An Ethno-Botanical Survey of Plants Used in Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatment: A Case Study of Gusau in Nigeria

Keywords: Ethnobotanical survey, Gusau, Medicinal plants, Nigeria, Rheumatoid arthritis


Background and Aim: Rheumatoid arthritis (RA), an autoimmune disease, is known as the most prevalent type of polyarticular inflammatory arthritis with a variety of features, including continual synovial inflammation, bony erosions, and progressive destruction with varying physical disability and degrees of pains. The aim of this study is to provide the knowledge about plants used in rheumatoid arthritis treatment by people residing in Gusau, Zamfara State, Nigeria. Materials and Methods: The survey was carried out using an electronic questionnaire to obtain information about plants used in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. The plants that were used, part of the plant(s), mode of preparation, and transferability of knowledge were documented. Results: About 12 plant species, i.e. Allium sativum Linn., Curcuma longa Linn., Xylopia aethiopica (Dunal) A. Rich., Zingiber officinale Roscoe., Telfairia occidentalis Hook.f., Moringa oleifera Lam., Eleusine indica (L.) Gaertn., Vernonia amygdalina Del., Momordica charantia Linn., Persea americana Mill., Vitellaria paradoxa C.F.Gaertn., and Nigella sativa Linn. were reported in a different frequency, with 16.83% of the respondents reporting herbal mixtures without a knowledge source of the plants. The plant parts used in rheumatoid arthritis treatment were roots, leaves, bulbs, fruits, and stems prepared in different forms like grinding, decoction, infusion, herbal mixture, and blending. Conclusion: There is a great level of transfer of these medicinal plants' knowledge to friends and family members. This ethnobotanical survey has shown these plants' local uses in treating rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in Gusau, Zamfara State, Nigeria.


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