Q & A Library
Help for Hot Flashes?
Is there a replacement for hot flashes other than black cohosh? I have been taking black cohosh now for a month and I'm still having terrible sweats and hot flashes constantly.
Answer (Published 1/14/2003)
Hot flashes can make your life miserable, but luckily in most cases, they do go away on their own, usually within six months to a year. Of all the alternative remedies, black cohosh is the best studied, but as you've learned, it doesn't work for all women. A number of other options are available, none of them fool-proof but all worth trying:
On the conventional medicine front, a Mayo Clinic study recently found that the anti-seizure drug gabapentin relieved the frequency of hot flashes by 66 percent and also lessened their intensity. More research is needed to confirm these results, but the investigators said that in the meantime, the drug is a reasonable alternative for women with hot flashes resistant to other treatments. The most reliable remedy is estrogen replacement, which you might want to consider on a short-term basis if nothing else helps.
Andrew Weil, M.D.
Dosage Update, October, 2004
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