Schwabe News Volume 5 | Issue 3-6 | March – June 2014
Hibiscus abelmoschus or Musk mallow is a plant belonging to the Malvaceae family. It is a shrub growing from 1m to 1.25m in height, and is found in Egypt, the East Indies, India and Mexico, where it is known under the name of musk-seed (in Spanish, Abelmosco = musk-grass). The branches are downy with long leaf-stalks, the flowers are yellow and the fruits appear as capsules containing numerous kidney-bean shaped seeds, 3-4mm in length and 2mm wide, with many coffee-coloured striae, which are separated by greyish furrows. They emit a pleasant odour like that of musk, and their taste is aromatic. The seeds contain malvalic acid, sterculic acid and vernolic acid and other constituents.
A homoeopathic medicine is made from the seeds in 65% alcohol. It is cultivated in hotter parts of India and is commonly found in Bengal. It was proved in 1961 by Dr. Luis G. de Legarreta of Mexico.1
In India the seeds are used as stimulant tonic, carminative, diuretic and antispasmodic. As per reports the tincture is useful in nervous debility and other nervous disorders.2
It is an old American Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeia 1890 drug. The revival of interest has taken place at it was learnt that it could be of use in Additions disease lymphangitis of reticulo endothelial system and glucoma.
It has a new area of application. The symptomatology covers sleepiness, dysphagia, oedema of hands and legs; face pale, yellow, itching, fear of animals (insects, flies, spiders, scorpions, and snakes); heavy feeling in the head, as if it were being clamped in a vice (crotalus cascavella); trembling or paralysis of the lips and jaw; rapid beating of the heart with feeling of anguish; dyspnoea, sharp pain in the chest; Scotoma: spots before the eyes, which impede the vision; tearing pain in the eye as if produced by a nail; diminution in hearing, descending stairs; trembling; paresis or even paralysis of limbs, with oedema; feeling of thoracic constriction; Addison’s disease; lymphangitis of the reticulo-endothelial system; migraine, polyneuritis, sialodochitis (presence of a fibrino-purulent lump which can provoke acute ranula), acute glaucoma or chronic glaucoma and detachment of the retina.3 Vithoulkas feels that this is a remedy with a lot of fears that you will tend to confuse with Phosphorus, Crotalus, Cascavella or Calcarea carbonica.4 The prover recommends 15 drops of 3x, which can be made from 1x (Mother Tinctures). Unpublished clinical reports suggest the use of the tincture in drop doses.
- P. N. Varma, Indu Vaid, Encyclopaedia of Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeia, Updated edition 2007, B. Jain Publishers, New Delhi.
- K. M. Nadkarni, Indian Materia Medica, Edited by A. K. Nandkarni, Volume 1, Bombay Popular Prakashan, Mumbai – 34.
- O. A. Julian, Materia Medica of New Homoeopathic Remedies, B. Jain Publishers Pvt. Ltd., New Delhi.
- G. Vithoulkas, Materia Medica Viva, RadarOpus 1.33 (Homoeopathic Software), Archibel S.A. Rue Fontaine St. Pierre 1E, Zoning Industriel de la Fagne, 5330 Assesse, Belgium.