Drugs A - Z
Ladies mantle (Alchemilla vulgaris)
Generic Name: Alchemilla vulgaris
CategoryHerbs & Supplements
Alchemillae herba, bear's foot, common ladies mantle, ellagic acid, flavonoids, Frauenmantle, Frauenmantelkraut, ladies cloak, leontopodium, lion's foot, nine hooks, pied-de-lion, quercetol, quercetin, stellaria, tannins.
Ladies mantle was named in the 16th century by Jerome Bock, also known as Tragus, and it appears under his name in the book History of Plants, published in 1532. Ladies mantle is referred to as lady's cloak or mantle because of its association with the Virgin Mary. The lobes of the leaf are said to resemble the scalloped edges of a mantle. It has also been referred to as lion's foot and bear's foot, most likely because of the resemblance of its spreading root leaves to such feet.
Ladies mantle has been used for many centuries in Europe including in Sweden and Germany. Some experts consider ladies mantle to be good for treating wounds due to its coagulation (blood clotting), astringent and styptic (stops bleeding) properties. It has also been used as a mouth rinse after dental procedures to help stop bleeding. Ladies mantle has been used for a variety of female conditions such as menstrual disorders including excessive menstruation and menopause, as an aid during conception, in the prevention of miscarriages, and to help the body heal after childbirth. However, clinical data is lacking.
EvidenceDISCLAIMER: These uses have been tested in humans or animals. Safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider.
TraditionWARNING: DISCLAIMER: The below uses are based on tradition, scientific theories, or limited research. They often have not been thoroughly tested in humans, and safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider. There may be other proposed uses that are not listed below.
Acne, anti-convulsant, anti-inflammatory, anti-hemorrhagic, appetite stimulant, astringent, coagulation (blood clotting), diabetes, diarrhea, diuretic, fertility (conception aid), fibroids (benign tumors in or around the uterus that sometimes can cause miscarriages), child birth (healing aid), high blood pressure, hormone imbalances (estrogen or testosterone), menopause, menorrhagia (excessive menstruation), miscarriage (prevention), rheumatism, sleep aid, stomach problems, styptic (stops bleeding), wound healing.
Adults (over 18 years old)
There is no proven safe or effective dose for ladies mantle. Traditionally, drinking a tea made by steeping the chopped leaves in hot water for 15 minutes, then straining and ingesting for 20 consecutive days, has been used as a conception aid. To treat excessive menstruation, one ounce of dried herb has been infused in one pint of boiling water to make a tea. This tea is then consumed in amounts similar to a teacupful (size of teacup not stated). Ladies mantle has also been used as a vaginal douche to treat leukorrhea (vaginal discharge).
Children (under 18 years old)
There is no proven safe or effective dose for ladies mantle in children.
SafetyDISCLAIMER: Many complementary techniques are practiced by healthcare professionals with formal training, in accordance with the standards of national organizations. However, this is not universally the case, and adverse effects are possible. Due to limited research, in some cases only limited safety information is available.
Avoid in individuals with a known allergy or hypersensitivity to ladies mantle.
Side Effects and Warnings
The lack of formal clinical trials makes it difficult to draw any conclusions regarding the safety of ladies mantle. Nonetheless, ladies mantle is possibly unsafe in patients using medications to prevent coagulation of the blood (e.g. warfarin) due to its theoretical use as a coagulant. It is also possibly unsafe in patients with iron deficiency anemia because ladies mantle may contain tannins, which may reduce the absorption of iron supplements.
Pregnancy & Breastfeeding
Ladies mantle is not recommended in pregnant or breastfeeding women due to a lack of available scientific evidence. Traditionally, ladies mantle has been used as a conception aid and for excessive menstruation.
Interactions with Drugs
Theoretically, ladies mantle should be avoided in patients using anti-coagulation therapy, such as warfarin (Coumadin®). Ladies mantle may decrease the efficacy of these medications due to its proposed coagulation (blood clotting) effects.
Interactions with Herbs & Dietary Supplements
Theoretically, ladies mantle should be avoided in patients taking anti-coagulation (blood thinning) herbs or supplements. Ladies mantle may decrease the efficacy of these agents due to its proposed coagulation (blood clotting) effects.
Ladies mantle contains tannins, which may reduce the absorption of iron supplements.
Ladies mantle has been shown to have a weak mutagenic effect (cause changes in the DNA of cells) on bacteria and it is proposed that the constituent quercetin is the cause of the mutagenic activity. Taking both quercetin and ladies mantle may increase this effect.
This information is based on a systematic review of scientific literature, and was peer-reviewed and edited by contributors to the Natural Standard Research Collaboration (www.naturalstandard.com): Lisa Scully, PharmD (Massachusetts College of Pharmacy), Shaina Tanguay-Colucci, BS (Natural Standard Research Collaboration); Catherine Ulbricht, PharmD (Massachusetts General Hospital); Wendy Weissner, BA (Natural Standard Research Collaboration).
BibliographyDISCLAIMER: Natural Standard developed the above evidence-based information based on a thorough systematic review of the available scientific articles. For comprehensive information about alternative and complementary therapies on the professional level, go to www.naturalstandard.com. Selected references are listed below.
Fraisse D, Carnat A, Carnat AP, et al. [Standardization of the aerial parts of Alchemilla]. Ann.Pharm Fr. 1999;57(5):401-405.
Nihoul-Ghenne L. [Presence of Alchemilla alpina L. together with Alchemilla vulgaris L. in a tea for high blood pressure.]. J Pharm Belg. 1950;5(11-12):335-338.
Schimmer O, Hafele F, Kruger A. The mutagenic potencies of plant extracts containing quercetin in Salmonella typhimurium TA98 and TA100. Mutat.Res 1988;206(2):201-208.
Schimmer O, Kruger A, Paulini H, et al. An evaluation of 55 commercial plant extracts in the Ames mutagenicity test. Pharmazie 1994;49(6):448-451.
Swanston-Flatt SK, Day C, Bailey CJ, et al. Traditional plant treatments for diabetes. Studies in normal and streptozotocin diabetic mice. Diabetologia 1990;33(8):462-464.