Major therapeutic interest

  • Treating reactive depression (mild to moderate);
  • Treating symptomatic, reactive, and nervous depression related to psychovegetative syndrome;
  • Helping fight insomnia;
  • Relieving nervous disorders, seasonal affective disorder, fear and anxiety.

Other therapeutic interest / Traditional Use

  • Healing wounds (topical use);
  • Treating insect bites, chapping, first degree burns (topical use);
  • Relieving pain associated with mouth and/or oropharynx problems (topical use);
  • Reducing pain and inflammation (topical and internal use);
  • Treating neurological disorders including anxiety, irritability, nervousness, troubled sleep, migraines, pain and spasms caused by nerve damage;
  • Reducing fear of the dark, bedwetting, and stammering in children;
  • Relieving menopause-related psychological and vasomotor symptoms (hot flashes, night sweats, etc.);
  • Easing premenstrual syndrome;
  • Treating phobias and obsessive-compulsive disorder.


  • Pregnancy and breastfeeding;
  • Endogenous depression (severe depression that may lead to suicide);
  • Bipolar disorder: can trigger mania and hypomania;
  • Schizophrenia: can trigger psychotic symptoms;
  • Alzheimer’s disease: can trigger delirium;
  • Infertility: may reduce the fertilization of oocytes;
  • It is recommended to avoid activities requiring alertness (driving a vehicle, using dangerous machines, working at heights, etc.) after taking St. John’s wort;
  • Alcohol intake while taking St. John’s wort is controversial.

Important Notice

  • It is recommended to avoid taking St. John’s wort at least two weeks before surgery. Cardiovascular complications and low blood pressure during anesthesia have been reported after long-term use of St. John’s wort. 


  • Remember that self-medication can prove dangerous. Clinical depression and the intensity of the depression should be evaluated and monitored by a doctor physician or a health care professional;
  • As St. John’s wort can dangerously increase the effect of synthetic antidepressants, the body should be given time to eliminate the latter before starting therapy with products containing St. John’s wort. Therapy should be stopped gradually to avoid potential withdrawal symptoms.


  • Photosensitization may occur: prolonged exposure to the sun should be avoided when taking St. John’s wort. However, the photosensitivity is minimal at therapeutic doses;
  • All foods high in tyramine (cabbage, camembert, herring, potatoes, etc.) should be consumed in moderation or avoided altogether.

Drug Interactions

Known human interactions

  • Increases the effect of various categories of antidepressants (Norpramin, Tofranil, Celexa, Prozac, Fluoxetine, Effexor, Zoloft, etc.);
  • Increases the sedative effect of benzodiazepines, antihistamines, pentobarbitals, and other drugs causing drowsiness;
  • Reduces anticoagulant effect of Coumadin;
  • Reduces the absorption of Lanoxin;
  • Alters menstrual bleeding, including its duration, when taken with oral contraceptives (Alesse, Diane-35, Marvelon, Min-Ovral, Ortho 0.5/35, Triphasil, etc.);
  • Reduces the effect of Sandimmune and Neoral: risk of transplanted organs and tissues being rejected;
  • Reduces the effect of theophylline, although in the only known case, St. John’s wort was taken together with other plants;
  • Reduces the effect of Dilantin.

Parts used

Flowering tops

Main constituents

  • Hypericin, hyperforin, flavonoids, essential oil.

Other names

Hypericum perforatum, Amber touch-and-heal, Goat weed, Hardhay