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What is Greater Celandine Used for Today?
Test-tube and animal studies provide weak evidence that greater celandine may both stimulate and relax the gall bladder. 1 2 In Europe, it is commonly believed that minor gall bladder problems are a cause of indigestion. On this basis, celandine was approved in 1985 by Germany’s Commission E as a treatment for what we would call dyspepsia , or non-specific digestive distress. While there is some supporting evidence for this use, 3 4 in view of the safety risks associated with celandine (see Safety Issues ), we do not recommend using it for this purpose (or any other).
Very preliminary evidence hints suggests that constituents of celandine may also have cancer preventive and antimicrobial properties. 5 6 Celandine has also traditionally been advocated as a topical treatment for warts . However, there is no reliable evidence that it is effective for this purpose.
- Baumann JC. Effect of Chelidonium , Curcuma , absinth and Carduus marianus on the bile and pancreatic secretion in liver diseases [in German]. Med Monatsschr. 1975;29:173–80.
- Hiller KO, Ghorbani M, Schilcher H. Antispasmodic and relaxant activity of chelidonine, protopine, coptisine, and Chelidonium majus extracts on isolated guinea-pig ileum [letter]. Planta Med. 1998;64:758–60.
- Ritter R, Schatton WFH. Clinical trial on standardized celandine extract in patients with functional epigastric complaints: results of placebo-controlled double-blind trial. Comp Ther Med. 1993;1:189–93.
- Kupke D, von Sanden H, Trinczek-Gartner H, et al. An evaluation of the choleretic activity of a plant-based cholagogue [in German]. Z Allgemeinmed. 1991;67:1046–1058.
- Colombo ML, Bosisio E. Pharmacological activities of Chelidonium majus L. (Papaveraceae). Pharmacol Res. 1996;33:127–134.
- Nowicky JW, Staniszewski A, Zbroja-Sontag W, et al. Evaluation of thiophosphoric acid alkaloid derivatives from Chelidonium majus L. (Ukrain) as an immunostimulant in patients with various carcinomas. Drugs Exp ClinRes. 1991;17:139-143.