Traditional medicines and alternative practice in the management of prostate diseases in southern Ghana
Objective: This study was aimed at identifying Ghanaian traditional medicines used for the management of prostate diseases and their constituents. Reviews of studies conducted on them are also presented.
Methodology: This was a prospective study. Traditional Medicine samples from consecutive patients with either lower urinary symptoms (LUTS) presenting at the Urology Unit of the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital (KBTH) in Accra from January 2015 to June 2016 and had a prior treatment with traditional medicines, had the samples retrieved. Additionally, all the 58 licensed pharmaceutical shops in Okaishie, a whole sale and retail depot for medicines in the
main business district of Accra, were visited and traditional medicines for the management of prostate diseases acquired. The products constituent as labeled were documented and entered once on a proforma. This study was part of a study on the management of benign prostate hyperplasia at the KBTH approved by the Medical Directorate. The findings were analyzed and presented using descriptive statistics and presented as a table.
Results: Eleven products were identified with the main indigenous medicinal plant identified being the root extract of Croton membranaceus. This was the constituent in four products (Uro 500®, UR-Quick mixture®, Prostacure® and prostat®60). Although studies on the basic pharmacology and animal studies have confirmed its effect on the prostate, only one clinical study was identified.
Conclusion: Croton membranaceus was the indigenous traditional medicine identified for relieving LUTS due to prostate disease. There is the need for empirical evidence on its efficacy in treating Prostate cancer.
Funding: Not declared
Keywords: Benign prostate hyperplasia, Prostate cancer, traditional medicine, Croton membranaceus