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Medically reviewed by Last updated on Jun 14, 2022.

What are other common names?

  • Petasites frigidus
  • Petasites hybridus
  • Petasites japonicas
  • Tussilago farfara
  • Arctic Butterbur
  • Arctic Sweet Coltsfoot
  • Arctic Sweet Coltsfoot (P. frigidus)
  • Blatterdock
  • Bog Rhubarb
  • Bogshorns
  • Butter-Dock
  • Butterfly Dock
  • Capdockin
  • Chapeliere
  • Coltsfoot
  • Common Butterbur
  • Contre-Peste
  • Exwort
  • Flapperdock
  • Fuki
  • Fuki Petasites
  • Giant Butterbur
  • Grand Bonnet
  • Japanese Butterbur
  • Japanese Sweet Coltsfoot (P. japonicas)
  • Japonica Petasites
  • Langwort
  • Pestilence-Wort (P. hybridus)
  • Pestwurz
  • Petadolex
  • Petasites
  • Petasites Japonicus
  • Petasites Vulgaris
  • Petasitidis Folium
  • Petasitidis Hybridus
  • Petasitidis Rhizoma
  • Plague Root
  • Purple Butterbur
  • Umbrella Leaves

What is this product used for?

Butterbur may help improve symptoms of seasonal allergies, or hay fever. It may also help to prevent migraines.

What are the precautions when taking this product?

  • Always check with your doctor before you use a natural product. Some products may not mix well with drugs or other natural products.

  • Use products that are certified and do not contain toxic ingredients called pyrrolizidine alkaloids. These products may say “pyrrolizidine free” or “PA free” on the label.

  • This product may interfere with some lab tests. Be sure to talk with your doctor about this and all drugs you are taking.

  • Do not use this product if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant soon. Use birth control you can trust while taking this product.

  • Do not use this product if you are breastfeeding.

  • Take extra care if you are allergic to pollens or plants like ragweed, daisy, marigolds, aster, or chrysanthemums.

  • Take extra care if you are taking drugs that help your heart beat stronger. These are drugs like dobutamine, milrinone, or digoxin.

  • Take extra care if you are taking drugs called calcium channel blockers. These are drugs like amlodipine, diltiazem, and verapamil.

  • Take extra care if you are taking drugs that block the nerve chemical called acetylcholine. These drugs have anticholinergic effects and are used for many different health conditions, such as allergies, Parkinson disease, difficulty controlling urination, and motion sickness.

  • Take extra care and check with your doctor if you have:

    • Liver problems

    • Heart problems

What should I watch for?

  • Upset stomach

  • Stomach cramps

  • Increased burping

  • Drowsiness

  • Itchy eyes

When do I need to call the doctor?

  • Signs of a very bad reaction. These include wheezing; chest tightness; fever; itching; bad cough; blue skin color; seizures; or swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat. Go to the ER right away.

  • Signs of liver problems. These include upset stomach or throwing up, belly pain, feeling tired, dark urine, yellow skin or eyes, not hungry.

  • Very bad headache

  • Very bad belly pain

  • Very bad throwing up

  • Very bad loose stools

  • Difficult to breathe

  • Dizziness or fainting

Where can I learn more?

National Center for Complementary and Alternative Health

Last Reviewed Date


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