Goldenrod has not been significantly investigated under controlled study conditions, so most evidence is derived from traditional use, in vitro and animal studies.
The most common use of goldenrod is in the treatment of bladder infections. Both the Commission E and ESCOP (2003) have approved its use for irrigation of the urinary tract, with ESCOP also indicating usefulness as adjunctive treatment for bacterial UTIs.
The product Phytodolor contains alcoholic extracts of Populus tremula, Fraximus excelsior and Solidago virgaurea and is standardised to 0.14 mg/mL of isofraxidine, 1 mg/mL salicine, and 0.07 mg/mL of total flavonoids. As part of this combination, goldenrod has been investigated in patients with RA, osteoarthritis and back pain. Pain was significantly reduced by treatment with Phytodolor in a placebo-controlled study of 47 patients. Symptom relief was equally effective amongst patients receiving half strength, normal (60 drops three times daily) or double-strength treatment. A shorter placebo-controlled study of 2 weeks duration found that Phytodolor reduced the need for conventional drug doses in subjects with ‘at least one rheumatological diagnosis’. Similarly, Phytodolor reduced requirements of diclofenac compared to placebo in a smaller study of 30 patients. A 2-week placebo-controlled study of 30 subjects with osteoarthritis demonstrated that treatment with Phytodolor significantly reduced pain and improved grip strength. The role of goldenrod in achieving these results is unclear.
INFLAMMATION OF THE NASOPHARYNX WITH CATARRH
Goldenrod is also used to relieve symptoms in this condition. The astringent activity of the tannin components provides a theoretical basis for its use.
In many countries goldenrod is used to prevent urolithiasis and eliminate renal calculi. It is also used in children with otitis media and nasal catarrh.
Goldenrod is used both internally and externally for a variety of conditions. Internally it is used to treat upper respiratory tract catarrh, arthritis, menorrhagia and urological complaints, vomiting and dyspepsia, and externally it is used to support wound healing and as a mouth rinse for inflammatory conditions of the mouth and gums.
• Infusion of dried herb: 0.5-2 g in 1 50 mLof boiled water for at least 10 minutes.
• Fluid extract (1:1) (g/mL): 0.5-2 mL taken 2-4 times daily between meals.