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Willow bark - Ibuprofen

Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles (October 2018)
#1
The best bet for people trying to avoid ibuprofen, Tylenol, and the like is to simply carry Willow bark. Easy to order. Not expensive. Some quick info below however plenty of other info exists.

https://www.healthline.com/health/willow-bark-natures-aspirin

I have brands I like and trust but that's a personal thing.

It does work and it's not harsh or chemically made in a lab.

Burn Camino
 

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falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#2
Willow bark is the bark from several varieties of the willow tree, including white willow or European willow, black willow or pussy willow, crack willow, purple willow, and others. The bark is used to make medicine.

Willow bark acts a lot like aspirin, so it is used for pain, including headache, muscle pain, menstrual cramps, rheumatoid arthritis (RA), osteoarthritis, gout, and a disease of the spine called ankylosing spondylitis.

Willow bark’s pain relieving potential has been recognized throughout history. Willow bark was commonly used during the time of Hippocrates, when people were advised to chew on the bark to relieve pain and fever.

Willow bark is also used for fever, the common cold, flu, and weight loss.

Salicin, the active ingredient in willow bark, seems to have contributed to the death of the composer, Ludwig von Beethoven. Apparently, Beethoven ingested large amounts of salicin before he died. His autopsy report is the first recorded case of a particular type of kidney damage that can be caused by salicin.

How does it work?
Willow bark contains a chemical called salicin that is similar to aspirin.

Insufficient Evidence for
  • Weight loss. Early research suggests that taking willow bark in combination with ephedra and cola nut might cause slight weight loss in overweight and obese people. However, it is not wise to use this combination because of safety concerns about ephedra. Ephedra has been banned in the United States due to severe harmful side effects.
  • Osteoarthritis. Research on willow bark extract for osteoarthritis has produced conflicting results. Some research suggests it can reduce osteoarthritis pain, while other research shows no effect.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Early research suggests that willow bark extract is not effective for rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Treating fever.
  • Joint pain.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of willow bark for these uses.

Side Effects & Safety
Willow bark is POSSIBLY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth for a short time (up to 12 weeks).

It may cause stomach upset and digestive system upset. It can also cause itching, rash, and allergic reactions, particularly in people allergic to aspirin. Special Precautions & Warnings:
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the safety of using willow bark during pregnancy. It’s best to avoid using it.

Using willow bark while breast-feeding is POSSIBLY UNSAFE. Willow bark contains chemicals that can enter breast milk and have harmful effects on the nursing infant. Don’t use it if you are breast-feeding.

Children: Willow bark is POSSIBLY UNSAFE n children when taken by mouth for viral infections such as colds and flu. There is some concern that, like aspirin, it might increase the risk of developing Reye’s syndrome. Stay on the safe side and don’t use willow bark in children.

Bleeding disorders: Willow bark might increase the risk of bleeding in people with bleeding disorders.

Kidney disease: Willow bark might reduce blood flow through the kidneys, which might lead to kidney failure in certain people. If you have kidney disease, don’t use willow bark.

Sensitivity to aspirin: People with ASTHMA, STOMACH ULCERS, DIABETES, GOUT, HEMOPHILIA, HYPOPROTHROMBINEMIA, or KIDNEY or LIVER DISEASE might be sensitive to aspirin and also willow bark. Using willow bark might cause serious allergic reactions. Avoid use.

Surgery: Willow bark might slow blood clotting. There is a concern it could cause extra bleeding during and after surgery. Stop using willow bark at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.

Major Interaction

Do not take this combination
  • Medications that slow blood clotting (Anticoagulant / Antiplatelet drugs) interacts with WILLOW BARK

    Willow bark might slow blood clotting. Taking willow bark along with medications that also slow clotting might increase the chances of bruising and bleeding.<br/><br/> Some medications that slow blood clotting include aspirin, clopidogrel (Plavix), diclofenac (Voltaren, Cataflam, others), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others), naproxen (Anaprox, Naprosyn, others), dalteparin (Fragmin), enoxaparin (Lovenox), heparin, warfarin (Coumadin), and others.
Moderate Interaction

Be cautious with this combination
  • Aspirin interacts with WILLOW BARK

    Willow bark contains chemicals similar to aspirin. Taking willow bark along with aspirin might increase the effects and side effects of aspirin.
  • Choline Magnesium Trisalicylate (Trilisate) interacts with WILLOW BARK

    Willow bark contains chemicals that are similar to choline magnesium trisalicylate (Trilisate). Taking willow bark along with choline magnesium trisalicylate (Trilisate) might increase the effects and side effects of choline magnesium trisalicylate (Trilisate).
  • Salsalate (Disalcid) interacts with WILLOW BARK

