Polygonum aviculare – Monograph


Polygonum L. – Genere


Order: Caryophyllales Juss. ex Bercht. & J.Presl (APG IV), Polygonales (Cronquist)

Family: Polygonaceae Juss.

Tribe: Polygoneae


Polygonum aviculare L.

Primary functionality:

Saturn [Culpeper, Junius]

Secondary functionality:



Cold in the 2.nd degree (or beginning of the 3.rd) and rather dry [Mattioli]
Cold in the 1.st degree and dry in the 2.nd [Salmon]


Bland (because of mucilages), astringent (due to tannins), sweet, slightly aromatic (cumarins), slightly bitter and slightly saline.


Intestine, bladder and kidneys, ANS (diaphoresis), epithelia (skin, mucous membranes, vascular epithelia), connective tissue (in particular tendons and ligaments), distal interphalangeal joints of the fingers.

Humoral actions1:

Resolves yellow bile excesses, phlegm (fluid or thickened) excesses and mixed conditions (toxic heat, heat-dampness); resolves tension excesses (mainly in bladder, intestine, ANS); corrects perverted melancholy (lithontriptic) and supplements melancholy deficiency (vulnerary). It is also moistening.

Clinical actions:

Abstersive, alexipharmic, anti-diabetic, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, astringent, cholagogue, depurative, diaphoretic, diuretic (uricosuric), emetic (seeds), emmenagogue, febrifuge (recurrent fevers), hemostatic, laxative (seeds), lithontriptic, nervine, styptic, vulnerary.

Used parts:

Flowering or non-flowering aerial part (with or without roots), seeds



Polygonum aviculare is generally ascribed to a complex formed by several species, which are considered by some authors as subspecies of P. aviculare.

Given the peculiar similarity of the species belonging to the complex, it is very likely that the ancient authors (mainly European ones) made no distinction between them and used them in a similar way. For example, in Italy, where the P. aviculare complex includes P. aviculare L. (=P. aviculare s. str.), P. rurivagum Jord. ex Boreau, and P. arenastrum Boreau, the Renaissance botanist Andrea Mattioli describes only the male polygonus, reporting that “its flowers are now white, now red”, without mentioning any other difference. For this reason it is plausible to believe that they were used in the same way, with similar therapeutic results.

Here we only deal with P. aviculare L. (=P. aviculare s. str.), but it is likely that the other species of the same complex have similar effects. The Italian Domenico Atzei also treats the three Italian species indistinctly from the therapeutic point of view [Atzei].

Obviously, differences between the species exist. For example, P. aviculare is particularly rich in silicon, more than P. arenastrum (according to [Hodson], P. aviculare contains an amount of elemental silicon almost three times greater than that contained in P. arenastrum).

Polygonum aviculare is an annual plant, very branched and with creeping, long and thin stems with many nodes: this feature has earned it the popular name of knotweed (centinodia in Italian). The popular name sanguinaria (or sanguinalia, from the Latin sanguis, “blood”) is linked to its anti-haemorrhagic abilities, and swinegrass reminds us that the plant is browsed by pigs.

Despite being little used today, P. aviculare, in addition to being an edible plant (leaves and young plants), has a great therapeutic value. In the past, in fact, it was considered a valid remedy for a large number of problems, so much so that in some areas of Italy it was called centimorbia (meaning “one hundred diseases”): “The people by ancient tradition believe it to be specific for a large number of diseases, from which it had the name of centimorbia, that is, good for a hundred diseases.” [Targioni-Tozzetti].

The main constituents are: flavonoids, tannins, mucilage, simple sugars, phenolcarboxylic acids, hydroxycoumarins, saponins, alkaloids (including the fat-soluble panicudin), sesquiterpenes, lignans, organic acids, essential oil (traces).

It is rather rich in silicon. According to some analyses, it contains about 1.97% by weight of total elemental silicon, of which 1.39% organic silicon, 0.11% mineral silicon in soluble form and 0.47% silicon in the form of insoluble silicates (data calculated with respect to the dry plant, see [Hodson, Kolesnikov])2. This gives the knotgrass some important functional characteristics, including a certain purifying activity and the ability to strengthen the connective tissue.

