The efficacy of an extract of Pygeum africanum in the treatment of micturitional disorders due to benign prostatic hyperplasia was tested in a multicentre double-blind trial versus placebo. Capsules containing 50 mg of Pygeum africanum extract or placebo were administered at a dosage of 1 capsule in the morning and 1 capsule in the evening over a period of 60 days. 263 patients were included in this study, which was carried out in 8 centres in Germany, France, and Austria. Evaluation was mainly based on quantitative parameters such as residual urine, uroflowmetry and the precise monitoring of diurnal and nocturnal pollakiuria. Treatment with the Pygeum africanum extract led to a marked clinical improvement: a comparison of the quantitative parameters showed a significant difference between the Pygeum africanum group and the placebo group with respect to therapeutic response. The characteristic subjective symptoms of micturitional disorders, which were evaluated by the patients in a qualitative manner, were also significantly improved by administration of Pygeum africanum extract. Overall assessment at the end of therapy, showed that micturition improved in 66% of the patients treated with Pygeum africanum extract, as compared with an improvement of 31% in the placebo group. The difference was significant at the statistical level of p less than 0.001. During therapy with Pygeum africanum extract, gastrointestinal side effects occurred in 5 patients. Treatment was discontinued in three of those cases.