Pelargonium sidoides is a plant in the geranium family that grows in South Africa. It has heart-shaped leaves and narrow flowers of deep, saturated red. It has a long history of traditional use in southern Africa for treatment of respiratory problems. The root is the part used medicinally.
What is Pelargonium sidoides Used for Today?
An alcohol extract made from Pelargonium sidoides has become popular in Germany as a treatment for various respiratory problems, including acute bronchitis
For example, in one
Another double-blind, placebo-controlled study enrolled 143 children aged 6-10 years with a nondangerous form of
: Only a medical test can distinguish between the relatively nondangerous form of strep throat studied in this trial (non-group A strep) and strep throat of the potentially very dangerous A form (group A strep). For this reason, physician supervision is essential. See the
Finally, a double-blind study of 133 adults who had just come down with the
It is not known how
might work, but its action is hypothesized to involve both direct antibacterial effects and immune function modification.
A typical adult dose of the tested standardized root extract is 30 drops three times daily. For children 6-11, this dose is typically reduced to 20 drops three times daily. However, other products beside the tested formulation may vary in strength. Therefore, we recommend that you follow the label instructions.
In clinical trials enrolling a total of over 2,500 adults and children, use of the tested, standardized extract produced few side effects, other than the usual occasional allergic reactions or digestive upset. 1 However, comprehensive safety testing has not been completed. There is no reliable evidence regarding safety in children under the age of 6, pregnant or nursing women, or people with severe liver or kidney disease.
2. Matthys H, et al. Efficacy and safety of an extract of Pelargonium sidoides (EPs 7630) in adults with acute bronchitis. A randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Phytomedicine. 2003;10(suppl 4):7-17.
3. Bereznoy VV, Riley DS, Wassmer G, Heger M. Efficacy of extract of Pelargonium sidoides in children with acute non-group A beta-hemolytic streptococcus tonsillopharyngitis: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Altern Ther Health Med . 2003;9:68-79.
7. Chuchalin AG, Berman B, Lehmacher W. Treatment of acute bronchitis in adults with a pelargonium sidoides preparation (EPs 7630): a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Explore (NY) . 2006;1:437-445.
8. Matthys H, Heger M. Treatment of acute bronchitis with a liquid herbal drug preparation from Pelargonium sidoides (EPs 7630): a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicentre study. Curr Med Res Opin . 2007;23:323-331.
9. Lizogub VG, Riley DS, Heger M. Efficacy of a Pelargonium sidoides preparation in patients with the common cold: a randomized, double blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial. Explore (NY). 2007;3:573-584.
11. Matthys H, Funk P. EPs 7630 improves acute bronchitic symptoms and shortens time to remission. results of a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicentre trial. Planta Med. 2008 Apr 30.
Last reviewed April 2009 by EBSCO CAM Review Board
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