ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Climate Change Could Sting Allergy, Asthma Sufferers
Traffic, Dust Linked to Asthma in Kids
'Safe' Ozone Levels May Not Be for Some
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Acupuncture May Help Restore Lost Sense of Smell
Soybean Chemicals May Reduce Effects of Menopause
Acupuncture Eases Breast Cancer Treatment Side Effects
ANIMAL CARE
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Beware of Dog Bites
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
BONES & JOINTS
Using a Balloon to Repair a Broken Back
Exercise Key Player in Knee Replacement Recovery
Many Americans Fall Short on Their Vitamin D
CANCER
Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors
Vitamin D Good for Breast Cancer Patients
Omega-3 May Safely Treat Precancerous Bowel Polyps
CAREGIVING
Many Alzheimer's Caregivers Admit to Abusive Behavior
Memory Loss Help from Brain Supplement Prevagen
Many Hospital Patients Can't ID Their Doctors
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Varicose Veins May Mask Larger Problem
Potassium-Rich Foods May Cut Stroke, Heart Disease Risk
Smog Tougher on the Obese
COSMETIC
Science May Banish Bad Hair Days
New Genetic Links to Baldness Discovered
Gum Chewing May Cut Craving for Snacks
DENTAL, ORAL
Amino Acid May Be Key to Strong Teeth
Scientists Find Gene for Tooth Enamel
Good Oral Hygiene May Protect Against Heart Infections
DIABETES
Older Diabetics With Depression Face Higher Death Rate
24 Million Americans Had Diabetes in 2007
Abnormal Heart Rhythm Boosts Death Risk for Diabetics
DIET, NUTRITION
Weight Loss Might Not Curb Knee Arthritis
Antioxidants Abound in Cereals, Popcorn, Whole-Grain Snacks
'Soda Tax' Wins Health Experts' Support
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Global Warming Linked to Heightened Kidney Stone Risk
Warmer-Than-Average Temperatures Raise Migraine Risk
Vitamin D Deficit May Trigger MS Risk Gene
EYE CARE, VISION
Retinal Gene Is Linked to Childhood Blindness
Music Can Help Restore Stroke Patients' Sight
Poor Night Vision May Predict Age-Related Eye Disease
FITNESS
Mom and Baby Alike May Benefit From Exercise
Have Fun This Summer, But DO Be Careful
When It Comes to Lifting, the Pros Have Your Back
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
HRT Use Raises Risk of Stomach Trouble
Gum Chewing May Speed Colon Surgery Recovery
Intestinal Bacteria Trigger Immune Response
GENERAL HEALTH
Internet Program Helps Problem Drinkers
Autumn Chores Often Hazardous
Keep Fire Safety in Mind as You Celebrate
HEAD & NECK
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
Airport Full Body Scanners Pose No Health Threat: Experts
Using Light Therapy to Silence Harmful Brain Activity
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Small Cuts in Salt Intake Spur Big Drops in Heart Trouble
Cherry-Enriched Diet Cut Heart Risks in Rats
Man's Best Friend Helps Mend Broken Hearts
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Older Adults May Have Some Immunity to Swine Flu
Swine Flu Now Reported in All 50 States
Chinese 'Devil Dung' Plant Could Be a Swine Flu Fighter
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Obese Children More Likely to Suffer Lower Body Injuries
Even Young Kids Can Learn CPR
Coconut Oil May Help Fight Childhood Pneumonia
MEN'S HEALTH
Vigorous Exercise Cuts Stroke Risk for Men, Not Women
Whole Grains, Bran May Fight Hypertension in Men
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
MENTAL HEALTH
The 3LS Wellness Program for Reversing Chronic Symptoms and Creating Lasting Health
Living Alone Increases Odds of Developing Dementia
Consciousness Helps the Mind and Body Work Together
PAIN
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Heart Defects in Newborns Linked to Antidepressants
Mom's Extra Pregnancy Pounds May Raise Child's Heart Risks
Exercise Boosts Bone Density in Breast-Feeding Moms
SENIORS
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
High-Impact Activity May Be Good for Old Bones
Older Adults May Have Some Immunity to Swine Flu
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Daylight Savings: Not a Bright Time for All
Sleeping Could Help Women Lose The Baby Fat
Meditation May Help Put Primary Insomnia to Bed
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Iodine in Prenatal Vitamins Varies Widely
Prenatal Stress May Boost Baby's Asthma Risk
Flame-Retardant Chemical Linked to Conception Problems
Add your Article

Licorice May Block Absorption of Organ Transplant Drug

TUESDAY, March 24 (HealthDay News) -- People taking the immunosuppressant cyclosporine should avoid consuming licorice because it may weaken the drug's effectiveness and possibly lead to deadly consequences, new research suggests.

Chemists in Taiwan report that lab rats taking cyclosporine -- commonly used to help prevent organ rejection in transplant patients -- who were feed licorice or its main active ingredient, glycyrrhizin, did not absorb the medication well. For a transplant patient on cyclosporine, lowered levels of the medication could lead to rejection of the new organ, followed by illness and even death, said the researchers, who were to present their findings Tuesday at the American Chemical Society's annual meeting in Salt Lake City.

"I would suggest that transplant patients avoid taking licorice," researcher Pei-Dawn Lee Chao, a chemist at China Medical University in Taichung, Taiwan, said in an American Chemical Society news release.

The researchers, who are trying to determine why licorice interfered with the drug's absorption, said they didn't know how much licorice might cause a toxic reaction in humans.

Cyclosporine is also used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile myositis and various skin conditions, and it is known to interact poorly with some medicines, foods and herbs. St. John's wort, onions and ginger, for example, can also lower cyclosporine levels in the blood, while grapefruit juice can sending cyclosporine levels soaring.

Licorice has been reported to possibly interfere with high blood pressure medications, aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs, insulin and oral contraceptives. The herb has been popular in folk medicine for centuries and is used by some combat stomach ulcers, bronchitis and sore throat. Because of its sweetness, glycyrrhizin is sometimes used in candy, teas and other foods.

More information

The U.S. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine has more about licorice.



-- Kevin McKeever



SOURCE: American Chemical Society, news release, March 24, 2009

Last Updated: March 24, 2009

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