licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra, Alcacuz, Sweet Root, Gan Zao, and many others) (cont.)

Pharmacy Author:
Medical and Pharmacy Editor:

DOSING:

  • Upset stomach: A combination product containing licorice is used as 1 ml by mouth three times daily.
  • Ulcer: Take 760-1520 mg by mouth with meals for 8 to 16 weeks.
  • Cough: Take 0.5 to 1 gram of powdered root one to three times a day.
  • Root: Take 1 to 4 gram by mouth three times a day.
  • Tea: Prepare tea with 1 to 4 gram of root per 150 ml water; drink 1 cup up to three times a day.

DRUG INTERACTIONS: Licorice should not be used with warfarin (Coumadin) because it can accelerate the breakdown of warfarin and decrease the effectiveness, leading to increased risk of clotting.

Licorice should be used with caution with digoxin (Lanoxin) because licorice can lower potassium levels in the body and low potassium can lead to increased digoxin side effects like dizziness, headache, nausea, diarrhea, irregular heart rate and rhythm, and visual disturbances.

Licorice should be used with caution in women taking birth controls pills or other hormonal medications. Licorice may change hormone levels in the body and decrease effectiveness of estrogen containing medications like conjugated estrogens (Premarin), ethinyl estradiol, and estradiol (Estrace).

Licorice should be used with caution with blood pressure medications because large amounts of licorice can increase blood pressure and decrease the effectiveness of blood pressure medications.

PREGNANCY: Licorice is not safe for pregnant women because it may cause miscarriage or early delivery; therefore, licorice should not be used in pregnant women.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/15/2014


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