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African Health Sciences

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Traditional herbal remedies used in the management of sexual impotence and erectile dysfunction in western Uganda

Maud Kamatenesi-Mugisha, Hannington Oryem-Origa

Abstract


Background: The utilisation of ethnobotanical indigenous knowledge is vital in male sexual reproductive health care delivery in western Uganda. Reproductive health care is the second most prevalent health care problem in Africa. However, this concept of reproductive health care has been focusing mainly on women disregarding men. Thus, some diseases such as sexual impotence and erectile dysfunction that deserve mention are regarded as petty though important in economic productivity, family stability and sexually transmitted diseases control including HIV/AIDS.

Objective: This study was carried out mainly to document medicinal plants used in the treatment of sexual impotence and erectile dysfunction disorders in western Uganda.

Methods: The medical ethnobotanical indigenous knowledge were collected by visiting traditional healers and documenting the medicinal plants used and other socio-cultural aspects allied with sexual impotence and erectile dysfunction. The methods used to collect the relevant information regarding the medicinal plants used included informal and formal discussions, field visits and focused semi-structured interviews.

Results: Thirty-three medicinal plants used in the management of sexual impotence and erectile dysfunction were documented and Citropsis articulata and Cola acuminata were among the highly utilized medicinal plants.

Conclusion: From the researchers' point of view, the usage of herbal remedies in managing male sexual disorders is useful because of long cultural history of utilisation and the current renewed interest in natural products to sustain health globally. As a way recognising the values and roles of traditional medical knowledge in health care provision, further research into the efficacy and safety of herbal remedies in male sexual disorders is precious in Uganda and beyond. More so, the establishment of rapport between relevant government department in Ministry of Health, modern health workers through collaborative and networking ventures with traditional healers under close supervision and monitoring of herbal treatments is noble.
Key words: Medicinal Plants, Erectile Dysfunction, Sexual Impotence, Ethnobotanical Indigenous Knowledge, Western Uganda
African Journal of Health Sciences Vol.5(1) 2005: 40-49



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