Motherwort is a plant. The parts that grow above the ground are used to make medicine.
Motherwort is used for heart conditions, including heart failure, irregular heartbeat, fast heartbeat, and heart symptoms due to anxiety. It is also used for the absence of menstrual periods, intestinal gas (flatulence), and over-active thyroid (hyperthyroidism).
Some people apply motherwort directly to the skin for itching and shingles. The seeds of two of the species (Leonurus artemisia or Leonurus heterophyllus) are used to improve eyesight and as a general tonic.
How it works
Motherwort might slow down the heart and thin the blood. It might also stimulate uterine tone and blood flow.
Some research suggests taking a combination of motherwort, valerian, hops, and lemon balm by mouth before bed improves sleep in alcohol abusers going through withdrawal.
Motherwort is POSSIBLY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth appropriately. Side effects include diarrhea, stomach irritation, uterine bleeding, sleepiness, and allergic reactions. Contact with the skin can cause rashes and increased sensitivity to the sun.
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Taking motherwort by mouth duringpregnancyisLIKELY UNSAFEand should be avoided. Motherwort can stimulate the uterus and might cause amiscarriage.Are there any interactions with medications?
There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking motherwort if you are breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.
Heart conditions: Motherwort can interfere with the treatment of heart conditions. If you have a heart condition, get your healthcare provider's advice before starting motherwort.
Surgery: Motherwort can slow down (sedate) the central nervous system (CNS). There is a concern that when combined with anesthesia and other medications used during and after surgery, motherwort might cause too much sedation. Stop using motherwort at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.
Uterine bleeding: Motherwort may be able to stimulate uterine blood flow, which is why some women try it for starting their periods. If you have a uterine bleeding condition, use motherwort with caution, since it might make this condition worse.
ModerateSedative medications (CNS depressants)
Motherwort might cause sleepiness and drowsiness. Medications that cause sleepiness are called sedatives. Taking motherwort along with sedative medications might cause too much sleepiness.Some sedative medications include clonazepam (Klonopin), lorazepam (Ativan), phenobarbital (Donnatal), zolpidem (Ambien), and others.