|Botanical Nomenclature||Atropus belladona|
|Common Name||Deadly Nightshade|
|Distinguishing Features of the Plant||Atropus belladona is a biennial plant growing from 0,5 up to 1,8m, with broad, ovate, soft, petiolate leaves, bell-shaped, red-black flowers and ash fruits in the size of walnut. The blossoming and the harvesting take place from May to August.|
|Region Found||Ioannina (Pindos, Zagori)|
|Part of the Plant with Active Substances||Leaves, root|
|Active Substances||(-) - Hyoscyamine (75%), atropine, scopolamine (alkaloids), cellulose, chlorophyll, fat|
|Pharmacological Effects - Therapeutic Applications||The whole plant has analgesic, sedative and anticonvulsant properties. It is reccomended for the treatment of skeletal muscles' spasms (it has been used in Parkinson's disease patients) and the renal colic. The herbal tea suppresses the mucosal secretions, an effect attributed to the plant's anticholinergic activity. It is also administered as mydriatic in ophthalmology and as an antidote after consuption of substances that cause a severe cholinergic syndrome. Finally, it is taken orally against the involuntary nocturnal enuresis, polyurea, ??spermatorroia, stomach and liver pain, constipation, nausea, dizziness, asthma and pertussis.|
|Method of Administration||The plant is administered in the form of herbal extract (from dried leaves, 1-3 drops a day), tincture (1: 5 parts of dried herb in 70% ethyl alcohol, 5 to 15 drops a day), ointment, powder, capsules and suppositories. The plant is also usefull as a natural source of atropine, in the form of tablets.
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||Dry mouth, dilation of the pupil (mydriasis), photosensitivity, hallucinations and generalized anticholinergic syndrome may be occurred. It should be noted that the whole plant is highly toxic.|
|References||1) Bιβλίο: Τα φαρμακευτικά βότανα και οι θεραπευτικές τους ιδιότητες, Λάμπρου Π. Σπύρου, Αγροτικός εκδοτικός οίκος, Αθήνα 1981, A' τόμος, σελίδες: 127-128 2) Βιβλίο: Οδηγός των φαρμακευτικών φυτών, Paul Schauenberg, Ferdinand Paris, Εκδότης Μ. Γκιούρδας, Αθήνα 1981, σελίδες 18, 3)http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/n/nighde05.html 4)http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/531.html 5)http://www.merciangathering.com/belladonna.htm 6) http://esciencecentral.org/journals/effects-of-atropa-belladonna-as-an-anti-cholinergic-2329-6836.1000104.pdf|