Verbena

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What other names is Verbena known by?

Blue Vervain, Common Verbena, Common Vervain, Eisenkraut, Enchanter's Plant, European Vervain, Herb of Grace, Herb of the Cross, Herba Verbenae, Herbe aux Enchantements, Herbe du Foie, Herbe Sacrée, Herbe aux Sorciers, Herbe à Tous les Maux, Herbe du Sang, Herbe de Vénus, Holywort, Juno's Tears, Ma Bian Cao, Pigeon's Grass, Pigeonweed, Simpler's Joy, Turkey Grass, Veine de Vénus, Verbenae Herba, Verbena officinalis, Vervain, Verveine, Verveine Commune, Verveine des Champs, Verveine Officinale, Yerba de Santa Ana.

What is Verbena?

Verbena is a plant. The parts that grow above ground are used to make medicine.

Verbena is used for sore throats and respiratory tract diseases such as asthma and whooping cough, and for heart conditions such as chest pain (angina) and fluid retention due to heart failure.

Verbena is also used for depression, hysteria, generalized seizure, gallbladder pain, arthritis, gout, metabolic disorders, "iron-poor blood" (anemia), fever, and recovery after fever.

Other uses include treatment of pain, spasms, exhaustion, nervous conditions, digestive disorders, liver and gallbladder diseases, jaundice, and kidney and lower urinary tract disorders.

Women use verbena for treating symptoms of menopause, irregular menstruation, and increasing milk flow, if breast-feeding.

Some people apply verbena directly to the skin to treat poorly healing wounds, abscesses and burns; for arthritis, joint pain (rheumatism), dislocations, bone bruises (contusions), and itching. Verbena is also used as a gargle for cold symptoms and other conditions of the mouth and throat.

In combination with gentian root, European elder flower, cowslip flower, and sorrel, verbena is used for maintaining healthy sinuses and treating inflamed or swollen sinuses (sinusitis).

In manufacturing, verbena flowers are used as a flavoring agent in alcoholic beverages.

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...

  • Nasal swelling (sinusitis). Early research suggests that taking a specific product containing verbena, gentian root, elderflower, cowslip flower, and sorrel (SinuComp, Sinupret) by mouth along with antibiotics and nasal decongestants helps treat sudden or ongoing sinusitis better than the standard medications alone.
  • Sore throat.
  • Asthma.
  • Whooping cough.
  • Chest pain.
  • Abscesses.
  • Burns.
  • Colds.
  • Arthritis.
  • Itching.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of verbena 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 Verbena work?

Verbena contains chemicals that might reduce inflammation.

Are there safety concerns?

Verbena is LIKELY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth in food amounts and POSSIBLY SAFE when taken by mouth in small amounts as part of a combination product containing gentian root, elderflower, sorrel, and cowslip flower (SinuComp, Sinupret). There isn't enough information to know if verbena is safe when used in medicinal amounts other than as part of the combination product. The combination product can cause digestive system upset and occasionally allergic skin rash.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

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

Are there any interactions with medications?



Medications changed by the liver (Cytochrome P450 2B1 (CYP2B1) substrates)
Interaction Rating: Moderate Be cautious with this combination.
Talk with your health provider.

Some medications are changed and broken down by the liver. Verbena might slow down how quickly the liver breaks down some medications. Taking verbena along with some medications that are broken down by the liver can increase the effects and side effects from some medications. Before taking verbena, talk to your healthcare provider if you are taking medications that are changed by the liver.
Medications that might be affected include cyclophosphamide, ifosfamide, barbiturates, bromobenzene, and others.

Dosing considerations for Verbena.

The following doses have been studied in scientific research:

BY MOUTH:
  • For sinus infections: the combination of 36 mg of verbena plus 12 mg of gentian root and 36 mg each of elderflower, sorrel, and cowslip flower three times daily.
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Reviewed on 3/29/2011 12:35:40 PM

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