Lily-of-the-valley herb (Convallariae herba)

Published April 23, 1987; Revised February 1, 1990.
List of German Commission E Monographs (Phytotherapy)

Maiglöckchenkraut

Name of Drug

Convallariae herba, lily-of-the-valley herb.

Composition of Drug

Lily-of-the-valley herb consists of the dried, above-ground parts of Convallaria majalis L. [Fam. Liliaceae], or closely related species, as well as their preparations in effective dosage. The herb is harvested during flowering season. The lily-of-the-valley contains cardioactive glycosides; the principal glycoside is convallotoxin.

Uses

Mild cardiac insufficiency, heart insufficiency due to old age, chronic cor pulmonale.

Contraindications

Therapy with digitalis glycosides, potassium deficiency.

Side Effects

Nausea, vomiting, cardiac arrhythmias.

Interactions with Other Drugs

Increased effectiveness and also side effects of simultaneously administered quinidine, calcium, saluretics, laxatives, and extended therapy with glucocorticoids.

Dosage

Unless otherwise prescribed:

Average daily dosage:

0.6 g standardized lily-of-the-valley powder; equivalent preparations. Mode of Administration Comminuted herb, as well as galenical preparations thereof for internal use.

Actions

Positive inotropic on the myocardium
Economizes heart performance
Lowers the elevated left-ventricular diastolic pressure, as well as
pathologically elevated venous pressure
Tonic for the veins
Natriuretic
Kaliuretic.