Umckaloabo
Umckaloabo

Background

Umckaloabo (Pelargonium sidoides) is a flowering plant native to South Africa. It's used as medicine by the native populations of South Africa.

Umckaloabo might work by killing bacteria or preventing bacteria from attaching to surfaces within the body.

People use umckaloabo for bronchitis, common cold, COPD, sore throat, asthma, and many other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support most of these uses.

Umckaloabo is sometimes called geranium. Don't confuse umckaloabo with rose geranium oil or spotted geranium. These are not the same.
When taken by mouth: A specific umckaloabo extract (EPs 7630, Dr. Willmar Schwabe Pharmaceuticals) is likely safe when used for up to 24 weeks. There isn't enough reliable information to know if it is safe when taken for longer periods of time. Side effects might include stomach upset. Allergic reactions are also possible.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There isn't enough reliable information to know if umckaloabo is safe to use when pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Children: A specific umckaloabo extract (EPs 7630, Dr. Willmar Schwabe Pharmaceuticals) is possibly safe when taken by mouth for up to one week. There isn't enough reliable information to know if it is safe when taken for longer periods of time.

Diseases of the immune system such as multiple sclerosis (MS), lupus (systemic lupus erythematosus, SLE), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), or other conditions: Umckaloabo might cause the immune system to become more active. This could increase the symptoms of these diseases. If you have one of these conditions, it's best to avoid using umckaloabo.

Surgery: Umckaloabo might slow blood clotting. It might increase the risk for bleeding during surgical procedures. Stop using umckaloabo at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.

Effectiveness

NatMed Pro rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate.
Likely effective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly effective Effectiveness definitions
  • Short-term swelling (inflammation) of the airways in the lungs (acute bronchitis). Taking a specific umckaloabo extract ((EPs 7630, Dr. Willmar Schwabe Pharmaceuticals) by mouth within 48 hours of feeling sick seems to help speed up recovery from bronchitis.
  • A lung disease that makes it harder to breathe (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD). Taking a specific umckaloabo extract (EPs 7630, Dr. Willmar Schwabe Pharmaceuticals) by mouth along with standard treatment seems to reduce the number of COPD flares in people with moderate or severe COPD. It might also reduce the need for antibiotics.
  • Common cold. Taking a specific umckaloabo extract (EPs 7630, Dr. Willmar Schwabe Pharmaceuticals) by mouth might help reduce symptoms and speed up recovery from a cold.
There is interest in using umckaloabo for a number of other purposes, but there isn't enough reliable information to say whether it might be helpful.
Likely ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Insufficient evidence Effectiveness definitions

Dosing & administration

A specific umckaloabo root extract (EPs 7630, Dr. Willmar Schwabe Pharmaceutical) has most often been used by adults as 30-60 drops of solution (1.5-3 mL) taken by mouth three times daily for 7-10 days. It's also available in tablets. In children, dosing depends on age. Speak with a healthcare provider to find out what dose might be best for a specific condition.

Interactions with pharmaceuticals

Medications that decrease the immune system (Immunosuppressants)

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

Umckaloabo can increase the activity of the immune system. Some medications, such as those used after a transplant, decrease the activity of the immune system. Taking umckaloabo along with these medications might decrease the effects of these medications.

Medications that slow blood clotting (Anticoagulant / Antiplatelet drugs)

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

Umckaloabo might slow blood clotting. Taking umckaloabo along with medications that also slow blood clotting might increase the risk of bruising and bleeding.

Interactions with herbs & supplements

Herbs and supplements that might slow blood clotting: Umckaloabo might slow blood clotting and increase the risk of bleeding. Taking it with other supplements with similar effects might increase the risk of bleeding in some people. Examples of supplements with this effect include garlic, ginger, ginkgo, nattokinase, and Panax ginseng.

Interactions with foods

There are no known interactions with foods.
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This monograph was last reviewed on 17/10/2023 11:00:00 and last updated on 24/09/2020 00:28:44. Monographs are reviewed and/or updated multiple times per month and at least once per year.
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