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All TopicsForum: Complementary and Holistic Medicine and Treatment → Topic: BIOTIN

Topic: BIOTIN

Forum: Complementary and Holistic Medicine and Treatment — Complementary medicine refers to treatments that are used WITH standard treatment. Holistic medicine is a term used to describe therapies that attempt to treat the patient as a whole person.

Posted on: Aug 18, 2007 03:27AM

winner wrote:


Anyone know anything about it or use it? Feedback appreciated!

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Posts 1 - 30 (38 total)

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Aug 18, 2007 04:07AM lam wrote:

I have used it since chemo finished. It has helped my skin, nails and hair. I ran out at some point and didn't immediately buy some more - I noticed that my skin and nails did not do as well when I wasn't taking it. I also used biotin shampoo & conditioner when my hair started growing back.

Hugs,

Les-Ann

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Aug 19, 2007 08:10AM pconn03 wrote:

I have used it now for a couple of months. I definitely know it has helped my nails grow - and I believe my hair as well, to some extent. I have the ones you put under your tongue and dissolve.

Pat

Pat

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Aug 20, 2007 05:01AM FitChik wrote:

I am a huge biotin proponent. After chemo, my hair wasn't growing as fast or as thickly as I wanted, so I began taking rather massive doses of biotin in the hopes of speeding up the process. In my case, it was very successful and since I take Aromasin (increasing the chance of hair loss/thinning), I continue to take a huge daily dose (5mg). From all of the research I could access, no adverse effects have been associated with such a dose and, so far, I've noticed nothing besides having acquired a full head of hair that is now shoulder-length. The brands that I take are Country Life and Earth Fare.

Hope this helps...

Marin

"Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim." ~Nora Ephron

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Aug 21, 2007 05:43AM abbadoodles wrote:

So, Marin, the 1000 mcg I'm taking isn't enough? My hair is coming in okay, I guess, but anything I can do to boost it would be more than welcome.

Tina

Tina

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Aug 21, 2007 07:13AM FitChik wrote:

Tina...I think that the 1,000 mcg/1 mg would be considered a huge dose as well, so it's probably doing something for you. The recommended dosage in most cases is 300 mcg. As I've posted, my research yields no warning about taking up to 5,000 mcg/5 mg so that's what I take. I truly don't know if all this growth would have occurred without the biotin, but I doubt it since my hair was much finer before chemo. It's still not thick & bushy, but it holds up pretty well with enough product and it grows very fast!

~Marin

"Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim." ~Nora Ephron

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Aug 22, 2007 02:21PM CaliforniaKate wrote:

I've always had really strong nails, and for the past almost 4 years on tamoxifen, they have been really week. I started biotin after reading a thread two weeks ago. I can already notice a change in my nails. Ridges are gone and nails aren't breaking. Now if it will just help my thinning hair, I'll be thrilled. Kate

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Aug 23, 2007 02:06AM Rosemary44 wrote:

Fish oil helps alot also. Once I started taking it daily, bingo, gone are the fallen hairs all over the shoulders.

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Aug 23, 2007 08:29AM simeon wrote:

I am not familiar with this - is it something you buy at a health food store?

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Aug 23, 2007 08:46AM Rosemary44 wrote:

I buy coromega packets cause I don't like taking the pills, but you can find fish oil in any vitamin store. Coromega I get online cause its cheaper there even with the postage. The orange flavor tastes good too.

http://www.coromega.com/

Also, Biotin is a B vitamin. Also sold at vitamin stores.
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Aug 24, 2007 05:40PM althea wrote:

Question to y'all who are using biotin -- since it's a B vitamin, do you find it helps boost your energy level? That's what I'm most interested in.

I also have ridges in my nails ever since chemo. They don't really bother me per se, but it's a frequent reminder of having endured chemo, so if I have a choice, I'd love to ditch the ridgy nails.

Listen with a questioning ear. quote from George Ohsawa, founder of macrobiotics

Dx 12/22/2004, ILC, 5cm, Stage II, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Aug 25, 2007 02:05AM Rosemary44 wrote:

I've tried everything for energy. When I feel it getting really low, I'll pop a B12 under the tongue. Ginseng supposedly works for fatigue. I haven't tried it yet but I keep reading about it here and there.

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Oct 6, 2007 06:09AM, edited Oct 6, 2007 06:09AM by Barbeqrn

Rosemary and Althea,

They did a big study on Ginseng and found that the patients on chemo taking 2000mg of Ginseng really helped. That is a whopper dose and I found it a health food store. I had no adverse side effects, got the ok from my onc and I am not dragging from TC therapy. Vitamin B12 is for energy as well...onc said that was ok too, since it isn't an antioxidant, which he feels protects cells from the chemo.

Marin, how long did it take for your hair to come back...I am late asking this question because I am losing it at the END of treatment!!!!!!! Go figure, and I was just feeling cocky that I didn't lose my hair!!!!!!!! Working out in the gym is no picnic with a wig but I am not at the bandana stage yet!

