Vitamin A hepatotoxicity: a cautionary note regarding 25,000 IU supplements

Am J Med. 1994 Dec;97(6):523-8. doi: 10.1016/0002-9343(94)90347-6.


Vitamin A hepatotoxicity has been reported at doses exceeding 50,000 IU/day. At 25,000 IU vitamin A per day, although elevated liver enzymes may be seen, hepatotoxicity is rare. We report a case of severe hepatotoxicity associated with the habitual daily ingestion of 25,000 IU of vitamin A bought as an over-the-counter dietary supplement. With the general availability of high-dose supplements and recent literature emphasizing the importance of vitamin A adequacy, the potential for vitamin A hepatotoxicity may increase. Health professionals should remain aware of the potential for vitamin A hepatotoxicity and elicit a vitamin A history in all patients being evaluated for liver dysfunction.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Fatal Outcome
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Liver Failure / chemically induced*
  • Middle Aged
  • Vitamin A / administration & dosage
  • Vitamin A / adverse effects*


  • Vitamin A