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Jul 5, 2002

Somewhere in the past I read that Papaya the raw fruit has an effect on hiv medications. I don't remember which ones now. What do you know about this fruit interaction? Also, which meds raw garlic affects? thanks

Response from Ms. Fields-Gardner

Papaya is known to interact with "blood thinner" medications such as coumadin causing a potential worsening of bleeding. In addition, papaya appeared on a list of reported interactions with anti-HIV medications.

There was a report Garlic may have a similar effect. Garlic has also has the potential to increase levels of ritonavir (Norvir) and is associated in one case with nausea and vomiting when combined with ritonavir.

If you are taking "blood thinning" medications it may be best to stay away from such supplements. If you are planning any surgery, advise your doctor. It is likely that you will need to discontinue such supplements a while before your surgery to prevent excessive bleeding. Also, if you experience enhanced side effects of your anti-HIV medications, you may consider discontinuing such supplements to see if the problems subside.

Check out the two links below for more information.

Project Inform Herbs, Supplements, and HIV Information Sheet

BC PWA Drug-Herb Interaction Sheet

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