Barb

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Oct 6, 2007 08:14AM, edited Oct 6, 2007 08:14AM by Rosemary44

Barb,

Thanks for letting me know that ginseng is Dr. approved.  I never remember to ask mine, though I know he knows nothing about this stuff, so why ask him anyway?  I'm tired of being tired, I'm going to try it.  Which brand do you use?  I'll have to see if there are any studies about taking ginseng and arimidex together.  I'd call Astra-Zeneca, but they're useless too.

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Oct 6, 2007 12:35PM Harley44 wrote:

Hi Y'all,


Just a note about Ginseng... If your bc is ER+, I believe you are not supposed to take this... because it is a phytoestrogen. 

I may be wrong, or have it mixed up with something else, but I am pretty sure that is the one that is a nono for hormone positive bc...

HARLEY

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Oct 6, 2007 12:37PM Harley44 wrote:

Marin,

If you take such a high dose of Biotin, don't you also have to take mega doses of the other B vitamins also?  Don't they need to be balanced??

Just wondering...

I want to start taking Biotin as soon as I finish my Chemo...  I want my hair back NOW!!!  Smile   Also, it will help my nails, which have always been weak, and brittle, breaking easily, due to a thyroid disorder.

Thanks

Harley

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Oct 6, 2007 02:37PM, edited Oct 6, 2007 02:37PM by FitChik

Hey Harley....I don't mega-dose on the other Bs because some of them, in high doses, can be toxic. I do, however, take a B-complex that gives me the maximum of all of the Bs. Perhaps the biotin upsets the balance somewhat, but so far/so good! And I'm lovin' my hair!

~Marin

"Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim." ~Nora Ephron

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Oct 6, 2007 05:22PM Harley44 wrote:

Marin,

Oh, I thought ALL the B vitamins were water-soluble, so you could take high doses of all of them, and you couldn't over dose on any of them...  maybe I was mis informed...

How long did you wait before starting the Biotin?  A month after chemo?  Is that sufficient?  Also, are you allowed to take them if you are about to have surgery?  I'll be having my reconstruction on Nov. 7th and don't want to mess that up.

Thanks! 

Harley 

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Oct 6, 2007 07:42PM Rosemary44 wrote:

Harley,

Yes, you are correct about ginseng being a phytoestrogen, but they call it a weak one.  There's a few things I don't understand about it.  One,  it's a phyto and two, it fights free radicals which I would think those on chemo wouldn't want to do.   Yet, the research says it's ok to use during chemo to offset fatigue?   The report is coming out in Nov.  I'll wait to read it first before taking ginseng.  Thanks for the heads up on it.

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Oct 7, 2007 06:41AM Harley44 wrote:

Rosemary,


Thanks for the info. on ginseng...

Please post and let us know what the report says!

Harley

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Oct 7, 2007 07:58AM Rosemary44 wrote:

Harley,

I meant to add to my post that in some cases high doses of B vitamins can actually cause the problems you are trying to heal.  B6 is one of them that can be very helpful at a low dose, but if you go too high, you'll get those problems.  B2 should be only taken at the same dose as B6.  B1 I don't care for, it could help feed a tumor, as does B12, so I take that only for bad fatigue days.  So for the long run, B's should be taken at a low dose if you take them all in the same pill.

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Oct 7, 2007 02:42PM Harley44 wrote:

Rosemary,


Thanks!

But, I'm still kind of confused... why is it safe to take BIOTIN in megadoses?

Harley

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Oct 7, 2007 02:55PM, edited Oct 7, 2007 02:55PM by JoanofArdmore

Re Ginseng"

Rosemary, we went though a huge ginsing discussion a while back.I was taking Panax Ginseng for fatigue.I was told Panax Ginseng is NOT acceptable for we with es+ bc!And I got scared and cut it out.

Next some maven, maybe Saluki, posted an article about ginseng being OK for es+, but only one kind--special American ginseng.

<sigh> by then I was intimidated.

Biotin-wise yes it helped me when I started losing hair from femara.

I've been taking it successfully for about a year.

So now my hair is falling out worse than ever!Dag!I've increased my dose to double.Glad we can use a lot of Biotin.Because I'm ready to take 3!The mess is horrible, worse than when my Labby would shed!

Still, I continue to continue to pretend, my life will never end, and flowers never bend with the rainfall . Paul Simon

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Oct 8, 2007 07:01AM Rosemary44 wrote:

Harley,

Here's the PDR on biotin.  There doesn't seem to be any indications that it causes problems.

http://www.pdrhealth.com/drug_info/nmdrugprofiles/nutsupdrugs/bio_0035.shtml

Start small, see nothing happen, add to the dose in small increments, till you see no more hair loss and if that doesn't happen, then probably a vitamin won't help.  Try the formula below for at least 3 months.

