[Severe vitamin B12 deficiency in infants breastfed by vegans]

Ugeskr Laeger. 2009 Oct 19;171(43):3099-101.
[Article in Danish]


Weight loss and reduction of motor skills resulted in paediatric evaluation of a 10-month-old girl and a 12-month-old boy. Both children suffered form anaemia and delayed development due to vitamin B12 deficiency caused by strict maternal vegan diet during pregnancy and nursing. Therapy with cyanocobalamin was instituted with remission of symptoms. Since infants risk irreversible neurologic damage following severe vitamin B12 deficiency, early diagnosis and treatment are mandatory. Vegan and vegetarian women should take vitamin B12 supplementation during the pregnancy and nursing period.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • English Abstract

MeSH terms

  • Breast Feeding*
  • Diet, Vegetarian / adverse effects*
  • Failure to Thrive / etiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Milk, Human
  • Mothers
  • Pregnancy
  • Risk Factors
  • Vitamin B 12 / administration & dosage
  • Vitamin B 12 Deficiency / drug therapy
  • Vitamin B 12 Deficiency / etiology*


  • Vitamin B 12