Although not intense, the flavor of P. aviculare is complex: bland (due to mucilage), astringent (due to tannins), sweet, slightly aromatic (coumarins), slightly bitter and slightly saline.

Such complex flavor is indicative of tonic, demulcent, soothing, anti-inflammatory, consolidating properties and the ability to solve/expel phlegm (either fluid or thickened) and melancholy.

The plant has been described by Dioscorides, as reported by Mattioli (who calls it male polygonus or sanguinaria, in order to distinguish it from female polygonus or female sanguinaria): “Its juice drunk has frigid and constricting virtues: it stagnates the spit of blood, and the body fluxes; it is good for the choleric, and for the distillations of urine, because it evidently makes people urinate. Drunk with wine, it heals snake bites. It is drunk in case of fevers, which are [not] continuous, an hour ahead of the beginning. Applied below it stagnates the fluxes of women. It is distilled in the ears, which leak, and in those which hurt. Cooked in wine, and added Honey to it, it heals the ulcers of the male members very well: the fronds are usefully plastered for the burning of the stomach, the spitting of blood, the corrosive ulcers, the shingles, the inflammations, the collections of putrid matter, and the fresh wounds.” (Dioscorides, according to [Mattioli]).

Again Mattioli, quoting Galen, writes: “The polygonus is somewhat constricting, and so truly there is of frigid wateriness in it, that it can be easily placed among those medicaments, which are frigid in the second order, or in the beginning of the third. And so for this reason it benefits, plastered outside, those who have too warm stomachs, as well as erysipelas, and hot phlegmons3.” [Mattioli]

The therapeutic activities of the plant has been well summarized, in more recent times, by William Salmon: “It is cooling, drying, and binding” [Salmon]. This plant in fact, as we have seen, is capable of resolving inflammation, healing wounds, stopping flows of any type (blood, organic liquids, exudations, …) and drying/eliminating excess fluids, but it is also able to moisten, break urinary stones and gallstones, calm spasms and “open the pores”.

According to Lyle, for instance: “This herb is a mild, diffusive, stimulating and relaxing, antispasmodic nervine. In hot infusion it influences the circulation and is diaphoretic, quite stimulating to the capillaries and increasing the periodic flow, especially if a little Zingiber be added. Cold preparations are diuretic and relieve the aching back and bladder. For irritable coughs it is a good addition to Aralia, Inula and Prunus.” [Lyle]

Targioni-Tozzetti writes: “The whole plant, fresh or dry, is used by country people to make decoctions against coughs and light bronchitis, and as a diaphoretic in rheumatisms, and as an astringent in prolapses and hemorrhages. Levrat-Perrotton praises it a lot in concentrated decoction, against even stubborn diarrhea.” [Targioni-Tozzetti]

Its ability to break down kidney and bladder stones is described by Clymer: “its chief influence is on the bladder, and it has generally been used for the removal of stones from the bladder even after all other treatments had failed. It is not given to prevent the formation of stones, but to dissolve stones already formed. For this purpose is best combined with Shave Grass three or more times a day, either in infusion or in tincture.” [Clymer]

More modern indications come from Serge Dewit and Jean-Claude Leunis: “Due to the richness in tannin, knotgrass is known as an hemostatic and antidiarrheal. Rich in silicon, it is remineralizing. We use it in angor, cerebral arteritis, Raynaud’s disease and localized circulatory deficiencies. The plant is rich in flavonoids (avicularoside) and coumarin, It has antiviral properties and this is not strange given its richness in flavonoids. It has been shown that it stimulates γ interferon and that it activates the polynuclear cells, probably activating the IgG subclasses. This is a hypothesis to be studied. We use it with Rumex acetosella in the treatment of asthma. It can also be used as a therapeutic adjuvant for diabetes in which it reduces thirst. It is interesting as an adjunct in the treatment of gout as it increases the clearance of uric acid. […] Its biological action covers the exudative, steatosic and amylotic phases.” [Dewit-Leunis]

Modern research has shown, for P. aviculare or its extracts, some antimicrobial effect [Salama] and some interesting activity on atherosclerosis [Park], diabetes [Cai, Zhang], obesity [Sung], sperm damage from EMF exposure [Milan], liver fibrosis [Nan].

Some sources report that P. aviculare is traditionally used to treat hypertension, and a vasorelaxant activity of its extracts has been demonstrated ex vivo [Yin].

P. aviculare, known as Bian Xu (萹蓄) or Herba Polygoni Avicularis, is also used in traditional Chinese medicine, mainly to:

  • drain Damp-Heat from the Urinary Bladder, promote urination and unblock painful urinary dysfunction; in this context, it is used in case of Damp-Heat Painful Urinary Dysfunction (Lin Syndrome) or Damp-Heat jaundice;
  • to expel parasites and stops itching; specifically, for damp lesions with itch (including tinea) or for intestinal parasites such as tapeworm, hookworm and pinworm [AmDragon]

This herb is reputed most appropriate when Heat and Dampness are equally severe. [AmDragon]



Temperature and taste

In the Hippocratic-Galenic system P. aviculare is described as cold and dry in the second degree or in the beginning of the third degree:

  • Liter.: “It is cold, and dry in the second degree or rather in the beginning of the third.” [Durante]
  • Liter.: “The polygonus is somewhat constricting, and so truly there is of frigid wateriness in it, that it can be easily placed among those medicaments, which are frigid in the second order, or in the beginning of the third.” [Mattioli]

William Salmon describes the plant as “cold in the first degree, and dry in the second”. [Salmon]

In TCM it is described as Slightly Cold (or Cool or Neutral), as having a bitter taste, and as entering the Bladder meridian. [AmDragon]

According to Herzog, “it has indeed some acridity in its taste”. [Herzog]

A personal proving with the fresh plant and the tincture has shown a delicate but complex flavor: bland (because of mucilage), astringent (due to tannins), sweet, slightly aromatic (cumarins), slightly bitter (this taste is more easily perceived in the mature leaves), and slightly saline.



The signature of the knotweed is mainly Saturnine (both according to Manfred Junius and to Culpeper [Culpeper, Junius]), reasonably due to its cold and dry nature and its cooling and consolidating activity. The exaltation of Saturn in Libra gives this plant the ability to act on the kidneys and regulate the hydrosaline control, and so to stimulate the degradation of stones and body “tartarous” matter.


Tissue phases

2 (reaction), 3 (deposition)4, 6 (disorganization) [Dewit-Leunis]


Actions and indications

Humoral actions

P. aviculare has a complex activity: it treats Yellow Bile excesses, Phlegm excesses (both of thin or thickened Phlegm) and mixed conditions (toxic heat, damp-heat); it resolves Tension excesses (mainly at the level of bladder, intestine, ANS5); it corrects the perverted melancholy (lithontriptic) and supplements deficient melancholy (vulnerary). It’s also moistening6 ([Vogel]).



P. aviculare has an elective tropism toward intestine, bladder and kidneys, ANS (diaphoresis), epithelia (skin, mucous membranes, vascular epithelia), connective tissue (specially tendons and ligaments), distal interphalangeal joints of the fingers.


Clinical actions

Abstersive, alexipharmic, anti-diabetic, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, astringent, cholagogue, depurative, diaphoretic, diuretic (uricosuric), emetic (seeds), emmenagogue, febrifuge (recurrent fevers), hemostatic, laxative (seeds), lithontriptic, nervine, styptic, vulnerary.


Principal actions

Astringent, vulnerary, styptic, hemostatic, abstersive (internal and external use) [Culpeper, Dewit-Leunis, Duraffourd-Lapraz, Durante, Grieve, Herzog, Mattioli, Rafinesque, Salmon, Targioni-Tozzetti, Winston]

  • Liter.: “it stagnates the spits of blood, & the fluxes of the body.” [Durante, Mattioli]
  • Liter.: “The leaves cooked in red wine, & drunk, tighten all the fluxes of the belly, the vomiting, the spits of the blood, & the superfluous menstruation.” [Durante]


Anti-inflammatory [Culpeper, Durante, Lyle, Mattioli, Plinius, Salmon]:

  • Liter.: “[its juice] is good for the choleric” (Dioscorides) [Durante, Mattioli]
  • Liter.: “The juice, or distilled water, is very valuable in extinguishing internal & external inflammations” [Durante]
  • Liter.: “it relieves ear pains” (external use) [Durante]
  • Liter.: “relieve the aching back and bladder” (cold preparations) [Lyle]
  • Liter.: “cool and temper the heat of Blood, or of the Stomach” [Salmon]


Diaphoretic (hot infusion) [Lyle, Targioni-Tozzetti]


Diuretic (preferably cold preparations); uricosuric [Culpeper, Duraffourd-Lapraz, Durante, Grieve, Cook, Lyle, Mattioli, Rafinesque, Salmon, Winston]

  • Liter.: “[its juice benefits] the distillation of urine, because it evidently makes us urinate” (Dioscorides) [Durante, Mattioli]
  • Liter.: “It is interesting as an adjunct in the treatment of gout as it increases the clearance of uric acid” [Dewit-Leunis]


Lithontriptic [Clymer, Durante, Jackson]


Blood purifier, depurative [Atzei, Duraffourd-Lapraz, Jackson]:

  • Liter.: “As a purifier of the blood, one tumbler of a weaker decoction is recommended to be taken every morning.” [Jackson]


Febrifuge [Atzei, Durante, Herzog, Jackson, Mattioli, Porcher]:

  • Liter.: “Excellent febrifuge, used […] a substitute for quinine.” [Jackson]
  • Liter.: “And it was administered in the fever before the remission in two glasses of water in the tertian, and mainly in the quartan.” [Plinius]


Laxative (seeds) [Grieve, Plinius]

  • Liter.: “The fruit is emetic and purgative.” [Grieve]


Emetic (seeds) [Grieve, Plinius]


Alexipharmic [Culpeper, Durante, Mattioli, Salmon]

  • Liter.: “Effectively expels venom, & stones, & kills body worms” [Durante]
  • Liter.: “for those who are stung or bitten by Scorpions, Serpents, or other Venomous Creatures” [Salmon]


Antispasmodic [Cook, Lyle, Salmon]:

  • Liter.: “It is a mild and quite diffusive relaxant and stimulant, antispasmodic in action” [Cook] (simil. [Lyle])
  • Liter.: “eases all inward pains of the Bowels arising from heat, sharpness, and corruption of Humors, as the Colick, &c.” [Salmon]


Nervine [Duraffourd-Lapraz, Lyle]

  • Sedative [Duraffourd-Lapraz]


Cholagogue [Winston]

Emmenagogue (hot infusion) [Cook, Lyle]

Anti-diabetic, hypoglicemiant [Cai, Dewit-Leunis, Duraffourd-Lapraz, Scholten, Zhang]


Specific indications


  • Back aching, extending to the bladder (or vice versa) [Cook, Lyle, Scholten]
    • with sudden suppression of urine [Cook]


  • Fever (intermittent, malarial) [Atzei, Boericke, Durante, Herzog, Jackson, Mattioli, Plinius, Porcher, Salmon, Scholten]
    • Liter.: “given before the Fit of an Ague comes, whether Tertian or Quartan, it is said to determine it, and cure the same” [Salmon]
    • Liter.: “in material doses of tincture, found useful in phthisis pulmonalis and intermittent fever, and especially in arterio-sclerosis. Erythema.” [Boericke]


  • Gout [AmDragon, Dewit-Leunis, Salmon]


  • Rheumatism (aerial parts) [Atzei, Targioni-Tozzetti]; (seeds) [Plinius]
    • Liter.: “The seeds solve the belly [,] more widely taken move the urine, restrict the rheumatism, which if not present, are not beneficial.” [Plinius]


  • Parasites [Durante]
    • Helminthiasis [AmDragon, Durante, Grieve, Vogel, Salmon]
      • Liter.: “kills also Worms in Stomach or Belly” [Salmon]
    • Trichomonas [Winston]
    • TCM: Damp lesions with itch including tinea [AmDragon]


  • Faintness [Rafinesque]; fatigue, weakness [Scholten]
  • Prolapsus [Rafinesque]



  • Jaundice [Winston]; Damp-Heat jaundice (TCM) [AmDragon]
  • Diabetes [Dewit-Leunis, Duraffourd-Lapraz, Scholten]
  • Itching of hepatic nature [Atzei]


Respiratory system

  • Cough, throat inflammations, pharyngitis [Cook, Lyle, Scholten, Targioni-Tozzetti]
    • Irritable coughs [Lyle]; tickling coughs [Cook, Scholten]; (cold infusion) [Cook]
    • Inflammatory changes to the oral and pharyngeal mucosa [CME]


  • Bronchitis [Targioni-Tozzetti]


  • Tuberculosis [Atzei, Boericke, Hansen, Herzog, Scholten]
    • Liter.: “Recommended in phthisis pulmon. 5-10 drops ter of the mother tincture.” [Hansen]
    • Liter.: “a remedy in mucosity of the breast and incipient phthisis.” [Herzog]


  • Catarrh, common cold [CME, Herzog]
  • Asthma (with Rumex acetosella) [Dewit-Leunis]


Gastrointestinal system

  • Diarrhea, chronic diarrhea, dysentery [Atzei, Dewit-Leunis, Duraffourd-Lapraz, Durante, Grieve, Herzog, Jackson, Lyle, Mattioli, Porcher, Salmon, Scholten, Targioni-Tozzetti]; enterocolitis (whole plant decoction) [Atzei], as a bowel antiseptic [Atzei, Duraffourd-Lapraz]:
    • Liter.: “[In chronic diarrhœa and dysentry] as a concentrated decoction, it was efficient in several cases in which the usual remedies were of no avail.” [Herzog]
    • Liter.: “Excellent remedy for chronic diarrhœa (strong decoction).” [Jackson]
    • Liter.: “Dr. Levat Perroton, of Lyons, gives it as an excellent remedy for chronic diarrhœa, using a strong decoction for a month or more; he reports nine cases cured which had resisted other plans of treatment.” [Porcher]
    • Liter.: “in intestinal infections (decoction of fresh herb complete with root, or aqueous macerate of shredded dried herb […])” [Atzei]


  • Flatulent colic [Cook, Scholten]
  • Vomiting [Durante]
  • Stomach pain [Scholten]
  • Gallstones [Atzei]
  • Gastrointestinal ulcer [Atzei]


Cardio-circulatory system

  • Hemorrhages, hemoptysis, hematemesis [Atzei, Culpeper, Durante, Grieve, Mattioli, Porcher, Rafinesque, Salmon, Targioni-Tozzetti]
  • Arteriosclerosis [Boericke, Scholten]; (tincture) [Boericke]
  • Angor7 [Dewit-Leunis]
  • Cerebral arteritis, Raynaud’s disease and localized circulatory deficits [Dewit-Leunis]


Urinary system

  • Urinary (kidney and bladder) calculi, gravel (aerial parts, seeds) [Atzei, Clymer, Culpeper, Durante, Grieve, Jackson]:
    • Liter.: “extraordinary power of curing stone and gravel disease” [Jackson]
    • Liter.: “Take a good, liberal handful and boil gently in six tumblers of water, till it is reduced to about four tumblers. The dose is one to two tumblers to be taken in the morning on an empty stomach. In bad cases it is given several times throughout the day, but diet must be strictly kept.” [Jackson]
    • Liter.: “It has also diuretic properties, for which it has found employment in strangury and as an expellant of stone, the dose recommended in old herbals being 1 drachm of the herb, powdered in wine, taken twice a day.” [Grieve]
    • Liter.: “powerfully expel the Stone, Gravel, Sand, Urine and other Tartarous Matter from the Reins, Ureters, and Bladder” [Salmon]


  • Strangury, dysuria [Cook, Culpeper, Durante, Grieve, Mattioli, Salmon]
    • with aching to the back and bladder [Cook]


  • Urinary tract inflammations [AmDragon, Salmon, Winston]
    • Liter.: “Knotgrass is a peculiar thing against […] heat and sharpness of Urine” [Salmon]
    • Urethritis [Winston]
    • Damp-Heat Painful Urinary Dysfunction (Lin Syndrome) [AmDragon]


  • Dropsy [Rafinesque]



  • Hemorrhoids (internal use) [Grieve, Herzog]; (external use) [Atzei]
    • Liter.: “useful in diarrhoea, bleeding piles and all haemorrhages” [Grieve]


Sex organs

  • Gonorrhea [Salmon]
  • Protects sperm from damage due to EMF exposure [Milan]



  • Spermatorrhea [Salmon]



  • Menometrorrhagia [Culpeper, Durante, Mattioli]
  • Amenorrhea, dismenorrhea [Lyle, Scholten]
  • Injured womb [Scholten]
  • Leucorrhea [Salmon]; (internal and external use) [Atzei]



  • Stomatitis [Atzei, Scholten]



  • Eye floaters (ITA: Miodesopsie) [Durante]:
    • Liter.: “The water distilled in the sun, sharpens eyesight, & resolves the clouds of the eyes” (external use)[Durante]


  • Sore eyes [Plinius]
    • Liter.: “And the juice is instilled in the ears, which are rotten, & per se to the pain of the eyes.” [Plinius]



  • Earache, ear infections, ear ulcers [Culpeper, Durante, Mattioli, Vogel. Salmon]
    • Liter.: “[its juice] is distilled in the ears, which secrete, and in those which hurt.” (Dioscorides) [Mattioli]
    • Liter.: “In addition to this, it consolidates the wounds, and confers to all the ulcers of the ears, in which it dries up the rottenness, and dries them” [Mattioli]



  • Ulcers, wounds, sores; also running and old (“filthy”) (external use) [Culpeper, Durante, Grieve, Herzog, Mattioli, Rafinesque]
    • Liter.: “Externally as a moderately astringent remedy in wounds and ulcers” [Herzog]
    • Liter.: “it helps the inflammations, & ulcers of the genital parts, especially cooked in the wine the fronds, & added honey” (external use) [Durante]
    • Liter.: “it confers not only to the corrosive, and malignant ulcers, but equally to all the others” [Mattioli]
    • Liter.: “excellent remedy for sores” (fresh juice made into an ointment) [Grieve]
    • Liter.: “cures Wounds, and cleanses and heals old filthy Ulcers, &c” [Salmon]


  • Erysipelas [Mattioli]


  • Shingles (external use) [Durante, Mattioli, Plinius, Salmon]
    • Liter.: “stop the progress of Anthonies-Fire, or any other breakings forth of heat, and gives ease in all hot Swellings and Apostems” [Salmon]
  • Erythema [Boericke, Scholten]
  • Scleroderma [Scholten]



  • Tendon trauma, sprains, bone fractures [Charrié, Culpeper, Salmon]
    • Liter.: “it strengthens weak Joints, comfort the Nerves and Tendons, and is prevalent against the Gout, being duly and rightly applied Morning and Evening” (balsam) [Salmon]
    • Liter.: “[…] I gladly associate the mother tincture of knotweed (Polygonum aviculare) which will support the pancreatic digestive dynamics (allowing the assimilation of the elements necessary for the healing of the ligaments)” [Charrié]
    • Liter.: “In case of fracture […] To help the healing of the bone, take horsetail, and/or comfrey (Symphytum officinale) and/or knotweed (Polygonum aviculare)” [Charrié]


  • Ruptures [Culpeper]


Used parts and collection

The aerial part of P. aviculare are collected before or, better, during flowering. The anthesis is very long and can begin as early as May and continue up to October. The root may or may not be harvested. The seeds must be collected when ripe.


Preparation and dosage

P. aviculare can be used both in infusion/decoction and in tincture.


Contraindications and side effects

P. aviculare is a plant generally considered safe and non-toxic.

According to TCM, it is contraindicated for those with difficult urination due to abdominal weakness. Overdose can cause Qi Deficiency. It may cause dermatitis or gastrointestinal disturbance. Over consumption can cause depletion of Jing. [AmDragon]



P. aviculare has not been thoroughly proven so far. The following is from Jan Scholten and Boericke [Boericke, Scholten]:


Uncontrollable sexual lust, directed to less desirable relations, feeling guilty about it.



General: diabetes.

Energy: fatigue, weakness.

Fever: intermittent, malarial.

Mouth: stomatitis.

Throat: pharyngitis.

Lungs: tuberculosis, tickling coughs.

Heart: arteriosclerosis.

Stomach: pain.

Abdomen: flatulent colic.

Rectum: diarrhoea.

Urinary: urination frequent, profuse, painful, dribbling; pain, cutting, neck of bladder, < urinating; urine dark, red, deposits, mucus, phosphates; clear, light, straw coloured; kidney inflammation, sudden suppression of urine.

Female: painful menstruation; injured womb.

Back: aching, extending bladder.

Limbs: spasms.

Skin: erythema; scleroderma.


Denis Demarque also adds:

Fingers: rheumatic pains of the distal interphalangeal joints of the fingers, in the presence of deformations; arthritis of the distal fingers of the fingers (Heberden’s nodules8). [Demarque]




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Sara Ansari et al., “Effects of Polygonum aviculare Extract on Histological Changes of Mouse Seminiferous Tubules after Electromagnetic Field Exposure”, Pharmaceutical sciences, 19(4), 139-144 (2014)


William Boericke, “Homœopathic Materia Medica


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D. Demarque et al., “Farmacologia e materia medica oemopatica”, Ed. Tecniche Nuove, Milano (1999). Orig.: “Pharmacologie et matière médicale homéopathique”, Boiron, Paris (1993)]


Serge Dewit, Jean-Claude Leunis, “Trattato Teorico e Pratico di Fitoterapia Ciclica”, Nova Scripta Srl Edizioni, Genova (2018)

Orig.: Serge Dewit, Jean-Claude Leunis, “Traité théorétique et pratique de Phytothérapie Cyclique”, Ed. Roger Jollois (1995)


Christian Duraffourd et Jean-Claude Lapraz, “Traité de phytothérapie clinique”, Masson, Paris (2002)


Castore Durante, “Herbario novo”, Venezia (1667)


https://www.ema.europa.eu/en/documents/herbal-report/final-assessment-report-equisetum-arvense-l-herba_en.pdf (retrieved: 2022-09-06)


M. Grieve, “A Modern Herbal” (1931) (under Knotweed)


Oscar Hansen, “Text Book of Materia Medica and Therapeutics of Rare Homeopathic Remedies”, Homoeopathic Pub. Co. (1899)


C. Herzog, “Polygonum aviculare L., in chronic diarrhœa”, in “The Chemist, Or, Reporter of Chemical Discoveries and Improvements”, Vol. VI (vol. III New Series), London (1845)



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M. P. Kolesnikov and V. K. Gins, “Forms of Silicon in Medicinal Plants”, Applied Biochemistry and Microbiology, Vol. 37, No. 5, 2001, pp. 524–527.


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1. See Notes on humors.

2. The maximum content of elemental silicon (i.e., expressed as an element and not as silica, silicates or silicic acid) in horsetail (Equisetum arvense) is slightly greater than 3% (see for example [Bye, EMASil, Labun]).

3. Phlegmon: an acute inflammation of the lax and adipose cellular tissues interposed between the various anatomical planes or around the various organs. They can be superficial (i.e. affect the subcutaneous tissue) or it can affect deeper tissues. According to the type of inflammation, suppurative phlegmons and necrotic (or gangrenous) phlegmons are distinguished.

4. In the figure in the book by Dewit and Leunis, the deposition phase (steatosis) mentioned in the text is missing. Here it is added for completeness.

5. It is indeed diaphoretic.

6. The plant also contain mucilage.

7. Angina pectoris.

8. Heberden’s nodules are usually round, solid, swollen osteophytes (or bone spurs) that form on the distal interphalangeal joints. Nodules on the proximal joints are also called Buschar’s nodules.


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