How does Feverfew work?

Feverfew leaves contain many different chemicals, including one called parthenolide. Parthenolide or other chemicals decrease factors in the body that might cause migraine headaches.

Are there safety concerns?

Feverfew is LIKELY SAFE for most people when used short-term (up to four months). Side effects might include upset stomach, heartburn, diarrhea, constipation, bloating, flatulence, nausea, and vomiting. Other reported side effects include nervousness, dizziness, headache, trouble sleeping, joint stiffness, tiredness, menstrual changes, rash, pounding heart, and weight gain.

The safety of feverfew beyond 4 months' use has not been studied.

Feverfew is POSSIBLY UNSAFE when fresh leave are chewed. Chewing unprocessed feverfew leaves can cause mouth sores; swelling of the mouth, tongue, and lips; and loss of taste.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Feverfew is POSSIBLY UNSAFE when taken during pregnancy. There is concern that it might cause early contractions and miscarriage. Don't use feverfew if you are pregnant. The safety of feverfew during breast-feeding isn't known. It's best to avoid using feverfew if you are breast-feeding.

Allergy to ragweed and related plants: Feverfew may cause an allergic reaction in people who are sensitive to the Asteraceae/Compositae plant family. Members of this family include ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigolds, daisies, and many others. If you have allergies, be sure to check with your healthcare provider before taking feverfew.

Surgery: Feverfew might slow blood clotting. It might cause bleeding during and after surgery. Stop taking feverfew at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.

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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

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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