|Botanical Nomenclature||Colchicum autumnale|
|Common Name||Autumn Crocus, Meadow Saffron, Naked Lady|
|Distinguishing Features of the Plant||Colchicum autumnale is a biennial bulbous plant growing up to 0,2m, with large, oval leaves, large, pink flowers and oval fruits. The flowering and the harvesting take place in autumn and the fruiting lasts from May to June.|
|Region Found||Ioannina (Pindos, Gramos, Metsovo)|
|Part of the Plant with Active Substances||The whole plant|
|Active Substances||Colchicine (alkaloid), fats, starch, inulin, gallic acid.|
|Pharmacological Effects - Therapeutic Applications||The whole plant has analgesic, antirheumatic, laxative and emetic properties. It is used for the collection of colchicine, a substance with strong antimitotic and anti-inflammatory action. It is also administered for the treatment of gout, pericarditis, the familial Mediterranean fever and Beacet's disease. The herbal extract has not been used for its antitumor properties yet, due to its strong toxicity (with the exception of the treatment of leukemia).|
|Method of Administration||The plant is administered in the form of tablets, with other painkillers and antirheumatic drugs in the combined treatment of gouty arthritis. It is also recommended as analgesic, laxative and emetic in the form of herbal tea (a spoon of dried seeds in a cup of boiled water, 1-10 drops daily) and tincture (1: 5 parts of dried plant in ethyl alcohol 70%, 5-15 drops daily). Finally, an ointment (0,01g of dried herb mixed with 20-30g of lanolin) is used against skin cancer and ulcers.
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||The whole plant is toxic, with symptoms similar to those of arsenic poisoning. Immediate gastric lavage, administration of activated charcoal and cardiotonic drugs are required for the treatment of poisoning. The intense burning sensation in the mouth and throat is a typical intoxication. Other symptoms, which could be observed include fever, abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, multi-organ failure (kidney, heart, etc.), leukopenia, hypovolaemic shock, anemia, muscle weakness and respiratory failure.|
|References||1) Bιβλίο: Τα φαρμακευτικά βότανα και οι θεραπευτικές τους ιδιότητες, Λάμπρου Π. Σπύρου, Αγροτικός εκδοτικός οίκος, Αθήνα 1981, A' τόμος, σελίδες: 185-187 2) Βιβλίο: Οδηγός των φαρμακευτικών φυτών, Paul Schauenberg, Ferdinand Paris, Εκδότης Μ. Γκιούρδας, Αθήνα 1981, σελίδες 24-25, 3) http://www.webhomeopath.com/homeopathy/homeopathic-remedies/homeopathy-remedy-Colchicum_autumnale.html 4)http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-282-autumn%20crocus.aspx?activeingredientid=282&activeingredientname=autumn%20crocus 5)http://www.botanical-online.com/alcaloidescolchicoangles.htm 6)http://botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/s/safmea04.html 7)http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Colchicum+autumnale|