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(ŭr'tī-kă, er'ti-),
The herb, Urtica dioica (family Urticaceae); a weed, the leaves of which produce a stinging sensation when touching the skin. It has been used as a diuretic and hemostatic in metrorrhagia, epistaxis, and hematemesis.
Synonym(s): nettle
[L. a nettle, fr. uro, pp. ustus, to burn]


/net·tle/ (net´'l) any plant of the genus Urtica, characterized by stinging hairs and secretion of a poisonous fluid. U. dioica is a type of stinging nettle that grows in temperate regions; its root is used to treat urinary problems associated with benign prostatic hyperplasia. The flowering plant is used for urinary tract infections, kidney and bladder stones, and rheumatism and is also widely used in folk medicine.


a perennial herb that is native to Europe and is now found throughout the United States and parts of Canada.
uses It is used as a diuretic and as a treatment for hay fever and shows some evidence of efficacy for these indications.
contraindications It should not be used during pregnancy and lactation, in children less than 2 years of age, or in people with hypersensitivity to this plant. It should be used only with caution in children and the elderly.

stinging nettle

Herbal medicine
A perennial herb that contains acetyl-choline, formic acid, histamine, minerals and vitamins A and C; it is astringent, diuretic, tonic, and administered as an infusion, poultice or applied topically (the leaves act as a counterirritant). Stinging nettle is used for arthritis, baldness, cystitis, diabetes, diarrhoea, eczema, epistaxis, gout, hay fever, haemorrhoids, rheumatic complaints and tuberculosis; it may be used under the supervision of a physician for congestive heart failure and hypertension.
Uncooked nettle may cause renal damage; the diuresis-related loss of potassium should be compensated for by increasing potassium intake; it should not be given to young children.

nettle (ne′·tl),

n Latin name:
Urtica dioica; parts used: leaves, roots; uses: benign prostatic hypertrophy, allergic rhinitis, respiratory ailments, astringent, bladder conditions, expectorant, diuretic, anticancer, analgesic, antiinflammatory; precautions: abortifacient, pregnancy, lactation, children, geriatric patients, diuretic medications, skin irritations. Also called
common nettle, greater nettle, or
stinging nettle.


a common name used for a variety of plants including bull nettle (Solanum carolinense), white horsenettle (S. elaeagnifolium), dead nettle (Lamium amplexicaule), field nettle (Stachys arvensis), spurge nettle (Jatropha stimulosa), mulga nettle (Haloragis odontocarpa) and the stinging nettles (Urtica incisa, U. urens and U. dioica).

nettle gases
used in crowd control in humans. Cause a very painful irritation of the skin. Includes dichloroformoxime.
nettle rash
see urticaria. Called also hives.