Sweet Violet root and herb (Violae odoratae rhizoma/herba)

Published June 17, 1994.
List of German Commission E Monographs (Phytotherapy)


Name of Drug

Violae odoratae rhizoma; sweet violet root.
Violae odoratae herba; sweet violet herb.

Composition of Drug

Sweet violet root, consisting of the dried root of Viola odorata L. [Fam. Violaceae] and pharmaceutical preparations thereof.

Sweet violet herb, consisting of the dried above-ground parts of V. odorata L. and pharmaceutical preparations thereof.

Pharmacological Characteristics, Pharmacokinetics, Toxicology

The drug is said to contain saponins. Saponins can have an expectorant effect and irritate the mucous membrane when used in higher doses. There are no studies available on preparations of the drug.

Clinical Data 1. Combination Partners The drug and preparations thereof are combined with the following drugs and substances:

acidum arsenicosum (potencies)*, ambra grisca (potencies), white horehound (herba marrubi), angelica root, anise, arnica, arnica root, avena sativa (potencies), valerian root, base bismuth nitrate, mugwort, erigeron, pimpernel root, bitter milkwort (complete plant), fenugreek seeds, stinging nettle, butetamat dihydrogencitrate, caulophyllum thalictroides (potencies), chamaelirium luteum (potencies), chelidonium majus (potencies), quinine bark, cimicifuga racemosa (potencies), condurango bark, convallaria majalis (potencies), crataegus (potencies), crocus sativus (potencies), cyclamen (potencies), delphinium staphisagria, marshmallow root, gentian root, ephedrine hydrochloride, fumaria, eucalyptus leaves, frangula, fennel, lady's mantle, galanga stem, tormentilla anserina, garden sorrel, woodbine, smooth sumach, goldenrod, grindelia, lignum vitae, oat straw, heather flowers, autumn-Helen flower, elderflower, hop cones, hydrastis canadensis (potencies), carob, St. John's Wort, potassium monohydrophosphate, calamus root, chamomile flowers, chestnut leaves, burdock root, coriander berries, caraway, lavender flowers, toadflax, lilium lancifolium (potencies), lungwort, filipendula, magnesium-hydrophosphate trihydrate, magnesium peroxide, balm leaves, nutmeg seeds, naja naja (potencies), cloves, agrimony, passionflower plant, pepsin, peppermint leaves, dogwood, bitter orange peel/flowers, quassia wood, rhubarb root, rosemary, sage leaves, wood sage, seedless garden bean pods, sand sedge, sarsaparilla root, sassafras root wood, sour cherry stems, horsetail, yarrow plant/flowers, cowslip flowers, black currant leaves, senecio aureus (potencies), senna leaves, sundew, star anise, pansy plant, strychnos nux-vomica (potencies), licorice root, centaurium erythraea, thyme, turnera diffusa (potencies), vitex agnus castus (potencies), juniper berries, woodruff plant, walnut leaves, water fennel berries, willow bark, white dead nettle flowers, wormwood, yohimbe bark, cedar wood, stachys, cinnamon bark, aspen leaves.

*[Ed.note: "Potencies" refers to homeopathic preparations made of the particular ingredient.]

2. Claimed Uses of the Above Combinations

Acute and chronic bronchitis, bronchial asthma, acute and chronic catarrh of the respiratory organs, cold symptoms of the upper respiratory tract: hoarseness, coughing, mucous congestion, bronchial inflammation, late "flu" symptoms, chesty cough, spastic cough, whooping cough, emphysema, dust-damaged lung. It is said to strengthen the bronchi and to soothe coughs and the respiratory organs.

Urinary incontinence with various causes: senile incontinence, irritable bladder, enuresis nocturna, prostate conditions. In the treatment of insomnia, to improve deep sleep; to calm and relax nerves, in the treatment of physical and mental exhaustion; in the treatment of climacteric complaints such as hot flashes, metabolic imbalances, insomnia, depressions, irritability, anxiety states; gastrointestinal complaints, abdominal pain, gallbladder complaints, gastric catarrh, intestinal catarrh, enteritis, duodenitis, digestion problems caused by incorrect diet, flatulence, heartburn, loss of appetite.

Supports metabolism, detoxifies the blood.

Is used in the treatment of skin impurities and skin disorders.

3. Risks

None known.


Due to the insufficiently proven efficacy of the drug and its pharmaceutical preparations as well as the associated risks, therapeutic use cannot be recommended.

The traditional use of sweet violet root as an expectorant for the respiratory tract is well documented.