Akhuparni: Ipomoea reniformis Remedies: Fever, Cold, Dandruff

By Dr MS Krishnamurthy MD (Ayu) PhD.
The plant Ipomea Reniformis Chois is known as Akhuparni or Mushakaparni in  Ayurveda. It is the most used herb by the folk healers of Kalanjimale forest in the treatment of intestinal worms and in pain abdomen conditions. The plant belongs to convolvulaceae family. Merremia emarginata is another botanical name to the same plant. 

As the leaves (parni=leaf) resemble the ears of the rats (akhu=rat) the name Akhuparni is given to this plant.
The whole plant is used in therapeutics. The leaves are used especially to treat the paediatric health issues.
Read related: Akhuparni: Ipomea reniformis: Uses, Remedies, Research, Side Effects

Classics of Ayurveda denote its use in worm infestation, abdominal pain, dysuria and skin diseases.
Caffeic, P-coumaric, Ferulic and Sinapic acid esters are the important constituents of its leaves.
Few of the important simple remedies of Akhuparni are presented here below-

1. For fever, cough, cold and sore throat:
Fresh juice of the whole plant is obtained (10-15 ml) and mixed with 1 gram of black pepper powder and a teaspoon of honey. 1 – 2 teaspoon of this is administered 3-4 times in a day. This pacifies fever, cough, cold and sore throat.

2. Fine paste of the plant in intestinal worms:
Fine paste of the herb is obtained. 1 teaspoon of it is administered along with a teaspoon of jaggery early in the morning, on empty stomach. This is useful in intestinal worms.

3. Decoction of the plant in itching skin diseases:
A fist full of the herb is taken and decoction is made. This is administered in various skin diseases, especially itching associated complaints will subside soon.

General method of decoction preparation is –
1 tablespoon (10 grams) fo coarse powder of the herb is added with 2 cups of water. Boiled in open air till the total content is reduced to 1 cup. This is filtered and used.

4. Leaf oil in dandruff:
The leaves are made into paste and cooked with coconut oil. This is applied to the scalp. It helps to pacify itching of the scalp and dandruff.

5. Plant juice and Bhringaraja juice as nasal drops for chronic rhinitis:
Both Bhringaraja and Mushakaparni are taken and fresh juice is obtained. 2-3 drops of this is instilled to both the nostrils. This pacifies headache, chronic cold, sinusitis etc.

6. Decoction of the plant for asthama:
20 ml of decoction of the plant is administered during evening hours along with a pinch each of turmeric powder and pepper powder.
This is useful in asthma and related disorders of chest congestion.

A weed becomes medicine if used appropriately. So knowledge of the plants and trees help us to safeguard the extinguishing and endangered species. Or else even the simple herbs may also to be cultivated or we may have to import the herbs and once after import we may to analyse its chemical properties and its safety while using them in medicine.
Click to consult Dr MS Krishnamurthy MD(Ayu), PhD


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