Health Library

S-Adenosylmethionine (SAMe)

Supplement Forms/Alternate Names

  • Ademetionine, S-adenosyl methionine, SAM

Introduction

S-adenosylmethionine (SAMe) is a compound made from two substances found in the body. The body uses it to make energy. SAMe has been used to ease pain in the joints and improve symptoms of depression. SAMe can be taken as a pill or powder. It can also be injected into the muscle or bloodstream by a healthcare provider.

Dosages

400 milligrams 3 to 4 times daily

What Research Shows

Likely Effective

  • Osteoarthritis —likely to ease pain and improve function of the hip and knee G1-G3

May Be Effective

Not Enough Data to Assess

Editorial process and description of evidence categories can be found at EBSCO NAT Editorial Process.

Editorial process and description of evidence categories can be found at EBSCO NAT Editorial Process.

Safety Notes

It is likely safe to take S-adenosylmethionine in small doses for a short time. Not enough studies have been done to say whether it is safe to take for a long period. It is also not known whether it is safe to take by women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Interactions

Talk to your doctor about any supplements or therapy you would like to use. Some can interfere with treatment or make conditions worse, such as:

  • People taking antidepressants should talk to their doctors before taking S-adenosylmethionine. It may interact with the medicine.

References

REFA
Cholestasis in Pregnancy

REFA1
Gurung V, Middleton P, et al. Interventions for treating cholestasis in pregnancy. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2013 Jun 24;(6):CD000493.

REFB
Chronic Liver Disease

REFB1
Guo T, Chang L, et al. S-adenosyl-L-methionine for the treatment of chronic liver disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis. PLoS One. 2015 Mar 16;10(3):e0122124.

REFC
Depression

REFC1
Williams AL, Girard C, et al. S-adenosylmethionine (SAMe) as treatment for depression: a systematic review. Clin Invest Med. 2005;28(3):132-139.

REFC2
Freeman MP, Mischoulon D, et al. Complementary and alternative medicine for major depressive disorder: a meta-analysis of patient characteristics, placebo-response rates, and treatment outcomes relative to standard antidepressants. J Clin Psychiatry. 2010 Jun;71(6):682-688.

REFC3
Turner P, Kantaria R, et al. A systematic review and meta-analysis of the evidence base for add-on treatment for patients with major depressive disorder who have not responded to antidepressant treatment: a European perspective. J Psychopharmacol. 2014 Feb;28(2):85-98.

REFC4
Galizia I, Oldani L, et al. S-adenosyl methionine (SAMe) for depression in adults. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2016;10:CD011286.

REFC5
Sarris J, Murphy J, et al. Adjunctive Nutraceuticals for Depression: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analyses. Am J Psychiatry. 2016 Jun 1;173(6):575-587.

REFC6
Schefft C, Kilarski LL, et al. Efficacy of adding nutritional supplements in unipolar depression: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Eur Neuropsychopharmacol. 2017 Nov;27(11):1090-1109.

REFD
Fibromyalgia

REFD1
De Silva V, El-Metwally A, et al. Evidence for the efficacy of complementary and alternative medicines in the management of fibromyalgia: a systematic review. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2010 Jun;49(6):1063-1068.

REFE
Mood and Anxiety Disorders

REFE1
Ravindran AV, da Silva TL. Complementary and alternative therapies as add-on to pharmacotherapy for mood and anxiety disorders: a systematic review. J Affect Disord. 2013 Sep 25;150(3):707-719.

REFF
Neuropsychiatric Disorders

REFF1
Sharma A, Gerbarg P, et al. S-Adenosylmethionine (SAMe) for Neuropsychiatric Disorders: A Clinician-Oriented Review of Research. J Clin Psychiatry. 2017 Jun;78(6):e656-e667.

REFG
Osteoarthritis

REFG1
Soeken KL, Lee WL, et al. Safety and efficacy of S-adenosylmethionine (SAMe) for osteoarthritis. J Fam Pract. 2002 May;51(5):425-430.

REFG2
Rutjes AW, Nüesch E, et al. S-Adenosylmethionine for osteoarthritis of the knee or hip. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2009;(4):CD007321.

REFG3
De Silva V, El-Metwally A, et al. Evidence for the efficacy of complementary and alternative medicines in the management of osteoarthritis: a systematic review. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2011 May;50(5):911-920.

REFH
Smoking Cessation

REFH1
Hughes JR, Stead LF, et al. Antidepressants for smoking cessation. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2014 Jan 8;(1):CD000031.

  • EBSCO NAT Review Board
  • 202206