COLTSFOOT Overview Information
Coltsfoot is a plant. The leaf is used to make medicine.
Despite serious safety concerns, people take coltsfoot for lung problems such as bronchitis, asthma, and whooping cough (pertussis). They also take it for upper respiratory tract complaints including sore mouth and throat, cough, and hoarseness.
Some people inhale coltsfoot for coughs and wheezing.
How does it work?
The chemicals in coltsfoot might fight pain and swelling (inflammation).
COLTSFOOT Side Effects & Safety
Coltsfoot is considered UNSAFE. It contains chemicals called hepatotoxic pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs) that can damage the liver or cause cancer. Dietary supplement products sold in the US are not required to state the amount of PAs they may contain. So, if the package doesn’t say the product is certified hepatotoxic PA- free, you can assume that there are probably hepatotoxic PAs in it. Avoid using coltsfoot products that are not certified and labeled as hepatotoxic PA-free.
Special Precautions & Warnings:Coltsfoot is considered UNSAFE for anyone, but people with the following conditions should be especially careful about avoiding this plant:
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Coltsfoot preparations containing hepatotoxic PAs might cause birth defects and liver damage. It’s not known whether coltsfoot preparations that are free of these chemicals are safe to use during pregnancy. So, it’s best to avoid using coltsfoot altogether if you are pregnant.
If you are breast-feeding, don’t take coltsfoot either. Hepatotoxic PAs can get into breast milk. Even if the product is certified hepatotoxic PA-free, it’s best to avoid use. Not enough is known about the safety of using hepatotoxic PA-free coltsfoot during breast-feeding.
Allergy to ragweed and related plants: Coltsfoot may cause an allergic reaction in people who are allergic to the Asteraceae/Compositae plant family. Members of this family include ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigolds, daisies, and many others. If you have allergies, be sure to check with your healthcare provider before taking coltsfoot.
High blood pressure, heart disease: There is a concern that coltsfoot taken in large amounts might interfere with treatment for these conditions. Don’t use coltsfoot if you have these conditions.
Liver disease: There is a concern that hepatotoxic PAs might make liver disease worse. Don’t use coltsfoot if you have this condition.
Moderate Interaction Be cautious with this combination
- Medications for high blood pressure (Antihypertensive drugs) interacts with COLTSFOOT
Excessive doses of coltsfoot seem to increase blood pressure. By increasing blood pressure coltsfoot might decrease the effectiveness of medications for high blood pressure.
Some medications for high blood pressure include captopril (Capoten), enalapril (Vasotec), losartan (Cozaar), valsartan (Diovan), diltiazem (Cardizem), amlodipine (Norvasc), hydrochlorothiazide (HydroDiuril), furosemide (Lasix), and many others.
- Medications that increase break down of other medications by the liver (Cytochrome P450 3A4 (CYP3A4) inducers) interacts with COLTSFOOT
Coltsfoot is broken down by the liver. Some chemicals that form when the liver breaks down coltsfoot can be harmful. Medications that cause the liver to break down coltsfoot might enhance the toxic effects of chemicals contained in coltsfoot.
Some of these medicines include carbamazepine (Tegretol), phenobarbital, phenytoin (Dilantin), rifampin, rifabutin (Mycobutin), and others.
- Medications that slow blood clotting (Anticoagulant / Antiplatelet drugs) interacts with COLTSFOOT
Coltsfoot might slow blood clotting. Taking coltsfoot along with medications that also slow clotting might increase the chances of bruising and bleeding.
Some medications that slow blood clotting include aspirin, clopidogrel (Plavix), diclofenac (Voltaren, Cataflam, others), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others), naproxen (Anaprox, Naprosyn, others), dalteparin (Fragmin), enoxaparin (Lovenox), heparin, warfarin (Coumadin), and others.
The appropriate dose of coltsfoot depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for coltsfoot. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.