Health Encyclopedia > Medications

goldenseal

Pronunciation: GOAL den seal

What is the most important information I should know about goldenseal?

Multum donot

Do not take goldenseal without first talking to your doctor if you have high blood pressure, a bleeding disorder, a blood clotting disorder, or if you take medicine to control any of these conditions.

Goldenseal has not been evaluated by the FDA for safety, effectiveness, or purity. All potential risks and/or advantages of goldenseal may not be known. Additionally, there are no regulated manufacturing standards in place for these compounds. There have been instances where herbal/health supplements have been sold which were contaminated with toxic metals or other drugs. Herbal/health supplements should be purchased from a reliable source to minimize the risk of contamination.

What is goldenseal?

The use of goldenseal in cultural and traditional settings may differ from concepts accepted by current Western medicine. When considering the use of herbal supplements, consultation with a primary health care professional is advisable. Additionally, consultation with a practitioner trained in the uses of herbal/health supplements may be beneficial, and coordination of treatment among all health care providers involved may be advantageous.

Goldenseal is also known as ox-eye daisy, golden daisy, herb Margaret, maudlinwort, moon daisy, eye balm, eye root, ground raspberry, Indian dye, jaundice root, orange root, tumeric root, yellow Indian paint, yellow puccoon, wild curcuma, warnera, Indian plant, yellow root, and others.

Goldenseal has been used topically (on the skin) to treat minor skin wounds and cold sores. Goldenseal has been used orally (by mouth) to decrease diarrhea and to boost the immune system. Some forms of goldenseal have also been used in the eyes as an eye wash.

Goldenseal has not been evaluated by the FDA for safety, effectiveness, or purity. All potential risks and/or advantages of goldenseal may not be known. Additionally, there are no regulated manufacturing standards in place for these compounds. There have been instances where herbal/health supplements have been sold which were contaminated with toxic metals or other drugs. Herbal/health supplements should be purchased from a reliable source to minimize the risk of contamination.

Goldenseal may also have uses other than those listed in this product guide.

What should I discuss with my health care provider before taking goldenseal?

Multum donot

Do not take goldenseal without first talking to your doctor if you

  • have high blood pressure or take medicine to control your blood pressure, or
  • have a bleeding or blood clotting disorder or if you take a medicine to control or prevent such a disorder {e.g., heparin, warfarin (Coumadin), others}.

You may not be able to take goldenseal, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special monitoring during treatment if you have any of the conditions, or take any of the medicines, listed above.

Talk to your doctor before taking goldenseal if you have any other medical conditions, allergies (especially to plants), or if you take other medicines or herbal/health supplements. Goldenseal may not be recommended in some situations.

Multum nopreg

Do not take goldenseal if you are pregnant or could become pregnant. Goldenseal has been reported to cause uterine contractions. It is not known whether goldenseal will harm an unborn baby.

Multum nobrfeed

Do not take goldenseal without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby. It is also not known whether goldenseal will harm a nursing infant.

There is no information available regarding the use of goldenseal by children. Do not give any herbal/health supplement to a child without first talking to the child's doctor.

How should I take goldenseal?

The use of goldenseal in cultural and traditional settings may differ from concepts accepted by current Western medicine. When considering the use of herbal supplements, consultation with a primary health care professional is advisable. Additionally, consultation with a practitioner trained in the uses of herbal/health supplements may be beneficial, and coordination of treatment among all health care providers involved may be advantageous.

If you choose to take goldenseal, use it as directed on the package or as directed by your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.

Standardized extracts, tinctures, and solid formulations of herbal/health supplements may provide a more reliable dose of the product.

Do not use any formulation of goldenseal as a douche.

Multum donot

Do not use different formulations (e.g., tablets, topical formulations, teas, tinctures, and others) of goldenseal at the same time, unless specifically directed to do so by a health care professional. Using different formulations together increases the risk of an overdose of goldenseal.

Store goldenseal as directed on the package. In general, goldenseal should be protected from light and moisture.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra goldenseal to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Multum emt

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

Symptoms of a goldenseal overdose may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, high blood pressure, nervousness, depression, seizures or convulsions, decreased feeling or paralysis, decreased breathing, and death.

What should I avoid while taking goldenseal?

Follow your healthcare provider's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.

What are the possible side effects of goldenseal?

Multum emt

Although uncommon, allergic reactions to goldenseal have been reported. Stop taking goldenseal and seek emergency medical attention if you experience symptoms of a serious allergic reaction including difficulty breathing; closing of your throat; swelling of your lips, tongue, or face; or hives.

Other less serious side effects have been infrequently reported. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you experience

  • headache; or
  • stomach upset.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect goldenseal?

Multum donot

Do not take goldenseal without first talking to your doctor if you

  • take medicine to control your blood pressure, or
  • take medicine to control or prevent a bleeding or blood clotting disorder {e.g., heparin, warfarin (Coumadin), others}.

You may not be able to take goldenseal, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special monitoring during treatment if you take any of the medicines listed above.

Goldenseal may also interact with medicines other than those listed here. Talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider before taking any prescription or over-the-counter medicines or other herbal/health supplements.

Where can I get more information?

Consult with a licensed healthcare professional before using any herbal/health supplement. Whether you are treated by a medical doctor or a practitioner trained in the use of natural medicines/supplements, make sure all your healthcare providers know about all of your medical conditions and treatments.


Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

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