Suma

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What other names is Suma known by?

Brazilian Ginseng, Brazilien Ginseng, Ginseng Brasilero, Ginseng Brésilien, Ginseng du Brésil, Gomphrena paniculata, Hebanthe eriantha, Hebanthe paniculata, Pfaffia, Pfaffia paniculata.

What is Suma?

Suma is a plant. It is sometimes called Brazilian ginseng, although it is not related to ginseng. The root is used to make medicine.

Suma is used as an "adaptogen" to help the body adapt to stress by improving the immune system. Suma is also used as a treatment for cancer and tumors, diabetes, and male sexual performance problems; as a tonic to restore body function; and as an aphrodisiac to heighten sexual arousal.

Suma is sometimes applied directly to the skin for wounds and skin problems.

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...

  • Improving the immune system.
  • Cancer and tumors.
  • Diabetes.
  • Wounds.
  • Skin problems.
  • Sexual problems.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of suma for these uses.

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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How does Suma work?

Some researchers think that the chemicals in suma may stop some cancers from developing, decrease swelling, and relieve pain.

Are there safety concerns?

Suma is considered safe for most people when it is taken by mouth for a short period of time. There isn't enough information to know if using suma on the skin is safe.

Suma can cause asthma symptoms if the root powder is inhaled.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of suma during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Dosing considerations for Suma.

The appropriate dose of suma 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 suma. 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.

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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.

Reviewed on 3/29/2011 12:35:40 PM

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