of use Overdose of vitamin A, the patient should go to the nearest medical facility for examination and treatment. If a dose of vitamin A is missed, users should take it as soon as possible. However, if the detection time is close to the next dose of vitamin A, the patient should skip the missed dose and take the next dose at the scheduled time. Note that do not take double the prescribed dose. Do not take expired vitamin A.
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