Advisory notice concerning Pennyroyal

Notice type: Advisory

Date: 08/03/2010


Product name or type:

Target Audience:
• Consumers 
• Suppliers and Retailers of herbal medicines and traditional Ethnic medicines 
• Health care professionals, 
• Complementary medical practitioners 

Problem Or Issue:
The Irish Medicines Board has recently reviewed the safety of the herb Mentha pulegium also known as Pennyroyal traditionally used for its effect on the uterus to stimulate menstrual flow and ease painful menstruation. It has also been used to aid digestion and in the treatment of the common cold. 
The potential toxicity of Pennyroyal is well documented in particular the potential liver and kidney toxicity of Pennyroyal oil with many reports of adverse events and fatalities following its ingestion. 
The Irish Medicines Board has not authorised any medicinal products containing this herbal substance nor do we consider such products to be appropriate candidates for registration as traditional herbal medicinal products or for inclusion in food substances. 
The IMB is of the opinion that Pennyroyal oil is not suitable for internal or external use in view of its potential toxicity. 

Background Information Or Related Documents:
Advisory notice concerning Pennyroyal Document

Actions To Be Taken:
Advice to Consumers /Healthcare professionals/Complementary medical practitioners 
1 Pennyroyal oil should not be used under any circumstance 
2 To safeguard public health we are also advising against the use of Pennyroyal herb. 
3 We would also like to take this opportunity to highlight to health care professionals that intake of herbal products such as Pennyroyal oil may be a potential cause of otherwise unexplained liver reactions. 

Advice to suppliers of herbal medicinal products 
1 Pennyroyal oil should not be recommended for use nor should it be offered for sale under any circumstance. 
2 To safeguard public health we are also requesting that you refrain from stocking or selling Pennyroyal herb. 

Further Information:
For Further Information 
Please contact 

« Back