In this Article
- What other names is Aloe known by?
- What is Aloe?
- Is Aloe effective?
- How does Aloe work?
- Are there safety concerns?
- Are there any interactions with medications?
- Dosing considerations for Aloe.
Aloe gel might cause changes in the skin that might help diseases like psoriasis.
Aloe seems to be able to speed wound healing by improving blood circulation through the area and preventing cell death around a wound.
It also appears that aloe gel has properties that are harmful to certain types of bacteria and fungi.
Aloe latex contains chemicals that work as a laxative.
Aloe gel is POSSIBLY SAFE when taken by mouth appropriately, short-term. Aloe gel has been used safely in a dose of 15 mL daily for up to 42 days. Also, a solution containing 50% aloe gel has been safely used twice daily for 4 weeks. A specific gel complex (Aloe QDM complex Univera Inc., Seoul, South Korea) has been used safely at a dose of about 600 mg daily for up to 8 weeks.
Taking aloe latex or aloe whole-leaf extract by mouth is POSSIBLY UNSAFE at any dose. Aloe latex is LIKELY UNSAFE when taken by mouth in high doses. Aloe latex can cause some side effects such as stomach pain and cramps. Long-term use of large amounts of aloe latex might cause diarrhea, kidney problems, blood in the urine, low potassium, muscle weakness, weight loss, and heart disturbances. Taking aloe latex 1 gram daily for several days can be fatal. Also, there is concern that chemicals in aloe latex and/or aloe whole-leaf extract may promote the development of cancer.
There have been a few reports of liver problems in some people who have taken an aloe leaf extract; however, this is uncommon. It is thought to only occur in people who are extra sensitive (hypersensitive) to aloe.
Special Precautions & Warnings:Pregnancy or breast-feeding: Aloe -- either gel or latex -- is POSSIBLY UNSAFE when taken by mouth. There is a report that aloe was associated with miscarriage. It could also be a risk for birth defects. Do not take aloe by mouth if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.
Children: Aloe gel is POSSIBLY SAFE when applied to the skin appropriately. Aloe latex and aloe whole leaf extracts are POSSIBLY UNSAFE when taken by mouth in children. Children younger than 12 years-old might have stomach pain, cramps, and diarrhea.
Diabetes: Some research suggests that aloe might lower blood sugar. If you take aloe by mouth and you have diabetes, monitor your blood sugar levels closely.
Intestinal conditions such as Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, or obstruction: Do not take aloe latex if you have any of these conditions. Aloe latex is a bowel irritant. Remember, products made from whole aloe leaves will contain some aloe latex.
Hemorrhoids: Do not take aloe latex if you have hemorrhoids. It could make the condition worse. Remember, products made from whole aloe leaves will contain some aloe latex.
Kidney problems: High doses of aloe latex have been linked to kidney failure and other serious conditions.
Surgery: Aloe might affect blood sugar levels and could interfere with blood sugar control during and after surgery. Stop taking aloe at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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