Berberis Vulgaris: Uses, Dosage, Benefits & Side Effects

Berberis Vulgaris Uses, Dosage, Benefits Side Effects

Berberis vulgaris is commonly known as common barberry or European barberry. The fruits of the plant are edible but sharply acidic. The fruits are rich in vitamin C.

Berberis vulgaris has been an essential part of herbal therapy for more than 2500 years. It has been used in the treatment of inflammations, high blood pressure, and abnormal uterine bleeding.

The plants’ dried leaf and stem bark are used to treat oedema, high blood pressure, and varicose veins. In addition, the dried root is used in stomach-related issues, and the fruit of the plant is used in painful menstrual problems, cough, and liver problems.

Berberis has a broad range of uses like lowering blood glucose levels, lowering blood lipid levels, and managing insulin sensitivity.

Berberis vulgaris contains active principles like acanthine, bargustanine, berbamine, berlambine, palmatine, and other metabolites like aesculetin, ascorbic acid, caffeic acid, pectin, tannin, etc.

BBR is an alkaloid found in the plant with various medicinal properties like antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antidiarrheal, antimicrobial, and antitumor properties.

Berberine is an important alkaloid effective in treating heart diseases by decreasing cholesterol levels.

Berbamine is known to block calcium channels which helps in reducing blood pressure.

The root extracts help prevent renal stone formation, and they possess antimicrobial properties against bacteria like staphylococcus, E. coli, Pseudomonas, Candida Albicans, etc.

Berberis vulgaris fruits contain salts and many vitamins like vitamin C, which treat learning disabilities and memory disorders.

Homeopathically, berberis is of great help in treating renal stones, liver disorders, urine, piles, arthritic and menstrual complaints.

So let’s explore the benefits of this extraordinary homeopathic medicine. 

Berberis Vulgaris Constitution/Personality

It is suited to individuals who are fleshy with good livers, but the liver’s ability to work continuously is less.

The patient is physically and mentally tired and worn out.

The medicine acts well in prematurely old and worn-out men and women.

It is suited to individuals with pale earthy complexion with sunken cheeks and hollow blue-encircled eyes.

Berberis Vulgaris Mind Symptoms

The patient is excessively worn out, so mental labor requiring close thinking is very difficult.

Even the slightest interruption can break their chain of thoughts.

They have a lack of interest or desire to act and are very indifferent.

The children are prone to see terrifying images of ghosts or pictures of a person who is dead.

They find images twice more significant than the original size.

These patients are anxious with great fear and have the disposition to take fright.

Berberis Vulgaris Uses

I will take you through all the body parts from toe to head.

You can match the symptoms and when you feel these symptoms are matched then you can take Berberis Vulgaris – 

1-Head Complaints

The patient has a sensation as if the head was becoming more extensive and the temples are cold. Frontal headache is marked.

There is a sensation of chilliness in the back and occiput.

They get vertigo with an attack or fainting.

The patient has a sensation of a tight cap on the head.

2-Eyes Complaints

The patient feels that the eyes are so dry that they feel as if sand is present between the eyelids.

The patient feels that their eyes become cold from the calm wind with lachrymation on closing the eyes.

The eyelids quiver while they read.

The eyes are sunken with dark-bluish circles around.

3-Ears Complaints

The patient has a sensation of coldness or bubbling in the ears.

They feel that the ears are stopped up with a feeling of pressure.

The patient is prone to nodes on the ear auricle and tumors behind the ears.

4-Nose Complaints

The patient experiences dryness with itching and crawling sensation in the nostril.

They have obstinate dryness and a thick discharge from the left nostril.

5-Face Complaints

The face of the patient is dirty grey and sickly. And it’s yellowish in appearance.

The patient feels as if cold drops were spurted on the face when they go into the open air.

They are prone to suppurating acne.

6-Mouth Complaints

The patient experiences sticky, foamy, cottony saliva. This gives rise to a bitter taste in the mouth.

The patient feels that their tongue is scalded. In addition, there are painful pimples on the tip of the tongue.

The gums are dirty grey in appearance. You can see small white nodes on the gums.

They feel that their teeth are too large or too long.

7-Throat Complaints

The patient has a sensation of the plug inside the throat with dryness feeling.

