HEALTH FEATURE ARCHIVE

Kava Kava Knocked By FDA

Kava kava has been much advertised as a sedative, muscle relaxant and diuretic and, in recent years, has become very popular. It is sold without a prescription. Some while ago MedicineNet carried a couple of stories about the dangers of kava kava. One story was titled Kava Kava - Herb Hurts Liver. The other was called Rhubarb - Over Kava Kava Alert.

To my mind, medicinal herbs such as kava kava should be regulated by the FDA just like prescription drugs in the US. It is impossible for anyone to remember all the different health warnings about different herbs. Why not have the FDA protect us from adverse herb effects?

Frederick Hecht, MD, FAAP
Associate Chief Medical Editor, MedicineNet.com


KAVA-CONTAINING DIETARY SUPPLEMENTS MAY BE ASSOCIATED WITH SEVERE LIVER INJURY

March 27, 2002 - The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is advising consumers of the potential risk of severe liver injury associated with the use of kava-containing dietary supplements. Kava (Piper methysticum) is a plant indigenous to the islands in the South Pacific where it is commonly used to prepare a traditional beverage. Supplements containing the herbal ingredient kava are promoted for relaxation (e.g., to relieve stress, anxiety, and tension), sleeplessness, menopausal symptoms and other uses. FDA has not made a determination about the ability of kava dietary supplements to provide such benefits.


Health Solutions From Our Sponsors