Significant Interactions

Controlled studies are not available; therefore, interactions are based on evidence of activity and are largely theoretical and speculative.

barbiturates

Additive effects are theoretically possible leading to increased sedation (NMCD 2006, Tierra 2005). Observe patients taking withania and barbiturates concurrently — beneficial interaction possible under medical supervision.

benzodiazepines

Additive effects are theoretically possible (Upton 2000). Observe patients taking withania and benzodiazepines concurrently— beneficial interaction possible under professional supervision.

chemotherapy

Animal studies suggest a potential role for withania as an adjunctive treatment during chemotherapy for the prevention of drug-induced bone marrow depression (Davis & Kuttan 1999, Gupta et al 2001). Observe — beneficial interaction possible under professional supervision.

immunosuppressants (including cyclophosphamide)

The ability to stimulate stem cell proliferation has led to concerns that W. somnifera could reduce cyclophosphamide-induced toxicity and its usefulness in cancer therapy (Davis & Kuttan 1998) although preliminary animal studies indicate a potential role as a potent and relatively safe radiosensitiser and chemotherapeutic agent (Uma Devi 1996). Theoretically it may also decrease the effectiveness of other immunosuppressant drugs. Caution should be exercised with patients taking immunosuppressants concurrently; however, a beneficial interaction may be possible under professional supervision.

morphine

In animal studies, repeated administration of withania (100 mg/kg) inhibited morphine tolerance and dependence (Kulkarni & Ninan 1997). For this reason it is sometimes used in opiate withdrawal. Beneficial interaction possible under professional supervision.

thyroid medication (e.g. levothyroxine)

Additive effects are theoretically possible as an in vivo study reported that daily administration of withania enhanced serum T4 concentrations — observe patients taking withania and thyroid medications concurrently (Upton 2000).

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