Survey of Medicinal Plants Used in the Management of Sickle Cell Disease by Traditional Medical Practitioners of Gbonyin Local Government Area of Ekiti State, Nigeria
Ethnobotanical survey was conducted on plants used traditionally for the management of sickle cell disease (SCD) in Gbonyin Local Government Area (LGA) of Ekiti State, South Western Nigeria. The study was conducted to document some of the medicinal plants used in the management of SCD with the aim of identifying possible drug leads from the phytomedicine of the area. A semi-structured questionnaire was used to obtain information on the use of herbal remedies for the management of SCD. A total of 32 respondents were interviewed in this study. twenty of them were males while twelve were females with the age range of 25 to 70 years. A total of 44 plant species belonging to 44 genera and 30 families were identified to be useful for the management of SCD. The most prominent among these plant families (genera) are Anacardiaceae (Anacardium occidentalis, Mangifera indica, Spondias mombin), Euphorbiaceae (Croton lobatus, Jatropha gossypifolia, Plukeneta conophora) and Fabaceae (Cajanus cajan, Pterocarpus osun, Cassia siamea) with three species each. Eighty percent (80%) of the 32 respondents interviewed said that their clients did not report any side effect and that the herbs were either collected from the forest (where available) or purchased from the herb markets. In all, the commonest plant species among the recipes given by the respondents according to their Use Mention Index (UMI) include: Elaeis guineense Jacq., Arecaceae (0.124); Khaya grandifoliola C.DC., Meliaceae (0.094); Carica papaya L., Caricaceae(0.094); Hymenocardia acida Tul., Phyllanthaceae (0.094); Mangifera indica L., Anacardiaceae (0.094); Parquetina nigrescens (Afzel.) Bullock, Asclepiadaceae (0.094) and Xylopia aethiopica (Dunal) A. Rich., Annonaceae (0.094).The main method of preparation is by decoction and in most cases, the preparation is taken orally twice to thrice daily. All the plants identified in this work have been used by most of the herbalists and adjudged to be efficacious in SCD management. The study concluded that the medicinal folklore of the Ekiti State LGA covered by this survey indicated high potential for drug discovery for the management of sickle cell disease.
Keywords: Ethnobotany, Sickle Cell Disease, Traditional Medicine, Gbonyin LGA, Medicinal Plants