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Wild lettuce

What is it?

Wild Lettuce is an herbal medicine used for insomnia (trouble sleeping), restlessness, and hyperactive children. It is also used for cough, painful monthly periods, and muscular or joint pain.

Other names for Wild Lettuce include: Bitter Lettuce, Lettuce Opium, and Lactuca virosa.

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 Wild Lettuce you should take. The amount depends on the strength of the medicine and the reason you are taking Wild Lettuce. 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 Throw away medicine that is out of date or that you do not need.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.

Warnings:

  • Before taking Wild Lettuce, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding
  • Taking too much can cause poisoning with slow breathing, passing out or loss of consciousness (not able to wake), and death (3).

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.

  • Call your doctor if you notice slow breathing, severe tiredness, passing out, or loss of consciousness (not able to wake) (3)
  • Skin rash (3)

References:

1. Bradley PR, editor: British Herbal Compendium, Vol 1. British Herbal Medicine Association, Bournemouth, UK; 1992.

2. Brinker F: Herb Contraindications and Drug Interactions. Eclectic Institute Inc, Sandy, OR; 1997.

3. Newall C, Anderson L & Phillipson J: Wild Lettuce. In: Herbal Medicines: A Guide for Health-Care Professionals. The Pharmaceutical Press, London, UK; 1996.

4. Fetrow CW & Avila JR: Professional's Handbook of Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Springhouse Corporation, Springhouse, PA; 1999.


Last Updated: 11/4/2014

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