In animal studies the combination of ginseng polysaccharides with vancomycin resulted in a 100% survival rate for animals treated for Staphylococcus aureus compared to only 67% or 50% survival in animals treated with ginseng polysaccharides or vancomycin alone (Lim et al 2002b). A beneficial additive effect is possible but clinical use in humans has not yet been established.
No affects on the pharmacokinetics or pharmacodynamics of either S-warfarin or R-warfarin were revealed in an open-label, crossover randomised trial of 12 healthy male subjects who received a single 25-mg dose of warfarin alone or after 7 days' pretreatment with ginseng (Jiang et al 2004). Whether these effects are consistent in less 'healthy' people likely to be taking warfarin or for prolonged concurrent use is unclear.
There have been two case reports of ginseng reducing the antithrombotic effects of warfarin (Janetzky & Morreale 1997, Rosado 2003). Additionally, it inhibits platelet aggregation according to both in vitro and animal studies. Avoid using this combination unless under medical supervision to monitor antithrombotic effects.
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