Rhus tox.
Poison Ivy / Poison Oak

Rhus toxicodendron

The homeopathic remedy rhus tox. is prepared from poison ivy, a creeping shrub that is found growing naturally all over North America. This plant is somewhat toxic by nature and is known for its oil causing reddish and itchy skin rash. In fact, the medicinal history of the leaves and stalks of the plant dates back to the later part of the 18th century when people used it extensively to cure health conditions like rheumatism and paralysis.

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When used in concentrated form, extracts of this vine shrub may result in a variety of adverse effects, including nausea, rash, fever, swollen glands, hallucination and even ulcers in the oral cavity. Owing to these attributes of poison ivy, homeopathic physicians prescribe rhus tox. prepared from the leaves and stalks of the plant, for people who may be suffering from health conditions that are accompanied by restiveness, fever and swollen glands.

Chemical analysis of the poison ivy has revealed that its major component is toxicodendric acid, an unstable substance that is usually in its most potent form after dusk, in a damp or cloudy weather condition, or during the period between June and July. The essential oil enclosed by the poison ivy plant is noxious, especially when the skin is exposed to it.

The symptoms of poisoning caused by the toxicodendric acid may include headache, nausea, fever, a red itchy rash resulting to blisters on the skin surface, delirium, appetite loss, distended glands as well as ulcers in the oral cavity.

It is interesting to note that despite being a useful homeopathic medication, poison ivy's medicinal attributes were actually discovered by mere accident. During the later part of the 18th century, a French physician was surprised to discover that one of his patient's chronic rashes had healed completely owing to accidental exposure to poison ivy.

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Encouraged by this finding, this French physician used the leaves and stalks of the poison ivy plant to treat the skin disorders as well as rheumatism and paralysis of other patients and found the results to be very promising.

Individuals who are said to belong to the Rhus tox. type usually have a reddish face, dry lips and suffer from distended glands. Such people may also endure muscle spasms or pain in the joints that may be bugging, shooting and excruciating. Owing to such pains, the patient feels very uncomfortable and the condition improves somewhat when they are mobile.

The Rhus tox. type patients may feel hungry, but have a poor or no appetite. Similarly, they may have a very dry mouth although they may be intensely thirsty. When such people drink any cold beverages, it may set off vomiting and nausea along with a severe pain in the stomach.

Other symptoms experienced by the Rhus tox. type patients may include an enlarged liver that is very hurting when pressed, a biting soreness in the stomach accompanied by a bursting and weighty sensation, weakness of the bladder, paralysis of the limbs or insensitive limbs when exposed to the cold and soreness and swelling of the glands in the abdominal region as well as the groin. In such cases, turning to the homeopathic remedy rhus tox. not only helps to cure the conditions, but also alleviate all the associated symptoms.

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Parts used

The homeopathic remedy rhus tox. is prepared from the poison ivy plant collected at night, as the oil enclosed by the plant is said to be in its most potent condition at this time. The leaves and stalks of the vine-like shrub are separated and pulverized into a pulp form and blended with alcohol.

Subsequently, the resultant solution is filtered and watered down to the desired level. Precisely speaking, rhus tox. is prepared by means of an extremely diluted as well as properly prepared solution that obtains its base from the poison ivy plant.


Although the homeopathic remedy rhus tox. has numerous health benefits, it is primarily used to treat skin problems, especially those accompanied by a itchy, reddish and burning sensation, swollen skin and skin that is prone to scaling, for instance blisters, rashes, herpes, eczema, and diaper rash.

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In addition rhus tox. is also prescribed for people suffering from musculoskeletal problems, for example rheumatism, osteoarthritis, cramps, strains, sprains as well as restless leg syndrome.

Rhus tox. is also effective for treating a number of other physical symptoms, which includes flu, rheumatic fever and all types of viral infections. This homeopathic medication is especially useful in healing conditions that are accompanied by nausea and vomiting, very high temperature along with disorder and hallucination and light-headedness that worsens when the patient is standing or walking.

