Reader response: Does it work?


Re: Does it work? Healthplus, October 21st

Dear Sir,

A recent article on feverfew explored the effectiveness of the plant as a treatment for migraine.

However, the author dangerously neglected to mention that pregnant women should not take feverfew during pregnancy, as there is a risk of birth defects or spontaneous abortion.

Herbs/plants are frequently purported as mild and safe remedies for a plethora of medical conditions. However, it must be remembered that many of these "safe" remedies can have nasty side effects.

Therefore, the Migraine Association of Ireland would ask all those who are thinking of turning to herbal medicine in a bid to treat their migraine, to consult their GP first.

Donna Walsh,

Information Officer,

Migraine Association of Ireland

In reply:

Dónal O'Mathúna writes: As a general rule of thumb, pregnant women should not take herbal remedies.

Little or no research has been conducted on the impact of most herbs on the developing foetus and are, therefore, best avoided during pregnancy or when trying to become pregnant.