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Most Frequently Asked Questions

What is the sodium content of the Sambucol range of products?

The products from the Sambucol product range contain only a trace amount of sodium.

Does the Sambucol range of products contain artificial sweeteners?

Sambucol liquid and capsules are free of artifical sweeteners. The lozenges contain mannitol and sorbitol.

Does the Sambucol Range of products contain artificial flavours?

No.

What preservatives does the Sambucol range of products use?

Sambucol Throat Lozenges are free from preserving agents. Sambucol Capsules contain sulphur dioxide and Sambucol Liquid contains potassium sorbate and sorbic acid as the preservatives.

Do the Sambucol products contain animal derived ingredients?

None of the ingredients used in the products in the Sambucol liquid range contain any ingredients derived from animal origin. The Shell of the Sambucol Gel Capsules are made from Gelatine (Bovine origin).

Are the Sambucol products dairy free?

All the products in the Sambucol product range are considered dairy free.

Are the Sambucol products gluten free?

Sambucol Liquid contains gluten derived from wheat. Sambucol Throat Lozenges and Capsules do not contain gluten.

Do the Sambucol products contain any artificial colours?

None of the products from the Sambucol range contain any artificial colours. The product gets its colour from the elderberry extract.

Are the Sambucol products sugar free?

Some of the Sambucol products contain glucose syrup. These are Sambucol Original, Sambucol for Kids and Immuno Forte Syrup. These products are not classed as sugar-free. The Sambucol Sugar Free syrup and Gel Capsules can be classed as sugar free as this contains no sugar derived ingredients.

Do any of the Sambucol products contain nuts?

None of the Sambucol liquid products contain nuts or any ingredients derived from nuts. The facilities where the Sambucol liquid products are manufactured do not use nuts or nut products during manufacture. The Sambucol lozenge products also do not contain nuts or any ingredients derived from nuts. The facilities where the Sambucol lozenge products are manufactured do not use nuts or nut products during manufacture.

Are the Sambucol Range of products kosher?

Sambucol Cold & Flu Capsules and Liquid are not Kosher certified.

Are there any special storage conditions for the Sambucol products?

It is recommended to store products from the Sambucol range in a cool and dry place.

Are the Sambucol products suitable for use by vegetarians?

The Shell of the Sambucol Gel Capsules are made from Gelatine (Bovine origin) so may not be suitable for vegetarians.
Both the Sambucol Liquid and the Throat Lozenges are suitable for vegetarians.

What are the traditional uses of elderberry?

Details of the uses of elderberry have been recorded since ancient times, as far back as the writings of Hippocrates, Dioscorides and Pliny the Elder. The berries have long been used for making preserves, wines, winter cordials and for adding flavour and colour to other wines. These uses are based on the elderberries antioxidant properties. Through these actions elderberry can help to support the immune system.

More recently, elderberry has been used as dietary supplements and used in natural health products containing extracts of the berries.

What evidence is available to support Sambucol®?

Scientific studies have demonstrated Sambucol®'s efficacy in helping to relieve flu symptoms and shorten the duration of influenza.
In a clinical trial, flu patients given Sambucol recovered on average 4 days earlier, in 3.1 days compared to 7.1 days for those given placebo, when taken within 48 hours after onset of symptoms.(1)
Another clinical trial reported that almost 90% of flu patients receiving Sambucol showed a significant improvement in Influenza B symptoms, including fever, and were symptom free within two to three days, as compared to at least six days with placebo.(2)
Scientific discoveries from in vitro studies have stipulated that the antiviral activity of Sambucol inhibits hemagglutinin and can help relieve flu symptoms, by helping to reduce reproduction of several influenza viruses when taken within 48 hours after onset of symptoms.(2),(3),(4)

(1) Zakay-Rones etal. J Int Med Res.2004;32(2):132-40.
(2) Zakay-Rones etal. J Alt Compl Med.1995;1(4):361-9.
(3) Balasingam S, etal. In IV International Conference on Influenza, Preventing the Pandemic, Bird Flu Vaccines. London, June 23–24. 2006.
(4) Catchpole A, Balasingam S. Retroscreen Virology. (2)2010,pp.1-8.

