Principal Proposed Uses
Senna extract is an FDA-approved over-the-counter treatment for occasional constipation. Because there is no controversy regarding senna's effectiveness for this purpose, we do not present the supporting evidence here. Rather, we address the concerns that have been raised regarding senna’s safety.
As is the case with all laxatives, people with significant colonic disease, such as ulcerative colitis , should not use senna.
If senna is taken to the point of diarrhea, the body may become depleted of the mineral potassium . This is particularly dangerous for people using drugs in the digoxin family , which can cause dangerous cardiac arrythmias if potassium levels in the blood are inadequate. People who additionally use medications that themselves deplete the body of potassium, such as thiazide or loop diuretics , are at special risk of this complication of senna overuse.
Interactions You Should Know About
If you are taking:
- Reviewer: EBSCO CAM Review Board
- Review Date: 09/2014 -
- Update Date: 09/18/2014 -