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Can you take Vitex with other herbs?

Catherine McDiarmid-Watt | Sunday, June 10, 2007 | 0 comments

QUESTION: Do you know if you can take Vitex with other herbs?

ANSWER: I don't think that it's a problem with other herbs, but not to be mixed with the Pill or hormones it seems. Here's what I found...

Side Effects
Has few side effects- 1-2% of patients in studies.
Main side effects are nausea, increased menstrual flow, diarrhea, acne, skin rash
Pregnancy - if used for infertility treatment, discontinue use as soon as pregnancy is confirmed

Interactions with medications
Do not use with dopamine-receptor antagonist medications like haloperidol
Do not use with oral contraceptives

Cautions, Contraindications and Side Effects

* Side effects of using vitex are rare. Minor gastrointestinal upset and a mild skin rash with itching have been reported in less than 2% of the women monitored while taking vitex.
* Vitex is not recommended for use during pregnancy or breastfeeding and should not be used at the same time as hormone therapy (eg. HRT, Oral Contraceptive Pill)

Author Cheryl Du Mee reviews reports of contraindications and dosage. She suggests that vitex is not appropriate for children, postmenopausal women, or when hormones are being prescribed for birth control or estrogen replacement. The only side effects she reports are possible increase in menstrual flow volume, and rare but dose-dependent persistent headache.

Internal vitex administration should not be recommended if a patient is pregnant or undergoing in vitro fertilization.

Potential drug interactions include progesterone drugs, oral contraceptive pills, or hormone replacement therapy.

In animal studies, very large amounts of vitex (nearly 20 times the therapeutic dose) inhibits all aspects of anterior pituitary function; resulting in decreased pituitary, adrenal, and uterine function.

Adverse effects that have been reported in large scale trials include rare occurrences of formication, abnormal menstrual cycle changes, itching, urticaria, gastrointestinal and lower abdominal complaints, and short term headaches.

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About Catherine: I am mom to three grown sons, two grandchildren and two rescue dogs. After years of raising my boys as a single mom, I remarried a wonderful man who had never had a child of his own. Unexpectedly, I found myself pregnant at 49!
Sadly we lost that precious baby at 8 weeks, and decided to try again. Five more losses, turned down for donor egg, foster care and adoption due to my age and losses - we have accepted that there will be no more babies in our house.

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