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Ginger for nausea: Does it work?By Mayo Clinic staff
Original Article: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/ginger-for-nausea/AN02018
- With Mayo Clinic internist
Brent A. Bauer, M.D.read biographyclose window
Brent A. Bauer, M.D.Brent A. Bauer, M.D.
Brent Bauer, M.D., is board certified in internal medicine. He is a consultant in the Department of Internal Medicine and director of the Department of Internal Medicine's Complementary and Integrative Medicine Program at Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Dr. Bauer, a native of Madison, Wis., is also a professor of medicine at Mayo Medical School and a graduate of Mayo Medical School.
He serves on the editorial board of the Mayo Clinic Health Letter and is medical editor for EmbodyHealth Newsletter. He has been on staff at Mayo Clinic since 1992, first practicing at Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Ariz., before joining Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn., in 1996.
Dr. Bauer's principal research focus is the scientific evaluation of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) therapies that patients and consumers are using with increasing frequency. He has authored several book chapters and papers on this topic, and is the medical editor of the "Mayo Clinic Book of Alternative Medicine." Dr. Bauer also spearheaded collaboration between Mayo Clinic and Gaiam in the creation of a series of 10 DVDs (Mayo Clinic Wellness Solutions). These DVDs address common health problems (for example, diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure) with integrative medicine approaches that empower people to take charge of their health. His work is at the forefront of the emerging field of integrative medicine which combines the best of conventional medicine with the best of evidence-based complementary therapies.
Dr. Bauer has served on the NIH-NCCAM study section and is currently collaborating on over 20 studies being conducted at Mayo Clinic evaluating CAM therapies ranging from acupuncture to valerian. He is also a member of Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society; the American Federation for Medical Research; the North Central Cancer Treatment Group and other professional organizations.
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Ginger for nausea: Does it work?
Can taking ginger for nausea reduce or eliminate nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy?
from Brent A. Bauer, M.D.
There is evidence that when taken with standard anti-nausea medications, ginger can be helpful in further reducing or eliminating nausea and vomiting during and after chemotherapy treatments.
Results from two studies of adults who took ginger for nausea showed that various doses of ginger before starting chemotherapy treatments helped to reduce the severity of nausea. In these studies, participants began taking ginger orally three days prior to starting chemotherapy. The ginger was taken in addition to a standard medication prescribed to reduce nausea and vomiting. A small number of participants reported side effects including heartburn, bruising, flushing and rash. In another study, taking ginger root powder was effective in reducing the severity of chemotherapy-induced nausea in children and young adults ages 8 to 21. Ginger in this study was also given along with standard anti-nausea medications.
Earlier studies had shown ginger to be of little or no benefit in reducing nausea and vomiting due to chemotherapy.
Many prescription drugs have been proved effective at controlling nausea during and after chemotherapy. Ask your doctor if combining ginger and anti-nausea medications might be right for you.Next question
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- Ryan JL, et al. Ginger (Zingiber officinale) reduces acute chemotherapy-induced nausea: A URCC CCOP study of 576 patients. Supportive Care in Cancer. In press. Accessed Aug. 5, 2011.
- Pillai AK, et al. Anti-emetic effect of ginger powder versus placebo as an add-on therapy in children and young adults receiving high emetogenic chemotherapy. Pediatric Blood & Cancer. 2011;56:234.
- Ginger. Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database. http://www.naturaldatabase.com. Accessed Aug. 16, 2011.
- Ryan JL, et al. Ginger for chemotherapy-related nausea in cancer patients: A URCC CCOP randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial of 644 cancer patients. Journal of Clinical Oncology. 2009;15(suppl):9511.
- Zick SM, et al. Phase II trial of encapsulated ginger as a treatment for chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting. Support Care Cancer. 2009;17:563.
- Bauer BA (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Aug. 18, 2011.