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Carline Thistle - Uses, Benefits and Some Properties for Carline Thistle

Taxonomic Class

Asteraceae

Common Trade Names

Multi-ingredient preparations: Blessed Herbs, Chinac Digestive Health Formula, Para- Clens, Phy to Surge

Common Forms

Available as a liquid or tea.

Source

Active components are obtained from the seeds, fresh roots, and leaves of Carlina acaulis.The plant contains 0.03% to 0.2% of volatile oil. The main component is cineole; others include alpha-amyrin, alpha- and beta-pinene, beta­sitosterol, fernenol, quebrachitol, sitosterol, tauremisin, tetracosanol, and thujonestigmasterol. Glycosides include rutinosyl-s quercetin as well as 4c-glycosyl flavones, such as carlino side, homoorientine, orientine, and schaftoside.

Actions

The leaf extract of Artemisia vulgaris was found to delay onset of picrotoxin-induced seizures and reduce mortality rates in mice. A plant extract was active against some sarcomas in rats.

Reported Uses

Carline thistle is claimed to be effective as an anthelmintic, an antiepileptic, an antiseptic, an antispasmodic, a colerectic, a diaphoretic, a digestive stimulant, a diuretic, an expectorant, a menstruation aid, a tonic, and a spasmolytic.

Carline thistle is claimed to be effective for asthma, bronchitis, cancerous lesions, chorea, cold, colic, constipation, cramps, diarrhea, dysmenorrhea, epilepsy, fever, gallstones, gastritis, gout, headache, hysteria, inflammation, kidney stones, labor, menstrual problems and irregular periods, nervousness, rheumatism, rickets, tuberculosis, vomiting, worms, and wounds and as a sedative. Anecdotal human data suggest that carline thistle is effective in treating pruritus and atopic dermatitis .

Possible efficacy as a bladder irrigant was suggested by researchers who used A. vulgaris as part of an herbal preparation for continuous bladder irrigation after prostatic adenotomy. They reported decreased bacteremia, blood loss, and purulent inflammation postoperatively .

Dosage

No consensus exists.

Adverse reactions

CNS: seizures (with overdose).

Musculoskeletal: muscle spasms, myalgia.

Other: allergic reaction.

Interactions

None reported.

Contraindications and precautions

Carline thistle is contraindicated in pregnant patients. The herb is thought to act as an abortificient and a menstrual and uterine stimulant. The effects in breast-feeding patients are unknown. Use cautiously in patients who are hypersensitive to plants in the Asteraceae/Compositae family (common herbs are chrysanthemums, daisies, marigolds, and ragweed), tobacco, honey, or royal jelly.

Special Considerations

Inform the patient that insufficient data exist to recommend use of carline thistle.

Caution the patient not to self-treat symptoms of illness before seeking appropriate medical evaluation because this may delay diagnosis of a serious medical condition.

Advise the patient to consult a health care provider before using herbal preparations because a treatment that has been clinically researched

and proved effective may be available.

Advise women to avoid using carline thistle during pregnancy or when breast-feeding.

Commentary

Anecdotal reports suggest that carline thistle may be effective for treating pruritic skin lesions and atopic dermatitis. Safety of the herb and its components is not supported by the scientific medical literature. Well­designed and controlled human trials are needed before carline thistle can be recommended for any purpose.

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