The FDA of the United States has issued an alert to doctors to be on the lookout for botanicals from the herb family, Aristolochia. Herbs from this family contain or may be contaminated with an ingredient called aristolochic acid that is toxic to the kidneys and is suspected of causing cancer.
Although no Americans have been reported to be injured by any of the Aristolochia botanicals, the U.S. FDA has issued the warning and is preparing to block the import of aristolochic acid-containing herbs based on 2 cases of kidney failure reported in Britain and 70 cases reported in Belgium.
For a list of plants under concern, check the FDA’s internet site located at the following address: http://www.fda.gov/opacom/hpwhats.html and click on "dietary supplements".
- AP WorldStream via COMTEX (Washington, June 2, 2000)