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Bilberry

What is it?

Bilberry is an herbal medicine used to treat eye problems and improve eye function. It may also be used to treat hemorrhoids, stomach ulcers, and diarrhea. Other uses for Bilberry include the treatment of varicose veins (rope-like leg veins) and improving blood flow in your body.

Other names for Bilberry include: Vaccinum myrtillus , Hurtleberry and Whortleberry.

Ask your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist if you need more information about this medicine or if any information in this leaflet concerns you.

Before Using:

Tell your doctor if you

  • are taking medicine or are allergic to any medicine (prescription or over-the-counter (OTC) or dietary supplement)
  • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medicine
  • are breastfeeding
  • have any other health problems, such as high blood pressure or heart or blood vessel disease

Dosage:

Talk with your caregiver about how much Bilberry you should take. Do not use Bilberry leaf. The amount depends on the strength of the medicine and the reason you are taking Bilberry. If you are using this medicine without instructions from your caregiver, follow the directions on the medicine bottle. Do not take more medicine or take it more often than the directions tell you to.

To store this medicine:

Keep all medicine locked up and away from children. Store medicine away from heat and direct light. Do not store your medicine in the bathroom, near the kitchen sink, or in other damp places. Heat or moisture may cause the medicine to break down and not work the way it should work. Throw away medicine that is out of date or that you do not need. Never share your medicine with others.

Drug and Food Interactions:

Do not take Bilberry without talking to your doctor first if you are taking:

  • Blood thinning medicine (examples: warfarin (Coumadin(R)), clopidogrel (Plavix(R)), aspirin, enoxaparin (Lovenox(R)), dalteparin (Fragmin(R)))

Warnings:

  • Before taking Bilberry, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

Side Effects:

Stop taking your medicine right away and talk to your doctor if you have any of the following side effects. Your medicine may be causing these symptoms which may mean you are allergic to it.

  • Breathing problems or tightness in your throat or chest
  • Chest pain
  • Skin hives, rash, or itchy or swollen skin

Other Side Effects:

You may have the following side effects, but this medicine may also cause other side effects. Tell your doctor if you have side effects that you think are caused by this medicine.

  • Nausea (upset stomach)

References:

1. Murray M: Bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus). Am J Natural Med 1997; 4(1):18-22.

2. Murray, M: The Healing Power of Herbs: The Enlightened Person's Guide To The Wonders Of Medicinal Plants. Prima Health, Rocklin, CA, USA, 1995:50-59.

3. Norred CL & Finlayson CA: Hemorrhage after the preoperative use of complementary and alternative medicines. AANA 2000; 68:217-220.

4. Tori A & D'Errico F: Vaccinium myrtillus anthocyanosides in the treatment of stasis venous diseases of the lower limbs. Gazz Med Ital 1980; 139: 217-224.

5. Werbach MR & Murray MT: Botanical Influences on Illness; A Source Book Of Clinical Research. Third Line Press, Tarzana, CA, USA, 1994.

6. Blumenthal M, Busse WR, Goldberg A et al: Bilberry fruit, in The Complete German Commission E Monographs. American Botanical Council, Austin, TX; 1998: 88.


Last Updated: 11/4/2014

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