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Old 06-01-2011, 12:30 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Copper Deficiency?

Is copper deficiency truly an ALS mimic? For the past six months I have had mutiple symptoms. Heavy, weak legs with fasciculations and assymetric muscle changes have been at the top of the list. The only test that has come back abnormal is my copper syrem @45. Has anyone here heard of symptoms being resolved with copper supplementation? All I've been able to find is three cases connected to denture cream zinc/copper poisoning. I don't wear dentures and wonder if others here have ever heard of significant cases of symptoms being resolved with copper supplementing. Thanks!

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Old 06-01-2011, 01:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Copper Deficiency?

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Originally Posted by curtrill View Post
Has anyone here heard of symptoms being resolved with copper supplementation? All I've been able to find is three cases connected to denture cream zinc/copper poisoning. I don't wear dentures and wonder if others here have ever heard of significant cases of symptoms being resolved with copper supplementing. Thanks!
You need to look in the right places.

copper deficiency neurological symptoms - Google Scholar

Apparently, it is something to keep in mind if a patient doesn't eat a good balanced diet -- extreme weight loss diets, bariatric surgery (gastric bypass), certain types of vegetarian diets, etc. -- because it can cause both muscle and nerve problems that can mimic early ALS.

And, yes, my ALS clinic did test me for copper levels when I first started there. Too much copper can also cause neurological problems that mimic some ALS symptoms, so be careful and not take copper supplements without the advice of your doctor.
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Old 06-09-2011, 02:11 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Copper Deficiency?

Hi - I have pyroluria - so I'm familiar with copper issues. I just wanted to tell you that you need to get your RBC copper levels tested. You mentioned serum test levels and this is not the same as the copper that actually gets into the cell. Also, your copper (even for serum) seems very low - have you researched biounavailable copper? This is when you have too much copper stored in your body - which basically makes copper completely unavailable to your body for use. So you're copper toxic and copper deficient at the same time. You may want to get your RBC Zinc levels tested as well. If you have low zinc that could explain why you would have accumulated the copper.

When my copper gets low I get heaviness in my legs, I lose my appetite, and I get shortness of breath. I hope this helps.
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Old 06-11-2011, 12:52 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Copper Deficiency?

Thanks for your replies!

Anyone heard of fasciculations assoiciated with copper deficiency?

I have been supplementing 2mg. twice daily as directed by my neuro for about 2-3 weeks. I haven't noticed much improvement yet.

Legs continue to be tight, heavy and weak with fasciculations. Subjective weakness continues in my hands, neck and arms. Overall fatigue. Some assymetric loss of soft tissue in multiple locations on dominate side. Muscles are flaccid in arms and legs (especially calves). However, I have been able to increase "strength" in my calves by the number of calve raises I can do but muscle "tone" has not improved. I have a widened tongue groove (white/furry tongue also). Tongue gets fatigued at the base when eating. Throat hurts and swallowing is not smooth but rather "noisy".

Wow! Can copper defiency truly cause all of this?

It's my understanding that the Neuros are done with tests for mimics as covered in my original post (MRI'S, CT's etc.) AND bazillion / gazillion ( to borrow some quantitative terms from Wright ) vials of bloodwork .

Two clean emg's. One partial by a general neuro. One more detailed at an ALS Clinic.

All of this in about six months!

Any additional feedback on all of this would be appreciated!
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