July 28, 2016

Wild Lettuce

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What other names is Wild Lettuce known by?

Acrid Lettuce, Bitter Lettuce, German Lactucarium, Green Endive, Lactuca virosa, Lactucarium, Laitue Amère, Laitue à Opium, Laitue Sauvage, Laitue Scariole, Laitue Serriole, Laitue Vireuse, Lechuga Silvestre, Lettuce Opium, Poison Lettuce, Strong-Scented Lettuce.

What is Wild Lettuce?

Wild lettuce is a plant. The leaves, sap (latex), and seed are used to make medicine.

Wild lettuce is used for whooping cough, asthma, urinary tract problems, cough, trouble sleeping (insomnia), restlessness, excitability in children, painful menstrual periods, excessive sex drive in women (nymphomania), muscular or joint pains, poor circulation, swollen genitals in men (priapism), and as an opium substitute in cough preparations.

The seed oil is used for "hardening of the arteries" (atherosclerosis) and as a substitute for wheat germ oil.

Some people apply wild lettuce latex directly to the skin to kill germs.

Some people inhale wild lettuce for a recreational "high" or hallucinogenic effect.

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...

  • Whooping cough.
  • Asthma.
  • Urinary tract problems.
  • Cough.
  • "Hardening of the arteries" (atherosclerosis).
  • Trouble sleeping (insomnia).
  • Restlessness.
  • Painful menstrual periods.
  • Sexual disorders.
  • Muscle and joint pain.
  • Killing germs, when the latex is applied to the skin.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of wild lettuce for these uses.

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).


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