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Aconite

What is it?

Aconite is an herbal or homeopathic medicine that has been used for nerve pain, headache, rheumatism (sore and painful joints), and to treat cold and flu symptoms. It may also be used to treat fever, severe anxiety, and nervous excitement. Aconite is very poisonous.

Other names for Aconite include: Aconitum napellus, Friar's Cap, Helmet Flower, Monkshood, Soldier's Cap, Bear's Foot, and Wolfsbane.

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 any other health problems, such as high blood pressure or heart or blood vessel disease

Dosage:

Talk with your caregiver about how much Aconite you should take. The amount depends on the strength of the medicine and the reason you are taking Aconite. 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 Throw away medicine that is out of date or that you do not need.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.

Warnings:

  • Before taking Aconite, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • Aconite has caused acidosis, increased heartbeats, diarrhea, increased salivation, and blurred vision. It has also caused nausea (upset stomach), vomiting, and weakness of muscles with numbness (2).
  • Death has resulted from as little as 5 milliliters (100 drops) of aconite tincture, 2 milligrams of pure Aconite, 1 gram of crude plant parts, or 6 grams of cured Aconite. There is no known Aconite antidote (2).
  • Poisoning has occurred from touching parts of the Aconite plant (2).

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.

  • Aconite has caused acidosis, increased heartbeats, diarrhea, increased salivation, and blurred vision. It has also caused nausea (upset stomach), vomiting, and weakness of muscles with numbness (2).
  • Poisoning has occurred from touching parts of the Aconite plant (2).

References:

1. Fetrow C & Avila J: Professional's Handbook of Complementary and Alternative Medicines. Springhouse Corporation, Springhouse, PA; 1999.

2. Fleming T (ed): PDR for Herbal Medicines. Medical Economics Company Inc, Montvale, NJ; 1998.


Last Updated: 1/27/2017
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