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Medications and Drugs

Brand Names:

Generic Name: devil's claw (Pronunciation: DEH vilz CLAW)

What is devil's claw ()?

The use of devil's claw in cultural and traditional settings may differ from concepts accepted by current Western medicine. When considering the use of herbal supplements, consultation with a primary health care professional is advisable. Additionally, consultation with a practitioner trained in the uses of herbal/health supplements may be beneficial, and coordination of treatment among all health care providers involved may be advantageous.

Devil's claw is also known as Harpagophytum procumbens, grapple plant, and wood spider.

Devil's claw has been used most commonly for rheumatism, arthritis, gout, muscle pain, and other degenerative disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Devil's claw has also been used orally for liver and gallbladder complaints, stomach complaints, loss of appetite, and pain relief and topically as an ointment for skin injuries and disorders.

Devil's claw has not been evaluated by the FDA for safety, effectiveness, or purity. All potential risks and/or advantages of devil's claw may not be known. Additionally, there are no regulated manufacturing standards in place for these compounds. There have been instances where herbal/health supplements have been sold which were contaminated with toxic metals or other drugs. Herbal/health supplements should be purchased from a reliable source to minimize the risk of contamination.

Devil's claw may also have uses other than those listed in this product guide.

What are the possible side effects of devil's claw ()?

Although rare, allergic reactions to devil's claw may occur. Stop taking devil's claw and seek emergency medical attention if you experience symptoms of a serious allergic reaction including difficulty breathing; closing of your throat; swelling of your lips, tongue, or face; or hives.

Other less serious side effects have also been reported infrequently. Talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider if you experience

  • headache,
  • ringing in the ears,
  • loss of appetite, or
  • loss of taste.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What is the most important information I should know about devil's claw ()?

Do not take devil's claw without first talking to your doctor if you have a stomach or intestinal ulcer, diabetes, high or low blood pressure or other heart problems, or if you are taking any medicines to prevent or treat these conditions.

Devil's claw has not been evaluated by the FDA for safety, effectiveness, or purity. All potential risks and/or advantages of devil's claw may not be known. Additionally, there are no regulated manufacturing standards in place for these compounds. There have been instances where herbal/health supplements have been sold which were contaminated with toxic metals or other drugs. Herbal/health supplements should be purchased from a reliable source to minimize the risk of contamination.



Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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