Hawthorn is a spiny, flowering shrub or small tree of the rose family. The species of hawthorn discussed here are native to northern European regions and grow throughout the world.
The hawthorn berry, leaf, and flower are used to make liquid extractextractto get, separate, or isolate a desired active ingredients, usually with water and alcohol. Dry extracts can be put into capsules and tablets.
Hawthorn berry, leaf, and flower are used to help maintain and support heart health.
Hawthorn is used for heart failure, a weakness of the heart muscle that prevents the heart from pumping enough blood to the rest of the body, which can lead to fatigue and limit physical activities. It is also used for other heart conditions, including symptoms of coronary artery disease (such as angina).
It has also been used for digestive problems such as indigestion, diarrhea, and abdominalabdominalrelating to the stomach and intestines pain.
Your health care provider may have recommended this product for other conditions. Contact a health care provider if you have questions.
There is scientific evidence that hawthorn leaf and flower may be safe and effective for milder forms of heart failure, but study results are conflicting. There is some evidence that suggests hawthorn may help improve angina.
Hawthorn is considered safe for most adults when used for short periods of time. Side effects are usually mild and can include nausea, agitation, fatigue, skin rash, upset stomach, headache, and dizziness.
Drug interactions with hawthorn have not been thoroughly studied. However, hawthorn is believed to interact with certain heart medications. If you are taking any of the medications called cardiaccardiacrelating to the heart glycosides (e.g., digoxin) or blood pressure medications, talk to your health care provider about the safety of taking them at the same time as hawthorn. If you are taking nitrates (e.g., nitroglycerin) or a phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitor (e.g., sildenafil, tadalafil), avoid taking hawthorn.
Hawthorn should be used for a minimum of 2 months to see beneficial effects. If symptoms persist or worsen, talk a health care provider.
Do not use hawthorn if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.
Before taking any new medications, including natural health products, speak to your physician, pharmacist, or other health care provider. Tell your health care provider about any natural health products you may be taking.
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM). Herbs at a Glance. Hawthorn. http://nccam.nih.gov/health/hawthorn/
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