Web Site Gives Info on Grapefruit/Drug Interactions

Experts note that intake of this fruit won't affect most medications

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SUNDAY, April 17, 2005 (HealthDay News) -- As documented in a number of studies released since the 1980s, grapefruit and grapefruit juice can dangerously interact with common prescription medications. Now, cautionary information about grapefruit-drug interactions is available on a Web site, DrugInteractionCenter.org.

The site provides consumers and health professionals with a comprehensive database of grapefruit-drug interactions. It also includes supporting scientific literature on such interactions.

A 2002 survey found that 80 percent of doctors and more than 50 percent of pharmacists lacked adequate information about how grapefruit juice can affect certain drugs. Grapefruit juice is one of the most common sources of food-drug interactions.

"Since there is a lot of inaccurate and out-of-date information on Web sites, we developed DrugInteractionCenter.org to provide healthcare professionals with a credible source on grapefruit-drug interactions, which they also can recommend to interested patients," Hartmut Derendorf, co-director of the University of Florida's (UF) Center for Food-Drug Interaction Research and Education, said in a prepared statement.

"Drug interactions with grapefruit are one of the most commonly misunderstood food-drug interactions. While certain prescription drugs interact with grapefruit juice, most do not," said Derendorf, a professor at UF's College of Pharmacy.

Grapefruit juice inhibits the CYP3A4 enzyme, which metabolizes certain drugs. This interference by grapefruit juice may enhance the body's absorption of these drugs, resulting in side effects.

More information

Here's where you can find DrugInteractionCenter.org.

SOURCE: University of Florida, news release, April 2005

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