Chinese Herbal Remedy and ESRD | Renal Failure associated with Aristocholic Acid in Chinese Medications
The study referenced below confirms an association between reported ingestion of Aristolochic acid in Chinese herbal remedies and an increased risk of end stage renal disease in Taiwan.
Aristolochic acid is a plant extract, used as a rodent carcinogen. Aristolochic acid is known to be nephrotoxic and has been reported to be associated with urinary tract cancers. The authors note that Aristolochic acid is still available and sometimes prescribed in Chinese remedies and medications.
The FDA issued a warning in 2001 to consumers to stop taking any botanical product containing aristolochic acid.
The authors in the recent study note the high prevalence of end stage kidney disease in Taiwan. In their survey of over 25,000 Taiwanese patients with ESRD, they report a dose-dependent association of the Chinese remedy Guan Mu Tong, containing aristolochic acid and the development of renal failure.
Risks of Kidney Failure Associated With Consumption of Herbal Products Containing Mu Tong or Fangchi: A Population-Based Case-Control Study , 01 February 2010
Ming-Nan Lai, Jung-Nien Lai, Pau-Chung Chen, Shu-Ching Hsieh, Fu-Chang Hu, Jung-Der Wang
American Journal of Kidney Diseases
March 2010 (Vol. 55, Issue 3, Pages 507-518