Rohitaka Tecomella undulata: Uses, Remedies, Side Effects, Research

Rohitaka- Tecomella undulata is an Ayurvedic herb, used for the treatment of diabetes, jaundice, piles, intestinal worms, leucorrhea and indigestion. 

Botanical name: 
Tecoma undulata G. Don
Tecomella undulata G. Don
Family- Bignoniaceae

Names in different languages:
Hindi name – Rugtrora/ Rudanti
English name – Desert teak
Gujarati name -Rohido
Kannada name – Mullumuntala
Marathi name -Rohido
Malayalam name – Cemmaram
Punjabi name – Laberra
Tamil name -Malampuluvan

Sanskrit Synonyms of Rohitak:
Dadima pushpa, Dadimaschada- Flowers resemble to that of pomegranate flower
Lohita, Rohita, Raktapushpa- Flowers are red like blood
Kushalmali, Kuta shalmali- Inferior variety of shalmali plant
Plihagna- Help to treat disease of the spleen
Raktaghna – useful in blood vitiation disorders
Sadapushpa, Rochana, Sada prasoona, Parijataka,

Rohitaka is a medium sized tree growing in the Himalayan belt and plains of North and West India to a height of 6-10 m. The leaves of the tree resemble to that of pomegranate leaves. The flowers are yellow or bright orange in color are seen in the month of April and May. The tree produces quality timber.

Medicinal Properties of Tecomella undulata:
Rasa (Taste) – Katu (Pungent), Tikta (Bitter), Kashaya (Astringent)
Guna (Qualities) – Laghu (Light for digestion), Ruksha (Dry in nature)
Vipaka – Katu (Undergoes Pungent taste after digestion)
Veerya (Potency) – Sheeta (Cold)
Karma (Actions) – Kaphavpitta shamaka (reduces vitiated kapha and pitta dosha)
Prabhava (Special action) – Pleehagna (Acts against the diseases of the spleen)

Part used- Bark
Powder- 1 to 3 g
Decoction- 50 to 100 ml

Chemical constituents of Tecomella undulata:
The bark of the tree contains Tecomin, Tecomelloside, Undulatoside A&B, Tecoside, C27 and C29, B-Sitosterol. The Heart wood contains, Lapachol, Octacosanylacetylferulate, Tectol, Tectoquinone and Undulatin. The root has Tecol and the Leaves has Tacosanol in them.

Use of Rohitaka:

  • To treat skin diseases, bath is taken with decoction prepared from the bark of Rohitaka.
  • To treat leucorria, the paste prepared from the bark and root of Tecoma undulata is taken with honey in a dose of 3-5 g.
  • The decoction prepared from the bark of the tree is taken in a dose of 40- 50 ml to treat diseases related to spleen like splenomegaly.
  • The decoction of the heartwood of the tree is useful to control diabetes and jaundice.
  • The powder of the bark of Rohitaka is given in a dose of 3 to 4 g to treat indigestion, lack of appetite and intestinal worms.
  • Intake of cow urine or water impregnated with powder of rohitaka and haritaki alleviates all types of piles and splenomegaly.

Qualities and benefits as per traditional Ayurveda:
Sara – induces mobility, causes diarrhea, purgation, relieves constipation

Indicated in –
Pleeha – Disease of the spleen, Splenomegaly
Udara – ascites, enlargement of the abdomen
Yakrut roga – liver disorders
Gulma – Tumors of the abdomen
Mamsa meda –diseases of muscle and fat tissues.
Bhuta – psychiatric disorders, anti microbial
Anaha – bloating, fullness
Vibandha – constipation
Asra – blood disorders such as abscess, skin disorders, bleeding disorders such as menorrhagia, nasal bleeding etc.
Shula – abdominal colic
Ruja – pain
Krimi – worm infestation
Vrana – Ulcers, wounds
Netraroga – eye disorders

Adverse effects of desert teak:
No adverse effect is known or reported after the normal use of Rohitka.

Ayurvedic medicines containing Rohitka:
Rohitaka lauha: Rohitaka Lauha is an Ayurvedic medicine in tablet or powder form. It is mainly used in the treatment of splenomegaly, liver diseases, jaundice, hepatitis, cough, asthma, fever.

Rohitaka arishta: Rohitakarishta is an Ayurvedic medicine, used in the treatment of liver and spleen related disorders, digestive problem like sprue etc.

Ashoka compound: It is a proprietary Ayurvedic medicine. It ensures synergy of ingredients for relief from common gynecological problems like DUB.It regulates hypothalamo-pituitary-ovarian axis. It reduces frequency and intensity of uterine contractions and thus reduces incidence of habitual abortion.

Yakrut shula vinashini vatika: Yakrut Shula Vinashini Vatika is a tablet, used in Ayurvedic treatment of liver and spleen related diseases.

Kalmeghasav: Kalmeghasav is an effective liquid Ayurvedic medicine used for treating chronic fever, anemia, acne, liver, spleen disorder, skin diseases. It also acts as mild laxative.

Amlycure DS capsule: Amlycure DS Capsule is a proprietary Ayurvedic medicine useful in the management of hepatic diseases.

Akliv tablet and syrup: It is a proprietary ayurvedic medicine useful to treat liver disorders and improve the digestive capacity.

Research articles related to Tecoma undulata:
Anti-oxidant activity: The study aims to investigate the methanolic extract of different plant parts (leaves, stems, bark and roots) of Tecomella undulata (family Bignoniaceae),for their antioxidant activity and were used for quantitative estimation of the total phenolics as Gallic Acid Equivalent (GAE) per gram dry weight and total flavonoid as Quericitin Equivalent (QE) ) per gram dry weight. Maximum total phenolic content was recorded in stems (13.75±0.125 mgGAE/gdw) While maximum total flavonoid content was found in leaves (71.875±18.393 mQE/gdw) and Highest radical scavenging activity is observed in stems with IC 50 value 92.29±7.693.

In -vitro hyperglycemic activity: This study was undergone to evaluate the in-vivo anti-hyperglycemic and antioxidant potential of ethanolic extract of leaves of Tecomella undulata Seem. on streptozotocin-nicotinamide induced type 2 diabetic rats. The blood glucose level, cholesterol, glycogen contents, glycosylated hemoglobin, and antioxidant parameters (Malondialdehyde and Glutathione level) were estimated from the blood plasma by using standard kits to demonstrate the hypoglycemic and antioxidant effect in treated animals. The data showed that the extract have significant influence on the above biochemical parameters.

Hepato- protective action: The aim of the present study was to validate the hepato-protective activity of bark of Tecomella undulata (Sm.) Seem., Biognoniaceae, against paracetamol (PCM) induced hepatic damage. Chloroform soluble fraction (Fraction-I), acetone soluble fraction (Fraction-II), methanol soluble fraction (Fraction-III) and methanol insoluble fraction (Fraction-IV) of ethanolic extract of bark of T. undulata were evaluated for hepato-protective activity against paracetamol induced hepatic damage using biochemical, morphological, functional and histo-pathological studies. The methanol soluble fraction (Fraction-III) was most potent among the four fractions studied in detail.

Classical categorization:
Bhava prakasha- Vatadi varga
Dhanvantari Nighantu- Amradi varga
Kaiyyadeva Nighantu- Oushadhi varga
Raja Nighantu- Shalmalyadi varga

Scientific classification:
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Lamiales
Family: Bignoniaceae
Genus: Tecomella
Species: T. undulata

Author: Dr.B.K.Prashanth M.D (Ayu), Ph.D
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