Main Article Content


Vitamin B12 deficiency or cyanocobalamin is a common condition in the elderly. It is repeatedly overlooked due to multiple clinical manifestations that can affect the blood, neurological, gastrointestinal, and cardiovascular systems, skin and mucous membranes. The various presentations of vitamin B12 deficiency are related to the development of geriatric syndromes like frailty, falls, cognitive impairment, and geriatric nutritional syndromes like protein-energy malnutrition and failure to thrive, in addition to enhancing aging anorexia and cachexia. Therefore, interventions must be developed to include their screening and diagnosis to make early and appropriate treatment to prevent its complications before they become irreversible.

1. Dali-Youcef N, Andrès E. An update on cobalamin deficiency in adults. QJM. 2009; 102: 17-28.

2. Ocampo JM. Los grandes síndromes de la geriatría. En: López JH (ed). Semiología geriátrica: anamnesis y examen físico del anciano. Bogotá: Editorial Médica CELSUS; 2010. p. 327-48.

3. Andrès E, Vogel T, Federici L, Zimmer J, Kaltenbach G. Update on oral cyanocobalamin (vitamin B12) treatment in elderly patients. Drugs Aging. 2008; 25: 927-32.

4. Dharmarajan TS, Adiga GU, Norkus EP. Vitamin B12 deficiency. Recognizing subtle symptoms in older adults. Geriatrics. 2003; 58: 37-8.

5. Stover PJ. Vitamin B12 and older adults. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2010; 13: 24-7.

6. Wolters M, Ströhle A, Hahn A. Cobalamin: a critical vitamin in the elderly. Prev Med. 2004; 39: 1256-66.

7. Andrès E, Vidal-Alaball J, Federici L, Loukili NH, Zimmer J, Kaltenbach G. Clinical aspects of cobalamin deficiency in elderly patients. Epidemiology, causes, clinical manifestations, and treatment with special focus on oral cobalamin therapy. Eur J Intern Med. 2007; 18: 456-62.

8. Reynolds E. Vitamin B12, folic acid, and the nervous system. Lancet Neurol. 2006; 5: 949-60.

Ocampo, J. M. (2024). Vitamin B12 deficit and development of geriatric syndromes. Colombia Medica, 44(1), 42–45.


Download data is not yet available.
Received 2011-07-02
Accepted 2011-09-09
Published 2024-06-26