Ginger for nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy

Although early studies were negative, Dr. Brent Bauer at the Mayo Clinic summarized 2 studies that support its use.

Here’s what we know.

  • Participants took ginger by mouth for 3 days prior to starting chemotherapy.
  • Ginger was taken in addition to a standard medication prescribed to reduce nausea and vomiting.
  • A small number of participants reported side effects: heartburn, bruising, flushing, and rash.
  • In another study, ginger root powder reduced the severity of chemotherapy-induced nausea in children and young adults ages 8 to 21.
  • Ginger in this study was also given along with standard anti-nausea medications.

The bottom line?

Dr. Bauer concluded, “Many prescription drugs have been proved effective at controlling nausea during and after chemotherapy. Ask your doctor if combining ginger and anti-nausea medications might be right for you.”

9/18/11 19:15 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, a complementary and alternative medicine website.