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Comfrey root (Symphyti radix)

Published July 27, 1990.
List of German Commission E Monographs (Phytotherapy)


Name of Drug

Symphyti radix; comfrey root.

Composition of Drug

Comfrey, consisting of the fresh or dried root section of Symphytum officinale L. [Fam. Boraginaceae], and effective pharmaceutical preparations thereof.

The drug contains allantoin and muco-polysaccharides. Comfrey also contains various amounts of pyrrolizidine (senecio) alkaloids with 1,2-unsaturated necine ring structure and their N-oxides.



Bruising, pulled muscles and ligaments, sprains. Contraindications None known.

Note: Application should only occur on intact skin; during pregnancy use only after consulting a physician.

Side Effects

None known.

Interaction with Other Drugs

None known.


Unless otherwise prescribed:

Ointments or other preparations for external use are made up with 5 - 20 percent of the drug and prepared accordingly. The daily dose should not exceed more than 100 µg (mcg) pyrrolizidine alkaloids with 1,2-unsaturated necine structure, including its N-oxides.

Mode of Administration

Crushed root, extracts, the pressed juice of the fresh plant for semi-solid preparations and poultices for external use.

Duration of Treatment

Not longer than 4 - 6 weeks per year.


Furthers the formation of callus