Saturday, July 31, 2004

Ginseng 'hampers blood clot drug'

The herbal remedy ginseng interferes with the action of a drug often given to heart patients, warn US scientists.

The University of Chicago team found ginseng reduced the blood level and anti-clotting effect of warfarin, which they say makes this combination unsafe.

The UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Authority said it would investigate the concerns.

The report on 20 patients, after a four-week trial, appears in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
Warfarin works to reduce the risk of blood clots.

It is prescribed for people who have a higher than normal risk of blood clots, such as people with abnormal heart rhythms or an artificial heart valve.

Too much warfarin can increase the risk of bleeding. On the other hand, too little will not be effective at preventing clotting.

For this reason, it is important that the level of warfarin is tightly controlled and monitored.

Source BBC News


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