Butterbur – The Healing Plant

Frequently asked questions

Frequently asked questions on migraine treatment with butterbur

When is preventative treatment of migraine recommended?

When is preventative treatment of migraine recommended?

The European Federation of Neurological Societies (EFNS) recommends medicinal prevention for migraine attacks if the attacks are very frequent, last a long time or are severe. The aim of preventative treatment is to reduce the frequency, severity and duration of the attacks. In addition, prevention of migraine reduces the risk of overdosing on pain-relieving medication. It is advisable to opt for preventative treatment of migraine if at least one of the following criteria is present:

  • more than two attacks per month
  • you need to take pain or migraine medication on more than ten days per month
  • the attacks last longer than 48 hours
  • the pain or limitations caused are unbearable
  • you suffer side-effects from your pain medication
  • the frequency of attacks is increasing
  • you are experiencing neurological problems, e.g. sight disturbances

You should maintain preventative treatment for at least six months before you discontinue the medication. If the condition worsens, treatment can be resumed.

How does butterbur work?

How does butterbur work?

Butterbur extract from the roots of the Petasites hybridus plant has an anti-spasmodic, anti-inflammatory and analgesic effect.

How long does butterbur treatment last?

How long does butterbur treatment last?

If treatment is successful, butterbur should be taken for at least six months before you discontinue use. Often, the preventative effect of butterbur extract does not appear for four weeks; sometimes it takes a few weeks more. If the condition worsens, treatment with butterbur extract can be resumed.

Can I take pain-relieving medication or triptane during preventative treatment with butterbur?

Can I take pain-relieving medication or triptane during preventative treatment with butterbur?

Yes. In addition to butterbur extract, you can also take your tried and tested pain-relieving medication or triptane to treat acute migraine attacks. There are not known to be any interactive effects between butterbur extract and other medications.

Is butterbur suitable for children?

Is butterbur suitable for children?

Yes. Children can take butterbur extract without a problem. Take the dose recommended by the relevant product manufacturer. Studies prove the efficacy and tolerability of treatment with children. Read the results of the children’s study for more information: Migraine Prevention in Children and Adolescents: Results of an Open Study with a Special Butterbur Root Extract

What side-effects can occur during treatment with butterbur?

What side-effects can occur during treatment with butterbur?

In rare cases, light stomach problems may appear such as stomach-ache for example. Gastritis has not been reported. In very rare cases (less than 0.001%), liver inflammation with jaundice appeared, probably in connection with the use of butterbur over a period of more than five weeks. The dose taken did not play any role here and the problem disappeared completely when treatment was discontinued. There are not known to be any interactive effects between butterbur and other medications.

What precautionary measures should I take when using butterbur?

What precautionary measures should I take when using butterbur?

If your liver function is not optimal (e.g. as a result of liver inflammation or chronic alcohol abuse), you should not use butterbur. Please speak with your doctor for more information. If symptoms such as loss of appetite, fatigue, nausea or vomiting persist, which could point to hepatitis, discontinue treatment with butterbur immediately and consult your doctor.

I am pregnant or breast-feeding. Can I still take butterbur?

I am pregnant or breast-feeding. Can I still take butterbur?

Butterbur should not be taken during pregnancy or by breast-feeding mothers as its effects in such cases have not been studied.

What is the correct dose of butterbur extract to prevent migraine in adults?

What is the correct dose of butterbur extract to prevent migraine in adults?

Adults

It is recommended that you take a dose of 150 mg of butterbur extract per day for six months. This has been tested in studies and scientific research.

Branded pharmaceutical remedies offer capsules with 50 mg of Petasites extract. The correct dose is therefore 3 x 1 capsules (3 x 50 mg) daily.

In many cases, the following dose is sufficient:

1st month: 3 x 1 capsules (3 x 50 mg) daily
2nd- 6th month: 2 x 1 capsules (2 x 50 mg) daily

 

 

What is the correct dose of butterbur extract to prevent migraine in children and adolescents?

What is the correct dose of butterbur extract to prevent migraine in children and adolescents?

Children and adolescents

When children and adolescents take butterbur special extract regularly, the number of migraine attacks they suffer decreases by 63% on average. This has been shown by studies and scientific research. Read the results of the children’s study here: Migraine Prevention in Children and Adolescents: Results of an Open Study with a Special Butterbur Root Extract

Branded pharmaceutical remedies offer capsules with 50 mg of Petasites extract.

Children aged between 10 and 12 years:

2 x 1 capsules daily; if the results are not sufficient after two months of treatment, the dose can be increased to 3 x 1 capsules daily.