Health Guide


What is it?

Willow is an herbal medicine used to treat rheumatism (sore aching joints) with redness and pain, the flu, headache, and arthritis.

Other names for Willow include: Salix, White Willow, and Black Willow.

Ask your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist if you need more information about this medicine or if any information in this leaflet concerns you.

Before Using:

Tell your doctor if you

  • are taking medicine or are allergic to any medicine (prescription or over-the-counter (OTC) or dietary supplement)
  • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medicine
  • are breastfeeding
  • have asthma, an ulcer, liver or kidney disease, diabetes, gout, or a bleeding disorder
  • have any other health problems, such as high blood pressure or heart or blood vessel disease


Talk with your caregiver about how much Willow you should take. The amount depends on the strength of the medicine and the reason you are taking Willow. If you are using this medicine without instructions from your caregiver, follow the directions on the medicine bottle. Do not take more medicine or take it more often than the directions tell you to.

To store this medicine:

Keep all medicine locked up and away from children. Store medicine away from heat and direct light. Do not store your medicine in the bathroom, near the kitchen sink, or in other damp places. Heat or moisture may cause the medicine to break down and not work the way it should work. Throw away medicine that is out of date or that you do not need. Never share your medicine with others.

Drug and Food Interactions:

Do not take Willow without talking to your doctor first if you are taking:

  • Blood thinning medicine (anticoagulants, examples: warfarin (Coumadin(R)), aspirin, heparin, enoxaparin (Lovenox(R)))
  • Medicines used for pain or inflammation (ibuprofen (Advil(R), Motrin(R)), naproxen (Aleve(R))


  • Before taking Willow, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding
  • Do not take Willow if you are sensitive to aspirin or have asthma or an ulcer
  • If you have diabetes (high blood sugar), gout (sore aching joints), hemophilia (bleeding disorder), low blood clotting factor, kidney or liver disease, you should not use Willow without first talking to your health care giver.

Side Effects:

Stop taking your medicine right away and talk to your doctor if you have any of the following side effects. Your medicine may be causing these symptoms which may mean you are allergic to it.

  • Breathing problems or tightness in your throat or chest
  • Chest pain
  • Skin hives, rash, or itchy or swollen skin

Other Side Effects:

You may have the following side effects, but this medicine may also cause other side effects. Tell your doctor if you have side effects that you think are caused by this medicine.

  • You may have stomach and kidney irritation, bloody stools, ringing in the ears, vomiting (throwing up), nausea (upset stomach), or skin rashes


1. Bradley PR, editor: British Herbal Compendium, Vol 1. British Herbal Medicine Association, Bournemouth, UK; 1992.

2. Newall C, Anderson L & Phillipson J: Willow. In: Herbal Medicines: A Guide for Health-Care Professionals. The Pharmaceutical Press, London, UK; 1996.

3. Baker S: Thomas PS. Herbal medicine precipitation massive hemolysis. Lancet 1987; I: 1039-1040.

4. Fetrow CW & Avila JR: Professional's Handbook of Complementary and Alternative Medicines. Springhouse Corporation, Springhouse, PA; 1999: 669-671.

Last Updated: 7/4/2018
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