Element of caution: a case of reversible cytopenias associated with excessive zinc supplementation

CMAJ. 2003 Jul 22;169(2):129-31.


Zinc is a common supplement and is widely available as a standard component of many over-the-counter products. A number of reports have identified an association between excessive zinc intake and severe cytopenia. We report a case of zinc-induced copper deficiency in a young adult to illustrate this under-recognized cause of anemia and neutropenia.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anemia, Sideroblastic / chemically induced*
  • Dietary Supplements / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Neutropenia / chemically induced*
  • Nonprescription Drugs
  • Pantothenate Kinase-Associated Neurodegeneration / drug therapy
  • Zinc / adverse effects*


  • Nonprescription Drugs
  • Zinc