|Botanical Nomenclature||Hypericum perforatum|
|Common Name||Common Saint John's Wort, Perforate St John's-Wort|
|Distinguishing Features of the Plant||Hypericum perforatum is a perennial, herbaceous plant growing from 30 to 60cm, with gold-yellow flowers. The small, oval or linear leaves have characteristic, transparent spots. The flowering lasts from June to September and the harvesting takes place from July to August|
|Region Found||Ioannina (Zagori, Vikos-Aoos, Tzoumerka, Pramanta, Konitsa), Arta (Tzoumerka)|
|Part of the Plant with Active Substances||The whole plant|
|Active Substances||Essential oil, hyperoside (flavonic polyphenol derivative), hypericin (glycoside), pseudohypericin, hyperforin, proanthocyanidin, amentoflavone, tannins, xanthones, umbelliferone, scopoletin, quercetin-3-O-rhamnoside (quercetrin)|
|Pharmacological Effects - Therapeutic Applications||In ancient times the whole plant was used as healing of the sword wounds and that is why in greek tha plant is traditionally called ''spathochorto'', which means ''the plant of swords''. Galen and Dioscorides claimed that the plant has also diuretic, emmenagogue and hemostatic properties. In USA, St John's-wort is probably the most popular medicinal plant, which is used against mild and moderate depression, instead of 'Prozac' (Fluoxetine). In Europe, it is commercially available as 'Ladose'. Also, the plant has anticonvulsant and hypnotic actions, improving the quality of sleep in patients suffering from insomnia. In 1994 in Germany, were prescribed prescriptions for 20 million patients. In Montana of USA are cultivated nowadays 500,000 acres of plant. The whole plant is used as anti-inflammatory, astringent, healing, analgesic, antidiarrheal and diuretic. Finally, plant's infusion is used to treat dyspepsia, liver diseases, runny nose, neuralgia, anxiety and tension.|
|Method of Administration||The plant is administered as healing in the form of an oil extract (10 parts of the herb -especially the shoots and the flowers- are added to olive oil and are exposed to sunlight. After 15 days the olive oil becomes reddich. It is filtered and it can be kept for a long time in order to be applied on wounds, burns etc.). Also it is used as antidepressant and stimulant in the form of infusion (15-20g of dried herb in 1lt of boiling water for 5-15min) and tincture (5-10 drops every night, children's dose and 15 to 20 drops, for 20 days, adult's dose) .
Warning: The use of herb preparations is not recommended without seeking advice from your physician or pharmacist. The substances they contain may interact with the subscribed drugs that the patient already takes, thus eliminating their therapeutic efficacy or inducing toxicity. They may also burden further weakened vital functions of the body thus exposing the patient to increased morbidity and life threatened conditions.
|Toxicity- Adverse Effects||Large daily doses (>1800mg) may cause photosensitivity and skin irritation. Plant's consumption can also cause allergic reactions, nausea, diarrhea, dizziness and anxiety. Attention is required when the plant is administered concomitantly with other antidepressant drugs. Attention is also required, as the active ingredients of the plant (hypericin and hyperforin), interact with other drugs and accelerate their inactivation (potent inducers of hepatic drug metabolizing enzymes).|
|References||1) Bιβλίο: Τα φαρμακευτικά βότανα και οι θεραπευτικές τους ιδιότητες, Λάμπρου Π. Σπύρου, Αγροτικός εκδοτικός οίκος, Αθήνα 1981, Β' τόμος, σελίδες: 497-480 2)Βιβλίο: Οδηγός των φαρμακευτικών φυτών, Paul Schauenberg, Ferdinand Paris, Εκδότης Μ. Γκιούρδας, Αθήνα 1981, σελίδες 146 3)http://www.academicjournals.org/ajb/PDF/pdf2011/15Aug/Berk%20et%20al.pdf 4)Screening of the antioxidant, antimicrobial and DNA damage protection potentials of the aqueous extract of Asplenium ceterach DC. Seyda Berk, Bektas Tepe, Serdal Arslan, Cengiz Sarikurkcu, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Faculty of Scie 4)http://www.healthy.net/scr/article.aspx?Id=915 5)http://www.altnature.com/gallery/stjohnswortherbaluse.htm 6)http://www.dolo.gr/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=104&Itemid=51|