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Gravel root (Eupatorium fistulosum)

Synonyms/Common Names/Related Substances:

  • 5-Acetyl-6-hydroxy-2-(1-oxo-2-acetoxy-ethyl)-benzofuran, 6-hydroxy-3beta-methoxytrematone, agueweed, benzofurans, bitter principle, boneset, cistifolin, crosswort, euparin, euparoire rouge (French), euparone, eupatoire d'eau à tiges rouges (French), eupatoire pourpre (French), Eupatoriadelphus purpureus, eupatorin, Eupatorium, Eupatorium purpureum, Eupatorium ternifolium, Eupatorium verticillatum, eupurpurin, feverwort, flavonoids, gravelroot, gravelweed, green-stemmed joe-pye-weed, hempweed, herbe à la gravelle (French), Indian gravelroot, Indian sage, joe-pye, joe-pye weed, jopi weed, kidney root, kidneywort, king-of-the-meadow, maculatum, marsh-milkweed, motherwort, oleoresin, poskonnik purpurnyi (Russian), purple boneset, purple joe-pye-weed, Purpur-Wasserdost (German), queen of the meadow, queen-of-the-meadow root, quillwort, racine à la gravelle (French), resins, sesquiterpene lactone, slunkweed, sweating plant, sweet joe-pye-weed, tannins, tall boneset, teasel, thoroughwort, trifoliatum, trumpet weed, volatile oil.

Clinical Bottom Line/Effectiveness

Brief Background:

  • Gravel root is indigenous to North America, growing in damp woodlands and rich meadows from Canada to Florida, and as far west as Texas. There are over forty species of the genus, many of which are used medicinally; it is the roots and rhizomes dug up in autumn that are thought to contain the active principles.
  • According to secondary sources, the genus name Eupatorium is derived from King Mithridates Eupator. He was the first to use the plant as a remedy. The popular names "jopi" or "joe-pye" are in honor of an American Indian who cured typhus with its root. The name gravel root is based on its use for kidney stones (gravel).
  • According to secondary sources, Native Americans purportedly used gravel root as a diuretic, for conditions affecting the genitourinary system, and as a diaphoretic to induce perspiration and break a fever.
  • Gravel root was listed in the U.S. Pharmacopeia from 1820 to 1840 and is most noted for its use as a diuretic helping to prevent kidney and bladder stone formation and to help diminish existing stones. It is also often used for cystitis, urethritis, rheumatism, and gout.
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Dosing/Toxicology

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Precautions/Contraindications

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Interactions

Most herbs and supplements have not been thoroughly tested for interactions with other herbs, supplements, drugs, or foods. The interactions listed below are based on reports in scientific publications, laboratory experiments, or traditional use. You should always read product labels. If you have a medical condition, or are taking other drugs, herbs, or supplements, you should speak with a qualified healthcare provider before starting a new therapy.

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Mechanism of Action

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History

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Evidence Table

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Evidence Discussion

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Products Studied

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Author Information

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References

Natural Standard developed the above evidence-based information based on a thorough systematic review of the available scientific articles. For comprehensive information about alternative and complementary therapies on the professional level, go to www.naturalstandard.com. Selected references are listed below.

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The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.