En Español (Spanish Version)
Principal Proposed Uses
Other Proposed Uses
Yellow dock ( Rumex crispus) is a perennial flowering herb, native to Europe, which grows throughout the United States. Its yellow roots were traditionally thought to have medicinal properties, and its sour-sweet leaves can be used (in moderation) as a salad green.
Historically, the plant has been used to treat a variety of problems, including constipation anddiarrhea, as well as dermatitis and venereal diseases.1 Powdered yellow dock root has also been used as a mouthwash or dentifrice.
Yellow dock root has no established medical uses. However, it contains chemicals called anthroquinones (also found in the more famous herbal laxative senna),2 which stimulate bowel movements. For this reason, yellow dock is occasionally included in herbal laxative mixtures.
Like many other plants, yellow dock contains a substantial amount of tannins. These have astringent properties that may offer some benefit for treating minor skin wounds and hemorrhoids. Yellow dock is also sometimes recommended for nasal and lung congestion.
Last reviewedSeptember 2014by EBSCO CAM Review Board
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.