Psyllium seed, Black (Psyllii semen)

Published November 30, 1985; Revised March 13, 1990.
List of German Commission E Monographs (Phytotherapy)


Name of Drug

Psyllii semen, black psyllium seed.

Composition of Drug

Black psyllium seed consists of the dried, ripe seed of Plantago psyllium L. (syn. P. afra L.) and of P. indica L. (syn. P. arenaria Waldstein et Kitaibel) [Fam. Plantaginaceae], with a swell index of at least 10, and its formulations in effective dosage.

The drug contains mucilages.


Chronic constipation, irritable bowel.


Stenosis of the esophagus or the gastrointestinal tract.

Side Effects

In rare cases allergic reactions, especially with powdered drug and liquid preparations.

Interactions with Other Drugs

None known.


Daily dosage:

10 - 30 g drug; equivalent preparations. Mode of Administration Whole or ground seeds, other galenical preparations for oral application.

Note: Separate monographs have been issued for blonde psyllium seed and psyllium husk.


Regulation of intestinal peristalsis.