Ruscogenine activity in chronic venous insufficiency

Mother plant: Ruscus aculeatus, Asparagaceae.

 Small Mediterranean bush, characterized by the absence of leaves that are replaced by short flattened branches (clatodi) with a spiny tip, in the center of which appear the small flowers and then the fruits consisting of red berries.

 Drug: the rhizome

 Active ingredients: steroidal saponins (ruscoside). The corresponding genine (ruscogenine) is separated by hydrolysis of the sugary component.


  increases venous tone;

 it is anti-inflammatory;

 reduces capillary permeability with a "sealing" effect.

 In other words, the extracts of the Ruscus rhizome have similiar properties to those of the escin, even if the effect on the capillary permeability is due to the inhibition of the elastase - enzyme that degrades the elastin, an important component of the connective - while that of escin is linked to the inhibition of hyaluronidase. 


 Clinical studies only with Ruscus are rare. We can remember the following:

 Clinical study of 148 women with chronic venous insufficiency.

Treatment: - two capsules for a total of 70 mg of extract; - placebo

 Duration: 12 weeks

Result: Foot volume reduction (ml):

After 4 weeks of treatment the volume reduction in ml is 4.5 in patients treated with Ruscus and 4.4 in patients treated with placebo.

After 8 weeks of treatment, volume reduction in ml is 11.5 in ruscus-treated patients and 5.5 in placebo-treated patients.

After 12 weeks of treatment, volume reduction in ml is 25.5 in patients treated with ruscus and 5.4 in patients treated with placebo

The authors conclude that the product is effective and well tolerated. [Vanscheidt et al. 2002 Arzneimittelforschung]

Source: Phytotherapy 2017 - pag. 25