Here is the full formula that came from a Dr. who specializes in hair loss:

Getting enough protein, she said this was important
Omega 3
B6
B12
folic acid
zinc
magnesium
biotin

If taking the above doesn't help within a few months' time, then it won't help. There could be other reasons for the loss. 

From her list, I would up the protein intake, go for the omega 3,  magnesium, biotin and low dose b6, for the rest they should be in foods anyway, so I wouldn't supplement.

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Oct 8, 2007 07:07AM, edited Oct 8, 2007 07:58AM by Rosemary44

Joan,

I remember that discussion about ginseng, but new info is enroute about it.   I'm not going to try it till I read the new research and it seems screwy that they'd be recommending it for people who had an ER+ tumor.  Anyway, I think I found another "cure" for fatigue.  Dark chocolate.  The darker the better.

They gave it to chronic fatigue syndrome patients to eat and it helped some of them to actually go back to work. 45 grams daily.  I wonder how much that is?  Why does everything have to be fattening?  They did find that none of the participants put on weight though.

I'll go look for the research and post it.

Found it:

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/84141.php

Oh, and read the definition of CFS symptoms, don't they sound familiar.

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Oct 8, 2007 09:06AM Harley44 wrote:

Thanks, Rosemary...


Unfortunately, I think my hair loss issues are related to my thyroid disorder, so I guess that means that nothing will help...

Also how long will I have to wait to start biotin, after my last chemo...   My last chemo tx is TOMORROW, Tuesday!!!!  YAY!!!

Thanks

Harley

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Oct 8, 2007 09:52AM, edited Oct 8, 2007 09:52AM by bomber410

Harley, I don't know what is recommended.  I do know I started biotin the day after my last treatment.  I guess I didn't want to wait.  :-)

Totally unrelated, who knows, but as for hair update, I now have white peach fuzz 4 weeks post chemo treatment.  So regrowth has begun.  

Debbie 

You can visit my CaringBridge site at http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/debbiecole

Dx 3/29/2007, IDC, 2cm, Stage II, Grade 2, 1/10 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Oct 8, 2007 10:10AM Harley44 wrote:

Debbie,

I must be weird, but my hair didn't ALL FALL OUT at once, or even all fall out at all.  I get TC txs, and my last tx is tomorrow,  YAY!, but I got a weird pattern happening at first.  I had the men's receding hairline thing, and it was BALD, just in front.  The next day, it was covered with white fuzz.... then the rest fell out in patches, but under it is this white fuzz... now the white is turning darker, but it is just fuzz.  I look like Sluggo of  the Nancy & Sluggo comics!

Oh, I am going to wait til about 3 weeks after my last tx, so that the chemicals will be out of my system, before starting the biotin.


Thanks

Harley

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Oct 8, 2007 08:16PM, edited Oct 8, 2007 08:16PM by JoanofArdmore

THANKS, Rosemary!!How awesome! I love 80% dark chocolate.I'm delighted to know it's...better than ginseng!!Will try taking it maybe at mid-day, so as to benefit from this ENERGY!

I like it for desert after dinner but actually hesitate to eat it, afraid I'll get a sugar high!Not that dark has a LOT of sugar.

Yep the CFS symptoms sound familiar.I've a note about this though:

My sleep nevr felt refreshing.My sleep was always broken.Pain woke me up 2 and 3 times a night.

But I have rescued a dog, a sweet good 8 year old from NYC  SPCA.

And the extra physical activity of the three extra walks a day make me SO tired, I sleep like the deadRight through the pain!AND I wake refreshed!Miracle!

Can I still use the dark chocolate?Laughing

(And how much IS 45 gms???)I like to eat 3 squares, a row.Bad?

Still, I continue to continue to pretend, my life will never end, and flowers never bend with the rainfall . Paul Simon

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Oct 9, 2007 07:32AM, edited Oct 9, 2007 07:32AM by FitChik

Harley...I don't think it's especially weird that you didn't lose all of your hair if you didn't get Adriamycin, aka 'Red Devil.' That's the stuff that causes the hair to practically fly off one's head and in record time. The 'T' which I assume is Taxol or Taxotere causes some hair release, but I've heard many women say that they start re-growth once they start the taxane component. For me, the Taxol did cause my lashes and brows to fall out, about 2-3 weeks after the final infusion. That was one of my primary reasons for starting Biotin. It was bad enough being bald, but the stark look of lashless eyes made me look like I was one step away from the coffin!

~Marin

"Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim." ~Nora Ephron

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Oct 9, 2007 08:21AM abreast_of_life wrote:

Hi,

I had a mastectomy in 2003, a year after my mother was diagnosed with terminal breast cancer.  We read a lot, particularly about alternative and complementary treatment. I have put this together in depth on a website to try to save the grief of sifting through bookshops, websites etc. It includes healthy diet, supplements (pre and post surgery, chemotherapy and radiation),how to heal, personal care etc etc It is www.abreastoflife.co.uk . The American version is hopefully coming soon. 

Good health.

Love and blessings,

Deborah

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