Mosby's Handbook of Natural Herbs and Supplements / Edition 1

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This essential handbook presents detailed monographs for 270 commonly used herbal products and natural supplements. Arranged in alphabetical order, each monograph incorporates authoritative information on generic names, botanical names, common alternative and trade names, actions, uses, dosages, side effects and adverse reactions, contraindications, precautions, pharmacokinetics, chemical components, and interactions with foods, other herbal products, and with drugs.

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Editorial Reviews

Doody's Review Service
Reviewer: Martha J. Greenberg, PhD, RN (Pace University)
Description: This book is designed for quick reference on key information on over 270 herbs and natural supplements. The handbook contains detailed monographs presented in a consistent format. Also included are many useful appendexes and an easy to use index. The book captures the format of drug guides offered by several publishing companies.
Purpose: The handbook provides reliable, unbiased information for healthcare providers about herbs and other alternative supplements. Considering the extensive use by the public of over-the-counter alternative supplements, a quick reference such as this aimed at health providers is a needed resource in healthcare.
Audience: It is intended and appropriate for professionals and students in a variety of healthcare disciplines. Contributing consultants such as herbalists, nurses, and health educators authored the text.
Features: The book leads off with important information that addresses quality, production, and standarization issues, as well as research. It contains pertinent information about common and scientific names, class, origin, uses, availability and dosages, precautionary information, pharmacology and actions and client considerations for herbal use. One unique feature is an appendix citing key online herbal resources. One shortcoming is an apparent reliance on information derived from the world wide web and underuse of scientifc references.
Assessment: This is a publication that every healthcare provider should own. It presents essential information on actual and potential herb-drug interactions and emergency resources. This little book should become as ubiquitous as any drug manual especially for nurses and nursing students.

3 Stars from Doody
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780323012089
  • Publisher: Elsevier Health Sciences
  • Publication date: 6/22/2001
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 768
  • Product dimensions: 4.48 (w) x 7.80 (h) x 1.35 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction · Individual Monographs (Acidophilus - Yohimbe) · Appendices · Disorders Index · Web-links · Poison Centers · Drug/herb Interaction Table · Pediatric Herbal Use · Glossary

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Interviews & Essays

Barnes & Exclusive Interview with Linda Skidmore-Roth, RN

Barnes & As the well-known author of drug handbooks and other nursing titles, how did you come to work on this new book, Mosby's Handbook of Herbs & Natural Supplements? Can you tell us about your educational and working background?

Linda Skidmore-Roth: The herbal field has interested me for several years. As you know, herbals have been used for centuries and even thousands of years in some cultures with little or no research basis. However, there has been a growing body of anecdotal information that is not widely accepted by the medical community. With more and more patients using herbal products, the medical community has finally had to take a hard look at herbals.

As far as my career is concerned, I received both a BSN and MSN from the University of Texas, and I practiced and taught nursing in El Paso, Texas, and Las Cruces, New Mexico. I started Skidmore-Roth Publishing, Inc. in 1987, and the list of nursing and allied health titles (about 50) was sold to Delmar/Thomson Learning in May 2000.

B& In the Introduction you state that clients or patients often do not disclose their use of herbal medicines to their doctors or other health providers. Could you elaborate on why this is?

LSR: Many patients do not think of herbals as medications, so they think it is unnecessary to disclose this information. As herbals are being used more and more frequently by patients, health care practitioners are asking their patients about herbal use. This book should help by providing nurses with some reliable information on the herbs their patients use and the possible effects and interactions those herbs may have with their treatment regimen.

B& You state that the purpose is not to advocate either for or against the use of herbs. Why did you take this approach?

LSR: The statement as to neither advocating for nor against herbals is really due to the lack of scientific studies of many of the herbals presented in the book. It is my feeling that herbals should not be recommended until scientific study verifies all aspects of herbal efficacy as well as all side effects or adverse reactions caused by that herb.

B& You explain the difference between potency and concentration. Could you give readers a sneak peek at your definitions of these two terms and why they are so important when counseling clients on the purchase of herbals?

LSR: Potency is defined as "a measure of the strength of the active chemical components contained in an herb or herbal preparation. Standardized products ensure that the consumer receives a dosage containing a consistent potency." Concentration, on the other hand, is defined as "a means of expressing the amount of herb and solvent used in formulating an herbal preparation. For example, a tincture with a 1:5 concentration contains 1 part of the herb in grams to 5 parts of the solvent in milliliters. Concentration is not the same as potency."

B& What features of this book make it different from other herbal handbooks recently published? Are there any features you think practitioners will find particularly valuable?

LSR: Several herbal references discuss "uses," "actions," and "origins." However, this herbal reference lists specific doses for different uses, when known, and specific doses for pediatric patients, when known, are given. Most doses are referenced. Also, the consideration section and drug/herb, herb/herb interactions make this book unique. The appendixes also contain useful material unique to this book, including herb interactions with common lab tests, pediatric herbal usage, and current herb safety information.

B& This handbook is pretty impressive when opened. Information looks easy to find. Since we can't put the book in the hands of our customers prior to purchase, can you describe for them what they'll find when they leaf through it?

LSR: Every herb or supplement in the book is arranged alphabetically by the most common name. This appears first, in large type, in the monograph headers. This is followed by the scientific or botanical name and a variety of additional common names. All the names are listed in the index so readers can easily find whatever they're looking for. Also in the header in bold type I've included the herb safety class as determined by the American Herbal Products Association.

Information on origins, uses, product availability, and dosages immediately follows the monograph header. Because of its importance all of the precautionary-type information, including contraindications and side effects, appears in a shaded box. Interactions are broken out into a table so that they are also easy to find.

Client considerations are broken into categories based loosely on the nursing process: assessment, administration, and client teaching. To make specific chemical compounds in the herbs easy to find, the chemical components are also placed in a table. Under the Action heading the actions of each herb and supplement are explained, together with any research or study results. Every herbal monograph has references listed at the end of its entry.

Throughout the monographs, icons are used to highlight key information. The icons include alerts, popular herbs, pregnancy information, and pediatric information. These appear in the margins throughout.

B& Would you care to speculate about where the U.S. government may be heading in regard to regulating herbals?

LSR: The federal government will eventually regulate herbals, but I think it is a long time in coming. The federal government must present the argument that herbals are really drugs and should be treated as such.

B& Are nursing and medical schools including herbal information in their courses now?

LSR: Several nursing schools now have separate courses on herbals, and others are integrating this information throughout the curriculum. There are now programs to train herbalists that are putting nurses on a fast track (a two-year program). In Australia and Europe herbal medicine is now integrated with traditional Western medicine.

B& Readers always like to hear more about their favorite authors. Would you share with us what projects you are currently involved in?

LSR: Most of my time is spent on two ongoing projects for Mosby/Harcourt. Mosby's Nursing Drug Reference is revised annually, and Mosby's Drug Guide for Nurses is revised biannually. Between these two projects much of my time is committed.

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