In the world of homeopathy and herbal medicine, there are certain medicinal plants you may not know. One of these, in particular, is Chelidonium. But, although you may not recognize the name, this medicinal plant has been quite effective for centuries.
In traditional medicine, the juice of herbal Chelidonium was once used for liver, gallbladder, and skin disorders. After it had been discovered within homeopathy, it was also used for liver and gallbladder disorders. Over the years, it was found that homeopathic Chelidonium also benefits those with headaches, neck and shoulder pain, pneumonia, and certain cancers.
Read on to learn more about Chelidonium, and its many homeopathic uses and health benefits.
Facts and History of Chelidonium
Chelidonium majus is a member of the plant family Papaveraceae—also known as the poppy family that includes bloodroot and opium poppy. Other names of the Chelidonium plant include celandine, wartweed, greater celandine, and swallow-wort. Since the plant blooms while the swallow are migrating, the famous first-century Greek physician, Pedanius Dioscorides, had named the plant after the Greek khelidon, which means “swallow” in English.
The plant blooms between May and August, while its seeds mature through July to September. Bees, beetles, and flies usually pollinate the flowers of this plant, which is native to North Africa, Western Asia, Europe, while it is now found in North America. The perennial plant will grow in hedgerows and on banks.
Chinese and Western herbalism uses herbal Chelidonium as an antispasmodic, a muscle relaxant, and to treat cataracts. Traditionally, the juice or sap was used for skin, gallbladder, and liver disorders.
Homeopathy founder, Dr. Samuel Hahnemann, had proven the efficacy of homeopathic Chelidonium and published his findings in his book Materia Medica Pura (1821-1834). It comes from the entire flowering plant or the root from the Chelidonium majus. The plant is chopped, pulped, and macerated in alcohol for a minimum of 10 days. After 10 days, the remedy is diluted and succussed, and what remains is a solution with virtually no traces of the actual plant; however, it is a very effective homeopathic remedy.
How Chelidonium Treats Liver Damage and Liver Cancer
One of the better-known uses of homeopathic Chelidonium is how it treats problems of the liver, including hepatitis, biliousness, and even liver cancer. It benefits hepatitis (liver inflammation) when there is a distended liver, along with pain that spreads to the right shoulder and back. There will also be jaundice and a tight and swollen abdomen.
Symptoms worsen from lying on the right side and around 4:00 a.m. or 4:00 p.m. They will improve with a hot bath, after passing stools, putting pressure on the affected area, and consumption of hot foods or drinks such as hot milk.
Research also supports homeopathic Chelidonium for liver damage and liver tumors. For instance, a study published in the journal Global Advances in Health and Medicine in 2012 showed that Chelidonium 6X was effective in a case of viral hepatitis that had failed while using conventional therapy. There were positive results, even two years after the homeopathic treatment.
Homeopathic Chelidonium 30C and 200C also exhibited antioxidative and antitumor potential against liver damage and artificially induced liver tumors in rats, according to a 2010 study published in the journal Homeopathy. For the study, the rats were randomized into six sub-groups, including groups given Chelidonium 30C and 200C.
Other research published in the journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine in 2002 showed that Chelidonium 30C and 200C exhibits antitumor and antigenotoxic activity, while also modulating the activity of certain marker enzymes. The results found that about 40% of the mice in the Chelidonium 30C and 200C groups did not have tumor nodules in their livers. As a result, homeopathic Chelidonium may be effective for combating liver cancer, according to the study’s authors.
Chelidonium Profile, Other Uses, and Health Benefits
In homeopathy, the remedy profile is a significant indicator for determining whether homeopathic Chelidonium is the best for your symptoms. The Chelidonium type has an aggressive and domineering personality, and those that respond well to the remedy tend to be practical rather than intellectual people that don’t waste time analyzing their emotions. The person also typically craves cheese and hot drinks. They also experience feelings of heaviness, while symptoms tend to be right-sided.
What are other health benefits of Chelidonium? Besides liver problems and related cancers, it is useful for indigestion, nausea, vomiting, stomach upset, abdominal distension, warts, arthritis, depression, and anxiety. The following will look at how it benefits gallbladder conditions, headaches, pneumonia, and shoulder and neck pain.
1. Gallbladder Conditions
Chelidonium is among the better homeopathic remedies for gallbladder conditions. The homeopathic remedy is used to treat a sharp, constant pain on the upper right side of the abdomen that is behind the ribs, which is likely due to a gallstone trapped in a bile duct. The pain may be similar to the pain felt during hepatitis.
The gallstone condition will often worsen when the sufferer consumes high-fat foods. As a result, the pain will spread to the back and right shoulder blade. Other symptoms include vomiting, queasiness, and an inflamed bile duct that may cause gallbladder inflammation or jaundice. Lying on the right side of the body will worsen symptoms, and symptoms improve from drinking hot milk, hot baths, passing stools, and putting pressure on the affected area.
2. Shoulder and Neck Pain
Chelidonium is often used for aching shoulders, along with chilliness in muscles and the tips of the fingers that ache when touched. In some cases, shoulder pain may have a relation to nausea, vomiting, and sweating. It is also used for right shoulder, wrist, arm, neck, and inner shoulder blade pain. The remedy will both treat and cure all symptoms related to shoulder pain.
Bending backward and putting pressure on the affected area will improve symptoms; however, they become worse when lying on the right side, and around 4:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.
Chelidonium is also a strong homeopathic remedy for headaches. In this case, the person will experience numbness of the face, heaviness on the right side of the head, and neuralgia, especially in the area above the eyes. The person will also often have a yellow coating on their tongue that also has teeth marks.
It is also worthy to note that the person’s symptoms may be related to an existing liver condition. Symptoms will improve from putting pressure on the affected area and bending backwards.
Chelidonium is often used for pneumonia when the person experiences breathlessness and pain when breathing deeply or coughing—common features of pneumonia. Pneumonia will mainly affect the right lung, and the condition may also be accompanied with liver disorders. Other pneumonia symptoms include teeth-chattering chills, diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, a rapid heartbeat, chest pain, fever, and tiredness.
Warmth will worsen symptoms, while hot foods and drinks improve symptoms.
Final Thoughts on Chelidonium
Where do you find homeopathic Chelidonium? You can find it at health food stores or online in pellet or liquid form. You can also acquire it from your homeopath if they determine that the remedy is right for you based on your emotional, mental, and physical symptom picture. A homeopath will often have the remedy on hand so you can take some with you to help treat your problems.
As mentioned, Chelidonium is often used for liver problems, cancer, gallbladder conditions, headaches, pneumonia, and headaches. Your homeopath will be able to recommend the correct dosage and remedy potency, and whether you should change the dosage, or change your remedy to something different.
Read More Articles:
“Chelidonium Majus/Chelidonium/Chel,” Home Remedy Central; http://www.homeremedycentral.com/en/homeopathic-remedies/homeopathy/chelidonium.html, last accessed July 4, 2017.
“Homeopathy Chelidonium Celandine,” Herbs2000; http://www.herbs2000.com/homeopathy/chelidonium.htm, last accessed July 4, 2017.
“Chelidonium majus,” Homeopathy Center; http://www.homeopathycenter.org/homeopathy-today/chelidonium-majus, last accessed July 4, 2017.
Biswas, S.J., et al., “Evaluation of protective potentials of a potentized homeopathic drug, Chelidonium majus, during azo dye induced hepatocarcinogenesis in mice,” Indian Journal of Experimental Biology, July 2004; 42(7): 698-714. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15339035.
Gebhardt, R., et al., “Antioxidative, antiproliferative and biochemical effects in HepG2 cells of a homeopathic remedy and its constituent plant tinctures tested separately or in combination,” Arzneimittel-Forschung, 2003; 53(12): 823-830. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14732962.