This homeopathic remedy is also ideal for sensitive scalp, puffed-up eyes with aching stinging tears, arid, cracked, brown-colored, red-tipped tongue, nose congestion during evenings, irritating coughs that resolve when the patient is talking or singing, numbness of the arms and legs, a sour taste in the mouth, a stitching pain that deteriorates when exposed to cold or damp conditions and firmness in the lower back portion.

The homeopathic remedy rhus tox. is also beneficial for women, especially those who have been suffering from profuse blood flow during menstruation, or have prolonged or early menstruation as well as a burning sensation in the vagina or women enduring abdominal pain which improves while lying down.

People who may be requiring this homeopathic medication are those who are likely to be suffering from depression and often feel irritated, besides having a tendency to have suicidal thoughts. Such patients may also be crying without any rhyme or reason. Such people generally do not have any physical pleasure, but are always nervous and suffer from an apprehension of being poisoned by medicines. In addition, they are highly susceptible to cold as well as moist conditions.

In homeopathy, rhus tox. is a significant and most appropriate for treating mumps accompanied by fever, firm distended glands and the tongue being coated white or yellow with a red tip. In such cases, the glands on the left side distend first or they may be shoddier on the left side. The inflamed glands are painful when touched and the symptoms endured by the patient improve when they are near heat and deteriorate when exposed to cold and damp.

As aforementioned, this homeopathic remedy has been indicated most for treating persistent or severe arthritic or rheumatic conditions. In homeopathy, rhus tox. is one of the most effective remedies for excruciating pains in the bone and joints.

People suffering from acute arthritis and/or rheumatism experience firm and disabled joints, while the muscles, tendons and ligaments feel painful and battered. Such pains worsen when the patient is walking, but the condition improves when the patient engages in light work outs.

Patients suffering from severe arthritis have downy and gleaming joints that are somewhat reddish. In the affected parts, the patients have a lack of sensation or stinging feeling. People who endure chronic or persistent arthritis experience comparatively less distension in the joints, but have comparatively stiffer joints.

In acute arthritis, the pain is so intense that it may trouble the patient and wake them up in the middle of the night. Hence, it is not surprising that such patients also suffer from sleep disorder or wakefulness.

As aforementioned, the symptoms suffered by these patients worsen when they are exposed to cold and damp weather conditions. In addition, the symptoms also worsen when they suffer from fever during night time and when they feel cold. On the other hand, the symptoms improve when the patients are mobile and close to heat. Such situations make them feel better.


The poison ivy, a vine-like shrub that forms the basis of the homeopathic remedy rhus tox. grows naturally all over North America.


