Description and Brand Names
US Brand Name
Biotin supplements are used to prevent or treat biotin deficiency.
Vitamins are compounds that you must have for growth and health. They are needed in only small amounts and are usually available in the foods that you eat. Biotin is necessary for formation of fatty acids and glucose, which are used as fuels by the body. It is also important for the metabolism of amino acids and carbohydrates.
A lack of biotin is rare. However, if it occurs it may lead to skin rash, loss of hair, high blood levels of cholesterol, and heart problems.
Some conditions may increase your need for biotin. These include:
Genetic disorder of biotin deficiency
Seborrheic dermatitis in infants
Surgical removal of the stomach
Increased need for biotin should be determined by your health care professional.
Claims that biotin supplements are effective in the treatment of acne, eczema (a type of skin disorder), or hair loss have not been proven.
Biotin supplements are available without a prescription.
Importance of Diet
For good health, it is important that you eat a balanced and varied diet. Follow carefully any diet program your health care professional may recommend. For your specific vitamin and/or mineral needs, ask your health care professional for a list of appropriate foods. If you think that you are not getting enough vitamins and/or minerals in your diet, you may choose to take a dietary supplement.
Biotin is found in various foods, including liver, cauliflower, salmon, carrots, bananas, soy flour, cereals, and yeast. Biotin content of food is reduced by cooking and preserving.
Vitamins alone will not take the place of a good diet and will not provide energy. Your body needs other substances found in food, such as protein, minerals, carbohydrates, and fat. Vitamins themselves cannot work without the presence of other foods.
The daily amount of biotin needed is defined in several different ways.
Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDAs) are the amount of vitamins and minerals needed to provide for adequate nutrition in most healthy persons. RDAs for a given nutrient may vary depending on a person's age, sex, and physical condition (e.g., pregnancy).
Daily Values (DVs) are used on food and dietary supplement labels to indicate the percent of the recommended daily amount of each nutrient that a serving provides. DVs replace the previous designation of United States Recommended Daily Allowances (USRDAs).
Recommended Nutrient Intakes (RNIs) are used to determine the amounts of vitamins, minerals, and protein needed to provide adequate nutrition and lessen the risk of chronic disease.
Because lack of biotin is rare, there is no RDA or RNI for it. Normal daily recommended intakes for biotin are generally defined as follows:
Infants and children—
Birth to 3 years of age: 10 to 20 micrograms (mcg).
4 to 6 years of age: 25 mcg.
7 to 10 years of age: 30 mcg.
Adolescents and adults—
This product is available in the following dosage forms:
If you are taking this dietary supplement without a prescription, carefully read and follow any precautions on the label. For this supplement, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
Problems in children have not been reported with intake of normal daily recommended amounts.
Problems in older adults have not been reported with intake of normal daily recommended amounts.
Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. Tell your healthcare professional if you are taking any other prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicine.
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.
The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.
The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.
For oral dosage form (capsules or tablets):
To prevent deficiency, the amount taken by mouth is based on normal daily recommended intakes:
Adults and teenagers—30 to 100 micrograms (mcg) per day.
Children 7 to 10 years of age—30 mcg per day.
Children 4 to 6 years of age—25 mcg per day.
Children birth to 3 years of age—10 to 20 mcg per day.
To treat deficiency:
Adults, teenagers, and children—Treatment dose is determined by prescriber for each individual based on severity of deficiency.
If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.
If you miss taking biotin supplements for one or more days there is no cause for concern, since it takes some time for your body to become seriously low in biotin. However, if your health care professional has recommended that you take biotin, try to remember to take it as directed every day.
Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Do not refrigerate. Keep from freezing.
Store the dietary supplement in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
No side effects have been reported for biotin in amounts up to 10 milligrams a day. However, check with your health care professional if you notice any unusual effects while you are taking it.