Reviewed on 6/11/2021
Other Name(s):

African Civet, Chat Musqué, Civeta, Civette, Civette d'Afrique, Civette de l’Inde, Civettictis civetta, Grande Civette de l’Inde, Indian Civet, Large Indian Civet, Viverra civetta, Viverra zibetha, Vivérrido, Zibeth.


“Civet” is the name of a small African mammal. “Civet” is also the name of a liquid taken from the glands of that animal. This liquid is used as medicine.

People take civet for pain relief and as a sedative.

In foods and beverages, civet is used as a flavoring.

In cosmetics and soaps, civet is used as a fixative and fragrance.

How does it work?

There isn't enough information available to know how civet might work as a medicine.


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Uses & Effectiveness

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...

  • Pain.
  • Promoting relaxation.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of civet 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).

Side Effects

Civet is safe for most people when used in the amounts found in foods. But there isn't enough information to know if civet is safe in the larger amounts typically used as medicine.


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Special Precautions & Warnings

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of civet during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.


The appropriate dose of civet depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for civet. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

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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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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations. Title 21. Part 182 -- Substances Generally Recognized As Safe. Available at:

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