Does Butterbur Work?

Butterbur products are alleged to be beneficial for numerous conditions, but does butterbur work? Some scientific evidence indicates that the supplement may be effective at preventing migraine headaches in adults and children as young as six years old. Preliminary research has also shown that butterbur may be effective at treating allergy symptoms. However, more research is necessary to support these claims.

Does Butterbur Really Work?

As with most dietary supplements, butterbur supposedly works for a variety of different uses. But does it really work? This article will address the effectiveness of butterbur for various uses, including:
  • Treating the following conditions:
  • Preventing or treating migraines
  • Promoting wound healing (when applied to the skin)
  • Stimulating the appetite
  • Decreasing spasms (such as spasms in the bladder or digestive tract).

What Does the Research Say?

There is a fair amount of scientific evidence to suggest that butterbur may really work for preventing migraine headaches in adults. The studies used one particular butterbur product (Petadolex®) that was purified to remove toxic alkaloids naturally found in butterbur and standardized to contain a consistent amount of the active components. Early evidence suggests that this particular product may also be effective for preventing migraines in children as young as six years old.
Studies have shown inconsistent results when using butterbur to treat allergies, but these inconsistencies may reflect differences in study design or differences among butterbur products. In general, the bulk of this preliminary evidence seems to suggest that the supplement might actually be effective for treating allergy symptoms.
There is not enough scientific evidence to suggest that butterbur really works for any other use.
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Butterbur Supplement Information

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