- Side Effects
- Drug Interactions
- Pregnancy & Breastfeeding
- What Else to Know
Generic Name: quercetin
Drug Class: Herbals
What is quercetin, and what is it used for?
Quercetin is a plant-derived compound known as flavonoid, the pigment that gives many flowers, fruits and vegetables their colors. Quercetin is widely available over the counter as oral formulations and is commonly taken as an herbal supplement. Quercetin is believed to have many health benefits due to its anticarcinogenic, antiviral, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Quercetin is an antioxidant that scavenges free radicals and reduces tissue damage from oxidative stress, a major contributor to inflammation. Oxidative stress is caused by imbalance in the levels of free radicals and antioxidants that can neutralize them. Quercetin reduces inflammation by inhibiting the release of inflammatory substances such as histamine and cytokines. Quercetin also inhibits aldose reductase, an enzyme that plays a role in the breakdown of glucose.
The suggested uses of quercetin include:
- Asthma and allergies such as hay fever and hives
- Prevention of diabetic cataracts
- Viral infections
- Cardiovascular diseases including:
- Adjunctive therapy in cancer
- Chronic prostate inflammation (prostatitis)
- Chronic bladder inflammation (interstitial cystitis)
There is insufficient evidence, however, for the efficacy of quercetin and it is not approved by the FDA for therapeutic purposes.
Dietary sources of Quercetin include apples, onions, citrus fruits, tea, sage, parsley, dark berries, grapes, red wine, and olive oil.
What are the side effects of quercetin?
Common side effects of quercetin include:
- Abnormal skin sensations (paresthesia)
- Nausea and vomiting
- Shortness of breath (dyspnea)
- Toxicity to kidney (nephrotoxicity)
This is not a complete list of all side effects or adverse reactions that may occur from the use of this drug. Call your doctor for medical advice about serious side effects or adverse reactions. You may also report side effects or health problems to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What are the dosages of quercetin?
- 400-500 mg orally three times daily
- Prostatitis: 500 mg orally twice daily
- Cancer: 420-1400 mg/m2 intravenous (IV) bolus once/week
- There is insufficient evidence to recommend use in children
What drugs interact with quercetin?
Inform your doctor of all medications you are currently taking, who can advise you on any possible drug interactions. Never begin taking, suddenly discontinue, or change the dosage of any medication without your doctor’s recommendation.
- Quercetin has no known severe interactions with other drugs.
- Serious Interactions of quercetin include:
- Quercetin has moderate interactions with at least 60 different drugs.
- Mild interactions of quercetin include:
The drug interactions listed above are not all of the possible interactions or adverse effects. For more information on drug interactions, visit the RxList Drug Interaction Checker.
It is important to always tell your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider of all prescription and over-the-counter medications you use, as well as the dosage for each, and keep a list of the information. Check with your doctor or health care provider if you have any questions about the medication.
Pregnancy and breastfeeding
What else should I know about quercetin?
- Quercetin is possibly safe for most people when taken by mouth short-term.
- Quercetin has been safely used in amounts up to 500 mg twice daily for 12 weeks.
- It is not known if longer-term use or larger amounts are safe.
Quercetin is a flavonoid commonly used as an herbal supplement for conditions such as allergies, asthma, diabetic cataract prevention, viral infections, cardiovascular diseases, and more. High doses (greater than 1 g per day) of quercetin may cause kidney damage. Quercetin is not approved by the FDA for therapeutic purposes. Common side effects of quercetin include abnormal skin sensations (paresthesia), headache, nausea and vomiting, shortness of breath (dyspnea), and toxicity to kidney (nephrotoxicity). Quercetin is not recommended for use in children. Do not take quercetin if pregnant or breastfeeding.
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Typical seasonal allergy symptoms include a stuffy or runny nose, sneezing, coughing, watery eyes, congestion, and a sore throat.
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Treatment of breast cancer depends upon the stage of the cancer at the time of diagnosis. Some of the various treatments include: hormone therapy, radiation therapy, surgery, chemotherapy, HER2-targeted therapy, neoadjuvant therapy, and adjuvant therapy.
Prostate Cancer Treatment: Chemotherapy, Bone-Targeted and Immune Therapy
Doctors may introduce chemotherapy and immune therapy if other measures fail to cure a case of prostate cancer. However, unlike with other forms of cancer, chemotherapy isn’t the first choice for early prostate cancer. Immune therapy uses the body's own immune system to attack the prostate tumor, while bone-targeted therapy aims to preserve bone and prevent metastasis.