Can the Sambucol products be used during breastfeeding?

Due to a lack of clinical data available on the use of Sambucol during breast feeding, it is advisable to avoid taking the product at this time. Consumers are advised to consult their GP before starting to take any new supplement or medication during breastfeeding

Should I take Sambucol before or after meals?

There is no evidence to suggest whether Sambucol should be taken before or after food. Given that Sambucol is extracted from the berries of the black elder, some people may find it preferable to take after food.

Are there any possible interactions between Sambucol and other substances?

No interactions between black elderberry and other medications were identified from the published worldwide literature. As with all medical conditions, the patient should check with a healthcare professional before using any other supplements or medications.

Can the Sambucol products be used during pregnancy?

Due to a lack of clinical data available on the use of Sambucol during pregnancy, it is advisable to avoid taking the product at this time. Consumers are advised to consult their GP before starting to take any new supplement or medication during pregnancy.

Can Sambucol products be used in children?

All the Sambucol products can be used in children. Please consult the dosage instructions on the individual Sambucol product packs before use to ensure the correct dose is given for the child’s age.

Can Sambucol be used in the elderly?

No special dosage requirements are required for use by the elderly. Follow the recommended dosage on the product packaging.

Can Sambucol be used in asthmatics?

After a thorough search of published literature, no evidence has been found and no clinical studies have been identified to suggest that black elderberry extracts, which are included in the Sambucol products, have either a positive or negative effect on patients suffering from asthma.

As with any pre-existing medical condition, it is advisable to consult a healthcare professional before starting to take any new supplement or medication.

Can Sambucol be used in children under 3 years of age?

It is recommended to administer Sambucol only to children 2 years or older.

Can Sambucol be used in people with HIV?

Sambucol contains an extract of black elderberries which have powerful antioxidant capabilities. Antioxidants are thought to to help boost the immune system.

We do not have any information on the use of Sambucol in patients who are HIV positive. No clinical trials have been conducted in this area and we are unable to comment on the use of Sambucol in HIV positive patients.

As with any pre-existing medical condition the new use of food supplements or medications should be discussed with a healthcare professional.

Can Sambucol be used in people with high blood pressure?

A literature search was conducted using Medline and Pubmed. No records were identified that discussed the effects of blood pressure when taking Sambucol products (or black elderberry extracts).
No warnings or contra-indications regarding use in high blood pressure are included on the proposed SmPC

Can I take Sambucol if I have heartburn?

Some of the Sambucol range of products contains zinc and or vitamin C. In large quantities these have been reported to cause heartburn. Sambucol should not cause heartburn or exacerbate it, provided that the recommended daily dose is adhered to and that any intensive use of the product is only short term. As with any pre-existing medical condition it is advisable to check with a healthcare professional prior to use of food supplements or medications. If heartburn is experienced the use of the product should be discontinued.

Can Sambucol be used in people with low white blood cell count?

Sambucol contains an extract of black elderberries which have recognised antioxidant capabilities. Several clinical studies have shown that elderberries have the ability to help boost the immune system.

PharmaCare (Europe) Ltd do not have any information on the use of Sambucol in patients with low white blood cell count and no clinical trials have been conducted in this patient group.

As with any pre-existing medical condition it is recommended that a consumer discuss the use of Sambucol with a Healthcare Professional prior to its use.

Can Sambucol be used in people with breast cancer?

Sambucol contains an extract of black elderberries which have recognised antioxidant capabilities. Several clinical studies have shown that elderberries have the ability to help boost the immune system.
PharmaCare (Europe) Ltd do not have any information on the use of Sambucol in patients with breast cancer and no clinical trials have been conducted in this patient group.
As with any pre-existing medical condition it is recommended that a consumer discuss the use of Sambucol with a Healthcare Professional prior to its use.


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