SKULLCAP

OTHER NAME(S):

American Skullcap, Blue Pimpernel, Blue Skullcap, Escutelaria, Grande Toque, Helmet Flower, Hoodwort, Mad-Dog Herb, Mad-Dog Skullcap, Mad-Dog Weed, Mad Weed, Quaker Bonnet, Scullcap, Scutellaria, Scutellaire, Scutellaire de Virginie, Scutellaire Latériflore, Scutelluria, Scutellaria lateriflora, Toque Bleue, Toque Casquée, Toque des Marais.<br/><br/>

Overview

Overview Information

Skullcap is a plant. The above ground parts are used to make medicine.

Skullcap is used for many conditions, but so far, there isn’t enough scientific evidence to determine whether or not it is effective for any of them.

Skullcap is used for trouble sleeping (insomnia), anxiety, stroke, and paralysis caused by stroke. It is also used for fever, high cholesterol, “hardening of the arteries” (atherosclerosis), rabies, epilepsy, nervous tension, allergies, skin infections, inflammation, and spasms.

Skullcap products are not always what the labels claim. The plants germander and teucrium are often unwanted and unlabeled ingredients in skullcap products. Secondly, you may think you are buying Scuttelaria lateriflora, the species of skullcap that has been studied for medicinal use, but the product may contain a different species of skullcap instead. The most often substituted species are Western Skullcap (Scuttelaria canescens), Southern Skullcap (Scutellaria cordifolia), or Marsh Skullcap (Scutellaria galericulatum). These species contain different chemicals, so they are not considered interchangeable.

How does it work?

The chemicals in skullcap might work by preventing swelling (inflammation). Other chemicals in skullcap are thought to cause sedation (drowsiness).

Uses

Uses & Effectiveness?

Insufficient Evidence for

  • Anxiety. Limited evidence suggests that healthy people who take a single dose of skullcap extract might feel more relaxed than tense. This effect appears to last for about 2 hours. However, it is not known if taking skullcap is effective for anxiety disorders or if extended use is beneficial.
  • Seizures.
  • Trouble sleeping (insomnia).
  • Stroke.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of skullcap for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

There is not enough information available to know if skullcap is safe to take for medical conditions.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking skullcap is you are pregnant or breast feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Surgery: Skullcap may slow down the central nervous system. Healthcare providers worry that anesthesia and other medications during and after surgery might increase this effect. Stop taking skullcap at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.

Interactions

Interactions?

We currently have no information for SKULLCAP Interactions.

Dosing

Dosing

The appropriate dose of skullcap 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 skullcap. 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

REFERENCES:

  • Awad, R., Arnason, J. T., Trudeau, V., Bergeron, C., Budzinski, J. W., Foster, B. C., and Merali, Z. Phytochemical and biological analysis of skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora L.): a medicinal plant with anxiolytic properties. Phytomedicine. 2003;10(8):640-649. View abstract.
  • Li, J., Ding, Y., Li, X. C., Ferreira, D., Khan, S., Smillie, T., and Khan, I. A. Scuteflorins A and B, dihydropyranocoumarins from Scutellaria lateriflora. J Nat.Prod. 2009;72(6):983-987. View abstract.
  • Sarris, J., Panossian, A., Schweitzer, I., Stough, C., and Scholey, A. Herbal medicine for depression, anxiety and insomnia: a review of psychopharmacology and clinical evidence. Eur.Neuropsychopharmacol. 2011;21(12):841-860. View abstract.
  • Brock C, Whitehouse J, Tewfik I, Towell T. American skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora): a randomised, double-blind placebo-controlled crossover study of its effects on mood in healthy volunteers. Phytother Res 2014;28(5):692-8. View abstract.
  • Foster S, Tyler VE. Tyler's Honest Herbal, 4th ed., Binghamton, NY: Haworth Herbal Press, 1999.
  • Gafner S, Bergeron C, Batcha LL, et al. Inhibitor of [3H]-LSD binding to 5-HT7 receptors by flavonoids from Scutellaria lateriflora. J Nat Prod 2003;66:535-7. View abstract.
  • Wolfson P, Hoffmann DL. An investigation into the efficacy of Scutellaria lateriflora in healthy volunteers. Altern Ther Health Med 2003;9:74-8. View abstract.

More Resources for SKULLCAP

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.