Medicine, Traditional

Publication Title: 
Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences

Traditional medical systems are challenging because their theories and practices strike many conventionally trained physicians and researchers as incomprehensible. Should modern medicine dismiss them as unscientific, view them as sources of alternatives hidden in a matrix of superstition, or regard them as complementary sciences of medicine? We make the latter argument using the example of Tibetan medicine.

Loizzo, Joseph J.
Blackhall, Leslie J.
Rapgay, Lobsang
Publication Title: 
Journal of Natural Products

Turmeric has been used for centuries in Ayurvedic medicine as a treatment for inflammatory disorders including arthritis. On the basis of this traditional usage, dietary supplements containing turmeric rhizome and turmeric extracts are also being used in the western world for arthritis treatment and prevention. However, to our knowledge, no data are available regarding antiarthritic efficacy of complex turmeric extracts similar in composition to those available for use as dietary supplements.

Funk, Janet L.
Oyarzo, Janice N.
Frye, Jennifer B.
Chen, Guanjie
Lantz, R. Clark
Jolad, Shivanand D.
Sólyom, Aniko M.
Timmermann, Barbara N.
Publication Title: 
Indian Journal of Public Health

OBJECTIVES: Institute for Research in Medical Statistics, Indian Council of Medical Research, Delhi undertook a study to obtain all India estimate of utilization of Indian Systems of Medicine and Homeopathy (ISM&H). METHODS: The study covered 35 districts spreading over 19 States of India. In this article, results for the State of West Bengal are being presented. Selected districts in West Bengal were Midnapore and Darjeeling where about 2400 sick persons from 2000 households were studied. RESULTS: About 20% sick persons actually availed ISM&H treatment in the State.

Yadav, R. J.
Pandey, A.
Singh, P.
Publication Title: 
Current Drug Safety

Traditional medicine use is common in developing countries and increasingly popular in the western world. Despite the popularity of traditional medicines, scientific research on safety and efficacy is limited. However documented fatalities and severe illness due to lead poisoning are increasingly recognized to be associated with traditional medicine use. As society becomes more globalized, it is imperative for pharmacists and health care providers to learn about the safety of traditional medical practices.

Karri, Surya K.
Saper, Robert B.
Kales, Stefanos N.
Publication Title: 
Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine

BACKGROUND: Plant species have long been used as principal ingredients of traditional medicine in far-west Nepal. The medicinal plants with ethnomedicinal values are currently being screened for their therapeutic potential but their data and information are inadequately compared and analyzed with the Ayurveda and the phytochemical findings. METHODS: The present study evaluated ethnomedicinal plants and their uses following literature review, comparison, field observations, and analysis.

Kunwar, Ripu M.
Shrestha, Keshab P.
Bussmann, Rainer W.
Publication Title: 
The Science of the Total Environment

Arsenic and lead have been found in a number of traditional Ayurvedic medicines, and the practice of Rasa Shastra (combining herbs with metals, minerals and gems), or plant ingredients that contain these elements, may be possible sources. To obtain an estimate of arsenic and lead solubility in the human gastrointestinal tract, bioaccessibility of the two elements was measured in 42 medicines, using a physiologically-based extraction test.

Koch, Iris
Moriarty, Maeve
House, Kim
Sui, Jie
Cullen, William R.
Saper, Robert B.
Reimer, Kenneth J.
Publication Title: 
Journal of Medical Toxicology: Official Journal of the American College of Medical Toxicology

Complementary and alternative medications, including the use of herbal medications, have become quite popular in the USA. Yerberias are found throughout the southwest and specialize in selling Hispanic herbal products. The products sold in these stores are not regulated by any governmental agency. Previous reports have found Ayurvedic medications contain high levels of lead, mercury, and arsenic. The primary purpose of this study is to examine the prevalence of heavy metal contaminants sold at Yerberia stores in the southwest.

Levine, Michael
Mihalic, Jason
Ruha, Anne-Michelle
French, Robert N. E.
Brooks, Daniel E.
Publication Title: 
Molecular Nutrition & Food Research

Although much has been published about curcumin, which is obtained from turmeric, comparatively little is known about turmeric itself. Turmeric, a golden spice obtained from the rhizome of the plant Curcuma longa, has been used to give color and taste to food preparations since ancient times. Traditionally, this spice has been used in Ayurveda and folk medicine for the treatment of such ailments as gynecological problems, gastric problems, hepatic disorders, infectious diseases, and blood disorders.

Gupta, Subash C.
Sung, Bokyung
Kim, Ji Hye
Prasad, Sahdeo
Li, Shiyou
Aggarwal, Bharat B.
Publication Title: 
Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology

1. Mental health gets a low priority all over the world but much more so in developing countries. 2. In India, modern psychiatric facilities are available only in the cities. Mental hospitals are becoming modernized but the backbone of psychiatry is the psychiatric department in the General Hospital where treatment is out-patient and family based except short admissions for crisis intervention. 3. Psychotropic drugs are preferred both by psychiatrists and patients, next being electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and other physical treatments followed by psychotherapies. 4.

Bagadia, V. N.
Shah, L. P.
Pradhan, P. V.
Gada, M. T.
Publication Title: 
Journal of Ethnopharmacology

Four systems of traditional medicine have been adopted in Sri Lanka: Ayurveda, Siddha, Unani and Deshiya Chikitsa. The Ayurveda and Deshiya Chikitsa systems use mainly plant and herbal preparations for the treatment of diseases--the former uses about 2000 species, the latter about 500. The plants are used singly or as mixtures. The traditional systems of medicine have a vast literature, mainly in the form of manuscripts. The principle of the Ayurvedic system is to consider the body as a whole, ailments of different organs not being treated separately as in modern medicine.

Weragoda, P. B.


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