There is polypus(growth) in the larynx, which leads to hoarseness. And this leads to obstruction of the breath, which is observed while raising the arms.

In tonsilitis, the patient has a sensation of something grim present in the throat with a stiff neck and a feeling of a plugin in the throat.

8-Chest and Respiratory Complaints

With a short dry cough, the patient has to stitch pain in the chest.

9-Heart Complaints

The patient can feel stitching pain around the heart with a slow pulse.

The patient has squeezing pain with shooting in the region of the heart with palpitations.

10-Stomach Complaints

The patient has nausea before breakfast and after dinner. Nausea before breakfast gets better after eating.

They have pains in the stomach to back or from back to reverse.

11-Abdominal Complaints

The patient has a torn feeling in the epigastrium.

They have biliary calculi (stones in the gall bladder). The pain starts in the gall bladder and goes to the stomach. The pain is worse by pressure.

Whenever the patient experiences colic in the abdomen, they feel as if breathing is arrested.

The stools passed are dirty, grey, tough with smarting pain, and are associated with jaundice.

In the case of diarrhea, it’s always painless.

The complaints of the gallbladder are always accompanied by constipation and a yellow complexion.

12-Rectum Complaints

The patient has constant urging to stool.

They have smarting pain around the anus and perineum. Tearing pain around the anus is marked.

There is a fistula in ano with itching and is associated with chest complaints.

13-Urinary Complaints

Berberis is an excellent remedy for renal colic and its urinary complaints.

In renal colic, the pain travels from the kidney along the ureter to the liver, stomach, and spleen, accompanied by arrested breathing.

The patient experiences burning, soreness, and bubbling sensations in the kidney region.

The patient passes clear discharge from the meatus before urinating.

The urine passed is thick, turbid, yellow, red, with sandy or slimy sediment.

The patient feels that some urine has remained even after urination.

They have a burning sensation in the urethra when not urinating. And there is a pain in the thighs and hips on urinating.

Some old patients have enlarged prostate, which puts pressure on the perineum.

14-Male Organs Complaints

The male patient’s complaint of neuralgia of testes and spermatic cord and the testicles are drawn up.

The pains keep changing the sides.

The genitals on examination feel cold and sweaty. Prepuce glans are cold and numb.

The patient can feel that the male part is hard, contracted, and bends upward.

15-Female Organs Complaints

The females experience too slight and sometimes watery blood; brown or grey mucus replaces menses.

Dysmenorrhea is marked with menses where the blood looks like a grey serum.

In a female patient’s vaginismus is seen where the female private part is susceptible. They experience cutting pain during coition due to vaginismus. Hence, they are unable to enjoy intimacy. There are many prostrations after coition.

It is also indicated in neuralgia of the ovaries and female private part, and the pain keeps changing the sides.

With menses and leucorrhea, urinary symptoms are marked.

In certain females’ menses is scanty grey mucus with pain in the kidney and chilliness, and the pain travels down the thighs.

16-Back Complaints

Stitching pain is experienced by the patient in the neck and back, which worsens respiration.

They have backache with severe prostration, which gets worsened on sitting or lying.

They can feel a sore spot under the right scapula.

The patient has severe crushing, stitching, paralyzing pain in the lumbar region.

They have pain from the iliac crest down to the front of the thigh, especially when urinating.

The patient has tearing sticking pain with stiffness which makes rising difficult. This pain is felt around hips, nates, limbs and is associated with numbness.

Berberis is an excellent remedy for postoperative pains in the lumbar region. The patient has soreness and sharp pain from the iliac nerve to the bladder, which leads to frequent urination.

17-Hands & Legs Complaints

Hands –

There is neuralgia under fingernails with swelling of finger joints.

Marbled spots on the arms with a burning sensation.

Acute pain in the arms extending to the forearm followed by heaviness and weakness of the arm.

Neuralgic pains under nails make it very tender to touch.

It is noted in few patients that there is redness with itching as if from chilblains.

Legs –

The patient feels that the outer side of their thigh is cold.

They can feel ulcerative pain in their heel. And the pain of stepping on something.

There is extreme tiredness and lameness in the legs after walking a short distance.

The patient has to stitch pain in the metatarsal bone as if it’s due to a nail. The pain worsens on standing.

The patient has the sensation as if the legs have wasted away.

The patient has the sensation of tiredness, bruising, and paralysis in the knee while walking and after rising from a seat after sitting for a long time.

Swelling of the foot is noted after movement with burning, swelling in the heel, and cramps in the foot.

18-Skin Complaints

The patient is prone to flat warts. As a result, the patient experiences tremendous itching, burning, and smarting pain on warts that worsen after scratching and better by cold application.

You can feel small bumps all over the body. The eruptions leave a brown stain on the skin.

There is a tendency for eczema, especially in the anus and hands. Eczema leaves a circumscribed pigmentation.

Small pustules develop red, with burning, itching, and shooting pain and are very painful on being touched.

19-Sleep Complaints

The patient feels sleepy, especially in the morning and afternoon.

After dinner, they have an unquiet sleep disturbed by burning, itching of the skin, or anxious dreams.

The patient wakes up in the morning between two and four am and cannot sleep again, accompanied by tension and congestion in the head and thirst.

The patient frequently wakes, resulting in fatigue due to want of sleep.

The sleep is significantly prolonged with pain as of a bruise and pressure on loins and thighs.

20-Fever Complaints

CHILL: The patient feels chilly. They feel coldness in various parts of the body as if cold water has been splattered.

The patient can feel shivering before dinner and sometimes after dinner with icy cold feet, dry mouth, and pain in the left epigastrium.

The patient experiences shivering in the morning in the back, arms, and thighs.

HEAT: Shivering in the morning is followed by burning heat with giddiness and violent pains in the head and sore throat.

The patient feels warm in the lower parts of the body, thighs, and hips.

There is heat in the hands and head in the afternoon.

SWEAT: On the third day, sweat smells like urine.

Whatever the patient does excite sweat, especially in the afternoon with anxiety.

The patient is highly thirsty with a dry mouth, especially in the afternoon.

Pulse is slow and weak or entire, complex and rapid.

Berberis Vulgaris General Characteristic Symptoms

  • Pains rapidly change their locality and character.

  • Symptoms alternate rapidly like, e.g., thirst alternates with shirtlessness, hunger alternates with loss of appetite.

  • Pains are radiating from one point shooting outward or all over.

  • Pains are sticking, burning-smarting with soreness.

  • Numbness is marked; they become insensible to extreme heat or cold.

  • There is a gurgling or bubbling sensation.

  • Mucous membranes become dry – mouth, vagina, etc.

  • Discharges or skin is dirty grey.

  • Cold feeling in the bones, eyes, ears, etc.

  • Chest is affected after operations of piles, fistula, etc.

  • They can see things in the twilight.

  • Pain in the small of the back, which becomes very sensitive to touch. The pain is aggravated when sitting and lying, jar, fatigue.

  • Burning and soreness are marked in the kidney region.

  • Numbness, stiffness, and lameness with painful pressure in the renal and lumbar region.

  • Rheumatic and gouty complaints with diseases of urinary organs.

  • Inflammation of kidneys with hematuria.

  • Arthritic complaints with urinary disturbances are marked.

  • Pains radiate are not worse by pressure but worse in various attitudes like standing and active exercise.

  • Renal colic on the left side with urging and strangury.

  • There is tremendous tiredness which is increased by walking or remaining long in standing posture. They sink after the slightest effort.

  • Weakness induces trembling associated with vertigo.

  • They are prone to fainting after having a ride in a carriage.

Berberis Vulgaris Modalities

Modalities are the factors which, increase or decrease the complaints in a patient.

They are categorized as aggravating factors and amelioration factors.

Aggravating factors make the condition of the illness worst, while the amelioration factor makes the condition of the disease better.

It can be time, any part of the day, season, position, or any applications, etc.

Aggravated By

  • Motion

  • Jar

  • Stepping hard

  • Rising from sitting

  • Standing

  • Fatigue

  • Urinating

  • Twilight

Motion or standing brings on or increases urinary complaints.

Berberis Vulgaris Relationship with Other Medicines

In Homoeopathy, the medicinal actions of a drug can be influenced by other Homoeopathic drugs such as medicines that can complement, antidote, follow each other.

The remedy relationship of Berberis Vulgaris is as follows.

Complimentary Medicines

Mag mur

Antidoted by



It Antidotes


An occasional dose of lycopodium helps the action of berberis, especially in the knee’s rheumatism.

