Podophyllin; Uses, Dosage, Site Effects, Interactions

Podophyllin; Uses, Dosage, Site Effects, Interactions

Podophyllin is a resin extracted from the root of the plant Podophyllum sp. Berberidaceae (Mandrake), which contains numerous compounds, among which podophyllotoxin. Podophyllin is the principal active component. Podophyllin arrests mitosis in metaphase.

Caustic extract from the roots of Podophyllum peltatum and P. emodi. Podophyllum resin contains PODOPHYLLOTOXIN and its congeners and is very irritating to mucous membranes and skin. Podophyllin is a violent purgative that may cause CNS damage and teratogenesis. It is used as a paint for warts, skin neoplasms, and senile keratoses.

Podophyllum peltatum is one of the main medicines for acute diarrhea in children. The child has profuse, gushing diarrhea that is watery, green or yellow, and offensive. There is gurgling in the abdomen with the passage of gas. Often the diarrhea is painless, although some cramping may occur prior to passing a stool. Despite having diarrhea, the child does not seem too ill, although he or she may begin to seem tired if diarrhea persists for a few days. This medicine is sometimes also needed in cases in which diarrhea and constipation alternate.

Mechanism of Actions of Podophyllin

Podophyllin is a cytotoxic agent that has been used topically in the treatment of genital warts. It arrests mitosis in metaphase, an effect it shares with other cytotoxic agents such as the vinca alkaloids. The active agent is podophyllotoxin.
Cell division is arrested and other cellular processes are impaired, gradually resulting in the disruption of cells and destruction of the tissue.

Indications of Podophyllin

  • 25% podophyllin (in benzoin tincture) is indicated for the removal of soft genital (venereal) warts (condylomata acuminata).
  • Genital warts – Applying podophyllum resin, also called podophyllin, as a 10% to 25% suspension in tincture of benzoin or as a 2% to 4% gel directly to the affected area is effective for the removal of warts caused by human papillomavirus. However, podophyllotoxin (podofilox, Condylox), a chemical found in podophyllum and an FDA-approved drug, is usually used instead because it is less toxic and might be more effective. But some research suggests that using a 20% podophyllum resin is equally effective as 8% solutions of podophyllotoxin or colchicine for removing penile warts.
  • Corns – Early research suggests that applying a specific product (Canthacur PS) containing cantharidin, salicylic acid, and 5% podophyllum resin to the affected area after corn removal can clear corns without causing scarring.
  • White patches growing on the tongue (hairy leukoplakia) – Early research suggests that a single application of 25% podophyllum resin in tincture of benzoin to the affected area can help heal wounds caused by hairy leukoplakia. Other research shows that adding acyclovir cream to 25% podophyllum resin is more effective than the 25% podophyllum resin alone for treating oral leukoplakia.
  • It has been used by American Indians as an emetic, cathartic,[17] and antihelmintic agent.[17] The rhizome of the mayapple has been used for a variety of medicinal purposes, originally by indigenous inhabitants and later by other settlers.
  • Mayapple can be also used topically for warts, and two of its derivatives, etoposide, and teniposide, have shown promise in treating some cancers.[18][19] Etoposide is among the Health Organisations’s list of essential medicines and it is derived from podophyllotoxin.
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Contra-Indications of Podophyllin

  • Data Information not Available

Side Effects of Podophyllin

The Most Common

  • Signs of an allergic reaction- hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • change in your mental state, confusion, agitation, seizure (convulsions), loss of consciousness;
  • drowsiness or light-headed feeling (like you might pass out);
  • weak or shallow breathing;
  • severe constipation, little or no urinating;
  • weakness, numbness, tingling in your arms or legs;
  • easy bruising or bleeding (nosebleeds, bleeding gums), bloody or tarry stools, coughing up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds;
  • upper stomach pain, loss of appetite; or
  • chest pain, pounding heartbeats or fluttering in your chest, shortness of breath.


Less common

Drug Interactions of Podophyllin

  • We currently have no information for PODOPHYLLUM Interactions. Information or data not available




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