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

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Last updated on: 29.10.2020

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acetum cinerariifolium; Chrysanthemum cinerariaefolium; Chrysanthemum coccineum; Coccinean T acetum; pyrethrum carneum; Pyrethrum cinerariifolium; Pyrethrum roseum

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Insecticides obtained from the dried flowers of various chrysanthemums (tanacetes).

Field of application/use
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Use in human medicine against head lice, crab lice, clothing lice and itch mites or as an anthelmintic. Pyrethrum extracts used to be used for insect extermination (today mostly synthetic or in combination with raw extract from flower heads).

Undesirable effects
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Pyrethrosine is the main allergen of pyrethrum flowers. Sensitizing potency: Strong.sensitizing frequency: Rare today. Until the middle of the 20th century, pyrethral dermatitis was a well-known and not rare skin disease (trigger: sesquiterpene lactones). Cross-reactivity exists in all composites and laurel due to the sesquiterpenlactone ingredients. Asthma (pyrethrum asthma) has been observed in workers exposed to pyrethrum.

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  1. Hadis M et al (2003) Field trials on the repellent activity of four plant products against mainly Mansonia population in western Ethiopia. Phytother Res 17: 202-205
  2. Hausen BM, Vieluf K (1997) Allergy plants, plant allergens. Ecomed Publishing House Landsberg/Munich 229-231
  3. Haustein UF (1991) Pyrethrin and pyrethroid (permethrin) in the treatment of scabies and pediculosis. dermatologist 42: 9-15

Outgoing links (2)

Pediculosis (overview); Skabies;