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Boneset (Eupatorium perforatum)


Boneset is a flowering plant belonging to aster plant family. Eupatorium has approximately 800 species although some plants have been moved to different genera. A lot of research has been done on this plant to determine its effectiveness for use as an herb. It is also grown as an ornament in Asia. It has foliage that is eaten by Lepidoptera larvae.  It is also found in South America, North America and other parts of the world. In some places, this weed is known as snakeroot, thoroughwort or boneset.

Medicinal Use

This plant has several uses in the medical field. Its use is based on the usage of a single species. As a herb, Eupatorium perforatum treats broken bones. It also helps in the treatment of dengue fever which is also referred to as broken bone fever. For many years, this herb has been used in treatment of broken bones despite being poisonous to livestock. Basically, boneset has a chemical that works like an anti-cancer medication.  This chemic al is also very effective in fighting bacteria. This has made it possible for it to be used in the treatment of swine flu, influenza, nasal inflammation, acute bronchitis, fluid retention, pneumonia and joint pain among others. It has also been used in excreting excess uric acid. Uric acid is the main cause of gout. However, care should be taken when using boneset as a medication. It has toxic compound which may cause damage to the liver.

Dosage and Administration

Appropriate dosage of boneset depends on several factors. Such factors include the health of the user among other conditions. However, there is no specific dosage set on the basis of scientific facts. Nevertheless, it is important to always bear in mind the fact that herbal medicines are not always safe. Therefore, it is paramount that you contact your doctor before using this herb as a medication. In some cases, boneset will have prescription on the product label. Follow this prescription and follow guidance of your physician, pharmacist or professional provider of health care.

The part of Boneset that is used in treating different medical conditions is the aerial region. It is usually dried and can be combined with ginger, cayenne or Elder flowers during administration. One or two teaspoonful of dried boneset should be mixed with one cup of boiled water. The mixture should be left to boil for ten to fifteen minutes. It is advisable to drink it while hot. One should drink this solution at least thrice per day. However, it can be taken in higher dosage when treating fevers.

Parts Used

The parts of boneset that are used are the aerial parts. These are dried and mixed with boiling water for administration. These have active components such as;

  1. Sesquiterpene lactones that include eupafolin, eufoliatin, euperfolitin, eufoliatorin, eucannabinolide, helenalin and euperfolid.
  2. Flavonoids that include kaempferol, quercitin, astragalin, hyperoside, eupatorin and rutin among others.
  3. Miscellaneous components such as diterpenes like hebenolide, dendroidinic and sterols.


Boneset is beneficial for use as a medicine because it is an herb. This implies that it is a natural treatment. It has been proven effective as a laxative, diaphoretic, anti-spasmodic, bitter, carminative and astringent treatment. Today, boneset is regarded as being among the best remedies for relieving influenza symptoms. It also helps in relieving pains, aches and also dealing with different types of fever. It also facilitates clearing of mucus in the respiratory tract. The mild aperients in this herb help in easing constipation. In addition, it has also been proven effective in treating muscular rheumatism. It does all this in a natural manner since it is a plant that grows naturally.

Side Effects

Although boneset is a natural remedy, it has side effects if consumed orally in large amount. There are plants which are related to this herb that have pyrrolizidine alkaloids. These can cause damage to the liver if it is taken in high dosage. It is also possible for boneset to cause allergic reaction in the body of the user. Therefore, it is also important to avoid using this herb if your body is sensitive. The best way of avoiding side effects when using this herb is by contacting your health care provider before using it.

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