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Grapefruit drug interactions linked to 85 medications, says study


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Image by The U.S. Food and Drug Administration

A growing number of prescription medications can have serious, sometimes deadly, side effects when mixed with grapefruit, according to a study published this week in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.

Medical News Today (MNT) reports that researchers found more than 85 medications that may have some type of interaction with grapefruit, and that the number of drugs that could cause a dangerous reaction when paired with grapefruit  has climbed from 17 to 43 in the past four years. 

The report also suggests that health professionals and patients are often unaware of the possible side effects.

MNT explains that furanocoumarins found in grapefruit inhibit the body's CYP3A4 metabolizing enzyme from properly breaking down medications. As a result, more of the drug winds up in the bloodstream, and toxic drug levels or overdose can occur, resulting in: