Saturday, 16 June 2012


A child from Dunmanway in 1938 (National Folklore Schools Collection) mentions the use of cobwebs to stop bleeding. I have also heard anecdotal reports from patients that this has been used until very recently, to staunch bleeding when dehorning cattle, as well as for cuts and scrapes. 
I have used it in the case of a deep gash in the top of the head measuring 3cm  and bleeding profusely. One of the problems in applying cobwebs is that they lose their structure as soon as they are removed from their abode. this makes it very difficult to spread over the entire area that needs to be covered. I have found that two forceps to hold the cobeweb is better then fingers! In this instance the bleeding stopped within 55 seconds and within a day the wound had healed.
Charles Stuart Parnell crushed his hand in machinery at his Arklow quarries and an old servant dressed the injured fingers with cobwebs from the cellar walls (O’Shea, 1914). 

Saturday, 9 June 2012

Herbal Medicine for the prevention & Treatment of Alzheimer's disease


Herbal medicines for the prevention and treatment of Alzheimer's disease.
Curr Pharm Des. 2012;18(1):57-75
Authors: Kim HG, Oh MS
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a chronic neurodegenerative disorder and is the most common cause of progressive dementia in aging. Research on AD therapy has been partly successful in terms of developing symptomatic treatments, but there have been a number of failures with regard to developing disease-modifying therapies. The pathogenesis of AD remains unclear and the present one-drug, one-target paradigm for anti-AD treatment appears to be clinically unsuccessful. In many countries, traditional herbal medicines are used to prevent or treat neurodegenerative disorders, and some have been developed as nutraceuticals or functional foods. This review briefly introduces progress in the development of anti-AD treatments and then focuses on recent advances in the research, characteristics, and development of herbal medicines. Because AD arises via multiple pathological or neurotoxic pathways, herbal medicines have the potential to be developed into optimum pharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals for AD because of their multi-function, multi-target characteristics.

PMID: 22316321 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Hildegard of Bingen



Herbalist, writer, dramatist, poet and composer, this remarkable 12th Century abbess and mystic is regarded as one of the most important women of the German Middle Ages, who at a time of political schisms and religious foment made her name as theologian, monastic trouble-shooter, consultant exorcist and visiting preacher.

A “first” in many fields, Hildegard produced major works of theology and visionary writings. When few women were accorded respect, she was consulted by and advised bishops, popes and kings. She used the curative powers of natural objects for healing, wrote major theological works, music still reverenced 1000 years later and treatises about natural history and medicinal uses of plants, animals, trees and stones.

Saturday, 2 June 2012

Cytotoxic effect of some medicinal plants from Asteraceae family on J-45.01 leukemic cell line--pilot study.


Cytotoxic effect of some medicinal plants from Asteraceae family on J-45.01 leukemic cell line--pilot study.
Acta Pol Pharm. 2012 Mar-Apr;69(2):263-8
Authors: Wegiera M, Smolarz HD, Jedruch M, Korczak M, KoproĊ„ K
In this study the in vitro cytotoxic properties of ethanol extracts from the herbs, inflorescents and roots of selected Asteraceae species: Arctium lappa, Artemisia absinthium, Calendula officinalis, Centaurea cyanus, Tanacetum vulgare and Tragopogon pratensis on J-45.01 human acute T leukemia cell line was examined. All tested samples possess antileukemic properties and induce cells death via apoptosis. The correlation between antileukemic activity and total polyphenol content was determined.

PMID: 22568040 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE