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Thomas M.Walter*, Gopi G.Radha**. Introduction: The World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that 80% of the population of developing countries relies on traditional medicines, mostly plant drugs, for their primary health care needs. Also, modern pharmacopoeia still contains at least 25% drugs derived from plants and many others which are synthetic analogues built on prototype compounds isolated from plants. Siddha system is one of the oldest systems of medicine in India. The Siddha system is capable of treating all types of disease (especially chronic diseases) other than emergency cases. The Pharmacology (Materia Medica) of Siddha system is divided into three major parts namely Herbal kingdom, Metals & Minerals and Animal kingdom. The initial treatment consists of Herbal treatment followed by metal and mineral preparations. It is important to have an awareness regarding the poisonous plants which when used in the proper, prescribed dose, acts as potent therapeutic agents. Toxins are molecules that are harmful to living organisms. It is a fact that virtually any substance can be harmful at high enough concentrations - as Paracelsus (1493-1541) said in the sixteenth century, "the dose makes the poison." Poisons include both naturally produced compounds and chemicals manufactured by humans. Natural poisons are produced by species of bacteria, fungi, protists, plants, and animals. This article has the basic details such as the Botanical & Family names, Common names, toxic parts of the plant, chemical constituents, signs and symptoms of toxicity, its use in Traditional Indian Systems of Medicine (in prescribed doses), and information about Lethal dose and Fatal period of the important plants (such as Papaver somniferum, Datura alba, Nerium oleander, Strychnos nux vomica, Cleistanthus collinus, Cannabis sativa, Gloriosa superba, Anamirta cocculus, Citrulus colocynthis, Abrus precatorius, Semecarpus anacardium, Excoecaria agallocha, Digitalis purpurea, Aconitum ferrox, Croton tiglium and Plumbago zeylanica) noted as poisons in the Traditional Indian Systems of Medicine.
Asst. Lecturer, Dept. of Pharmacology, Govt. Siddha Medical College, Palayamkottai, T.N., INDIA. House-Surgeon, Govt. Siddha Medical College, Palayamkottai, T.N., INDIA.
Bot. Paralysis& Other nervous diseases Externally used in Neuralgia. fish berry. Aconitum ferox (Ranunculaceae) Indian aconite or Monkshood Dried tuberous root Napelline or Pseudo aconite Gastro Intestinal Tract irritant &Cardiac poison. Narcotic stage & Death. Neuralgia. Note LD: 90gm120gm. Sciatica. Migraine. . Nervine tonic in case of paralysis.& leaves Abrin Action Uses Vomiting. Cleistanthus collinus (Ephorbiaceace) Bark Saponins Extremely poisonous Bark is a fish poison. Fresh fruit Picrotoxin - - Cannabis sativa (Cannabinaceae) Indian hemp Dried flowers and fruits Cannabin. cannabinol Deliriant poison. cannabinon.54gm FP: 5 hrs Anamirta cocculus. Dysmenorrhea & Menorrhagia. Indian Jamaica or Wild Liquorices Roots. Asthma. Whooping cough. LD: 2. seeds. LD: Bhang:10g m Ganja:8gm Charas:2g m. FP: 24hrs7 days. Cardiac poison. In smallest doses it is given in epilepsy. Menispermaceae Indian berry. Externally used in Alopecia. FP: 24-72 hrs. produce Over excitement . Muscular rheumatism.name & Family Abrus Precatorius Common Toxic Constit Name parts uents Jequirity.
Deliriant poison produce collapse & death. Jaundice. Root.Citrullus colocynthis (Cucurbitaceae) Colocynth. intestinal obstruction. Seed. FP: 6 36hrs. Fever. or quartenylic acid. Indian wild Gourd or bitter apple. Datura alba (Solanaceae) Thorn apple Whole plant Daturine. Digitalis purpurea Terophularaceae Fox glove _ _ Cardiac poison. Spasmodic asthma.24 hrs. Fruit. Tiglinic acid. Amenorrhea. Crotonic. bitter cucumber. Dropsy. LD: 0. Convulsions. FP: 24 hrs. LD: 15-30 mg FP: 30 min . Colocynthin Ascitis. Obstinate constipation. Constipation.61gm. Insanity. Cerebral affection like apoplexy. LD: 1 seed Oil: 1520ml. GIT irritant &Cardiac poison. . Croton tiglium (Euphorbiaceae) Purgative croton. Dried Pulp of the fruit. croton oil seed. oil.
GIT irritant &Respirato ry poison. Gloriosa superba (Liliaceae) Superblily Tubers(ro Superbine& ots) glucosine. Cancers. Thebaine. . Dysentry. externally hrs. Diarrhoea.8gm Morphine:3 0mg Codeine:1 0-60mg Tincture opium:250 mg Pethedine: 1gm FP: 6-12 hrs. snake poison. Nerium oleander (Apocynaceae) Sweet scented Root oleander. Euphorbiaceae Tiger’s milk tree _ _ Epilepsy. petals seeds. &rootRoseberry bark spurge. Gonorrhea.Excoecaria agallocha. Intestinal inflammatory pain. LD:800mg FP: 12-24 hrs. Depression Cough. Narcotic Asthma. LD:Opium: 0. Codeine. poppy seeds. Narcotine. Papaver somniferum (Papavaraceae) Opium poppy capsules. Insomnia. used in Hamorrhoids. Ripe &dried capsules. Cardiac poison Small doses in Snake bites& LD:16gm powerful venomous FP: 24-36 bites. externally in snake bite& Scorpion Sting. Neriodorin. White poppy. poison. externally in ulcers. Morphine.9-1.
