Autumn Crocus

How does Autumn Crocus work?

The seeds of autumn crocus contain colchicine. This is the same active ingredient used in a prescription medication for gout and Mediterranean fever. Colchicine works by reducing the chemicals that cause joint swelling (inflammation) in people with these diseases.

Are there safety concerns?

Autumn crocus is UNSAFE. It is considered a poison, and can cause burning of the mouth and throat, vomiting, diarrhea, liver and kidney problems, blood disorders, nerve problems, shock, organ failure, and death. There have been reports of poisoning when autumn crocus bulbs were mistaken for onions and eaten.

If you have gout or familial Mediterranean fever, it is much safer to use colchicine prescribed by your healthcare provider. Prescription colchicine contains a set amount of medicine. The amount of colchicine in autumn crocus can vary from plant to plant.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: It's UNSAFE for anyone to use autumn crocus, but pregnant women have extra reasons to avoid use. Autumn crocus might cause birth defects.


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You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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