Blood root is a low-growing woodland herb that grows in the north central United States and the prairie provinces plus British Columbia in Canada. The red juice pressed from the fresh root is poisonous when taken internally, but when used externally it has a unique ability to dissolve abnormal growth without disturbing normal tissue.
Alkaloids, berberine and coptisine (antibacterial chemicals also found in barberry and coptis), various forms of sanguinarine.
Powder or paste from ground dried root. Can also be administered in extract form.
Although blood root is used to make commercial toothpastes and mouthwashes, the main use of the herb in herbal medicine is treating skin tags.
Skin tags, known in the medical literature as acrochordons, are soft, rubbery, skin-colored growths that typically grow into a droplet shape and hang from the skin by a stalk. They do not become malignant and, except for getting caught in zippers and being irritated by rough clothing, they do not cause pain or inflammation, they are not a medical concern.
Skin tags are, however, a cosmetic problem, and for this reason insurance usually does not pay the doctorÍs bills for removing them. A dermatologist can snip them off in seconds with a scalpel or scissors. A family practitioner is more likely to burn them off with an electric spark or freeze them off with liquid nitrogen. All of these procedures are at least unpleasant and sometimes painful, and if youÍre susceptible to skin tags, you may get rid of one crop only to develop another. Blood root is a far less expensive way to handling the problem.
Do not apply blood root to your eyelids, lips, nose, or genitals. Blood root can damage to normal and healthy skin tissue, so make sure you only apply the herb to the damaged areas your want to treat.
For educational purposes only
This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.
This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.