    Salsalate (Disalcid) is called a salicylate. It's similar to aspirin. Willow bark also contains a salicylate similar to aspirin. Taking salsalate (Disalcid) along with willow bark might increase the effects and side effects of salsalate (Disalcid).
Dosing

The following doses have been studied in scientific research:

BY MOUTH:

  • For back pain: Willow bark extract providing 120-240 mg salicin has been used. The higher 240 mg dose might be more effective.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles (October 2018)
#3
and yet it works without incident from my experience. research it yes but "bought and paid for" sites like webMD will always lean towards the scariest scenarios, especially if it's not a big pharma remedy. so those sites also need to be taken with a grain of salt.
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#4
those sites also need to be taken with a grain of salt.
Anecdotal effectiveness should be taken with that same grain of salt! For years Skin So Soft was anecdotally a mosquito repellent. Then it was tested. It was completely ineffective. So, Avon added an insect repellent to catch up with false "fact."

From Consumer Reports:
Bath Oil: Not a Good Insect-Repellent Choice

The Skin So Soft Original Bath Oil didn’t perform well in our most recent insect-repellent testing. That result tracks with the last time we tested the product’s insect-repellent abilities, way back in 1993.
This time around, the oil provided only about two hours of protection from deer ticks and two kinds of mosquitoes, the Aedes variety (aggressive daytime biters that can spread Zika), and Culex (nighttime biters that can carry West Nile). That would put it among the worst-performing insect repellents we tested: The products we recommend generally protect for upwards of seven hours.
“While we know that many consumers have turned to Skin So Soft Bath Oil, the product is actually not intended to repel mosquitoes or sold for that purpose, and is not approved by the EPA as a repellent,” Avon told Consumer Reports.

Bug Guard: A Middle-of-the-Pack Performer

Skin So Soft Bug Guard Plus Picaridin, a dedicated insect repellent, performed reasonably well against ticks and mosquitoes. That places it among the midrange performers of the insect repellents we tested.
The product's active ingredient, picaridin, is a synthetic repellent modeled after a compound that occurs naturally in the black pepper plant. In Skin So Soft’s product, the concentration is 10 percent. In our recommended products containing picaridin, the concentration is 20 percent.
Avon pointed out that its insect-repellent products are deet-free. We think that up to a 30 percent concentration is safe, when used properly. Three of the products we recommend contain deet, from 15 percent to 30 percent concentration.
Another Avon product, Skin So Soft Plus IR3535 Expedition, combines an insect repellent with a sunscreen. We didn’t test that product as either a repellent or as a sunscreen because we think combination products are a bad idea. Sunscreens should be applied liberally and often; the same isn’t true for bug sprays, so the combination could lead to unnecessarily high doses of insect repellent.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles (October 2018)
#5
if it works for people then it's effective.

anything can be dangerous. cherry pits and apple seeds are toxic. potatoes, eggplants, and tomatoes are poisonous. bananas are radioactive.

for those who believe chemical pharmaceuticals are the way, hey it's a sort of free country. for others, there are less toxic ways.

but spirited conversation is always welcome!
 

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SYates

Camino Fossil AD 1999
Camino(s) past & future
First: Camino Francés 1999
...
Last: Camino Portugues 2018

Now: http://egeria.house/
#7
@WanderingBrian

You named this thread "Let me help with all of the Ibubrofen questions" and then you recommend another remedy solely based on your personal experience. Any, really any remedy can be hazardous to people based on their personal health history, allergies, other medications they take and so on.

I would be very, very careful recommending something without reservation solely based on that it was effective for you.

Buen Camino, SY
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles (October 2018)
#8
@WanderingBrian

You named this thread "Let me help with all of the Ibubrofen questions" and then you recommend another remedy solely based on your personal experience. Any, really any remedy can be hazardous to people based on their personal health history, allergies, other medications they take and so on.

I would be very, very careful recommending something without reservation solely based on that it was effective for you.

Buen Camino, SY
fair point!

I do encourage people to do their own research as well.
 
Camino(s) past & future
future
#9
fair point!

I do encourage people to do their own research as well.
I would submit that putting a single link in your initial post is a rather sketchy recommendation to readers to "do their own research as well" (especially a link which requires the reader to 'accept' before even being able to get to the article). As a physician, I have treated patients having life-threatening side effects to OTC and Rx medications casually recommended by well-meaning friends and acquaintances. On the Camino 2 months ago, I walked with a man who ended up in the hospital for 10 days after following friendly advice on the way to "try this pill". I suggest you not be so cavalier in your healthcare recommendations.
 

