Vinpocetine
What is it? Overview Usage Side Effects and Warnings
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Vinpocetine Side Effects and Warnings

Written by FoundHealth.

Safety Issues

No serious side effects have been reported in any of the clinical trials. However, there is one case report of vinpocetine apparently causing agranulocytosis (loss of certain white blood cells). 1 Vinpocetine inhibits blood platelets from forming clots, 2 and for this reason it could cause problems if it is taken by individuals with bleeding problems, during the period immediately before or after surgery or labor and delivery, or in combination with medications or natural substances that also affect platelet activity, such as:

The drug warfarin (Coumadin) affects blood clotting, but not through actions on platelets. One study found only a minimal interaction between warfarin and vinpocetine. Interestingly, it was in the direction of decreased clotting. 3 Nonetheless, combination therapy with vinpocetine and warfarin should not be attempted except under the supervision of a physician.

Safety in pregnant or nursing women, young children, or those with severe liver or kidney disease has not been established.

Interactions You Should Know About

If you are taking:

  • Blood-thinning drugs, such as aspirin , clopidogrel (Plavix), ticlopidine (Ticlid), or pentoxifylline (Trental): Simultaneous use of vinpocetine might cause bleeding problems.
  • Natural substances with blood-thinning properties, such as garlic , ginkgo , policosanol , or high-dose vitamin E : Simultaneous use of vinpocetine might in theory cause bleeding problems.
  • Warfarin (Coumadin): Vinpocetine might impair the action of the blood-thinning actions.

References

  1. Shimizu Y, Saitoh K, Nakayama M, et al. Agranulocytosis induced by vinpocetine. Medicine Online [serial online]. Available at: http://www.priory.com/med/vinpocetine.htm. Accessed July 20, 2002.
  2. Kiss B, Karpati E. Mechanism of action of vinpocetine [in Hungarian; English abstract]. Acta Pharm Hung. 1996;66:213-214.
  3. Hitzenberger G, Sommer W, Grandt R. Influence of vinpocetine on warfarin-induced inhibition of coagulation. Int J Clin Pharmacol Ther Toxicol. 28(8):323-8.
 
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