Generic Name: garlic (Not applicable.)
Brand Name: Generics only. No brands available.

Garlic is used for:

High cholesterol levels, for blood clots, and to lower blood pressure. It has also been promoted for colds, bronchitis, and other uses. Check with your pharmacist for more details regarding the particular brand you use.

Garlic is an herbal product. It is unknown exactly how it works.

Do NOT use garlic if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in garlic
  • you are pregnant

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

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Before using garlic:

Some medical conditions may interact with garlic. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are planning to become pregnant or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have diabetes, stomach or bowel problems, or a blood disease

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with garlic. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • HIV protease inhibitors (eg, saquinavir) because effectiveness may be decreased by garlic

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if garlic may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use garlic:

Use garlic as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Dosing depends on the use and the source of the product.
  • Use as directed on the package, unless instructed otherwise by your doctor.
  • The smell of garlic may be noticeable on the breath and skin. If this is bothersome, use an enteric-coated garlic product.
  • It may take several weeks for garlic to lower cholesterol and up to 6 months to lower blood pressure.
  • If you miss taking a dose of garlic for 1 or more days, there is no cause for concern. If your doctor recommended that you take it, try to remember your dose every day.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use garlic.

Important safety information:

  • This product has not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as safe and effective for any medical condition. The long-term safety of herbal products is not known. Before using any alternative medicine, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
  • If you are taking warfarin and your doctor has approved the use of a garlic product, notify your doctor if you experience any signs of bleeding.
  • Diabetes patients - If you have diabetes, garlic may lower your blood sugar. Check blood sugar levels closely and ask your doctor before adjusting the dose of your diabetes medicine.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: Do not use garlic supplements if you are pregnant. If you plan on becoming pregnant, discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of using garlic supplements during pregnancy. Do not breast-feed while taking this product.

Possible side effects of garlic:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Burning of the mouth, stomach, and throat; changes in the menstrual cycle; lightheadedness; nausea; sweating.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue).

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately.

Proper storage of garlic:

Store at room temperature away from heat, moisture, and light unless otherwise directed on the package label. Do not store in the bathroom. Most herbal products are not in childproof containers. Keep garlic out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about garlic, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Garlic is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take garlic or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about garlic. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to garlic. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using garlic.

Issue Date: September 3, 2014
Database Edition 14.3.1.003
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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