Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale, Blowball, Lion's Teeth)

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD
    Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD

    Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD

    Dr. Charles "Pat" Davis, MD, PhD, is a board certified Emergency Medicine doctor who currently practices as a consultant and staff member for hospitals. He has a PhD in Microbiology (UT at Austin), and the MD (Univ. Texas Medical Branch, Galveston). He is a Clinical Professor (retired) in the Division of Emergency Medicine, UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, and has been the Chief of Emergency Medicine at UT Medical Branch and at UTHSCSA with over 250 publications.

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What is dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)-oral, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?

Taraxacum officinale is a plant. The above ground parts are used as natural herbal supplements and for many conditions. There is little evidence that it is effective for any condition. Taraxacum officinale contains chemicals that may increase urine production and decrease pain and swelling. Check with your health-care professional before using herbs or herbal supplements.

What brand names are available for dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)-oral?

Dandelion, Blowball, Lion's Teeth

Is dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)-oral available as a generic drug?

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

Do I need a prescription for dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)-oral?

No

What are the side effects of dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)-oral?

Side effects of Taraxacum officinale are abdominal discomfort, diarrhea, heartburn, increased heart rate, bruising and bleeding, excessive urination, and increased potassium levels (hyperkalemia).

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What is the dosage for dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)-oral?

There is no established dosing. Follow the manufacturers recommendation for each product.

Safe and effective use of Taraxacum officinale supplement is not established for individuals under the age of 18.

Which drugs or supplements interact with dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)-oral?

: Taraxacum officinale should be used with caution with quinolone antibiotics like ciprofloxacin (Cipro), levofloxacin (Levaquin), and moxifloxacin (Avelox) because it may reduce the absorption of these antibiotics and may decrease their effectiveness. Check with your doctor before using this herbal product.

Taraxacum officinale may reduce the breakdown of some drugs by the liver, increasing blood levels of these drugs. Some examples include propranolol (Inderal), amitriptyline (Elavil), haloperidol (Haldol), and ondansetron (Zofran).

Taraxacum officinale contains potassium. If combined with potassium sparring diuretics (water pills) such as spironolactone (Alkdactone) there may be significant increases in blood potassium levels.

Taraxacum officinale may increase urine production, so it may affect how lithium (Eskalith, Lithobid) may be removed from the body. Increased urine production can slow down lithium removal from the body, leading to increased lithium levels. Adjustments in lithium dose may be required.

Taraxacum officinale may slow down blood clotting and increase the risk of bleeding. Therefore, Taraxacum officinale should be used with caution with medications like aspirin, warfarin (Coumadin), clopidogrel (Plavix), enoxaparin (Lovenox), diclofenac (Voltaren), ibuprofen (Motrin), and naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn).

Is dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)-oral safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?

It is not known whether Taraxacum officinale enters breast milk. It should be avoided by nursing mothers to avoid harm to the newborn.

What else should I know about dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)-oral?

What preparations of dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)-oral are available?

Taraxacum officinale is available as capsules, liquid extract, and tea forms. Concentration of Taraxacum officinale may vary from product-to-product due to multiple manufacturers producing various products. Products that contain Taraxacum officinale also contain other herbs.

How should I keep dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)-oral stored?

Due to multiple manufacturers making different forms of Taraxacum officinale, storage requirements may vary based on individual manufacturer practices.

REFERENCE:

Medscape. Effects of Herbal Supplements on the Kidney.

MedlinePlus. Dandelion.

NIH. Dandelion.

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Reviewed on 9/19/2014
References
REFERENCE:

Medscape. Effects of Herbal Supplements on the Kidney.

MedlinePlus. Dandelion.

NIH. Dandelion.

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