Chijol, Cornouiller de Jamaïque, Dogwood Jamaica, Erythrina piscipula, Fishfudle, Fish Poison Bark, Fish-Poison Tree, Ichthyomethia piscipula, Jabín, Jamaica Dogwood, Jamaican Cornouiller, Piscidia, Piscidia communis, Piscidia erythrina, Piscidia piscipula, West Indian Dogwood.<br/><br/>


Overview Information

Jamaican dogwood is a plant. The root bark is used to make medicine.

Despite serious safety concerns, Jamaican dogwood is used for anxiety and fear, for sleep problems (especially sleeplessness due to nervous tension), and as a daytime sedative. It is also used for painful conditions including nerve pain, migraines, and menstrual cramps.

Be careful not to confuse Jamaican dogwood and American dogwood.

How does it work?

Jamaican dogwood might cause sleepiness, decrease pain and swelling (inflammation), and decrease muscle spasms in internal organs.


Uses & Effectiveness?

Insufficient Evidence for

More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of Jamaican dogwood for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

Jamaican dogwood is LIKELY UNSAFE and poisonous when taken by mouth for self-medication. Jamaican dogwood is an irritant and can cause numbness, tremors, salivation, and sweating.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Jamaican dogwood is LIKELY UNSAFE for anyone to use, but people affected by the following conditions are particularly sensitive to the toxic effects and should avoid use.

Children: Jamaican dogwood is LIKELY UNSAFE for children when taken by mouth. They are especially sensitive to the poisons this plant contains. Do not give Jamaican dogwood to children.

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: It is LIKELY UNSAFE for pregnant women to take Jamaican dogwood by mouth. It can affect the uterus. It is also LIKELY UNSAFE for breast-feeding women to take Jamaican dogwood by mouth because of the poisons it contains.

Surgery: Jamaican dogwood might slow down the central nervous system (CNS), causing sleepiness. There is a concern that it might slow down the CNS too much when combined with anesthesia and other medications used during and after surgery. Stop using Jamaican dogwood at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.



Major Interaction

Do not take this combination

  • Sedative medications (CNS depressants) interacts with JAMAICAN DOGWOOD

    Jamaican dogwood might cause sleepiness and drowsiness. Medications that cause sleepiness are called sedatives. Taking Jamaican dogwood along with sedative medications might cause too much sleepiness.<br /> Some sedative medications include clonazepam (Klonopin), lorazepam (Ativan), phenobarbital (Donnatal), zolpidem (Ambien), and others.



The appropriate dose of Jamaican dogwood 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 Jamaican dogwood. 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


  • Alonso-Diaz, M. A., Torres-Acosta, J. F., Sandoval-Castro, C. A., Aguilar-Caballero, A. J., and Hoste, H. In vitro larval migration and kinetics of exsheathment of Haemonchus contortus larvae exposed to four tropical tanniniferous plant extracts. Vet.Parasitol. 5-31-2008;153(3-4):313-319. View abstract.
  • Auxence, E. G. A pharmacognostic study of Piscidia erythrina. Economic Botany 1953;7(3):270-284.
  • Caceres, A., Lopez, B. R., Giron, M. A., and Logemann, H. Plants used in Guatemala for the treatment of dermatophytic infections. 1. Screening for antimycotic activity of 44 plant extracts. J.Ethnopharmacol. 1991;31(3):263-276. View abstract.
  • COSTELLO, C. H. and BUTLER, C. L. An investigation of Piscidia erythrina (Jamaica dogwood). J.Am.Pharm.Assoc.Am.Pharm.Assoc. 1948;37(3):89-97. View abstract.
  • Della, Loggia R., Tubaro, A., and Redaelli, C. [Evaluation of the activity on the mouse CNS of several plant extracts and a combination of them]. Riv.Neurol. 1981;51(5):297-310. View abstract.
  • Della, Loggia R., Zilli, C., Del, Negro P., Redaelli, C., and Tubaro, A. Isoflavones as spasmolytic principles of Piscidia erythrina. Prog.Clin.Biol.Res. 1988;280:365-368. View abstract.
  • Fernandez-Salas, A., Alonso-Diaz, M. A., Acosta-Rodriguez, R., Torres-Acosta, J. F., Sandoval-Castro, C. A., and Rodriguez-Vivas, R. I. In vitro acaricidal effect of tannin-rich plants against the cattle tick Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus (Acari: Ixodidae). Vet.Parasitol. 1-10-2011;175(1-2):113-118. View abstract.
  • Hoffmann, D. The Herbal Handbook: A User's Guide to Medical Herbalism. Healing Arts Press 1988;
  • Meolie, A. L., Rosen, C., Kristo, D., Kohrman, M., Gooneratne, N., Aguillard, R. N., Fayle, R., Troell, R., Townsend, D., Claman, D., Hoban, T., and Mahowald, M. Oral nonprescription treatment for insomnia: an evaluation of products with limited evidence. J Clin.Sleep Med 4-15-2005;1(2):173-187. View abstract.
  • Yarnell, E. Abascal K. Botanical Medicines for Headache. Altern Complement Ther 2007;13(3):148-152.
  • Yarnell, E. Abascal K. Spasmolytic Botanicals: Relaxing Smooth Muscle with Herbs. Altern Complement Ther 2011;17(3):169-174.

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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.
© Therapeutic Research Faculty 2018.