Natural Standard Bottom Line Monograph, Copyright © 2013 (www.naturalstandard.com). Commercial distribution prohibited. This monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. You should consult with a qualified healthcare provider before making decisions about therapies and/or health conditions.
While some complementary and alternative techniques have been studied scientifically, high-quality data regarding safety, effectiveness, and mechanism of action are limited or controversial for most therapies. Whenever possible, it is recommended that practitioners be licensed by a recognized professional organization that adheres to clearly published standards. In addition, before starting a new technique or engaging a practitioner, it is recommended that patients speak with their primary healthcare provider(s). Potential benefits, risks (including financial costs), and alternatives should be carefully considered. The below monograph is designed to provide historical background and an overview of clinically-oriented research, and neither advocates for or against the use of a particular therapy.
Adam-and-Eve, adder's root, Araceae (family), Árón plamatý (Czech), Aronenkraut (German), Aronstab (German), Aron-stab (German), arsenic, Arum dioscorides, Arum maculatum, arum tacheté (French), bobbins, calcium oxalate crystals, Chindlichrut (German), cocky baby, cuckoo point, cuckoopint, cyanogenic glycosides, cypress powder, Dansk ingefær (Danish), dieffenbachia, Dittichrut (German), dragon root, Ekelblume (German), Eselsohr (German), fläckig munkhätta (Swedish), flekkmunkehette (Norwegian), foltos kontyvirág (Hungarian), friar's cowl, gaglee, gefläckter Aronstab (German), gefleckter Aronstab (German), gemeiner Aronstab (German), gevlekte aronskelk (Dutch), gigaro scuro (Italian), gouet (French), gouet tacheté (French), kings and queens, kontyvirág (Hungarian), ladysmock, lectin, lords and ladies, obrazki plamiste (Polish), parson and clerck, plettet arum (Danish), plettet ingefær (Danish), Portland arrowroot, quaker, ramp, Ronechrut (German), soluble oxalates, spotted arum, starchwort, tähniline aarum (Estonian), Trommelsschlägel (German), wake robin, Zehrwurz (German).
Combination product examples: Roxalia® sore throat (homeopathic preparation containing Arum Triphyllum 3c).
Plants of the genus Arum are poisonous because they contain calcium oxalate. Currently, there is no standard, accepted medicinal use of the plant, although Arum may have been used to treat prostate disease and skin conditions. Extracts from Arum are being studied for their ability to fight against sperm and therefore, may be used to prevent pregnancy (contraceptive).
Traditionally, Arum may have been used to treat colds, inflammation of the throat, and diarrhea. It may also have been used as a diaphoretic (promotes sweating) and diuretic (increase urine production). The leaves of the plant have also been applied to the skin for rheumatic-type pain.
At this time, research supporting the use of Arum for any medical condition is lacking.
These uses have been tested in humans or animals. Safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider.
No available studies qualify for inclusion in the evidence table.
*Key to grades:A: Strong scientific evidence for this use; B: Good scientific evidence for this use; C: Unclear scientific evidence for this use; D: Fair scientific evidence against this use (it may not work); F: Strong scientific evidence against this use (it likely does not work).
The below uses are based on tradition or scientific theories. They often have not been thoroughly tested in humans, and safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious and should be evaluated by a qualified health care professional.
Aphrodisiac (increases sexual desire), arthritis, colds/flu, diaphoretic (promotes sweating), diarrhea, diuretic (increases urine), expectorant (dissolves thick mucus), intestinal worms, pain, prostate cancer (general), sexually transmitted disease (Chlamydia pneumoniae), skin diseases, sore throat, vomiting
The below doses are based on scientific research, publications, traditional use, or expert opinion. Many herbs and supplements have not been thoroughly tested, and safety and effectiveness may not be proven. Brands may be made differently, with variable ingredients, even within the same brand. The below doses may not apply to all products. You should read product labels, and discuss doses with a qualified healthcare provider before starting therapy.
Adults (18 years and older)
There is no proven effective dose for Arum. One teacup of a decoction or infusion made with one ounce of the plant to one quart water has been taken every 2-3 hours. A dose of 10-30 grains of Arum powdered root has also been used.
Children (under 18 years old)
There is no proven safe or effective dose for Arum in children.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not strictly regulate herbs and supplements. There is no guarantee of strength, purity or safety of products, and effects may vary. 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. Consult a healthcare provider immediately if you experience side effects.
Avoid in individuals with known allergy/hypersensitivity to Arum, its constituents, or members of the Araceae family.
Side Effects and Warnings
Avoid use in all patients, as Arum species are considered toxic with a lack of medicinal value.
The toxic element arsenic that is found in Arum plants is used as a homeopathic preparation, the safety of which is unclear.
Arum poisoning and swelling of the lips, tongue, and palate have been reported.
If processing the plant, sanitary practices should be followed in order to avoid contact with toxic constituents.
Arum plants contain calcium oxalate, a common constituent of human kidney stones.
Pregnancy and Breastfeeding
Arum species are toxic, and use is not recommended in pregnant and breastfeeding women.
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.
Interactions with Drugs
The effects of Arum taken with antibiotics, calcium salts, or iron salts are not well understood.
Interactions with Herbs and Dietary Supplements
The effects of Arum taken with antibacterials and other minerals (calcium, iron, zinc) are not well understood.
This information is based on a systematic review of scientific literature edited and peer-reviewed by contributors to the Natural Standard Research Collaboration (www.naturalstandard.com).
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.
Alencar, V B, Alencar, N M, Assreuy, A M, et al. Pro-inflammatory effect of Arum maculatum lectin and role of resident cells. Int J Biochem Cell Biol 2005;37(9):1805-1814. View Abstract
Ali-Shtayeh, M S, Yaniv, Z, and Mahajna, J. Ethnobotanical survey in the Palestinian area: a classification of the healing potential of medicinal plants. J Ethnopharmacol 2000;73(1-2):221-232. View Abstract
Al Rmalli, S W, Haris, P I, Harrington, C F, et al. A survey of arsenic in foodstuffs on sale in the United Kingdom and imported from Bangladesh. Sci Total Environ. 1-20-2005;337(1-3):23-30. View Abstract
Majumder, P, Mondal, H A, and Das, S. Insecticidal activity of Arum maculatum tuber lectin and its binding to the glycosylated insect gut receptors. J Agric Food Chem. 8-24-2005;53(17):6725-6729. View Abstract
Mladenov, I. V., Haralambieva, I. H., Iankov, I. D., and Mitov, I. G. Characterisation of 20-kDa lectin-spermagglutinin from Arum maculatum that prevents Chlamydia pneumoniae infection of L-929 fibroblast cells. FEMS Immunol.Med.Microbiol. 2-18-2002;32(3):249-254. View Abstract
Roychowdhury, T, Uchino, T, Tokunaga, H, et al. Survey of arsenic in food composites from an arsenic-affected area of West Bengal, India. Food Chem Toxicol 2002;40(11):1611-1621. View Abstract
Van Damme, E J, Goossens, K, Smeets, K,et al. The major tuber storage protein of araceae species is a lectin. Characterization and molecular cloning of the lectin from Arum maculatum L. Plant Physiol 1995;107(4):1147-1158. View Abstract
Copyright © 2013 Natural Standard (www.naturalstandard.com)
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.
March 22, 2017