Boneset, also know as agueweed, crosswort, feverwort, indian sage, teasel, and thoroughwort, is part of the Echinacea and daisy (Asteraceae) botanical family. It mainly grows in temperate regions of North America. The leaves and flowering tops of Boneset are the parts of the plant that are used medicinally. Boneset is used primarily as a homeopathic remedy, where it is recommended for fevers, flu, digestive problems, and liver disorders. Further clinical studies are required in order confirm it effectiveness.Medical Indications and Benefits
Many people believe that boneset is one of the best herbal remedies for relieving symptoms associated with influenza. It speedily relieves aches and pains as well as assisting the body's ability to cope with fever. Boneset may be used to help clear mucus congestion from the upper respiratory tract. Its mild aperient activity may also be effective at relieving constipation. It may ease the symptoms of muscular rheumatism treatment. Test tube studies have also indicated taht boneset can stimulate immune cell function.Dosage and Administration
Boneset has been traditionally taken as a tea or tincture. To prepare the tea, add boiling water to 1/4-1/2 teaspoon (1-2 grams) of the herb. Allow it to steep covered for ten to fifteen minutes. Three cups (750 ml) a day may be taken (the tea is fairly bitter). Tincture, 1/4-3/4 teaspoon (1-4 ml) three times daily, is also taken often.Common Side Effects and Interactions
A small minority experience nausea and/or vomiting when using boneset. However, the fresh plant is more likely to cause these conditions than the dried herb. Although pyrrolizidine alkaloids, potentially liver-damaging chemicals, are found in some similar plants the levels in boneset are minimal. No known findings of liver damage from taking boneset have been reported. Regardless, liver-diseased individuals should avoid boneset, and no one should take it consistently for six months or longer. Women who are breast-feeding should not take boneset. Do not use boneset when a high fever (over 102 degrees F) is present. Supporting LiteratureMills SY. Out of the Earth: The Essential Book of Herbal Medicine. New York: Viking Arkana, 1991.
Woerdenbag HJ, Bos R, Hendriks H. Eupatorium perfoliatum L-the boneset. Z Phytother 1992;13:134-139.