Cramp bark

Scientific name: Viburnum opulus

Common names: Crampbark high, High cranberry, Highbush cranberry

Ayurvedic names:

Chinese names:

Bangladesh names:

Arabic names:     الرباطية درهمية الأزهار (ar-rubaatiyah dirhamiyyat al azhaar)

Rain Forest names:

Family: Caprifoliaceae

Approximate number of species known:

Common parts used: Bark

Collection: Winter

Annual/Perennial: Perennial

Height: 12 feet

Actions:  Anti-spasmodic, astringent, emmenaogue, nervine

Known Constituents:  Vilburnin, valerianic acid, salicosides, resin, tannin

Constituents Explained:


Traditional Use:

A strong antispasmodic, crampbark is often used to relieve muscle tension and the cramping that comes with cathartic herbs.

It is also sometimes used to relieve uterine or ovarian pain if it is associated with excess tension.  In higher doses it is sometimes used to prevent miscarriages.

Because its an astrigent it is sometimes used to help relieve symptoms of excessive blood loss due to menstruation

It used in cases of rehutism and to relieve restless leps.

Clinical Studies:

In the present study, antioxidant properties of the water extracts of different parts of Viburnum opulus and Viburnum lantana (Caprifoliaceae) were investigated using the DPPH scavenging and superoxide anion scavenging methods. 

The extracts were prepared from the fruits, branches, and leaves of V lantana and V opulus species. The branch extracts of V lantana and V opulus inhibited superoxide anion in a concentration-dependent manner. 

Compared with t-tocopherol, the fruit extract of V lantana did not show any scavenging effect on superoxide anion formation. V lantana leaf extracts, however, showed a moderate scavenging effect on superoxide anion formation, whereas V lantana branch extracts showed a strong scavenging effect on superoxide anion in higher concentration. 

On the other hand, all extracts exhibited a scavenging effect on the DPPH radical with various potencies. When compared with butylated hydroxytoluene, V opulus branch and V lantana leaf extracts, as well as V lantana branch, V opulus fruit and V lantana fruit extracts, showed strong DPPH radical scavenging activity.


Altun ML, Citoqlu GS, Yilmaz BS, Coban T. “Antioxidant Properties Of Viburnum Opulus And Viburnum Lantana Growing In Turkey.” 2008 May