davebugg

DustOff: "When I have your wounded."
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
#10
and yet it works without incident from my experience. research it yes but "bought and paid for" sites like webMD will always lean towards the scariest scenarios, especially if it's not a big pharma remedy. so those sites also need to be taken with a grain of salt.
Thank you for your desire to help, Brian. I am looking at the various comments, and would like to mention a few points to consider. I post this because from my viewpoint, some of the things written have gotten in the way of your attempt to be helpful; especially since you do make a good suggestion about willow bark as a possible alternative for those who may be sensitive to NSAID use.
  1. Aspirin was developed by Bayer because of objective observation of the effects willow bark has on moderating and relieving some levels of discomfort and pain.
  2. The disparaging use of terms like "bought and paid for" and "big pharma" are non sequiturs. They do not provide a reasoned support for your suggestion of using willow bark. The use of such terms are a rhetorical red flag for me, as they are terms frequently employed by those who use conspiracies and innuendo in place of facts.
  3. When you state that "it (willow bark) works without incident from my experience", you are probably aware that this statement applies to virtually every medication and treatment protocol. It is an anecdotal observation which also applies to a large percentage of people who safely use ibuprofen.
  4. Willow bark has the identical mechanism for its therapeutic effect as aspirin (reduction of prostaglandins), and much of the same contraindications, like a history of easy bleeding. The difference is in how that mechanism occurs. For those at risk for GI issues, willow bark is metabolized in a way that interacts with the gut and the liver that may be less risky. However, it has been demonstrated that some folks can still experience various side effects to its use.
  5. As I wrote above, willow bark can be an alternative for those seeking such. Dogmatic claims serve only to make the offering of valid information less attractive and harder to accept.
I appreciate your posting about the willow bark, Brian. I think there will definitely be some folks who will consider its use. :)
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016). Seville-Astorga (Mar 2017). Mozarabe (Apr-May 2018)
#11
The disparaging use of terms like "bought and paid for" and "big pharma" are non sequiturs. They do not provide a reasoned support for your suggestion of using willow bark. The use of such terms are a rhetorical red flag for me, as they are terms frequently employed by those who use conspiracies and innuendo in place of facts.
So true.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Santiago to Finisterre to Muxia 2013
Camino Frances May 2015
Camino Frances July 2017
#15
There are "brands" of Willow bark?

Wow, and people say big pharma is cynical, at least they take the time time grind things down a bit and make it into a pill.
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
#16
I generally *prefer* medicines that are, as you say, "chemically made in a lab." Here's why.

The effective pain-relieving ingredient in willow bark is salicylic acid; the same as aspirin. The difference between willow bark and aspirin is that, when you take aspirin, you know exactly what the dose of salicylic acid is that you are getting. You are also getting ONLY the pain-relieving ingredient, and not a lot of other ingredients that may cause problems or side-effects that haven't been studied.

I worked as a clinical researcher for years. As for "bought and paid for" and "big pharma", there is no question that the pharmaceutical industry is greedy and obscenely profit-oriented. Even so, these clinical trials are strictly monitored and regulated. I could go on for pages about the pros and cons of how this whole system works.

And, in the end, I would rather take medications that have gone through clinical trials so I know what dose I'm getting, how effective it is likely to be, and the possible side effects I should be aware of.
 
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Jacobus

Pilgrim since 2008
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2008 09 14
Del Norte 2011. Portuguese 2015, 2017Ingles 2015 Fisterre 2015.
#18
On topic but a little removed from the conversation...
Some countries including my own restrict the import of agricultural products, plants including parts of plants etc. The European Union may not have these restrictions but it is a consideration if carrying the raw form or a raw derivative. Just sayin is all.
Jim
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
#19
I honestly wasn't trying to force a debate on the topic. But I do respect everyone's input. All points are valid and I think the takeaway is do your research and go with what works best for you.

Stands true for all things in life.
You didn't sound like you were trying to force a debate. But it is misleading to say that willow bark is "less toxic" than aspirin, hence others posted further information that should be considered before accepting this recommendation at face value. And not to be argumentative, but no, all points are NOT valid. All best! :)
 

alaskadiver

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017-Camino Primitivo
2019- Invierno
#20
You didn't sound like you were trying to force a debate. But it is misleading to say that willow bark is "less toxic" than aspirin, hence others posted further information that should be considered before accepting this recommendation at face value. And not to be argumentative, but no, all points are NOT valid. All best! :)
I wish there was a feature to “love” a post. You are so right that not all points are valid. Glad to see so many people not falling for the nonsense that implies that modern medicine is all toxic and we should return to Middle Ages “medicine “ :)
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
#21
Willow bark is the bark from several varieties of the willow tree, including white willow or European willow, black willow or pussy willow, crack willow, purple willow, and others. The bark is used to make medicine.
Not to dredge up this conversation, but I just re-read this and am wondering where I can get me some of that "crack willow." Now we're talking.
 



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