||Black Root, Bruisewort, Knitbone, Slippery Root, Wallwort
||Europe and W Asia
||Moist to wet soil in sun or partial shade. Comfrey is invasive and deep-rooted, and difficult to erradicate when established. Plants may be affected by rust.
||By seed sown in autumn or spring (species only); by division in spring or autumn.
||Leaves are picked in early summer before flowering and dried for infusions, liquid extracts, and poultices. Roots are lifted during dormancy and dried for decoctions, liquid extracts, and ointments.
||A sweet, mucilaginous, cooling herb with expectorant, astringent, soothing, and healing effects. It reduces inflammation, and controls bleeding.
||Internally for gastric and duodenal ulcers, chronic bronchial diseases, colitis, irritable bowel syndrome, and rheumatism (leaves). Externally for psoriasis, eczema, sores, varicose veins and ulcers, arthritis, sprains, bunions, hemorrhoids, sore breasts during lactation, and injuries, including fractures.
To treat gum disease, strep throat, inflammation of the throat, stomach ulcers, bruises, sprains, and pulled ligaments and muscles; to promote bone healing. Germany's Commission E has approved the use of comfrey to treat blunt injuries.
||Internal use is no longer recommended because of the potential for liver damage. For external use, topical products containing comfrey (5 to 20 percent of dried herb present in product) may be used as needed, but not for longer than four weeks and only on unbroken skin.
|Possible Side Effects:
||Comfrey's side effects include allergic reactions (from oral or topical use) and nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, liver damage, and liver cancer (from oral use).
|Taking comfrey internally with these drugs may cause or increase liver damage:
||Acarbose, (Prandase, Precose)
||Acetaminophen, (Genepap, Tylenol)
||Allopurinol, (Aloprim, Zyloprim)
||Cyclosporine, (Neoral, Sandimmune)
|Erythromycin, (Erythrocin, Staticin)
||Etodolac, (Lodine, Utradol)
||Fluconazole, (Apo-Fluconazole, Diflucan)
||Fluphenazine, (Modecate, Prolixin)
||Ganciclovir, (Cytovene, Vitrasert)
||Gemfibrozil, (Apo-Gemfibrozil, Lopid)
||Gentamicin, (Alcomicin, Gentacidin)
||Ibuprofen, (Advil, Motrin)
||Isoniazid, (Isotamiune, Nydrazid)
||Ketoconazole, (Apo-Ketoconazole, Nizoral)
||Ketoprofen, (Orudis, Rhodis)
||Ketorolac, (Acular, Toradol)
|Lamivudine, (Epivir, Heptovir)
||Levodopa-Carbidopa, (Nu-Levocarb, Sinemet)
||Lovastatin, (Altocor, Mevacor)
||Meloxicam, (MOBIC, Mobicox)
||Methotrexate, (Rheumatrex, Trexall)
|Methyldopa, (Apo-Methyldopa, Nu-Medopa)
||Morphine Hydrochloride, (Morphine Hydrochloride)
||Morphine Sulfate, (Kadian, MS Contin)
||Naproxen, (Aleve, Naprosyn)
||Nitrofurantoin, (Macrobid, Furadantin)
||Paclitaxel, (Onxol, Taxol)
||Pantoprazole, (Pantoloc, Protonix)
|Phenytoin, (Dilantin, Phenytek)
||Piroxicam, (Feldene, Nu-Pirox)
||Pravastatin, (Novo-Pravastatin, Pravachol)
||Prochlorperazine, (Compazine, Compro)
|Propoxyphene, (Darvon, Darvon-N)
||Repaglinide, (GlucoNorm, Prandin)
||Rifampin, (Rifadin, Rimactane)
||Saquinavir, (Fortovase, Invirase)
||Simvastatin, (Apo-Simvastatin, Zocor)
|Tamoxifen, (Nolvadex, Tamofen)
||Zidovudine, (Novo-AZT, Retrovir)
|Lab Test Alterations:
||May increase values on liver function tests, including aspartic acid transaminase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), total bilirubin, and urine bilirubin.
||May worse liver disease.
- May increase the risk of liver damage when combined with herbs and supplements that can cause hepatotoxicity (destructive effects on the liver), such as Bishop's Weed, Borage, Chaparral, Uva Ursi, and others.
- Enhanced toxicity when taken with herbs and supplements that induce Cytochrome P450 3A4, such as Garlic and St. John's Wort.
- Increased risk of additive toxicity when used with herbs and supplements containing unsaturated pyrrolizidine alkaloids (UPAs), such as Butterbur and Colt's Foot.
||Bristly foliage is a skin irritant.
This herb, especially in the form of tablets and capsules of the roots or leaves, is subject to legal restrictions in some countries.
||Fresh young leaves are added to salads, made into fritters, or cooked as a vegetable in similar ways to spinach. Dried leaves are used to make tea.
||Encyclopedia of herbs by Deni Brown Copyright © 1995, 2001 Dorling Kindersley Limited. pg 377
The Essential Herb-Drug-Vitamin Interaction Guide by Geo. T. Grossberg,MD and Barry Fox,PhD Copyright©2007 Barry Fox,PhD. Pp.162-163