The following sections explain in detail the potentially negative interactions that can occur when saw palmetto is combined with any of the drugs listed above.
Combining saw palmetto with medications that increase the risk of bleeding (such as antiplatelet and anticoagulant medications) could, at least in theory, further increase the risk of bleeding, including dangerous internal bleeding.
Check with your healthcare provider before taking saw palmetto in combination with an anticoagulant or antiplatelet medication. Be sure to specifically discuss the possible bleeding risk. In many cases, your healthcare provider may recommend that it is okay to combine such medications, as long as you are careful to watch for any signs of easy bruising or bleeding.
Saw palmetto may have anti-estrogen effects and may, therefore, make hormonal contraceptives (such as birth control pills, patches, and rings) less effective. Do not take saw palmetto and oral contraceptives together.
Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)
Saw palmetto may have anti-estrogen effects and may, therefore, make hormone replacement therapy with estrogen less effective. Check with your healthcare provider before combining saw palmetto with hormone replacement therapy.
Final Thoughts on Saw Palmetto Drug Interactions
It is possible that not every drug interaction was discussed in this article. Therefore, you should talk with your pharmacist or healthcare provider about the saw palmetto drug interactions that may apply to you.
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: KristiMonson, PharmD;
List of references (click here):
Jellin JM, editor. Pharmacist's Letter/Prescriber's Letter Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Web site. Available at: http://naturaldatabase.com/. Accessed January 4, 2008.
National Center for Complimentary and Alternative Medicine. National Institutes of Health. Herbs at a glance: saw palmetto (May 2006). NCCAM Web site. http://nccam.nih.gov/health/palmetto/. Accessed January 4, 2008.
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