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Biotin May Interfere with Lab Tests, Says FDA

If you are taking a biotin supplement, you may want to alert your healthcare provider before having lab work done. According to an FDA safety communication released on November 28, biotin may interfere with certain laboratory tests and create inaccurate results when taken in high levels.

Also known as vitamin B7, biotin is a water-soluble vitamin used in supplements marketed for hair, skin, and nail growth. It is commonly present in multivitamins and prenatal vitamin supplements in lesser amounts. The daily recommended allowance for biotin is 0.03 milligrams, according to the FDA. These levels should not cause interference. However, supplements containing higher biotin levels may have a significant impact on cardiovascular diagnostic tests and hormone tests. These lab tests use biotin technology because of its ability to bond with specific proteins, which can then be measured to determine whether the patient has a health condition.

The following is a list of lab tests that may potentially be affected by biotin supplementation:

Anemia/Vitamins: ferritin, folate, vitamin B12, 25-OH vitamin D

Cardiac: CK-MB, NT-proBNP, troponin T   

Endocrine: anti-TPO, anti-TG, cortisol, insulin, PTH, T3 free, T3 total, T4 free, T4 total, TSH

Reproductive Endo: estradiol, FSH, LH, hCG, prolactin, progesterone, testosterone  

Hepatitis: anti-HAV, anti-HAV IgM, HBsAg, HBsAb, HBcAb, HBcAb-IgM, anti-HCV

Tumor Markers: AFP, CA 15-3, CA 19-9, CA-125, CEA, PSA, free PSA

The FDA is working to further understand biotin interference and will inform the public of any updates. If you have taken a biotin supplement and are concerned about your lab test results, talk to your Women’s Health CT provider. Read the FDA's full safety alert here.

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