TRIBULUS

OTHER NAME(S):

Abrojo, Abrojos, Al-Gutub, Baijili, Bindii, Bulgarian Tribulus Terrestris, Caltrop, Cat's-Head, Ci Ji Li, Common Dubbletjie, Croix-de-Malte, Devil's-Thorn, Devil's-Weed, Épine du Diable, Escarbot, Espigón, German Tribulus Terrestris, Goathead, Gokantaka, Gokhru, Gokshur, Gokshura, Nature's Viagra, Puncture Vine, Puncture Weed, Qutiba, Small Caltrops, Tribule, Tribule Terrestre, Tribulis, Tribulis Terrestris, Tribulus, Tribulus terrestris.<br/><br/>

Overview

Overview Information

Tribulus is a plant that produces fruit covered with spines. Rumor has it that tribulus is also known as puncture vine because the spines are so sharp they can flatten bicycle tires. People use the fruit, leaf, and root as medicine.

People use tribulus for conditions such as chest pain, eczema, enlarged prostate, sexual disorders, infertility, and many others, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses.

How does it work?

Tribulus has chemicals that might increase levels of some hormones. However, it doesn't appear to increase male hormones (testosterone) in humans.

Uses

Uses & Effectiveness?

Possibly Effective for

  • Sexual problems that prevent satisfaction during sexual activity. Research shows that taking tribulus can improve the sexual experience in women who have sexual dysfunction or low sexual desire. Taking tribulus seems to improve sexual desire, arousal, sensation, ability to reach orgasm, lubrication, and sexual comfort. Early research also shows that taking tribulus can improve sexual satisfaction in men with erectile dysfunction.

Possibly Ineffective for

  • Enhancing athletic performance. Taking tribulus by mouth, alone or with other herbs and supplements, doesn't seem to enhance body composition or exercise performance in athletes.

Insufficient Evidence for

  • Chest pain (angina pectoris). Early research shows that taking tribulus extract by mouth might reduce symptoms of angina.
  • Eczema (atopic dermatitis). Taking tribulus by mouth in combination with 9 other herbs might reduce redness and skin outbreaks in adults and children with a certain type of eczema. However, some research shows no benefit.
  • Enlarged prostate (Benign prostatic hyperplasia; BPH). Early research shows that taking a supplement containing tribulus and curry leaf (Murraya koenigii) for 12 weeks improves symptoms similar to the prescription drug tamsulosin in men with an enlarged prostate. Other early research shows that taking a supplement containing tribulus, brown algae, chitosan, and saw palmetto for 2 months improves symptoms and quality of life in men with lower urinary tract symptoms, with or without BPH.
  • Erectile dysfunction (ED). The effect of tribulus for erectile dysfunction is unclear. Some early research shows that taking tribulus for 3 months improves erections and sexual satisfaction in men with and without a condition called partial androgen deficiency. Men with this condition often have ED. Other early research shows that taking a supplement containing tribulus, brown algae, and chitosan for 3 months improves sexual satisfaction, desire, ability to ejaculate, and sexual quality of life in men with ED. However, other research shows that taking tribulus for 30 days does not improve erections in men with ED.
  • Conditions in a man that prevent him from getting a woman pregnant within a year of trying to conceive (male infertility). Research on tribulus for infertility is conflicting. Some early research shows that taking tribulus for up to 3 months does not improve sperm count in men with low sperm count or men with unexplained infertility. However, other research shows that taking a specific tribulus product for 30 days improves ejaculate volume, sperm concentration, and sperm movement in men with low sperm count and defective sperm movement. Other research shows that taking the same tribulus product for 1-2 months may increase sexual desire and erections in some men who have infertility due to low levels of testosterone.
  • Menopausal symptoms. Early research shows that taking a supplement containing tribulus and other ingredients twice daily for 4 weeks improves some menopausal symptoms such as depression and tiredness, but not other symptoms like vaginal dryness. The effect of tribulus alone on menopausal symptoms is unknown.
  • A hormonal disorder that causes enlarged ovaries with cysts (polycystic ovary syndrome or PCOS). Early research shows that taking tribulus and other ingredients for 3 months might improve menstrual cycle regularity, improve quality of life, and decrease body weight in women with PCOS. Although women taking this combination had a higher rate of becoming pregnant, this did not make them more likely to give birth. The effect of taking tribulus alone for the treatment of PCOS is unknown.
  • Premature ejaculation. Early research shows that taking a supplement containing tribulus and other ingredients daily for 3 months improves time to ejaculation by 30 seconds. However, the effect of taking tribulus alone for the treatment of premature ejaculation is unknown.
  • "Tired blood" (anemia).
  • Cancer.
  • Coughs.
  • Intestinal gas (flatulence).
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of tribulus for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

Tribulus supplements are POSSIBLY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth for a short period of time. Tribulus has been used safely in research studies lasting up to 90 days. Side effects are usually mild and uncommon but might include stomach pain, cramping, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, constipation, excitation, difficulty sleeping, or heavy menstrual bleeding. In rare cases, reports of kidney damage have been linked to taking tribulus. The long-term safety of tribulus is unknown.

Eating the spine-covered fruit of tribulus is LIKELY UNSAFE. There has been a report of a serious lung problem linked to eating the fruit.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Taking tribulus during pregnancy is POSSIBLY UNSAFE. Animal research suggests that tribulus might harm fetal development. Not enough is known about the safety of using tribulus during breast-feeding. It's best not to use tribulus if you are pregnant or nursing.

Diabetes. Tribulus might decrease blood sugar levels. Dose of diabetes medications might need to be adjusted by your healthcare provider.

Surgery: Tribulus might affect blood sugar levels and blood pressure. This might interfere with blood sugar and blood pressure control during and after surgery. Stop using tribulus at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.

Interactions

Interactions?

Moderate Interaction

Be cautious with this combination

!
  • Lithium interacts with TRIBULUS

    Tribulus might have an effect like a water pill or "diuretic." Taking tribulus might decrease how well the body gets rid of lithium. This could increase how much lithium is in the body and result in serious side effects. Talk with your healthcare provider before using this product if you are taking lithium. Your lithium dose might need to be changed.

  • Medications for diabetes (Antidiabetes drugs) interacts with TRIBULUS

    Tribulus might decrease blood sugar. Diabetes medications are also used to lower blood sugar. Taking tribulus along with diabetes medications might cause your blood sugar to go too low. Monitor your blood sugar closely. The dose of your diabetes medication might need to be changed.<br/><br/> Some medications used for diabetes include glimepiride (Amaryl), glyburide (DiaBeta, Glynase PresTab, Micronase), insulin, pioglitazone (Actos), rosiglitazone (Avandia), chlorpropamide (Diabinese), glipizide (Glucotrol), tolbutamide (Orinase), and others.

Dosing

Dosing

The following doses have been studied in scientific research:

ADULTS

BY MOUTH:

  • For sexual problems that prevent satisfaction during sexual activity: 250 mg tribulus powdered extract three times daily taken after meals for 3 months has been used for women. Also, tribulus extract 7.5 mg daily for 4 weeks has been used for women. 500 mg three times daily for 3 months has been used for men.

View References

REFERENCES:

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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.

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