Hysteria. LD:5gm Semecarpus anacardium (Anacardiaceae) Markins nut tree. Epilepsy. LD: 5 – 10 gm FP: 12 – 24 hours. Epilepsy. Cholera. Gum. bark. Piles. Root Externally it produces rashes & Gastro intestinal poison. Chronic enlargement of spleen. quaker button Stem Strychnine. Acute Dysentery. produce Convulsion & death.P. Externally in Abscess. LD: 30120mg FP: 1-2 days. Internally used in Syphilis. Rheumatism. poison nut. Fatal Period. Leprosy and Scabies. . Abbreviations Used: L. Mental emotion. Spinal poison.Plumbago zeylanica Plumbaginaceae Ceylon leadwort. Internally used in Neuralgic affection. Lethal Dose F. Strychos nux vomica (Loganiaceae) Nux vomica or Strychine tree. Internally root causes Abortion. Palsy. Externally it produces Rashes on skin. Plumbagin. Anacardiac acid & Cardol anacardol GIT irritant. Palsy. Prolapse of rectum. Externally used in Headache.D. oil. Chronic Rheumatism. Fruit. White leadwort. Dried ripe seeds.
Drugs which lessen the activity of heart. A remedy which relieves pain. An agent which stimulates or increases sexual excitement. Any agent which contracts organic tissue thus lessening secretion. Medicine that "alter" the morbid or unhealthy process of nutrition and excretion.Pharmacological terms and their meanings: Abortifacient: Alterative: Drug that induces expulsion of a non-viable fetus. Any agent which prevents inflammation. Any agent which allays or reduces fever. the normal functions of an organ or of the system without producing any sensible effect or obvious impression on any of the organs of the body. Drugs which maintain an efficient circulation when the heart becomes weak to perform its function by Analgesic. passion and virile power. A remedy which counteracts or neutralizes the action of a poison. Any measure used to relieve spasm occurring in muscle. Any agent which destroys bacteria. A remedy that arrests or prevents putrification or which prevents or retards the growth of microorganisms as long as they remain in contact with them but not destroy them. Any remedy for the destruction or elimination of intestinal worms. sexual appetite. Anodyne: Antacid: Anthelmintic: Antibacterial: Antidote: Antiinflammatory: Antipyretic: Antiseptic: Antispasmodic: Aphrodisiac: Aromatic: Astringent: Cardiac depressant: Cardiac stimulant: . restoring in some unknown way. Drug that counteracts or neutralizes the acidity in the stomach. Substances characterized by a fragrant. spicy taste and / or odour and containing volatile oils and stimulates to the gastro intestinal mucous membrane. cordial.
Any substance which is required for the production of red blood cell and the constituents. especially of mucous membranes. and produces free purgation at the same time. An agent which assists the stomach and intestine in their normal functions of promoting digestion of foods. An agent inducing or increasing the flow of milk. (b) by removing the cause of the suppression. Any agent which arrests bleeding. Expectorant: Galactagogue: Haematinic: Haemostatic: Laxative: A drug which promotes or increases the elimination of secretion from the respiratory tract by coughing or by sputum. A mild aperient. mucilaginous fluid which allays irritation and sooths inflammation. Carminative: Calming or soothing medicines that act by relieving pain in the stomach and bowel and expel flatulence and gas from the stomach or intestines by increasing or regulating peristalsis. allow the discharge to return. Emetic: Any agent used to produce vomiting. It is milder in action. which by their stimulating action on the uterine fiber (a) directly assist in increasing or restoring disordered menstruation when deficient or absent. An agent which increases the flow of urine. An agent which induces diaphoresis(perspiration). A medicine that removes functional obstructions of the body. Cholagogue: Demulcent: Deobstruent: Diaphoretic: Digestive: Diuretic: Emmenogogue: These are medicines.improving its activity. A slippery. . empties the gall bladder. promoting or increasing the secretion or excretion of bile. Remedy which stimulates the action of liver.
A substance which when applied to the skin. and which quench thirst. jointly and severally. Siddha Materia Medica (Medicinal Plants Division) by Murugesa Mudaliar. i. Dr. cause redness. Drug that exerts a soothing effect by lowering functional activity. Publisher: Popular Prakash. Published by The Directorate of Indian Medicine & Homeopathy.e.R). Nadkarani.I. Mumbai. New Delhi. Chennai. An astringent applied to stop bleeding. Textbook of Medical Jurisprudence and Toxicology by Dr. or lowering bodily temperature.M.Lithontriptic: A medicine supposed to possess the power of dissolving urinary calculi. by stimulating the nutrition. An agent which increases or excites functions. . 4.S. Medicines having cooling properties on the surface of the body. and medicines which suppress an unnatural heat of the body.. stone in the urinary bladder. Indian Materia Medica Vol: 1 by.K Parikh. as well as improve the entire general tone of the system. Drug which quiets the nervous system without actually producing sleep. CBS Publisher. K. Mumbai. Nutritive: Refrigerant: Rubefacient: Sedative: Sialogogue: Stimulant: Stomachic: Styptic: Tonic: Bibliography: 1.12. Publisher Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (C. The Wealth of India Vol 1. 2. Medicine which permanently increase the tone of the part upon which they act. 3. An agent which increases the flow of saliva. C. An agent which increases the appetite and digestion. Nourishing medicines.
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