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Because manganese plays a role in bone metabolism, it has been suggested as a treatment for osteoporosis , a condition in which bone mass deteriorates with age. However, we have no direct evidence that manganese is helpful, except perhaps in combination with other minerals. 1 One small but rigorous study suggests that making sure to get enough manganese may help control symptoms of dysmenorrhea (menstrual pain) . 2 Manganese has also been suggested for the treatment of muscle strains and sprains , rheumatoid arthritis , and tardive dyskinesia , 3 but there is no reliable evidence as yet to indicate that it actually helps.
People with epilepsy 4 or diabetes 5 have lower-than-normal levels of manganese in their blood. This suggests (but definitely doesn't prove) that manganese supplements might be useful for these conditions. Unfortunately, the studies that could prove or disprove this idea haven't been performed.
- Strause L, Saltman P, Smith KT, Bracker M, Andon MB. Spinal bone loss in postmenopausal women supplemented with calcium and trace minerals. J Nutr. 124(7):1060-4.
- Penland JG, Johnson PE. Dietary calcium and manganese effects on menstrual cycle symptoms. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 168(5):1417-23.
- Kunin RA. Manganese and niacin in the treatment of drug-induced tardive dyskinesias. In: Werbach MR. Nutritional Influences on Illness [book on CD-ROM]. 2nd ed. Tarzana, CA. 1996.
- Akram M, Sullivan C, Mack G, Buchanan N. What is the clinical significance of reduced manganese and zinc levels in treated epileptic patients? Med J Aust. 151(2):113.
- Kosenko LG. The content of some trace elements in the blood of patients suffering from diabetes mellitus. Klin Med (Mosk). 1964;42:113-116. In: Werbach MR. Nutritional Influences on Illness: A Sourcebook of Clinical Research [book on CD-ROM]. Tarzana, CA: Third Line Press; 1998.