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J Ethnopharmacol. 2002 Apr;80(1):49-66.

Herbal medicines for sexually transmitted diseases and AIDS.

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Department of Pharmaceutics, National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPER), Sector 67, SAS Nagar, 160 062, Punjab, India.


Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) are gaining significant importance at present due to rapid spread of the diseases, high cost of treatment, and the increased risk of transmission of other STDs and AIDS. Current therapies available for symptomatic treatment of STDs and AIDS are quite expensive beyond the reach of common man and are associated with emergence of drug resistance. Many patients of STDs and AIDS are seeking help from alternative systems of medicines such as Unani, Chinese, Ayurvedic, naturopathy, and homeopathy. Since a long time, medicinal plants have been used for the treatment of many infectious diseases without any scientific evidence. At present there is more emphasis on determining the scientific evidence and rationalization of the use of these preparations. Research is in progress to identify plants and their active principles possessing activity against sexually transmitted pathogens including human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) with an objective of providing an effective approach for prevention of transmission and treatment of these diseases. In the present review, plants reported to possess activity or used in traditional systems of medicine for prevention and treatment of STDs including AIDS, herbal formulations for vaginal application, and topical microbicides from herbal origin, have been discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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