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Specialist advice on the use of plant medicines

There are limits to the wisdom of self-prescription. Whenever a problem becomes more than a minor or self-limiting condition then it is wise to seek expert advice, starting with a regular physician to make the initial assessment and diagnosis. Once the formal diagnosis and treatment regimen has been obtained it may be possible to consider plant medicines as a supportive measure. In this case DO take all the precautions we do on this site. The best solution in many cases is to find specialist professional advice. In most parts of the world there are such opportunities, although in individual circumstances the options may be restricted.

The use of plant medicines is part of orthodox medicine in some countries. If you go to a doctor or a pharmacist in the following countries they are likely to know a useful amount about their use:

  • France

  • Germany

  • People's Republic of China

  • Switzerland

  • Taiwan

In the case of European countries the remedies may be known as 'phytomedicines'.

In some countries pharmacists are particularly well-informed about plant medicines even if doctors are less used to prescribing them

  • Netherlands

  • Singapore

  • Spain

In the following countries there are recognised professional groups of herbal practitioners, phytotherapists or traditional practitioners. These may have university training (marked*) and some have professional codes of ethics and practice to protect the patient. However there is usually no statutory registration of these practitioners and in most cases the patient will need to make individual checks to establish the good standing and reputation of the practitioner. Where there are links here it is usually possible to obtain lists of practising members: one may assess the professionalism of the association from the information it provides to the public. Look for evidence of professional codes of conduct and ideally opportunities for the public to make contact if there is any complaint. One simple piece of advice: if the practitioner offers too much, advertises cures for diseases, then be very cautious.  A good practitioner will not make hyped-up claims.

The following is a service for those seeking expert help in the use of plant medicines. The fact that a professional association is listed here is not a recommendation that its members are safe to use. This list is not complete and may be expanded as more information is received and checked.


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contact us           Where to find us? Last Updated: 14 September 2011