Adjuvant role of vitamin B analogue (sulbutiamine) with anti-infective treatment in infection associated asthenia

J Assoc Physicians India. 2003 Sep:51:891-5.


Aims of the study: Asthenic symptoms such as weakness accompany illness. This study investigates whether the centrally acting cholinergic agent, vitamin B analogue (sulbutiamine), is effective and acceptable in relieving these symptoms in infectious disease when combined with specific anti-infective treatment.

Methodology: In a prospective uncontrolled, non-randomised, commercial, observational study, 1772 patients with an infectious disease and asthenic symptoms, drawn from the practice of 350 randomly selected physicians throughout India, received vitamin B analogue (sulbutiamine) in addition to specific anti-infective treatment for 15 days. The primary outcome variable was complete resolution of asthenic symptoms with treatment.

Results: The number (%, 95% confidence interval) of patients with complete resolution of all asthenic symptoms was 916 (51.7, 49.4-54). In the remaining patients, severe asthenia was reduced but persisted in 11 (0.6, 0-26); and moderate asthenia in 94 (5.3, 0-17.6). The response was greater in patients with acute infection and symptoms more related to cerebral function. Side effects occurred in 10 (0.6%), patients and well being improved significantly.

Conclusions: Vitamin B analogue (sulbutiamine) may be a useful adjunct to specific anti-infective treatment.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Asthenia / classification
  • Asthenia / drug therapy*
  • Asthenia / physiopathology
  • Confidence Intervals
  • Female
  • Humans
  • India
  • Male
  • Prospective Studies
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Thiamine / analogs & derivatives*
  • Thiamine / therapeutic use*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • sulbutiamine
  • Thiamine