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Home Industry News Herbal remedies ‘may interfere with heart medicines’

Herbal remedies ‘may interfere with heart medicines’

2nd February 2010

Health experts have warned of the danger of taking some herbal remedies, claiming they could interfere with prescribed heart disease medication.

The report published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology warns natural remedies such as ginseng may cause potentially serious problems.

Researchers said that while there was no risk from taking the medication on its own, taken with the herbal remedies they could become dangerous.

Supplements such as St John’s wort, ginkgo biloba and garlic – when combined with some prescribed medicines – could have “devastating effects” in vulnerable patients, the doctors wrote.

Arshad Jahangir, professor of medicine at the Mayo Clinic Arizona, said: “Many people have a false sense of security about these herbal products because they are seen as natural. But natural doesn’t always mean they are safe.

“These products are not by themselves dangerous. But when taken with medications for cardiovascular diseases, a relatively safe compound can become dangerous.”

The authors of the new report said it was vital health professionals asked their patients if they were taking any other medicine and that patients must tell their doctor when they start taking herbal supplements.

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