13:07 03 December 2012
Patients who are taking prescription drugs must check if the medications they’re taking goes well with grapefruit before they consume both at the same time. According to a study conducted by researchers from Lawson Health Research Institute, taking certain prescription drugs together with grapefruit poses a potentially lethal health risk.
Grapefruit contains chemicals that can make certain drugs more potent. This can result in overdoses, especially for older people. Adverse effects can include respiratory failure, acute kidney failure, internal bleeding and sudden death the research has found.
The study also revealed that the number of prescription drugs that do not mix well with grapefruit have increased from 17 in 2008 to 43 in 2012.
Dr David Baily from Lawson Health Research Institute in London and his collegues found the result “disturbing.”
“Unless healthcare professionals are aware of the possibility that the adverse event they are seeing might have an origin in the recent addition of grapefruit to the patient's diet, it is very unlikely that they will investigate it,” they wrote.
“In addition, the patient may not volunteer this information. Thus, we contend that there remains a lack of knowledge about this interaction in the general healthcare community.”
Aside from grapefruit, other citrus fruits that may cause the same reaction are thought to include Seville oranges and limes.
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