Figure 2

Echinaceae Purpureae

WHO Model Monograph

"11.1 Uses supported by clinical data.

Herba Echinaceae is administered orally as an immunostimulant, in supportive therapy for colds and infections of the respiratory and urinary tract (1, 3, 5, 7, 8, 18). Beneficial effects in the treatment of these infections are generally thought to be brought about by stimulation of the immune response (3, 5, 7). The term ‘supportive therapy' denotes that Echinacea would ordinarily be administered together with other antibacterial agents, such as antibiotics or sulfa drugs (1).

External uses include: promotion of wound healing, and inflammatory skin conditions (1, 5, 7, 8, 9, 19). Echinacea preparations are used in topical applications for the treatment of chronic superficial wounds and skin inflammations (3, 5, 7, 19).

11.2 Uses described in pharmacopoeias and in traditional systems of medicine.


11.3 Uses described in folk medicine, not supported by experimental or clinical data.

Other medical uses claimed for Echinacea preparations include treatment of yeast infections, side effects of radiation therapy, rheumatoid arthritis, blood poisoning, and food poisoning (1, 5, 7, 9)."

(Numbers in parentheses refer to citations of scientific literature in the WHO monograph.)

Statements of Nutritional Support from Notification Letters to FDA

"For immune system function."

"Nutritionally supports healthy immune function."

"Helps stimulate natural resistance."

"Echinacea has been the subject of numerous scientific studies involving its ability to help maintain natural resistance."

"Many Native American tribes have used Echinacea, or purple coneflower, for centuries. The Cheyenne and Comanche gathered this plant for use during cold seasons. It quickly won the favor of early European settlers and has now become a well-loved herb both here and abroad. Scientific research studies on Echinacea abound, documenting its ability to help maintain overall health and well-being."

"Echinacea promotes the body's natural resistance by supporting a healthy immune system. Echinacea continues to be popular in Europe to strengthen and enhance overall well-being."


Commission on Dietary Supplement Labels