Beleño, Careillade, Devil's Eye, Fetid Nightshade, Fève à Cochons, Hen Bell, Herbe aux Engelures, Hog Bean, Hyoscyami Folium, Hyoscyamus niger, Jupiter's Bean, Jusquiame, Jusquiame Noire, Khurasani-Ajavayan, Parasigaya, Poison Tobacco, Potelée, Stinking Nightshade, Tue Poule.
Henbane is a plant. The leaf is used to make medicine. Don't confuse henbane, sometimes called “fetid nightshade” or “stinking nightshade,” with bittersweet nightshade (Solanum dulcamara) or deadly nightshade (belladonna).
Henbane leaf is used for spasms of the digestive tract.
Some people apply henbane leaf oil directly to the skin for treating scar tissue.
How does it work?
Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...
- Spasms of the digestive tract, including the stomach and intestines.
- Treating scar tissue, when the leaf oil is used on the skin.
- Other conditions.
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).
Henbane is possibly safe for most people when taken by mouth for a short time with the help of a healthcare professional. Side effects include dry mouth, red skin, constipation, overheating, reduced sweating, vision disturbances, increased heart rate, urination problems, drowsiness, restlessness, hallucinations, delirium, manic episodes, and death.
Henbane is UNSAFE when used for self-medication. Since henbane can be very toxic, the dose must be carefully chosen and side effects checked by a healthcare professional. Too much henbane can cause poisoning and death.
Not enough is known about the safety of putting henbane oil on the skin.
Heart conditions such as heart failure or irregular heartbeat: Don't take henbane if you have heart failure or irregular heartbeat. There are chemicals in henbane that could cause rapid heartbeat (tachycardia) and also make heart failure worse.
Constipation: Don't take henbane if you are constipated. There are chemicals in henbane that could make your condition worse.
Trouble urinating (urinary retention): Don't take henbane if you have trouble urinating. There are chemicals in henbane that could make your condition worse.
Digestive tract conditions such as heartburn or “gastroesophageal reflux disease” (GERD), a hiatal hernia, an infection, stomach ulcer, constipation, a blockage, ulcerative colitis, a serious condition called toxic megacolon, or other digestive disorders: Don't take henbane if you have any of these conditions. There are chemicals in henbane that could make your condition worse.
Drying medications (Anticholinergic drugs)Interaction Rating: Major Do not take this combination.
Henbane contains chemicals that cause a drying effect. It also affects the brain and heart. Drying medications called anticholinergic drugs can also cause these effects. Taking henbane and drying medications together might cause side effects including dry skin, dizziness, low blood pressure, fast heartbeat, and other serious side effects.
The appropriate dose of henbane depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for henbane. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.
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.
Blumenthal M, ed. The Complete German Commission E Monographs: Therapeutic Guide to Herbal Medicines. Trans. S. Klein. Boston, MA: American Botanical Council, 1998.
Gruenwald J, Brendler T, Jaenicke C. PDR for Herbal Medicines. 1st ed. Montvale, NJ: Medical Economics Company, Inc., 1998.
McEvoy GK, ed. AHFS Drug Information. Bethesda, MD: American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, 1998.