Follows well



Kali bichromicum

Rhus tox


Berberis follows these medicines well in case of rheumatic affections.

Related Medicines/ Compare

Benzoic acid – It is helpful in Gout and rheumatism with urinary complaints when urine smells like that of a horse.

Coccus cacti -Lancinating violent pain from kidney to bladder. The urination is very painful. Sticking pain along ureters. Urine is scanty, thick, sour, sandy with bloody mucus. There is a constant urge to urinate in females but better after passing blood clots from the vagina.

Kali-bi– The patient feels that one drop of blood always remained after urination which cannot be expelled. Bloody urine with pain in the back.

Pulsatilla – Hematuria after urination. A sensation of stone rolling in the bladder.

Ipomea Convolvulus– Pain in the left lumbar muscle on stooping. Kidney disorder with pain in the back. Much abdominal flatulence. Aching in top of the right shoulder with renal colic and hurting in small of back and extremities.

Xanthoriza– It contains berberine. Dilatation of stomach and intestines. Atony, enlarged spleen.

Aloe, Lycopodium, Nux Vom, Sarsaparilla, Xanthorrhea– Severe pain kidneys, bladder, and stone formation. They have pain from the ureter to the bladder and testicles—pain in the small of the back returns from least chill or damp.

Cantharis, Tabacum – Renal colic has to be compared. In cantharis, burning is marked, whereas, in tabacum, renal colic is associated with deathly nausea and perspiration.

Berberis Vulgaris Dosage & Potency

Homeopathic medicines are prescribed based on symptoms similarity. The symptoms presented by the patient are matched with the symptoms of the remedy.

Depending on the extent of symptom similarity, the potency and repetition are decided. The greater number of symptoms that match, the higher is the potency used.

Similarly, if a smaller number of symptoms match the remedy, then a lower potency is used.

Berberis Vulgaris Mother Tincture (Q) Uses

This potency can be used in conditions like gout, jaundice, calculus, oxaluria, tumors, etc.

DOSAGE: Mix 10-15 drops in ½ cup of water and sip. This can be taken 2-3 times a day till there is improvement in symptoms.

Berberis Vulgaris 30 Uses

This potency can be used in conditions like Gout, kidney affections, Fistula in ano, polypus of vocal cord, urine disorders, etc.

DOSAGE: 3-4 pills dissolved in 100ml water and taken in sips every 1 hour.

Berberis Vulgaris 200 Uses

This potency can be used in conditions like rheumatism, gall stone colic, biliary colic, lumbago, dysmenorrhea, renal colic, affection of duodenum, herpes, leucorrhea, spleen affections, etc.

DOSAGE: – 4-5 pills twice or thrice a day as per the patient’s state it can be administered.

Berberis Vulgaris 1M Uses

This potency can be used in conditions like vaginismus, fevers, irritation, neuralgia of spermatic cord, etc.

The medicine can be repeated frequently in pathological as well as specific disorders.

Higher potencies can be used in specific conditions when there are highly characteristic symptoms present.

Berberis Vulgaris Side Effects

Some side effects of Berberis Vulgaris can be found as –

  • Nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea

  • Dizziness and fainting

  • Low blood pressure, decreased heart rate, and reduced breathing rate occurs with high dosages.

  • Hypersensitivity

  • When a median lethal dose is taken, it lacks energy, stupor, daze, vomiting, diarrhea, kidney inflammation.

  • Pregnant women should not use barberry as it stimulates uterine contraction and might lead to abortion.

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4 thoughts on “Berberis Vulgaris: Uses, Dosage, Benefits & Side Effects”

  1. Hitesh Bhakta

    Dear Madam,
    I m Hitesh Bhakta frm Gujarat. I m 43 yrs,male.
    I have problem that my legs are feeling dead.
    Kindly recommend me some advice.

    Thanking you
    Hitesh Bhakta

  2. Does berberis vulgaris cause eczema, ie itching and small blisters on palm and fingers? This medicine was recommended to me for Uric acid buildup. I have. used this once daily(10 drops) for about one week.

  3. I have diabetic pentation last 5year. i am facing skin disease recent skin rashes in my legs due to diabetic. I required diabetic and skin medicine please

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