Medication Guide App

Cat's claw

Generic Name: cat's claw (Not applicable.)
Brand Name: Generics only. No brands available.

Cat's claw is used for:

Stimulating the immune system. It is also said to have anti-inflammatory, antimutagenic, antiviral, and antioxidant properties, which may be useful in arthritis, allergies, asthma, diabetes, chronic fatigue syndrome, cancer, viral infections, irregular menstrual cycles, ulcers, gastritis, and hemorrhoids. It may also have other uses.

Cat's claw is an herbal product. It contains certain chemicals that work by reducing inflammation and fighting certain viruses.

Do NOT use cat's claw if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in cat's claw
  • you are pregnant
  • you have or are scheduled for an organ transplant or skin graft
  • you have a blood clotting disorder or hemophilia

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

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Before using cat's claw:

Some medical conditions may interact with cat's claw. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are planning to become pregnant or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have low blood pressure, are undergoing chemotherapy, or have conditions that decrease your immune response

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with cat's claw. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Chemotherapy or immunosuppressants (eg, cyclosporine, prednisone) because the effectiveness may be decreased by cat's claw

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if cat's claw may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use cat's claw:

Use cat's claw as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Dosing depends on the use and the source of the product.
  • Use as directed on the package, unless instructed otherwise by your doctor.
  • If you miss taking a dose of cat's claw for 1 or more days, there is no cause for concern. If your doctor recommended that you take it, try to remember your dose every day.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use cat's claw.

Important safety information:

  • Cat's claw may cause dizziness. Do not drive, operate machinery, or do anything else that could be dangerous until you know how you react to cat's claw. Using cat's claw alone, with certain other medicines, or with alcohol may lessen your ability to drive or to perform other potentially dangerous tasks.
  • Cat's claw may cause lightheadedness or fainting. Alcohol, hot weather, exercise, and fever can increase these effects. To prevent them, sit or stand up slowly, especially in the morning. Also, sit or lie down at the first sign of dizziness, lightheadedness, or weakness.
  • Do not confuse cat's claw with devil's claw. They have different properties and claims.
  • Do not use cat's claw while taking chemotherapy. Stop taking cat's claw 2 days before starting the chemotherapy and do not restart until 2 to 6 days after your chemotherapy is finished.
  • This product has not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as safe and effective for any medical condition. The long-term safety of herbal products is not known. Before using any alternative medicine, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
  • Cat's claw is not recommended for use in CHILDREN younger than 3 years of age. Talk with your doctor about risks and benefits before giving cat's claw to your child.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: Do not use cat's claw if you are pregnant. Do not breast-feed while taking cat's claw.

Possible side effects of cat's claw:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Diarrhea; dizziness; fatigue; weakness.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); bleeding from gums; blood in urine or stools.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately.

Proper storage of cat's claw:

Store at room temperature away from heat, moisture, and light unless otherwise directed on the package label. Do not store in the bathroom. Most herbal products are not in childproof containers. Keep cat's claw out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about cat's claw, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Cat's claw is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take cat's claw or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about cat's claw. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to cat's claw. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using cat's claw.

Issue Date: December 3, 2014
Database Edition 14.4.1.003
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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