Send to

Choose Destination
J Ethnopharmacol. 2012 Jul 13;142(2):557-62. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2012.05.051. Epub 2012 Jun 2.

Ethnomedicinal plants used to treat bone fracture from North-Central Western Ghats of India.

Author information

Regional Medical Research Centre, ICMR, Nehru Nagar, Belgaum 590010, India.



North Central Western Ghats in India comprises rich bio-cultural diversity and is also home to varied ethnomedicinal practices. The study was taken up for documentation and analysis of traditional knowledge regarding the practice and use of plants in the treatment of bone fracture. This is an effort to preserve the vanishing wealth of traditional knowledge.


Key informants identified in a preliminary survey and collection of information was through semi structured, open ended interviews. The details on age, place of practice, experience of key informants and learning of practice, disease they treat and mode of diagnosis, storage and usage of plants were collected. The identity of plants and their information was confirmed through repeated guided transect walks in different seasons with the informants and focus group discussions. Identified plants were deposited at the herbaria of Regional Medical Research Centre, Belgaum.


Forty four key informants providing treatment for bone fracture in this region were identified. Thirty eight plant species belonging to 24 families have been documented in the present study. Highest number of species representation is found in families Euphorbiaceae and Fabaceae. The habit of the species showed that 45% of the herbal drugs were obtained from trees, followed by herbs, shrubs and climbers and majority of plants used were collected from wild (76%). The stem or stem bark (33%) was most commonly used plant part to prepare medicine. Twenty six formulations of 30 plant species were directly used in treating bone fracture, where Cissus quadrangularis has the highest use-value (0.14). Eleven plants were found to be administered for bone strengthening, pain relieving, inflammation reduction and speedy recovery and Gmelina arborea has the highest use value (0.27).


The results indicated the importance of traditional herbal practices in community for their health needs. Both conservational strategies and further validation studies are the need of the hour for better utilization and sustenance of the documented knowledge.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center