Survey of preoperative patients' use of herbal products and other selected dietary supplements

Tricia A. Meyer, Clinton E. Baisden, Charles R. Roberson, David F. Gloyna, Mohammad H. Rajab, Billy W. Woodward, Charles H. McLeskey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Purpose: This study was designed to determine the prevalence of herbal and selected dietary product use among preoperative patients. Methods: A questionnaire listing 26 herbal/dietary supplements was given to 979 preoperative patients in the anesthesia assessment unit. Subjects were asked to indicate the amounts and durations of products taken. Demographic data and proposed surgical procedures were noted. Results: One hundred and seventy surgical patients (17.4%) reported taking herbal or dietary supplements. Neurosurgical, gynecological, and orthopedic surgical patients reported the highest incidences of use at 21%, 21%, and 20%, respectively. Of patients taking these agents, 34.7% took only one product, 23.5% took two products, 11.2% took three products, and 10.6% took four or more products. The most commonly used herbals, in descending order of frequency, were ginkgo, garlic, ginseng, St. John's wort, and echinacea. Glucosamine, chondroitin, and chromium were the surveyed dietary supplements most widely used. More than 40 herbs were taken occasionally. The median age of users and nonusers was 62 years. Orthopedic patients took glucosamine and chondroitin most commonly, ophthalmic patients took ginkgo most commonly, and urology patients took saw palmetto most commonly. Conclusion: The adverse effects of herbals and dietary products during surgical procedures and the interactions between these products and anesthetic drugs warrant further research. The use of herbal or dietary supplements may indicate alteration of patients' perioperative regimens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1301-1306
Number of pages6
JournalHospital Pharmacy
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Anesthesiology
  • Dietary supplements
  • Herbals
  • Surgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacy
  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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