Black Cohosh; Uses/ Indications, Dosage, Side Effects

Black Cohosh; Uses/ Indications, Dosage, Side Effects

Black cohosh (Actaea racemosa or Cimicifuga racemosa), a member of the buttercup family, is a perennial plant which native to North America. Historical names for this plant include snakeroot, black bugbane, rattleweed, macrotys, and rheumatism weed. Black cohosh has a long history of use. Native Americans used it for its purported benefits in treating musculoskeletal pain, fever, cough, pneumonia, sluggish labor, and menstrual irregularities. European settlers were said to use black cohosh as a tonic to support female reproductive health

Another name

  • Black cohosh
  • Black snakeroot
  • Cimicifuga racemosa rhizome
  • Cimicifuga racemosa root
  • Cimicifuga racemosa root with rhizome
  • Cimicifugae rhizoma
  • Fairy candle root
  • Rattleroot

Uses/ Indications of Black Cohosh

  • Menopausal symptoms – Research shows that taking some black cohosh products can reduce some symptoms of menopause. However, the benefits are only modest. Black cohosh might lessen the frequency of hot flashes. Most of this research is for a specific commercial black cohosh product, Remifemin. The benefits may not occur with all products that contain black cohosh. Research using black cohosh products other than Remifemin have not always shown benefits for menopausal symptoms. Some of these studies show that these other black cohosh products do not reduce hot flashes or menopausal symptoms any better than a sugar pill (“placebo”).
  • Treatment of menopausal symptoms and menstrual dysfunction – Some women take black cohosh for hot flashes related to breast cancer treatment. Women with breast cancer should not use black cohosh without talking to their cancer specialist or another health provider. Some early research suggested that black cohosh might reduce hot flashes in breast cancer patients, but more recent and higher quality research shows that black cohosh does not reduce hot flashes in women with breast cancer. Also, there is some question as to whether black cohosh is safe for women with breast cancer. It is important for a woman with breast cancer to discuss any use of black cohosh with her health provider before using it.
  • Breast cancer – One study suggests that taking black cohosh supplements is linked to a decreased risk of breast cancer. However, other research has found no link. One study found that taking black cohosh might increase survival in women already diagnosed with breast cancer.
  • Heart disease – Early research shows that taking 40 mg of a specific black cohosh extract (CR BNO 1055) daily does not lower the risk of heart disease in postmenopausal women.
  • Mental function – Early research suggests that taking 128 mg of black cohosh daily for 12 months does not improve memory or attention in postmenopausal women.
  • Infertility – Some early research suggests that taking black cohosh plus clomiphene citrate can increase pregnancy rates in infertile women compared to clomiphene citrate alone. Other research shows that taking black cohosh with clomiphene results in pregnancy rates that are similar to those found when clomiphene is taken with another fertility drug.
  • Induction of labor – Some people report that black cohosh can help start labor. As many as 45% of nurse-midwives use black cohosh to start labor in pregnant women at term. Despite its common use, there is no reliable scientific evidence that black cohosh works for this purpose.
  • Migraine headache – Early research shows that taking 50 mg of black cohosh plus soy isoflavones and dong quai daily for 24 weeks can reduce the occurrence of menstrual migraines.
  • Osteoarthritis – Early research suggests that taking a specific product containing black cohosh (Reumalex) twice daily for 2 months improves pain, but not joint function, in people with osteoarthritis.
  • Weak bones (Osteoporosis) – Evidence regarding the benefit of black cohosh for treating or preventing osteoporosis is unclear. Some early research shows that taking a specific black cohosh product (CR BNO 1055, Klimadynon/Menofem, Bionorica AG) daily for 12 weeks increases markers of bone formation in postmenopausal women. However, other research shows that taking the same black cohosh extract does not improve bone mineral density. It is not known if these black cohosh products can reduce the risk of bone fractures.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis – Early evidence suggests that taking a specific product containing black cohosh (Reumalex) twice daily for 2 months improves pain, but not joint function, in people with rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Painful menstrual periods with upper back pain
  • Acne
  • Anxiety
  • Bug Bites
  • Cough
  • Fever
  • Mole removal
  • Painful menstruation
  • Premenstrual syndrome (PMS)
  • Rheumatism
  • Snakebite
  • Sore throat
  • Wart removal
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The Dosage of Black cohosh Uses

  • Adult and children 2 years of age and older: Dissolve 5 pellets under the tongue 3 times a day until relieved or as directed by a doctor.


Black cohosh uses


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