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Reaction to ground elder

BissonsBissons Posts: 3
I have recently taken on a garden quite badly infested with ground elder. I suffer from arthritis in my hands and I have noticed that whenever I am working on an area that is badly infested, carefully picking out every little piece of root, I suffer quite a major flare in my arthritis which causes considerable pain in my joints which then lasts for some time (days, even weeks). I am fascinated to discover that ground elder is also called goutwort, and clearly has a history of being used to treattreat gout and arthritis. I feel this cannot be purely coincidental, but can find no reference to it actually causing or exacerbating the problem. I wonder if anyone else has had a similar reaction, or can enlighten me further.


  • hogweedhogweed Posts: 4,053
    Is it in all your joints, the pain, or only in your hands? It could just be also because your are bending a lot?
    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 83,847
    Certainly when Wonky Womble was doing a lot of hand weeding in the cold weather before Christmas her hands and wrists swelled badly and she was in a lot of pain which kept her awake at night.  Don't know whether she was weeding out Ground Elder ... think it was a variety of weeds ... but certainly, following various blood tests etc, her GP said it was a combination of the 'fine motion activity' and the cold weather.  She has since changed her job.  

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • BissonsBissons Posts: 3
    In reply to Hogweed, definitely just my hands, and mysteriously most in the worst affected finger, which is probably the least used when picking up little roots, I.e. the littles finger!  So not stiffness!
  • BissonsBissons Posts: 3
    In reply to Dove from above, I too put it largely down to fine movements and cold weather originally, but yesterday's flare was SO marked and I actually hadn't been working very long, and I have done longer amounts of fine work, clearinf corners of leaves,  potting on etc, in much colder weather, and not had the same problem
  • pansyfacepansyface Posts: 21,901
    I think gout weed is supposed to be applied as a hot poultice.
    I haven’t tried it though. 
    Arthritis is about the one thing I don’t have.😄
    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
    If you live in Derbyshire, as I do.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 83,847

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

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