I would like to know more information about "Arnica Montana," such as where it is found, its uses, and its contraindications.

Expert Answers
ophelious eNotes educator| Certified Educator

"Arnica Montana," also known as "Leopard's Bane," "Wolfsbane," or "Mountain Tobacco," grows throughout much of Europe.  It grows well in lousy soils, and although it has a wide distribution area, it is not a common thing to find (outside of certain "patches.")  It's a tall yellow flower that grows from about May to August.

"Arnica Montana" has long been used medicinally. It's roots contain a derivative of "thymol."  When used in a gel, it seems to stimulate the blood flow under the skin and counteract certain types of arthritis.  It is used as an ingredient in a lot of topical products.

As far as contra-indicators go, don't eat it!  It will give you a wicked stomach ache, and if you eat enough of it (don't ask me how much is enough, just don't eat any : ) you will suffer from internal bleeding and die.  The plant itself can also give a skin rash in a lot of people, so don't go picking it either.  It's only the roots that are useful (as far as I know) and then they are only useful if prepared properly.

Hope this helps!  And remember, if you are considering using Arnica Montana as a supplement (it is available in certain processed forms) talk to your doctor or a nutritionist first.

giorgiana1976 | Student

The plant is met in the mountain, hence its name. It prefers moist and cool climate, and blooms from June to August. The flowers are yellow. Flowers without stalks are used for medical purposes but also cosmetics (rarely plant roots or rest). It is harvested when flowering.

 Arnica montana has in its composition, silicon, in large quantities, camphor, potassium, calcium, tannins. The flowers contain volatile oil, choline, alcohols and dye substances .Active Principles of flowers have anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, healing and antifungal. In the form of essential oils it has anti-inflammatory role and disinfectant.

Internal use:

- Flowers - pneumopathies, bronchitis, whooping cough, cystitis, pyelonephritis, urinary retention, uterine bleeding

- in the form of tincture, laryngitis

- in the form of gargle, nausea, neurological disorders, asthenia, arterioscreloza, infarction, rheumatic diseases, parazitoza, smoking, dysentery.

Internal use should be cautious and only do at the doctor's recommendation  as it can cause gastrointestinal irritability and hypertension.

External use:

- Flowers - bruising, acne, furunculosis, leucorrhea, wounds or abscess whose cure is difficult, keloid scars, bruises and other injuries, burns, also cosmetic uses.


- It is recommended to use plant if only  physician advices it, as consumption of Arnica montana may cause irritation, vomiting, gastroenteritis, dizziness, palpitations, hypertension or central nervous paralysis . The plant is forbiden to pregnant or nursing women.