Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Risks of mixing drugs and herbal supplements: What doctors and patients need to know

Date:
May 1, 2012
Source:
Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., Publishers
Summary:
Herbal, dietary, and energy or nutritional supplements may offer specific health benefits, but they can also have harmful and even life-threatening effects when combined with commonly used medications. Clinicians need to be aware of and educate their patients about the potential risks of mixing supplements and therapeutic agents, since their interaction can diminish or increase drug levels.

Herbal, dietary, and energy or nutritional supplements may offer specific health benefits, but they can also have harmful and even life-threatening effects when combined with commonly used medications. Clinicians need to be aware of and educate their patients about the potential risks of mixing supplements and therapeutic agents, since their interaction can diminish or increase drug levels. This timely topic is explored in a provocative article in Alternative and Complementary Therapies, published by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.

The article is available free on the Alternative and Complementary Therapies.

“‘Natural’ does not equal ‘safe,’” and the effects and interactions of herbal or dietary supplements and functional foods such as energy drinks or nutritional bars can be difficult to predict, says Catherine Ulbricht, PharmD, co-founder of Natural Standard Research Collaboration and Senior Attending Pharmacist at Massachusetts General Hospital (Boston, MA). “If something has a therapeutic action in a human body, this substance can also cause a reaction or an interaction.”

The risk for interactions is greatest in younger and older people and in individuals with multiple health conditions or who take multiple medications, explains Dr. Ulbricht in the article “What Every Clinician Should Know About Herb–Supplement–Drug Interactions.” She describes in detail some of the most common side effects that result from interactions between herbal supplements and therapeutic drugs, and provides guidance to clinicians on how to decrease the risk of harmful interactions in their patients and what resources are available for obtaining accurate information and reporting patient reactions.

Common examples include an increased risk of significant bleeding associated with garlic, ginkgo, ginger, and saw palmetto supplements; decreased blood sugar as a result of chromium, cinnamon, whey protein, and others; hormonal effects of dong quai, black cohosh, kudzu, and saw palmetto; and elevated blood pressure caused by bloodroot, green tea, hawthorn, and matι.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., Publishers. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Catherine Ulbricht. What Every Clinician Should Know About Herb–Supplement–Drug Interactions. Alternative and Complementary Therapies, 2012; 18 (2): 67 DOI: 10.1089/act.2012.18202

Cite This Page:

Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., Publishers. "Risks of mixing drugs and herbal supplements: What doctors and patients need to know." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 May 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120501134119.htm>.
Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., Publishers. (2012, May 1). Risks of mixing drugs and herbal supplements: What doctors and patients need to know. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 16, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120501134119.htm
Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., Publishers. "Risks of mixing drugs and herbal supplements: What doctors and patients need to know." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120501134119.htm (accessed September 16, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

EU Ministers and Experts Meet to Discuss Ebola Reponse

EU Ministers and Experts Meet to Discuss Ebola Reponse

AFP (Sep. 15, 2014) — The European Commission met on Monday to coordinate aid that the EU can offer to African countries affected by the Ebola outbreak. Duration: 00:58 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Despite The Risks, Antibiotics Still Overprescribed For Kids

Despite The Risks, Antibiotics Still Overprescribed For Kids

Newsy (Sep. 15, 2014) — A new study finds children are prescribed antibiotics twice as often as is necessary. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

AP (Sep. 15, 2014) — The FDA is considering whether to ban devices used by the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center in Canton, Massachusetts, the only place in the country known to use electrical skin shocks as aversive conditioning for aggressive patients. (Sept. 15) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Respiratory Virus Spreads To Northeast, Now In 21 States

Respiratory Virus Spreads To Northeast, Now In 21 States

Newsy (Sep. 14, 2014) — The respiratory virus Enterovirus D68, which targets children, has spread from the Midwest to 21 states. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins