Chinese medicines for slimming still cause health problems

BMJ 2002; 324 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.324.7338.679 (Published 16 March 2002) Cite this as: BMJ 2002;324:679
  1. Karl Metcalfe (karl.metcalfe@southend.nhs.uk), consultant physician,
  2. Cathryn Corns, consultant biochemist,
  3. Michael Fahie-Wilson, consultant biochemist,
  4. Paul Mackenzie, chief biomedical scientist
  1. Southend Hospital, Westcliff-on-Sea, Essex SS0 0RY

    EDITOR—Local events caused great public health concern recently. After the referral of a 44 year woman with new onset hypertension, palpitation, anxiety, and a body mass index of 19 kg/m2 it became apparent that an alarming number of the local population had been attending a particular Chinese herbalist for weight loss remedies. Most had been taking multiple preparations—as many as nine—and described “spectacular” results. Several reported considerable cardiovascular symptoms but were …

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