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…But Can Cause Urothelial Cancer

KEY POINT

Patients with Chinese-herb nephropathy are at greatly increased risk for developing urothelial carcinoma. The problem has not been reported in the United States, but the agent believed responsible— Aristolochia fangchi—is available in capsule form here.

SOURCES

Nortier JL et al. Urothelial carcinoma associated with the use of a Chinese herb (Aristolochia fangchi). N Engl J Med. 2000;342:1686–92. 

Kessler DA. Cancer and herbs [editorial]. N Engl J Med. 2000;342:1742–3.