Complementary medicines

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Handling questions about herbal medicines (or dietary supplements) and conventional medicines

12 October 2020UKMi Quality and Risk Management Group Increasingly, patients and healthcare professionals are faced with concerns about interactions between complementary and alternative medicines (CAM), and conventional…

Does horny goat weed have any clinically significant interactions?

3 May 2020Horny goat weed (Epimedium) is a herbal medicine that may comprise of mixtures of different related Epimedium species, which contain numerous and varied active constituents. …

Glucosamine – what are the adverse effects?

17 April 2020Summary Glucosamine supplements are widely used for relieving pain and symptoms associated with osteoarthritis. They appear to be well tolerated, with a reported frequency of…

Non-vitamin K antagonist oral anticoagulants (NOACs): Is it safe to take them with herbal medicines?

26 March 2020There is a lack of scientific evidence of the safety and efficacy of herbal medicines together with an under-reporting and underestimation of adverse effects. Interactions…

Cannabidiol oil – potential adverse effects

27 February 2020Self-administration of over-the-counter bought CBD is increasingly popular and doctors and pharmacists should be aware of its potential adverse effects. The Food Standards Agency (FSA)…

Chondroitin – what are its drug interactions?

23 January 2020There are two published case reports of increased INR in patients receiving warfarin who self-medicated with glucosamine-chondroitin supplements. INR was increased in a further three…

Considerations when addressing questions about potential for adverse effects and drug interactions with homeopathic remedies

16 January 2020The principles on which homeopathy is based are very different to conventional medical beliefs. Two theories central to homeopathy are like cures like and the…

Can riboflavin reduce the incidence of migraines in adults?

9 December 2019This updated Medicines Q&A evaluates the limited evidence available on the effectiveness of riboflavin for the prevention of migraine in adults. UK guidelines for the…

Glucosamine – what are its drug interactions?

14 October 2019This updated medicine Q&A considers the limited information available on potential drug interactions between glucosamine and conventional medicines. There are a number of reports describing enhanced anticoagulant…

Can patients on levothyroxine take sea kelp?

10 June 2019Summary The term kelp can refer to a variety of brown seaweeds. The iodine content in kelp products varies considerably, even between products of the…