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Fumaria officinalis

Latin Name: Fumaria officinalis

Common name: Fumitory, Earth Smoke

Family: Fumariaceae

Parts used: Aerial

Constituents: Isoquinoline alkaloid (canadine, dicentrine, fumaricine/fumarine, sanguinarine) as well as protopine, and berberine-like alkaloids, rutin and quercitin.

Medicinal actions: Depurative, antispasmodic, hypotensive, diuretic, cholagogue, mild sedative, vulnerary, diuretic, alterative, laxative, anti-itching, anti-bacterial, vasodilator.

Medicinal use: chronic conditions and a variety of skin disorders including scabies, leprosy, eczema, and general itching, sores, and abscesses. Also used in digestive weaknesses (constipation), gastrointestinal disorders, gallbladder disorders and liver insufficiency.

Pharmacology:

  • Reports of protopine’s antibacterial activity against Gram-positive Staphylococcus and Bacillus Anthracis have been noted.

Pharmacy:

  • Infusion: 1-2 tsp/1 cup of water TID
  • Dried herb: 2-4 g orally or in hot water TID
  • Tincture: 1-4 ml (1:5, 45%) TID, or 1-2 ml (1:5, 25%) TID

Toxicity: Can be toxic in high doses due to the presence of Protopine, should be used under professional advice in this manner.

Contraindications: Do not use in pregnancy or breast feeding, use with caution if elderly.

Interactions: May interact with cardiac mediations and anti-hypertensives.

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