A case of pancreatitis in a 55-year-old man with alcoholism who had been sober for more than 15 years was published in the Southern Medical Journal. The authors make a circumstantial case for his ongoing use of saw palmetto and the occurrence of pancreatitis.

I was unable to find any information supporting saw palmetto as a cause of pancreatitis, although it is associated with hepatitis and gallbladder disease, among other conditions that are discussed by the authors.

Ultimately, the article concludes, “the fundamental question of whether saw palmetto is indeed involved in hepatic, pancreatic and possibly other organ injury in susceptible individuals needs to be determined.”

7/26/06 19:43 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.