Harpagophytum / devil’s claw. The Most Powerful Natural

Anti-Inflammatory You Can Take in Capsules. infusion, etc. Without the harmful effects of the drugs.

Harpagophytum. The Most Powerful Natural Anti-Inflammatory You Can Take in Capsules. infusion, etc.

Harpagophytum / devil’s claw. The Most Powerful Natural Anti-Inflammatory You Can Take in Capsules. infusion, etc. Without the harmful effects of the drugs.

The root of this plant has been well studied and analyzed and more than 40 active components have been discovered in it, among which are the monoterpene glycosides of the group of irioids. Among the irioids the major constituent is the harpagósido, responsible main of the properties of the plant.

Cumaroll-harpágido, procumbid, are other components along with flavonoids, phenolic substances, free and combined phytosterols, triterpenes and steroids.


The Harpagophytum / devil’s claw was considered in Africa almost as a panacea and was used in the treatment of various ailments. Traditionally, it is used in gastrointestinal problems such as difficult digestions, such as bitter tonic, but also as analgesic and antipyretic in rheumatic diseases. Administered externally it has been applied for the treatment of skin ulcerations, boils and other dermatological injuries. In Europe its introduction is relatively recent, since apparently it was not known until the beginning of century XX, when introduced by a German farmer. The European Pharmacopoeia has collected it since 1994.


The Harpagophytum has anti-inflammatory, antirheumatic and analgesic activity. It also has diuretic and healing properties, as well as digestive and appetite stimulants. It seems to possess also some cardiovascular activity and is indicated in arthralgia, arthritis, dyspepsia ... Being the most studied, well-known and proven property of this plant its anti-inflammatory action, for which it is highly recommended in cases of articular, rheumatic, arthritis. The Harpagophytum significantly reduces the sensation of pain and improves the movement of the affected area without appearing adverse effects so it can be used along with other anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce the dose of these.

It also accelerates trauma recovery and thanks to the peripheral action of the Harpagophytum irioids with muscular and vascular responses, rather than a central analgesic action, it is especially indicated and is more effective in the elderly.


It has a choleretic action that increases the production of bile, which improves the digestive function. It stimulates the taste buds by increasing the production of gastrointestinal juices, thus improving the appetite. In South Africa where it originates, it is used to treat gastrointestinal problems.


The Harpagophytum is well indicated to treat cases of low back pain, as it is a great natural inhibitor of the intracellular protein kinase, which acts as an intracellular mediator of pain and achieves an efficiency very similar to synthetic drugs but without the harmful effects of these.


Numerous studies have been carried out to confirm the activity and effectiveness of the Harpagophytum root as analgesic and anti-inflammatory. For example, the clinical trial performed by Chrubasik et al (2002) with 250 patients who had non-specific back pain or knee or hip osteoarthritis confirmed a significant decrease in pain. The dose administered was the equivalent of 60 mg harpagoside / day. It appears that the decrease in pain was significantly greater in patients who were older. Similarly, Chantre et al. (2000) observed a significant improvement in symptomatology comparable to other treatments (diacerein) in a trial of 122 patients with osteoarthritis of the knee and hip, but with greater tolerability and less need for analgesics and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs after administration of harpage for 4 months.

In summary, overall study results (4-8 weeks) consistently demonstrate an improvement in non-specific back pain and osteoarthritic hip and knee pain.


In addition the Harpagophytum is a great depurative that helps the elimination of uric acid by the urine helping to improve many cases of arthritis and gout. It is an antispasmodic that acts as a relaxant on intestinal spasms, irritable bowel, biliary and renal colic and aid to the descent of the indices of cholesterol in blood.


It is contraindicated in cases of gastroduodenal ulcer and gastritis, obstruction of the bile ducts and irritable colon.


It should not be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding unless expressly indicated by a doctor.


Another great advantage of Harpagophytum is that unlike anti-inflammatory drugs it is very rare that it causes gastric irritation.


No interactions are known so far with medications although it is advisable to monitor their possible interaction with antiarrhythmic drugs.


It can be used in infusions, sprays, capsules, extract, tinctures, etc.



Infusion: 4.5 g / 300 ml. Take 100 ml every 8 hours.

-Extracto liquid: Contains the water of the roots and has high concentration of active principles. The maximum dose should be 15 milliliters per day.

-Extracto dry or capsules: It consists of the roots almost dehydrated. This part of the Harpagophytum is the one that really has medicinal properties, since that is where the iridoids are concentrated.400 mg-800 mg a day.

-Comprises: They are made with a decoction of the root and applied on the affected área.

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