Is herbal tea days before a surgery cause for cancellation?

I am having a lump in my breast removed on Friday (2.5 days) in order to biopsy it. I was told to stop all herbal medications two weeks prior to the surgery but nothing was said about herbal tea. It didn't cross my mind and I've had several cups over the past few days. Am I going to have to cancel the surgery? I was told I am not going under general anesthesia if that makes a difference.

Doctor Answers 1

Herbal tea before surgery

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I am guessing this is ordinary herbal tea and not any special tea with medicinal properties? If you were my patient, I would not cancel surgery on a patient who drank herbal tea. Most herbal teas are essentially for the taste and lack of caffeine without any effects on the body whereas some concentrated herbal supplement pills or powders can have effects on healing or clotting. While I might request that a patient stop certain supplements, I would not cancel surgery for any kind of supplement, because surgery is so important and the side effects of most concerning supplements (increased tendency to bleed) are usually easy to manage and overcome with diligent care and good surgical technique. You should be able to check with your doctors team and I would be surprised if they would be worried or concerned about common herbal tea use. 


Beverly Hills General Surgeon
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