Heavy metals in traditional Indian remedies

  title={Heavy metals in traditional Indian remedies},
  author={E. Ernst},
  journal={European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology},
  • E. Ernst
  • Published 1 February 2002
  • Engineering
  • European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology
Abstract. The growing popularity of traditional Indian remedies necessitates a critical evaluation of risks associated with their use. This systematic review aims at summarising all available data relating to the heavy metal content in such remedies. Computerised literature searches were carried out to identify all articles with original data on this subject. Fifteen case reports and six case series were found. Their collective results suggest that heavy metals, particularly lead, have been a… 

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This work systematically searched and reviewed the research articles regarding analytical methods for heavy metals in herbal medicine from various databases, including Medline/PubMed, ScienceDirect, SciFinder, Google Scholar, EBSCO, Gale InfoTrac, Ingenta, Ovid, ProQuest and ISI Web of Knowledge to provide a comprehensive review of the current state of the art in analytical methods used to detect heavy metals.

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It was showed that commercially available herbal medicines lack toxic levels of heavy metals and aflatoxins, and further research is required on a larger sample size to ascertain for sure that these remedies are safe for use.

Accumulation of heavy metals in selected medicinal plants.

It is emphasized that medicinal plants are often subjected to heavy metal contamination and that the levels at which these heavy metals sometimes occur exceeds permissible levels for some species, therefore, collecting medicinal plants from areas that are, or may be, contaminated should be discouraged and banned if possible.

Investigation of Heavy Metals with some Methods on Plants

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  • E. Ernst
  • Medicine
    Trends in pharmacological sciences
  • 2002

Determination of heavy metals (Cd, Pb, Cu) in some herbal drops by Polarography

The amount of lead, cadmium, and copper in edible herbal dribbles present in Iranian drug market have been measured with the aid of a polarography technique, Differential Pulse Stripping Voltammetry (DPSV).



Heavy metals in some Asian medicines and cosmetics.

Lead poisoning from Asian traditional remedies in the West Midlands - report of a series of five cases

The present morbidity from traditional remedies may be far greater than is realised, and will continue until such time as the supply of harmful preparations can be effec tively limited.

Lead poisoning associated with the use of Ayurvedic metal-mineral tonics.

Ayurvedic metal-mineral tonics are again identified as a potential source of high lead and the import of such tonics should be strictly controlled.

Lead poisoning from the use of Indian folk medicines.

The following case involves a non-Asian US resident who received treatment through "alternative medical" channels and was hospitalized with a 1-month history of increasing abdominal pain, obstipation, and weight loss.

Simultaneous exposure to lead, arsenic and mercury from Indian ethnic remedies.

We report the case of an Asian woman who was exposed to toxic levels of lead, arsenic and mercury through the use of Indian ethnic remedies, and who suffered symptomatic lead poisoning. We know of no

Arsenic and mercury intoxication due to Indian ethnic remedies.

It is difficult to evaluate the effectiveness of the link programme, but it has helped to broaden the perspective of both the British and the Brazilian particiants and give community based approaches to health care credibility within the country.

Lead poisoning from an Asian Indian folk remedy.

  • A. H. PontifexA. K. Garg
  • Medicine
    CMAJ : Canadian Medical Association journal = journal de l'Association medicale canadienne
  • 1985
In spite of the awareness of the danger, sporadic cases of lead poisoning still occur, most as a result of the ingestion of lead salts, and children absorb a higher proportion of ingested lead than do adults.

Sources of lead poisoning.

One such remedy is Azarcon, a bright orange powder used by Mexican-Hispanic parents to treat chronic indigestion or "empacho" in their children, which was found to contain 86% to 93.5% lead tetroxide.

Indian herbal remedies for diabetes as a cause of lead poisoning.

The case of an Indian patient with hepatitis who was found to have lead poisoning where the source was traced to ethnic remedies he had been taking for diabetes.

Surreptitious lead exposure from an Asian Indian medication.

  • L. Saryan
  • Medicine
    Journal of analytical toxicology
  • 1991
The discussion reviews the problem of leaded medications and emphasizes the need to carefully pursue suspected instances of outside exposure in lead workers as well as in the general public.