Grapefruit: Never take it with these meds

Do you make a habit of taking your meds with a nice glass of grapefruit juice? STOP!  You might be surprised to learn that can delay, decrease or enhance absorption of some drugs. 

Yep, that cheerful, yellow and pink citrus fruit that is full of vitamin C can be dangerous.

Over 80 drugs are identified that may cause harm if you drink grapefruit juice while taking them. The major interactions are listed below according to RxList

Grapefruit: Major interactions

You should not take grapefruit with this combination

Medications for high blood pressure

  • (Calcium channel blockers)
     nifedipine (Adalat, Procardia), verapamil (Calan, Isoptin, Verelan), diltiazem (Cardizem), isradipine (DynaCirc), felodipine (Plendil), amlodipine (Norvasc), and others.

Medications changed by the liver (Cytochrome P450 3A4 (CYP3A4) substrates)

  • lovastatin (Mevacor), ketoconazole (Nizoral), itraconazole (Sporanox), fexofenadine (Allegra), triazolam (Halcion), and many others.

Medications moved by pumps in cells (Organic anion-transporting polypeptide substrates)

  • bosentan (Tracleer), celiprolol (Celicard, others), etoposide (VePesid), fexofenadine (Allegra), fluoroquinolone antibiotics, glyburide (Micronase, Diabeta), irinotecan (Camptosar), methotrexate, paclitaxel (Taxol), saquinavir (Fortovase, Invirase), rifampin, statins, talinolol, torsemide (Demadex), troglitazone, and valsartan (Diovan).

Sedative medications (Benzodiazepines)

  • diazepam (Valium), midazolam (Versed), quazepam (Doral), and triazolam (Halcion)

Cholesterol lowering medications (“statins”)

  • Atorvastatin (Lipitor)Lovastatin (Mevacor), Simvastatin (Zocor), Pitavastatin (Pravachol)

Other Meds

  • Amiodarone (Cordarone)
  • Artemether (Artenam, Paluther)
  • Buspirone (BuSpar)
  • Carbamazepine (Tegretol)
  • Carvedilol (Coreg)
  • Celiprolol (Celicard)
  • Cisapride (Propulsid)
  • Clomipramine (Anafranil)
  • Clopidogrel (Plavix)
  • Cyclosporine (Neoral, Sandimmune)
  • Dextromethorphan (Robitussin DM, and others)
  • Estrogens
    Some estrogen pills include conjugated equine estrogens (Premarin), ethinyl estradiol, estradiol (Climara, Vivelle, Estring), and others.
  • Etoposide (VePesid)
  • Halofantrine
  • Methylprednisolone
  • Terfenadine (Seldane)
  • Ticagrelor (Brilinta)
  • Quinidine
  • Sildenafil (Viagra)
  • Scopolamine (Transderm Scop)
  • Praziquantel (Biltricide)

You may need to eliminate grapefruit products from your diet because simply taking your medication and grapefruit product at different times doesn’t stop the interaction. 

Alternatively, you can ask your health care provider if there’s a comparable medication you can take that doesn’t interact with grapefruit.

Never take or stop taking a med without a go ahead from your healthcare provider or pharmacist. Be safe!

4 thoughts on “Grapefruit: Never take it with these meds

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