What other names is Acetyl-l-carnitine known by?
Acetil-L-Carnitina, Acetyl Carnitine, Acétyl Carnitine, Acetyl L-Carnitine, Acétyl-L-Carnitine, Acetyl-L-Carnitine Arginate Dihydrochloride, Acetyl-L-Carnitine Arginate HCl, Acétyl-L-Carnitine Arginate HCl, Acetyl-L-Carnitine HCl, Acétyl-L-Carnitine HCl, Acetyl L-Carnitine Hydrochloride, Acetyl Carnitine, Acétyl-Carnitine, Acetyl-Levocarnitine
, Acétyl-Lévocarnitine, ALC, Alcar, Carnitine Acetyl Ester, Dihydrochlorure d'Acétyl-L-Carnitine Arginate, Gamma-Trimethyl-Beta-Acetylbutyrobetaine, L-Acetylcarnitine, L-Acétylcarnitine, Levacecarnine, N-Acetyl-Carnitine, N-Acétyl-Carnitine, N-Acetyl-L-Carnitine, N-Acétyl-L-Carnitine, ST-200, Vitamin B(t) Acetate, 2-(acetyloxy)-3-carboxy-N,N,N-trimethyl-1-propanaminium inner salt; (3-carboxy-2-hydroxy-propyl)trimethylammonium hydroxide inner salt acetate.
What is Acetyl-l-carnitine?
Acetyl-L-carnitine is an amino acid (a building block for proteins) that is naturally produced in the body. It helps the body produce energy.
Acetyl-L-carnitine is used for a variety of mental disorders including Alzheimer's disease
, age-related memory loss
, late-life depression
, thinking problems related to alcoholism
, and thinking problems related to Lyme disease
. It is also used for Down syndrome
, poor circulation in the brain, cataracts
, nerve pain
due to diabetes
, nerve pain
due to drugs
used in the treatment of AIDS
, and facial paralysis
Some men use acetyl-L-carnitine for infertility
, symptoms of "male menopause
" (low testosterone
levels due to aging
), and a disease of the penis called Peyronie's disease
The body can convert L-carnitine to acetyl-L-carnitine and vice versa. But, no one knows whether the effects of acetyl-L-carnitine are from the chemical itself, from the L-carnitine it can make, or from some other chemical made along the way. For now, don't substitute one form of carnitine for another.
Possibly Effective for...
- Improving memory problems in elderly people.
- Improving memory in people who use alcohol excessively. Taking acetyl-L-carnitine seems to improve memory in 30-60 year-old people whose use of alcohol has produced long-term thinking problems.
- Reducing nerve pain (neuropathy) caused by diabetes. Acetyl-L-carnitine reduces pain best in people who have not had diabetes for a long time or who have poorly controlled type 2 diabetes.
- Treating Peyronie's disease, a connective tissue disease in men. Acetyl-L-carnitine seems to be more effective than a drug called tamoxifen for reducing pain and slowing worsening of the condition.
- Treating male infertility caused by inflammation of some reproductive organs and tissues (prostate, seminal vesicles, and epididymis). Taking acetyl-L-carnitine by mouth, along with L-carnitine for 6 months, seems to increase sperm count and sperm movement. The carnitines are used following 2 months of treatment with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as aspirin.
- Treating symptoms of age-related testosterone deficiency ("male menopause"). Taking acetyl-L-carnitine by mouth along with propionyl-L-carnitine seems to help symptoms related to declining male hormone levels. This combination taken for 6 months seems to improve sexual dysfunction, depression, and fatigue in much the same way the male hormone testosterone does.
- Improving blood flow to the brain. Administering a single dose of acetyl-L-carnitine intravenously (by IV) seems to produce short-term improvements in blood flow in the brains of people who have poor blood circulation in the brain.
- Treating Alzheimer's disease. Acetyl-L-carnitine is more likely to help those with early-onset Alzheimer's disease who are less than 66 years of age and have a faster rate of disease progression and mental decline.
Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...
- Depression. Some research suggests acetyl-L-carnitine might improve mood and decrease depression in elderly people.
- Muscle weakness caused by medications taken for HIV disease. Some research suggests acetyl-L-carnitine might help relieve muscle weakness caused by some HIV treatments.
- Down syndrome.
- Thinking problems related to Lyme disease.
- Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of acetyl-L-carnitine for these uses.
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).