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Pakistan Journal of Biological Sciences
Year: 2008  |  Volume: 11  |  Issue: 16  |  Page No.: 2051 - 2053

An Ethnobotanical Study of Plants Used for the Treatment of Eye Infections in the Eastern Cape Province, South Africa

S.C. Pendota, D.S. Grierson and A.J. Afolayan    

Abstract: Information on medicinal plants, used by the people of the Eastern Cape for the treatment of eye infections, was collected through questionnaires which were administered to herbalists, traditional healers and rural dwellers. The information collected revealed 12 plant species. These plants belong to 9 families, of which Sapindaceae was the most prominent. The leaves were reported to be the most used part of the plants, constituting 75% of herbal preparations. This was followed by bark and roots which constituted 25%. Generally, the plant parts are crushed and the sap squeezed directly into the infected eyes. In few cases, the material is mixed with water and boiled; after cooling, the extract is applied to the infected eyes. Hippobromus pauciflorus was the most commonly used plant species for the treatment of eye infections in the province. Majority of the plants used have been reported in literature to possess some other pharmacological activities.

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