Implication of herbal medicines for curing arthritis in Central Western Ghats of Karnataka
Keywords:Arthritis, Central Western Ghats, Traditional medicine.
Background: The study area lies in the Central Western Ghats which is one of the 36 biodiversity hotspots of the world. Over 4.5 billion people in developing countries and overall 60% of the world population rely on traditional medicine as components of their healthcare. Documentation of such traditional medicinal knowledge is important for conservation of medicinal plants and as well as future beneficiaries.
Methods: A purposive sampling method was adapted. A self-structured questionnaire was used to collect the feedbacks of patients. The information (plant parts, mode of usage, dosage) were collected through face to face interviews and discussions with the traditional practitioners. The medicinal plants used were collected for herbarium preparation and identified using standard regional and district floras.
Results: A total of 15 medicinal plant species belonging to 11 families for treating arthritis were found in this study. The dominant habit was climbing shrub. Leaves were used in higher proportion (63%). The members of Lamiaceae family were dominant. Three important formulations (pellet, decoction, oil) were used to treat different stages of Arthritis. The statistical outcome from the patients’ feedback questionnaire is also mentioned in the paper.
Conclusions: Herbal preparations should only be prepared as remedy by a practitioner. The people in and around the study area depend on traditional medicine given by practitioner for arthritis. The conservation of such traditional knowledge for treatment can only be accomplished through systematic documentation and scientific research.
Keywords: Diversity, Ethnobotany, Herbal medicine, Joint pain, Medicinal plants, Sharavathi valley, Traditional medicine.
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