Exercise-induced asthma is asthma triggered by vigorous exercise. Symptoms include coughing, shortness of breath, chest tightness, wheezing, and fatigue while exercising. Preventing exercise-induced asthma attacks involves using inhaled medicines before exercising, performing warm-up exercises and cooling down afterward, avoiding exercising outdoors when pollen counts are high, restricting exercise when you have a viral infection, and wearing a mask over your nose and mouth when exercising in cold weather.
Should I Exercise Outside if I Have Allergies?
An allergy is a condition in which the immune system overresponds to a foreign substance. With the right treatment and precautions, you can completely eliminate allergy flare-ups during your outdoor workout.
Can You Exercise With Exercise-Induced Asthma?
You can continue exercise and normal physical activity even after being diagnosed with exercise-induced asthma (EIA).
Can Asthma Be Genetic?
While asthma genes are inherited in families, the risks of developing the condition are half due to genetic susceptibility and half due to environmental factors.
What Are the Symptoms of E-Asthma?
Symptoms of E-asthma, also called eosinophilic asthma, can include chronic rhinosinusitis, asthma attacks, nasal polyps, wheezing, and more.
Do Allergy Desensitization Shots Work?
Allergies happen when your immune system overreacts to harmless substances called allergens. Allergy desensitization shots make your body less likely to react to allergen.
What Causes Nose Allergies?
Nose allergies can be caused by irritants such as pollen, animal dander, and household dust. Learn about symptoms, treatment, and prevention.
What Is the Best Treatment for Asthma?
Depending on the severity of your asthma, treatment may include quick-relief or controller medicines, a combination of both or the use of biologics.
How Do You Know if Your Baby Has Asthma?
Properly diagnosing and managing asthma in babies and young children can be challenging. However, be on the lookout for these signs and symptoms.
How Can I Help My Child With a Peanut Allergy?
Since there is no cure for peanut allergies, prevention and keeping an epinephrine injector (EpiPen) on hand is key to helping your child’s allergy.
What Foods Cause Oral Allergy Syndrome?
Oral allergy syndrome, also called pollen food allergy syndrome or PFAS, is a type of food allergy caused by certain allergens found in both pollen and raw vegetables and fruits and some nuts. Foods that cause oral allergy syndrome include those in the birch, grass and ragweed families.
How Do You Tell If Your Child Has Allergies or a Cold?
Colds and allergies have different causes, but both involve the body's immune system. Since the symptoms of allergies and the symptoms of a cold overlap, it can be hard to tell which one your child has.
How Do You Get Tested for Food Allergies?
If you develop symptoms of a food allergy, your doctor will have you undergo a skin test or blood test to determine which foods you are allergic to.
Is Food Intolerance the Same as Food Allergy?
Food intolerance is a condition in which an individual has difficulty in digesting certain foods. Consumption of these foods manifests as physical symptoms such as bloating, loose motion, gases, and bellyache. Food intolerance is quite common. Most people are aware of the foods that disagree with them.
What Is Winter Asthma?
Why is your asthma worse in the colder months? Learn about causes of winter asthma and what you can do now to create an action plan.
How Do You Know if You Have Asthma or Not?
Your doctor may diagnose you with asthma based upon your signs and symptoms and after performing a physical exam and certain tests.
Is Allergic Conjunctivitis the Same as Conjunctivitis?
Allergic conjunctivitis may occur along with sneezing, runny nose, or sinus headache. Many people also find that they are tired and feel agitated.
What Class Is Severe Asthma?
Asthma is termed as a chronic inflammatory lung disease caused by the airway’s hypersensitive response to allergic stimuli (dust, pollen, pollution, smoke or unhygienic conditions). This results in the narrowing of airway passages, making it hard to breathe. It is often genetic and passed down from families and precipitated during childhood.
What Is Severe Asthma?
Asthma is a chronic inflammatory lung disease caused due to the airway’s hypersensitive response to allergic stimuli. Severe asthma or status asthmaticus is defined as asthma that is uncontrolled, despite adherence with maximal optimized therapy and treatment of contributory factors or asthma that worsens when high dose treatment is decreased.
Treatment & Diagnosis
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