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What causes elevated B13 levels?

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Quick Answer

Doctors refer to heightened levels of orotic acid, formerly called vitamin B13, as orotic aciduria, and the condition has a variety of causes, according to Mayo Medical Laboratories. Some causes of orotic aciduria include Reye's syndrome, a condition that causes swelling in the liver and brain, and hereditary orotic aciduria, explains Biochemistry For Medics.

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Hereditary orotic aciduria usually appears in the first year of life and causes growth failure and developmental retardation, explains Biochemistry For Medics. People with this condition are deficient in specific enzymes that convert orotic acid. Doctors treat the disorder with Uridine, which inhibits orotic acid production.

Reye's syndrome is a rare condition that most often affects children and teenagers recovering from a virus such as the flu and chickenpox, according to the Mayo Clinic. Early signs and symptoms include diarrhea and rapid breathing for children under 2 and persistent vomiting or unusual sleepiness in older children. If not detected early enough, people with this condition can develop life-threatening symptoms such as confusion, seizures and loss of consciousness, which require emergency care.

Some causes of Reye's syndrome include aspirin use in children with a fatty acid oxidation disorder and exposure to toxins, notes the Mayo Clinic. Treatment for the disorder includes methods such as intravenous fluids, diuretics, medications that prevent bleeding and the use of breathing machines.

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