Bois d'Artois, Bois Béni, Bois Ordinaire, Boj, Boje, Boxwood Extract, Buis, Buis Commun, Buis Toujours Vert, Bujo, Bush Tree, Buxaceae, Buxus, Buxus colchica, Buxus hyrcana, Buxus sempervirens, Dudgeon, European Box, Extrait de Buis, SPV 30.


Overview Information

Boxwood is a shrub. People use chemicals (extract) from the leaf of boxwood to make medicine. But the leaf itself should not be used for medicine. It can cause serious harm, including death.

People use boxwood extract for conditions such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, and arthritis, and as a "blood-detoxifying agent," but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses.

How does it work?

Boxwood might stop the parasite that causes malaria from reproducing. It might also stop viruses, but there isn't enough scientific evidence to support this theory.


Uses & Effectiveness?

Insufficient Evidence for

  • HIV/AIDS. Early evidence suggests that taking boxwood leaf extract might delay disease progression in people with HIV.
  • Arthritis.
  • Detoxifying the blood.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of boxwood for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

When taken by mouth: Extract of boxwood leaf is POSSIBLY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth for up to 16 months. But using whole boxwood leaf is LIKELY UNSAFE. It has serious side effects that the leaf extract doesn't seem to have. Whole boxwood leaf can cause poisoning, including life-threatening side effects such as seizures and paralysis. It can also cause death.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: It's LIKELY UNSAFE to use whole boxwood leaf, whether or not you are pregnant or breast-feeding. There isn't enough reliable information to know if boxwood extract is safe to use when pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Slow heart rate (bradycardia): Boxwood extract might slow down the heart rate. This could be a problem in people who already have a slow heart rate.

Gastrointestinal tract blockage: Boxwood extract might cause "congestion" in the intestines. This might cause problems in people who have a blockage in their intestines.

Ulcers: Boxwood extract might increase secretions in the stomach and intestines. There is concern that this could worsen ulcers.

Lung conditions: Boxwood extract might increase fluid secretions in the lung. There is concern that this could worsen lung conditions such as asthma or emphysema.

Seizures: There is concern that boxwood extract might increase the risk of seizures.

Urinary tract obstruction: Boxwood extract might increase secretions in the urinary tract. There is concern that this could worsen urinary obstruction.



We currently have no information for BOXWOOD Interactions.



The appropriate dose of boxwood 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 boxwood. 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.

View References


  • Ahmed, D., Choudhary, M. I., Turkoz, S., and Sener, B. Chemical Constituents of Buxus sempervirens. Planta Med 1988;54(2):173-174. View abstract.
  • Durant, J., Chantre, P. H., Gonzalez, G., Vandermander, J., Halfon, P. H., Rousse, B., Guedon, D., Rahelinirina, V., Chamaret, S., Montagnier, L., and Dellamonica, P. Efficacy and safety of
  • Liu, J. P., Manheimer, E., and Yang, M. Herbal medicines for treating HIV infection and AIDS. Cochrane.Database.Syst.Rev. 2005;(3):CD003937. View abstract.
  • Loru, F., Duval, D., Aumelas, A., Akeb, F., Guedon, D., and Guedj, R. Four steroidal alkaloids from the leaves of Buxus sempervirens. Phytochemistry 2000;54(8):951-957. View abstract.
  • Orhan, I., Sener, B., Choudhary, M. I., and Khalid, A. Acetylcholinesterase and butyrylcholinesterase inhibitory activity of some Turkish medicinal plants. J Ethnopharmacol 2004;91(1):57-60. View abstract.
  • van Neer, F. J. and van Ginkel, C. J. Allergic contact dermatitis from a boxwood recorder. Contact Dermatitis 1997;36(6):305. View abstract.
  • Althaus JB, Jerz G, Winterhalter P, Kaiser M, Brun R, Schmidt TJ. Antiprotozoal activity of Buxus sempervirens and activity-guided isolation of O-tigloylcyclovirobuxeine-B as the main constituent active against Plasmodium falciparum. Molecules. 2014;19(5):6184-201. View abstract .
  • Atta-ur-Rahman Au, Ata A, Naz S, et al. New steroidal alkaloids from the roots of buxus sempervirens. J Nat Prod 1999;62:665-9. View abstract.
  • Carballada F, Prat M, Núñez R, et al. Allergy to boxwood. J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol. 2014;24(5):359-61. View abstract.
  • Durant J, Chantre P, Gonzalez G, et al. Efficacy and safety of Buxus sempervirens L. preparations (SPV30) in HIV-infected asymptomatic patients: a multicentre, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Phytomedicine 1998;5:1-10.

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CONDITIONS OF USE AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.

This copyrighted material is provided by Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Consumer Version. Information from this source is evidence-based and objective, and without commercial influence. For professional medical information on natural medicines, see Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Professional Version.
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