Iboga

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What other names is Iboga known by?

Bois Sacré, Eboka, Tabernanthe iboga.

What is Iboga?

Iboga is a shrub. It is used for ritual and ceremonial purposes in some African cultures. The root bark of the plant is also used as medicine. Ibogaine is a chemical in iboga which is illegal in the United States.

People take iboga for fever, influenza (the flu), swine flu, high blood pressure, drug abuse, HIV/AIDS, and nerve disorders. They also take it for preventing fatigue and drowsiness, for increasing sex drive, for fighting substance abuse and addictions, and as a general tonic.

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...

  • Drug abuse. Early evidence suggests that ibogaine, a chemical in iboga, can help increase abstinence and relieve withdrawal symptoms in people abusing drugs such as heroin, codeine, cocaine and other substances such as alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana. However the existing research is flawed and unreliable.
  • Addictions.
  • Fever.
  • Flu.
  • HIV/AIDS.
  • High blood pressure.
  • Nerve disorders.
  • Preventing fatigue and drowsiness.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of iboga for these uses.

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).

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How does Iboga work?

Iboga contains chemicals that can cause brain stimulation.

Are there safety concerns?

Ibogaine, a chemical in iboga, is POSSIBLY SAFE when taken by mouth in smaller doses and under a health care professionals supervision. Due to potentially dangerous side effects it should not be used without advice of a medical practitioner.

Ibogaine POSSIBLY UNSAFE when taken by mouth in large doses. Ibogaine might cause an irregular heartbeat, thinking disturbances, heart attack, and death.

Ibogaine can causeother side effects such as low blood pressure, slow heart rate, seizures, paralysis, difficulty breathing, anxiety, hallucinations and death.

There isn't enough information to know if iboga the shrub is safe to be used.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of iboga during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Are there any interactions with medications?



Paroxetine (Paxil)
Interaction Rating: Major Do not take this combination.

Iboga contains ibogaine. Ibogaine is changed and broken down by the liver. Paroxetine can slow the liver from breaking down ibogaine. This might increase the chance of side effects caused by ibogaine.



Drying medications (Anticholinergic drugs)
Interaction Rating: Moderate Be cautious with this combination.
Talk with your health provider.

Iboga contains chemicals that can affect the brain and heart. Some drying medications called anticholinergic drugs can also affect the brain and heart. But iboga works differently than drying medications. Iboga might decrease the effects of drying medications.

Some of these drying medications include atropine, scopolamine, and some medications used for allergies (antihistamines), and for depression (antidepressants).



Medications that can cause an irregular heartbeat (QT interval-prolonging drugs)
Interaction Rating: Moderate Be cautious with this combination.
Talk with your health provider.

Ibogaine, a chemical in iboga, can cause irregular heartbeat. Taking iboga along with medications that can cause an irregular heartbeat might cause serious side effects including heart attack and death.

Some medications that can cause an irregular heartbeat include amiodarone (Cordarone), disopyramide (Norpace), dofetilide (Tikosyn), ibutilide (Corvert), procainamide (Pronestyl), quinidine, sotalol (Betapace), thioridazine (Mellaril), and many others.



Medications that decrease breakdown of other medications by the liver (Cytochrome P450 2D6 (CYP2D6) inhibitors)
Interaction Rating: Moderate Be cautious with this combination.
Talk with your health provider.

Iboga contains ibogaine. Ibogaine is changed and broken down by the liver. Some drugs can slow the liver from breaking down ibogaine. This might increase the chance of side effects caused by ibogaine. Some of these medications include amiodarone (Cordarone), amitriptyline (Elavil), cinacalcet (Sensipar), bupropion (Wellbutrin), dronedarone (Multaq), duloxetine (Cymbalta), fluoxetine (Prozac), darifenacin (Enablex), paroxetine (Paxil), quinidine (Quinidex), ritonavir (Norvir), sertraline (Zoloft), terbinafine (Lamisil), and others.



Various medications used for glaucoma, Alzheimer's disease, and other conditions (Cholinergic drugs)
Interaction Rating: Moderate Be cautious with this combination.
Talk with your health provider.

Iboga contains chemicals that affect the body. This chemical is similar to some medications used for glaucoma, Alzheimer's disease, and other conditions. Taking iboga with these medications might increase the chance of side effects.

Some of these medications used for glaucoma, Alzheimer's disease, and other conditions include pilocarpine (Pilocar and others), donepezil (Aricept), tacrine (Cognex), and others.

Dosing considerations for Iboga.

The appropriate dose of iboga depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for iboga. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Reviewed on 3/29/2011 12:35:40 PM

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