Ethnobotanical survey of medicinal plants used in treating snakebites in Benue, Nigeria.
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West University of Timişoara
Snakebites are a major health concern in rural Nigeria which have led to high mortality and suffering in victims due to lack of basic social amenities, ill-equipped hospitals, costly treatments and distance to hospitals. An alternative to treat snakebites is the utilization of herbal invigorating plants however traditional knowledge about plants used for snakebites is not well documented and is rapidly disappearing. Here, we present an ethnobotanical survey of the medicinal plants used for treating snakes bites by the people of southern Benue, mainly the Idoma people. Our survey recorded 18 plant species, belonging to 11 families, used to treat snakebites. The family Fabaceae is represented by 5 species, Annonaceae, Connaraceae and Malvaceae had two useful species each, while the remaining families had only one species each. The leaves were the most utilized plant parts (55.6%), followed by bark (5.5%), seeds (5.5%), roots (27.8%) and whole plant (5.5%). The reported species are mostly administered topically onto the bitten area, sometimes the leaves or barks are chewed, and plant extracts/decoctions are drunk to neutralize snake venom. The need to subject the identified plant species to phytochemical validation and physiochemical tests is imperative to contribute to cost-effective snake antivenom in Nigeria.
West Africa , Antivenom , Ethnobotany , Idoma , Indigenous Knowledge , Research Subject Categories::NATURAL SCIENCES
Nodza, G.I, Onuminya, T.O, Ogbu, P.E., Agboola, O.O., and Ogundipe, O.T. (2020). Ethnobotanical survey of medicinal plants used in treating snakebites in Benue, Nigeria. Annals of West University of Timişoara, ser. Biology, 23(2): 147-158