Sunday, 23 April 2017

Ethnoveterinary health management practices using medicinal plants in South Asia - a review.

2017 Apr 12. doi: 10.1007/s11259-017-9683-z. [Epub ahead of print]

Author information

Department of Health Sciences, Faculty of Science, University of Mauritius, Réduit, Mauritius.
Department of Plant Sciences, Quaid- i- Azam University, Islamabad, 45320, Pakistan.
Department of Environmental Sciences, Fatima Jinnah Women University, Rawalpindi, Pakistan.
Institue of Industrial Biotechnology, Government College University, Lahore, 54000, Pakistan.
Department of Health Sciences, Faculty of Science, University of Mauritius, Réduit, Mauritius.


Animal rearing is the major occupation of most population of South Asian countries. Due to lack of resources and limited approach to modern medicine, most of the livestock raisers prefer to use plant-based traditional medicine also referred to as ethnoveterinary medicine (EVM). Indeed, the use of medicinal plants in South Asia dates back to several centuries with documented evidences. However, there is currently a dearth of documentation and compilation of use of medicinal plants for animal diseases in this part of the world. This review aims to provide an up-to-date compilation of common medicinal plants used for the treatment and/or management of common animal diseases in South Asian countries. Extensive literature search was conducted online and relevant data was retrieved from well-known scientific databases. A total of 276 plants belonging to 95 families have been documented to be in common use for managing 14 different categories of animal diseases. Solanaceae, Lamiaceae, Fabaceae, and Leguminosae were most common plant families in terms of their plant species used for EVM. Gastric diseases were commonly reported and accounted for 72 species of plants used for its treatment followed by the miscellaneous disorders category and skin diseases comprising of 65 and 39 plant species respectively. Herbs accounted for 46% of the total plant species, followed by trees (33%), and shrubs (18%). The EVM were applied through different routes of administration; oral administration accounted for 72% followed by topical application 27%, while burning of plant parts to create smoke around animals to repel insects was less common (1%). It is anticipated that the present review will stimulate further ethnoveterinary research among livestock disease management practices in South Asia.


Animal diseases; Ethnoveterinary; Livestock healthcare; Medicinal plants; South Asia