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Medical and Pharmacy Editor:

Brand Name: Amidinosarcosine, Creatine Citrate, Creatine Monohydrate, Creatine Phosphate, N-amidinosarcosine

Generic Name: creatine

Drug Class: Sports Medicine, Supplements

What Is Creatine and How Does It Work?

Phosphocreatine serves as phosphate donor to generate ATP from ADP. Creatine suggested uses for ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), chronic heart failure (CHF), exercise performance enhancement, gyrate atrophy (chorioretinal degeneration resulting in blindness (GA), McArdle disease, mitochondrial cytopathies (multisystem disorders which preferentially affect the muscle and nervous systems), muscle mass builder, muscular dystrophies, neuromuscular disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and Parkinson's disease.

Creatine is available under the following different brand names: amidinosarcosine, creatine citrate, creatine monohydrate, creatine phosphate, and N-amidinosarcosine.

Athletic performance: Creatine seems to enhance muscle performance during repeated bouts of brief, high-intensity exercise. Does not seem to improve performance in aerobic exercises, or provide benefit to older individuals or highly trained athletes.

Chronic heart failure: When creatine is taken orally, it improves exercise tolerance but does not affect the ejection fraction. IV creatinine improves cardiac function, including ejection fraction.

Gyrate atrophy: Creatine seems to slow visual deterioration.

McArdle's disease: Preliminary clinical evidence suggests that it can increase exercise capacity and decrease exercise-induced muscle pain.

Parkison's disease: Some evidence shows that it can decrease rate of disease progression in early stages.

Idiopathic inflammatory myopathies (disease of muscle tissue): more evidence is needed to determine effectiveness.

Possibly ineffective for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), rheumatoid arthritis, and schizophrenia.

Dosages of Creatine Should Be Given As Follows:

Exercise Performance Enhancement

  • Initial dose: 20 g by mouth each day for 5 days
  • Maintenance: 2-3 g by mouth each day

Chronic Heart Failure

  • 20 g by mouth daily for 5 to 10 days

Parkinson's Disease

  • 10 g by mouth each day

Gyrate Atrophy

  • 1.5 g by mouth daily

McArdle Disease

  • Initial: 150 mg/kg per day for 5 days, then 60 mg/kg per day by mouth

Muscular Dystrophies

  • 10 g by mouth daily

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS, Lou Gehrig's Disease)

  • 10 g by mouth per day for 12-16 months

Idiopathic Inflammatory Myopathies

  • 20 g per day for 8 days, then 3 g per day for 6 months.

Dosage Considerations

There are no dosage considerations for the use of creatine.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 4/14/2017

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