Mullein

What other names is Mullein known by?

Aaron's Rod, Adam's Flannel, American Mullein, Beggar's Blanket, Blanket Herb, Blanket Leaf, Bouillon Blanc, Bouillon Jaune, Candleflower, Candlewick, Cierge Cotonneux, Cierge de Notre-Dame, Clot-Bur, Clown's Lungwort, Cuddy's Lungs, Duffle, European Mullein, Faux Bouillon-Blanc, Feltwort, Flannelflower, Fleur de Grand Chandelier, Fluffweed, Gidar Tamaku, Gordolobo, Hag's Taper, Hare's Beard, Hedge Taper, Herbe de Saint-Fiacre, Herbe Saint Fiacre, Higtaper, Jacob's Staff, Longwort, Molène, Molène à Grandes Fleurs, Molène Bouillon-Blanc, Molène Faux-Phlomis, Molène Thapsus, Orange Mullein, Oreille de Loup, Oreille de Saint Cloud, Our Lady's Flannel, Queue de Loup, Rag Paper, Shepherd's Club, Shepherd's Staff, Tabac du Diable, Torch Weed, Torches, Velvet Plant, Verbasci Flos, Wild Ice Leaf, Verbascum densiflorum, Verbascum phlomides, Verbascum thapsiforme, Verbascum thapsus, Woolen, Woolly Mullein.

What is Mullein?

Mullein is a plant. The flower is used to make medicine.

Mullein is used for cough, whooping cough, tuberculosis, bronchitis, hoarseness, pneumonia, earaches, colds, chills, flu, swine flu, fever, allergies, tonsillitis, and sore throat. Other uses include asthma, diarrhea, colic, gastrointestinal bleeding, migraines, joint pain, and gout. It is also used as a sedative and as a diuretic to increase urine output.

Mullein is applied to the skin for wounds, burns, hemorrhoids, bruises, frostbite, and skin infections (cellulitis). The leaves are used topically to soften and protect the skin.

In manufacturing, mullein is used as a flavoring ingredient in alcoholic beverages.

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...

More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of mullein for these uses.

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How does Mullein work?

The chemicals in mullein might be able to fight influenza and herpes viruses, and some bacteria that cause respiratory infections.

Are there safety concerns?

Mullein is POSSIBLY SAFE for when applied to the ear, short-term. A specific product (Otikon Otic Solution, Healthy-On Ltd.) that contains mullein, garlic, calendula, and St. John's wort has been used in the ear for up to 3 days.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Children: Mullein is POSSIBLY SAFE when applied to the ear, short-term. A specific product (Otikon Otic Solution, Healthy-On Ltd.) that contains mullein, garlic, calendula, and St. John's wort has been used in the ear for up to 3 days.

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking mullein if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Dosing considerations for Mullein.

The appropriate dose of mullein 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 mullein. 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.

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).

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Last Editorial Review: 3/29/2011