Original Articles: 2015 Vol: 7 Issue: 7
Ethnopharmacological survey of traditional medicinal plants used for the treatment of infantile colic in Morocco
The aim of this study is to compile plants and identify the important species used for the treatment of infantile colic in Moroccan traditional medicine. A field survey was carried out in a period of 2 years (2012–2014) in 6 cities of Morocco. A total of 222 people were interviewed, including 102 mothers with babies under 6 months of age who report using plants for the treatment of infantile colic and 120 herbalists. A semistructured questionnaire was used and the collected data were analyzed qualitatively and quantitatively. A total of 36 plant species distributed in 34 genera belonging to 18 plant families have been identified as being used in the treatment of infantile colic. The species most commonly cited were: Ammodaucus leucotrichus, Lippia citrodora, Carum carvi, Foeniculum vulgare, Pimpinella anisum, Origanum vulgare , Nigella sativa, Lavandula officinalis, Rosmarinus officinalis, Cuminim cyminum, Mentha pulegium, Zygophyllum geatulum, Punica granatum, Illicium verum and Artemisia herba alba. The majority of informants use complex mixtures of plants, rather than a single plant and most of the remedies are prepared in the form of infusion or decoction but the doses of the plants varied widely and some of them are well known to contain toxic compounds. The ethnopharmacological investigation made in this study identified the vegetal species used in different traditional preparations to treat infantile colic in Morocco. Further studies should be undertaken to investigate the effectiveness of these plants and to determine their chemical composition.