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Oman Med J. 2008 Oct;23(4):253-6.

Antimicrobial efficacy of henna extracts.


Lawsonia inermis (henna plant) has been used in herbal medicine for ages. However, the medical benefits of this plant have been discussed in only a few publications. In this study, the antibacterial effects of water, alcoholic and oily extracts of Lawsonia inermis leaves against bacterial cultures isolated from various skin diseases were investigated and compared with Tetracycline, Ampicillin, Gentamicin and Ciprofloxacin antibiotics. Cultures of Staphylococcus aureus Staphylococcus epidermidis (Co-agulase negative staphylococci or CONS), ß-hemolytic streptococci and Pseudomonas aeruginosa species were obtained from 74 (35 females, 39 males) patients with different skin infections who attended the Dermatology outpatient clinic in Basra General Hospital. The bacterial isolates were treated with L. inermis extracts in vitro. Alcoholic and oily extracts were more effective than the water extract which had no effects using standard method of NCCL, 2000.Alcoholic extracts had the highest antibacterial activity with a MIC of 0.125-0.150 µg/ml against ß-hemolytic streptococci and against CONS was 0.125-175 µg/ml .Oily extracts had a MIC of 0.25-0.30 µg/ml against Staphylococcus epidermidis (cons). Both alcoholic and oily extracts had the same MIC (0.5 µg/ml) on Staphylococcus aureus. However, alcoholic extracts were more effective on Pseudomonas aeruginosa with a MIC of 0.5-0.57 µg/ml than oily extract (MIC of 0.20-0.28 µg/ml). However, there were no statically differences between the effects of oily and alcoholic henna extracts (p= 0.050).When comparing the extracts' MICs with those of antibiotics, alcoholic extracts showed pronounced antibacterial effects against the isolated bacteria in vitro but oily extracts had much similar MICs to those of antibiotics and there are significant difference between effect of both extracts and antibiotics p>0.050.


Bacteria; Henna; Herbal Medicine; Lawsonia inermis; Skin diseases

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