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    Grapefruit juice interactions not understood


    Grapefruit juice interactions not understood

    At the 2006 annual APhA meeting, information was released showing that pharmacists overestimate the number of interactions between drugs and grapefruit juice. A follow-up survey performed by KRC Research for the Florida Department of Citrus has found that while 50% more pharmacists are well informed regarding grapefruit juice interactions compared with the results of the initial 2002 survey, many pharmacists still need more specific information. The survey found that interactions with the cholesterol-lowering statins appear to be the most misunderstood. One in four pharmacists surveyed thought grapefruit juice interacted with the entire class of statins, when it is actually safe to drink the juice while taking pravastatin (Pravachol, Bristol-Myers Squibb) and fluvastatin (Lescol, Novartis). Survey results also showed that 70% of pharmacists never ask patients whether they consume grapefruit juice before filling a prescription for a potentially interacting medication. For a list of drug/grapefruit juice interactions, pharmacists can visit http://www.druginteractioncenter.org/, a Web site run by the University of Florida and Tufts University.

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