Herb-Drug Interactions: Meadowsweet

Filipendula ulmaria (L.) Maxim. (Rosaceae)

Synonym(s) and related species

Bridewort, Queen of the meadow.

Spiraea ulmaria L.


Meadowsweet (British Ph 2009, European Ph, 6th ed., 2008 and Supplements 6.1, 6.2, 6.3 and 6.4).


Meadowsweet contains the phenolic glycosides spiraein, monotropin and gaultherin, and the essential oil is composed of up to 75% sahcylaldehyde, with methylsahcylate and other sahcylates. It also contains flavonoids, tannins, traces of natural coumarin and ascorbic acid. It may be standardised to a minimum content of steam volatile substances.

Use and indications

Meadowsweet is used as an anti-inflammatory and antacid.

Surprisingly for a herb containing sahcylates, meadowsweet is used traditionally to treat stomach complaints, and anti-ulcer activity has been demonstrated in some animal studies. Extracts from the flowers have been reported to have bacteriostatic activity in vitro.


No relevant pharmacokinetic data found.

Interactions overview

No interactions with meadowsweet have been found. Note, however, that it contains sahcylates, although it is unknown whether the sahcylates are at sufficient levels to have antiplatelet effects and thereby interact with warfarin. For more information about salicylate-containing herbs, see willow.

Meadowsweet + Anticoagulant or Antiplatelet drugs

The information regarding the use of meadowsweet with anticoagulants and antiplatelet drugs is based on a prediction only.

Evidence, mechanism, importance and management

No evidence found. However, note that meadowsweet contains salicylates, and conventional salicylate drugs increase the risk of bleeding with anticoagulants such as warfarin, and may have additive effects with antiplatelet drugs, because of their antiplatelet effects.

Whether there are sufficient salicylates in meadowsweet to have an equivalent antiplatelet effect to low-dose aspirin is unknown. Further study of the in vitro antiplatelet potential of meadowsweet is required, using aspirin as a control. See also Interactions overview, under willow.

Meadowsweet + Food

No interactions found.

Meadowsweet + Herbal medicines

No interactions found.