From Laura - Oct-14-2016
My mom has an auto-immune system disease, the treatment (cortisone & imuran) gave her lots of back pain, swollen face and feet, numbness; she took Rhus. tox. and she feels great, she walks better, feels her toes and her swelling is down. She felt the effects after one day. It worked on her.
From Carolyn Winkler - Jun-22-2016
I have a Bakers cyst in back of my knee. I've been suffering for 2.5 months. I've been doing physical therapy and that is helping but still was painful at night and to walk. I took the Rhus. tox. and within 30 minutes the pain is almost completely gone. Highly recommend it. Wish I would have searched the internet sooner.
From George - Aug-20-2015
I have rheumatoid arthritis and have been prescribed rhus tox. I am also taking Chinese medicine. I have 4 tablets of rhus tox. 2 x a day. At first I stopped the Chinese meds. Today I was in too much pain and decided to take the rhus tox. and the Chinese meds. Within 4 hours the RA has completely lifted.
I actually cannot believe what has happened. I really am quite taken aback. So much so I just want to cry with relief. I have actually walked without any pain and put one foot in front of the other for the first time in 17 months. Even if it has worn off by tomorrow, it was an absolutely amazing feeling.
From Vanessa - Sep-13-2014
This is to update my previous comment from July. It is true that the Rhus. tox. did wonders for the pain and cramping in my legs. I also sleep better than I have in years. However, I did have side effects. I may have killed the friendly bacteria in my stomach? Haven't taken it in over a month and still having intestinal problems. Also tired and don't feel well a lot of the time as a result of taking the Rhus.tox.
From El - Jul-26-2014
Rhus. Tox. worked great to help heal my poison ivy! I had it all over my legs and nothing stopped the itching, until my sister gave me some tiny little Rhus. Tox. pills. The itching was better within hours and the healing of the sores began that same day. It was amazing and now I keep a few bottles of Rhus. Tox. on hand especially for the summer, when outdoors more.
After I work in the yard I take a dose or two of Rhus. Tox. just in case I accidentally touched any poison ivy and I've read that folks who work outdoors often take the pills regularly to prevent any poison ivy rash. Also, the only thing found to really help the itching was Cala-gel.
From Vanessa - Jul-16-2014
Had extreme pain & cramping in feet and legs in the evening & at night. Couldn't sleep. Nothing really helped for long. Read that this is helpful for people whose pain is helped by motion. I took the Boiron 30 Rhus. Tox. tiny pellets. It worked like magic from the beginning. All the swelling, spasms, and pain stopped immediately. I can sleep soundly for the first time in 10-15 years.
I would suggest the #30 strength. The smaller the number...the stronger...and potentially more toxic the Rhus. Tox. I started by taking 5 pellets...3x per day. Now I am down to 5 pellets when I go to bed. Have discovered that eating steak or ground sirloin causes pain that is not stopped by this.
Dairy products and sugar also seems to aggravate the pain more...and I sometime have to take an extra 2 or 3 pellets during the night. Prior to taking this I did not know what made the pain worse. This was a super blessing for me...but my friend who has pain... that is only helped by rest...is not helped by this. The only side effects I see are feeling warmer than usual & sometimes an upset stomach. I am not sure this is relevant...but I had rheumatic fever as a small child.
From Dr. Sheryl Wagner - Jan-28-2014
A patient came in today with frozen shoulder x 2 months. left shoulder. It only felt better with deep massage and hot packs and felt worse in bed at night and when motion was restricted, such as when wearing a bra. Even though frozen shoulder feels bad to move it, also hers felt worse when any motion was restricted.
Rhus. tox typically feels worse on first motion, better after continued motion. Also the hot pack tipped me off. After one dose of Rhus. tox 30c her shoulder abduction went from 15 degrees to 85 degrees (in 10 minutes!)!
From Nora Ashley - Oct-09-2013
I have rheumatoid arthritis, especially in my shoulders. Tired of taking pain medicine, decided to try this homeopathy, started taking it immediately and on day two now, what a difference, no side effects. Arms tired from the pain of the shoulders, the arthritis seems to be less, I can actually lift my arms up without suffering, who knew that it came from poison ivy? my enemy is now my friend.
From Carlos - May-11-2013
Rhus tox. was suggested to me by my local homeopath. The recommended dose was five-six tiny "pills" for painful joints. Folks, if you suspect that you may have an allergic reaction to this product, one thing that you may want to look out for is a swelling of the lower extremities. Ankles, feet, and possibly as far up as your knees. It was/is several days now, and I have taken some antidote(s) for the swelling and have begun to reduce the swelling.
For those of you who have no adverse reaction to this product... I commend you for using it. For those of you "first timers" use with judicious care and watch for any unusual reactions.
From Charla - Apr-10-2013
I was exposed to pollen, lots of it, on a box I moved. I didn't realize I was allergic, guess bodies change. It filtered through my clothing as I worked throughout the day, and within a few hours I was covered with red, itchy whelps and rash. My son purchased these tablets for me and I began taking them Monday afternoon.
Within a few hours the whelps and itching had subsided. I continued throughout the day with the dosage as recommended, 2 every 2 hours. My arms started clearing up by the second dose. It is now 48 hours and my arms are clear and my torso and legs are clearing up, with no itching. God is good and always provides a way out.
Thank you for this wonderful, natural product. I have already recommended it to friends and family who suffer from poison ivy, but after reading this information, I have lots more folks to recommend it too. Thank you and God bless.
From Teresa D. - 2010
I am extremely allergic to poison ivy, oak, and sumac. I always end up getting a steroid shot & oral steroids to heal. However, if, when I realize I have been exposed I immediately start taking Rhus tox. every 15 minutes for two to three days and it actually works! The impact from the exposure is very minimal and I don't have to deal with the steroids. It is truly awesome!
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