Do You Know How to Assess Risks Posed by Over-the-Counter Vitamin A Supplements?

Dina H. Zamil, Emily K. Burns, Ariadna Perez-Sanchez, Rajani Katta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Dietary supplements are regulated as foods by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and, despite their potentially harmful effects, are not subject to labeling rules that apply to prescription medications. This commentary responds to a case about vitamin A supplement safety. The commentary compares regulation of vitamin A-derivative prescription medications, such as isotretinoin, to regulation of high-dose vitamin A supplements, illuminating both products' potential for causing birth defects. Label analysis is key to educating patients about risks of vitamin A-containing supplements. The commentary also suggests the need for more FDA oversight of the dietary supplement industry.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E376-E381
JournalAMA Journal of Ethics
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Issues, ethics and legal aspects
  • Health(social science)
  • Health Policy


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