Saw palmetto can reduce the symptoms of enlarged prostate, including frequent urination, painful urination, sudden urge to urinate, and inability to urinate. It can also decrease the need to urinate during the night, increase urine flow, and make it easier to empty the bladder completely. Saw palmetto seems to work about as well as some prescription medications, but it takes about one or two months of treatment before symptoms improve.
When considering the use of herbal supplements, seek the advice of your doctor. You may also consider consulting a practitioner who is trained in the use of herbal/health supplements.
If you choose to take saw palmetto, use it as directed on the package or as directed by your doctor, pharmacist, or other healthcare provider. Do not use more of this product than is recommended on the label.
Saw palmetto is available in a capsule formulation.
Other forms of saw palmetto may also be available, such as teas, tinctures, and topical forms. Do not use many different forms of saw palmetto together at the same time, unless you healthcare provider instructs you to. Using different forms together may increase your risk of an overdose of saw palmetto. Saw palmetto should be taken with food to reduce stomach upset. If you need to have any type of surgery, tell the surgeon ahead of time that you are using saw palmetto. You may need to stop using the medicine for a short time.
As a dietary supplement take 1 capsule three times daily with meals and a glass of water.
For benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH): 160 mg twice daily or 320 mg once daily.
Store Saw Palmetto at room temperature, between 68 and 77 degrees F (20 and 25 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Keep Saw Palmetto out of the reach of children and away from pets.
Saw palmetto may increase your risk of bleeding. Tell your healthcare provider if you take a blood thinner such as Coumadin, or if you have hemophilia, a stomach or intestinal ulcer, or if you need to have any type of surgery.
You should not use this medication if you are allergic to Saw Palmetto, or have certain conditions. Be sure your doctor knows if you have:
a bleeding or blood clotting disorder (such as hemophilia);
stomach ulcer with active bleeding; or ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease.
Before taking saw palmetto, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, herbalist, or other healthcare provider. You may not be able to use this product if you have:
a heart rhythm disorder;
a history of stomach ulcer; or asthma or other breathing disorder.
Do not take saw palmetto without telling your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. Saw palmetto may be harmful to an unborn baby. It is not known whether saw palmetto passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this product without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby. Do not give any herbal/health supplement to a child without the advice of a doctor.
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Stop using saw palmetto and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:
weakness or fainting;
black, bloody, or tarry stools;
coughing up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds;
pain or swelling in your breasts or testicles;
fast, slow, or uneven heart rate;
easy bruising or bleeding; or nausea, stomach pain, loss of appetite, itching, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).
Less serious side effects may include:
nausea, vomiting, stomach pain;
diarrhea or constipation;
sleep problems (insomnia);
depressed mood; or
increased or decreased interest in sex;
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor, pharmacist, herbalist, or other healthcare provider about any unusual or bothersome side effect.