Chamomile real

Authors: Prof. Dr. med. Peter Altmeyer, Prof. Dr. med. Martina Bacharach-Buhles

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Last updated on: 03.04.2023

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Chamaemelum nobile; chamomile; Chamomile; chamomilla matricaria; chamomilla recutia (INCI); Chamomilla recutita L.; German chamomile; mayweed; Real chamomile; recutita matricaria; Roman Chamomile

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Low-growing, evergreen composite plant that is widespread in Europe and neighboring zones at medium altitudes up to 1000m. It is now also cultivated in the USA and Australia. The true chamomile (Matricaria recutita) is one of the most commonly used medicinal plants.

Matricaria recutita is the parent plant of the officinal Matricariae flos of chamomile flower, Ph.Eur.8.

Oleum chamomillae: The officinal chamomile oil (Oleum chamomillae) is obtained from Matricariae flos by steam distillation (also called Matricariae aetheroleum).

HMPC Mon ograph: Chamomile flowers and chamomile oil: Traditional-use
ESCOP Monograph: Chamomile flowers internally: gastrointestinal complaints, mild cramps, flatulence, belching; externally: mild inflammation, irritation of the skin and mucous membranes, oral cavity and gums (as mouth rinses), respiratory tract (as inhalation), anal and genital area (as baths, ointments).
Commission E-monograph: chamomile flowers externally: skin and mucous membrane inflammations, bacterial skin diseases and mucous membrane diseases: oral cavity, gums; inflammatory diseases and irritations of the respiratory tract (inhalations), diseases of the anal and genital area (baths, rinses); internally: gastro-intestinal spasms. inflammatory diseases of the gastro-intestinal tract.

Experiential medicine: acute, weeping dermatoses, superficial wounds, decubitus, ulcus cruris, irrigation of infected wounds, sunburn, 2nd degree burns, adjuvant in infections of the oral cavity and genital (Candida), nipple care in pregnancy and lactation, sebostasis.

Field of application/use
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Infusions for wound and mouth rinses as well as use in liver-bile preparations. Probably the most widespread use is in cosmetics and toiletries, e.g. ointments, creams, lotions, especially hair shampoos and conditioners. Occasionally used as a flavouring in herbal liqueurs because of its bittering properties.

HMPC: mild, cramp-like gastrointestinal complaints including flatulence in adolescents, adults also elderly.

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Herbal tea: 1-4 g of the herbal substance or crushed herbal substance in 100-150 ml of boiling water 3 times daily as herbal tea between meals.

Liquid extract: 1-4 ml 3 times daily. Use in children under 12 years of age is not recommended.

Safety during pregnancy and lactation has not been established. In the absence of adequate data, use during pregnancy and lactation is not recommended. No data on fertility available.

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hypersensitivity to the active substance and other plants of the composite family (Compositae)

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Aqueous camomile flower preparations (e.g. camomile tea): Preparation: Pour hot water (approx. 150ml) over 3 g camomile flowers and sieve them through a tea strainer after 5-10 min. (alternative: ready-made tea bag). In case of inflammation of the mouth and throat, rinse or gargle several times a day.

Envelopes: The prepared tea can be used 10% for moist envelopes.

Alcoholic flower extracts (containing higher proportions of essential oil) are used in varying concentrations in camomile oil, ointments, creams and bath additives.

Trade names
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Anisan® Hemorrhoidal Ointment S, Arnica Kneipp® Ointment, Arnikamill® Wound and Healing Ointment, Azulon® Camomile Powder, Befelka® Oil, Casrasanol®, Chamo® Citizen Ointment, Chamo® Citizen Powder, Dr. Klinger's Stomach Tea, Dr. Klinger's Gall Tea, Eucamillat®, Fugacid® Gall Tea, Gerner Cholagogum N, Gerner Nervivum N, Helago-oel®, Hevert Majocarmin Tea, Hewekzem novo Ointment, Hocura® Spondylose Ointment, Camomile Bath N "Ritsert", Camomile Bath-Robugen, Camomile Cream-ratiopharm® N, Camomile Extract Steierl®, Camomile Spritzer®, Kamillosan®, Kamillosan® cream, Kamillosan® mouth spray N, Kamillosan® ointment, Kamistad® gel, Kneipp® gastropressan, gastro-intestinal tea, Stada® stomach tea, Matmille® ointment, Matmille® bath, Sagitta camomile bath, Transpulmin® children's ointment N, Trauma-cyl ointment, Varicylum® S ointment, Four winds tea, Wound healing ointment S

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The sensitizing potential of real chamomile is very low. The main cause of contact allergies is the sesquiterpene lactone anthecotulide, which is only present in small traces in the true camomile and in high concentrations in the "stinking dog chamomile". However, there is also a risk of type I sensitization from chamomile pollen. Co-sensitization between chamomile pollen with mugwort and birch pollen is not uncommon. The cause seems to be Bet v1 of birch pollen.

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  1. Aberer W (2008) Contact allergy and medicinal plants. JDDG 6:15-24
  2. Hausen BM, Vieluf K (1997) Allergy plants, plant allergens. Ecomed Verlag Landsberg/Munich pp. 90-91.
  3. Paulsen E (2002) Contact sensitization from Compositae-containing herbal remedies and cosmetics. Contact Dermatitis 47: 189-198
  6. Wenigmann M. (2017) Phytotherapy medicinal drugs, phytopharmaceuticals, application. Urban & Fischer, pp. 137-138