Cat's Claw

Evaluating Cat’s Claw Herbal Supplement

About Cat’s Claw
Cat's claw, also known as uña de gato (its Spanish name), is a high-climbing, woody vine that grows profusely in the upper Amazon regions of Peru, Columbia, Ecuador, and other South American countries. At the base of the plant's leaves are two curved thorns that resemble the claws of a cat (hence its name); these allow the vine to climb up trees and other vegetation into the forest canopy. The herb's botanical name, Uncaria, is from the Latin uncus, for "hook."
Two species of cat's claw are harvested for medicinal purposes, Uncaria guianensis, used mainly in Europe, and Uncaria tomentosa, commonly imported into the United States. Among the herbal practitioners of South America, the two species are considered interchangeable.
Cat’s claw has a long history of use as a folk medicine by native peoples to treat intestinal complaints, asthma, wounds, cancer, tumors, arthritis, inflammations, diabetes, and irregularities of the menstrual cycle, fevers, ulcers, dysentery, and rheumatism. They have also utilized the herb as a kidney cleanser, blood cleanser, and contraceptive.
The manufacturer for this supplement is Changsha Kanglong Co.Ltd. The address to order this product from is:
NO2405 dushidongjia, Xiongju, Mawangdui North Road, Changsha, Hunan, China410016, Changsha, Hunan, China 410016
To prepare the tea, boil 1 g (0.4 oz) of the bark in 1 cup of water for 10–15 minutes. Strain the mixture before drinking. A suggested dose is one cup of tea three times daily.
Tincture dosage: 1–2 ml up to two times daily. Children over two years of age and adults over 65 should begin use with mild doses and increase strength gradually if needed.
Side Effects
European studies have reported low toxicity in the use of cat's claw, even when taken in large doses. The only noted side effect was diarrhea. In 2001, however, one case study was reported from South America of a patient with...