Effect of topical rosemary essential oil on Raynaud phenomenon in systemic sclerosis

Complement Ther Med. 2018 Oct:40:191-194. doi: 10.1016/j.ctim.2017.10.012. Epub 2017 Nov 1.


Introduction: Raynaud's phenomenon is the earliest manifestation of systemic sclerosis. Nitroglycerin gel is the only proven topical therapy.

Methods: A 53-year-old woman with systemic sclerosis had topical Rosamarinus officinalis (rosemary) oil, often used in anthroposophic medicine, applied to her hands over 3days and then, separately, olive oil.

Results: Thermography images showed significant warming of fingers after rosemary oil, but not after olive oil, coinciding with the patient's subjective experience.

Conclusions: Topical Rosamarinus officinalis oil had a vasodilator and warming effect in a patient with systemic sclerosis and Raynaud's phenomenon.

Keywords: Raynaud phenomenon; Rosmarinus officinalis; Scleroderma; Systemic sclerosis.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Arm / physiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Oils, Volatile / therapeutic use*
  • Raynaud Disease / drug therapy*
  • Raynaud Disease / etiology*
  • Scleroderma, Systemic / complications*
  • Thermography


  • Oils, Volatile
  • rosemary oil