Biotin (Vitamin B7) Supplements May Interfere with Lab TestsLast updated: Mar 23, 2018
Biotin (Vitamin B7) has numerous therapeutic uses and it’s prescribed by physicians for certain conditions.
It’s also becoming a popular over-the-counter supplement.
Even if you’re not using pure biotin labeled as such, you may be unknowingly taking it in other widely distributed products.
In fact, biotin is found in:
- Supplements for hair, skin and nails
- Topical hair, skin and nail products
- Prenatal vitamins
Dietary supplements marketed for hair, skin and nails that contain biotin at levels hundreds of times greater than the recommended daily intake for most adults (0.03 mg or 30 mcg) are of particular concern due to the potential for interference with medical tests.
Biotin-based technology is used to process many lab tests. If biotin is present in the body at an exaggerated level when testing occurs, the results can be inaccurate and lead to misdiagnosis. Reports of such interference have caused the US Food & Drug Administration (FDA) to issue an advisory.
Here’s what you can do to prevent biotin lab test interference:
- Know what’s in the supplements you take and check the labels for biotin content.
- Speak with your doctor about any supplements you’re taking.
- Consult your doctor before adding supplements to your regimen.
- On the advice of your physician, discontinue or reduce biotin use for a specified time period before lab tests.
- If you had lab tests while taking a product with high biotin content and you’re concerned about the results, discuss the possibility of interference with your physician.