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Benzodiazepines - Interactions and Warnings

Four lactones in kava kava have been found to have significant analgesic and anesthetic effects via non-opiate pathways. Studies have been conflicting regarding its GABA-receptor-binding capacity, although this has been found to occur in some studies. In vitro kava has been found to block norepinephrine uptake. It has also been know to potentiate other medications such as barbiturates and Xanax.
- Altern Med Rev 1998 Dec;3(6):458-60 -- Piper methysticum (kava kava).

Other herbs and supplements may interact with Benzodiazepines. If you are currently taking a prescription medication for anxiety or insomnia, use extreme caution when taking herbs that have a sedative effect. Consult with your physician before using herbs along with the Benzodiazepine family of drugs.

Serious consequences can result from combining kava kava with Benzondiazepines such as coma.
- Coma from the health food stores: Interaction between kava and alprazolam. -- Almeida JC and Grimsley EW. -- Ann Intern Med 125(11): 940-941, 1996.

Cimetidine is known to interfere with other drugs through hepatic metabolism, the concentration of co-committant drugs such as warfarin, benzodiazepine tend to be elevated. Cimetidine should be replaced by the other H2RAs which have no such effects.
- Nippon Rinsho 2002 Aug;60(8):1613-7 -- What is important in treating elderly with H2 receptor antagonists -- Kurosawa S.

last update: November 2008

This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. You should not use this material to diagnose or treat a health condition or disease without consulting with your healthcare provider.
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