Anthroposophic Pharmacy

Anthroposophic medicinal products are made from raw materials of natural origin, i.e., they are primarily taken from nature. The raw materials include minerals, metals, plants and partial plants, eusocial insects, animal organs and organ derivatives.

Today the pharmaceutical processes of Anthroposophic Pharmacy are well described in the European Pharmacopoeia (Pharmacopoea Europaea), the German Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeia (HAB), the Swiss Pharmacopoeia (Pharmacopoea Helvetica) and the Anthroposophic Pharmaceutical Codex (APC). The APC presents all relevant processes of Anthroposophic Pharmacy in one work.

Many anthroposophic medications are on the market based on specific national legislation. In the European Union, anthroposophic medications are generally regulated according to Directive 2001/83/EC. The Directive mentions anthroposophic medicinal products only in its introductory paragraphs (paragraph 22) and defines that, provided the products are prepared according to the homeopathic method, they should be regulated as homeopathic medicinal products.

The origin, production and application of anthroposophic medicinal products go back to Rudolf Steiner (1861–1925), who founded Anthroposophic Medicine at the beginning of the 20th century together with the physician Ita Wegman (1876–1943). At that time Rudolf Steiner developed principles for the choice of raw materials and the various manufacturing processes that are still valid today. Another pioneer of Anthroposophic Pharmacy was Rudolf Hauschka (1891–1969).

International Association of Anthroposophic Pharmacists/IAAP. Anthroposophic Pharmaceutical Codex APC. Ed. 4.2. Dornach: IAAP; 2020. Verfügbar unter https://iaap-pharma.org/fileadmin/user_upload/pdf/apc/Anthroposophic_Pharmaceutical_Codex__APC__edition_4.2.pdf (21.8.2020)

Meyer U, Pedersen PA. Anthroposophische Pharmazie. Grundlagen, Herstellprozesse, Arzneimittel. Berlin: Salumed Verlag; 2017.

Engel W. Vegetabilisierte Metalle - Pharmazeutische Grundlagen und Zubereitung der Metall-Dünger. Der Merkurstab 2013;66(1):4-17.

Engel W. Zum Verständnis des Potenzierens aus anthroposophischer Sicht - unter besonderer Berücksichtigung der Triturationen. Der Merkurstab 2012;65(3):196-211.



Research news

Yarrow liver compresses in cancer patients and their effect on the autonomous nervous system    
Liver compresses are frequently used in Anthroposophic Medicine for cancer treatment and are believed to have an energizing effect. In a randomized pilot study, the influence of this external application on the autonomous nervous system was now evaluated. For this study, heart rate variability was measured in metastatic cancer patients undergoing radiotherapy and suffering from cancer-related fatigue (CRF). A total of 20 patients (10 per group) were available for analysis. The results show that yarrow liver compresses led to increase sympathetic activity during the day in the intervention group, while increased parasympathetic activity was observed in the control group, which received no external application. The study is published open access: 
https://doi.org/10.1177/15347354221081253
Previously in 2021, Georg Seifert´s research group had demonstrated that liver compresses reduced (CRF) in this clinically relevant range. The current study clarifies the correlation.
https://doi.org/10.1186/s13014-021-01757-x


Further information on Anthroposophic Medicine