Butterbur Drug Interactions
Butterbur may negatively interact with several medications, such as carbamazepine, phenytoin, and rifampin. If natural butterbur is taken with any of these medications, it may increase the rate at which the liver converts certain alkaloids into toxic substances that can damage the liver and lungs. To avoid any possible butterbur drug interactions, make sure to use a product that has been purified to remove these toxic alkaloids.
Butterbur Interactions: An OverviewEven though it is a natural product, butterbur can potentially interact with some medications. Although there are no clearly established drug interactions with butterbur, theoretically, some medications may increase the risk of liver damage due to certain butterbur products.
Natural butterbur contains toxic alkaloids that can damage the liver and the lungs. It is thought that the liver changes the alkaloids into toxic forms. In theory, some drugs may increase the rate at which the liver converts the alkaloids into toxic substances. Such drugs include but are not limited to:
- Carbamazepine (Carbatrol®, Epitol®, Equetro®, Tegretol®)
- Phenobarbital (Luminal®)
- Phenytoin (Dilantin®, Phenytek®)
- Rifampin (Rifadin®)
- Rifabutin (Mycobutin®).
It should be noted that liver problems and, therefore, drug interactions that lead to liver problems are not expected to be side effects of butterbur products that are free of toxic alkaloids. In order to avoid these drug interactions and possible liver problems, even if no interactions are present, make sure to choose a butterbur product that has been purified to remove the toxic alkaloids.