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2006, Vol 1 No 1, Article 2


A Survey of Plants Used for Wound Healings in Animals

Sabah Handoo
Department of Animal Husbandry, Kashmir


A wound can be defined as a break in the continuity of the soft tissues like skin, mucous membranes, tissue surfaces etc. caused by physical, chemical or biological insult. Wound can also be called as a traumatic lesion.
Broadly, wounds are classified into two categories:
1) External wounds
2) Internal wounds
An external wound is one with a varying degree of damage to the tissue including skin e.g., incised wounds, lacerated wounds punctured wounds, penetrating wounds, perforating wounds gunshot wounds, abrasions, avulsions or evulsions.
An internal wound damages the underlying tissue to varying degree leaving the skin intact e.g., contusions, bruises, and hematomas.
Two basic objectives are the guiding principles for wound healing:
A) The rapid and completed repair of the created defect and,
B) The Prevention of bacterial invasion during the period the natural barriers are defective.
Although these principles appear to be separate goals they are impossible to attain separately in the clinical care of wounds. For practical purposes, the maneuvers employed to promote rapid wound healing are so intimately related to prevention of bacterial invasion, in fact so dependent on it, that a major portion of energy directed toward the optimal wounds healing is expended in the direction of prevention of bacterial infection.


Proliferation of fibroblasts and capillary buds and the subsequent laying down of collagen to produce a scar is the usual consequence of most tissue damage. Connective tissue is a ubiquitous and efficient method but it necessitates a loss of specialized parenchyma function.
Connective tissue repair may be classified as:
A) Healing by first intention
B) Healing by second intention
C) Healing by third intention

Healing by first intension or primary union is the goal surgeon has in mind with each surgical incision. It represents the results of primary suture and healing of an aseptic, properly incise and closed wound.
The formation of granulation tissue or healing by second intension occurs in those wounds that are allowed to heal without closure. It is in this situation that the biological processes defending against bacterial invasion are vital for survival. The size of wound is reduced by contracture of the underlying tissue. The time required for such a wound to heal will vary with the area involved and the mobility of the underlying tissue. As granulation tissue matures inflammatory cells decrease in number, fibroblasts lay down collagen and the capillaries become much less prominent.

Healing by tertiary intention is represented by the application of skin graft or by intentionally brining together the granulating surface of an incised, previously unclosed wound after a period of several days. An example is the delayed primary closure and the delayed secondary closure.

In all forms of healing however, a series of various processes that involve re-epithlialization, scar formation and the completion of the inflammatory processes, the healing finally comes to an end with contact inhibition of the division process of the cells.

Since would healing is a vital body response, in ideally suited environment, the process may be hastened due to optimum biological repose of the body. In order to create similar situations applications of different medicaments are suggested.

The orient has a long history of using a number of plants for healing of wounds. The modus operandi though not clear in all the cases includes the antiseptic, astringent, immuno-modulatory and anti-inflammatory actions of these plant constituents.

The search for valuable pharmacological properties of plants has led to the emergence of several allopathic drugs. At present phyto-medicines and traditional remedies employed by various tribal, ethnic, nomadic and semi-nomadic societies in rural areas are being viewed with a great scientific interest. The knowledge gathered from such communities has played a significant role in the development of certain important remedies in India, China and other countries.

The development of anti-fatigue agent from Ticopus zeylanicus in Kerela (Pushpangadan et al 1995) and Vicoa indica (Rao et al 1960) used by some tribals in Bihar are two latest examples exhibiting renaissance of interest in the researchers of traditional plant based remedies. The WHO has also recommended to all member countries to actively promote native medicines and also to initiate steps to conserve and cultivate medicinal plants.

The patho-physiology and treatment strategies vary depending on the nature of would e.g. in contusions wherein subcutaneous tissues is injured, the local application of astringents and administration of anti-inflammatory and analgesic agents could be beneficial, whereas administration of analgesic, antipyretic and antibiotic agents along with local application of antibiotics is essential to achieve good results in case of contaminated/septic wounds. Similarly in other wounds different strategies are applied keeping the situation in hand in view, for example in maggoted wounds, in addition to the general therapy, an agent able to expel or kill the maggots has to be applied locally.


A study was undertaken to establish the commonly used plants for treatment of wounds. The source of the data collected were the livestock farmers (home remedies), the village herbsmen/milkmen/herb-doctors etc, and also a review of literature related to pharmacognosy and phytomedicine available for the area.

Table 1. Plants Used in Treatment of Fresh Cut Wounds

Name of Plant

Part(s) Used and mode of usage

Botanical Name

Local Name (Region)

Agrimonia pilosa

Belur (UPH)

Agrimony (E)

Pounded whole plant is applied locally

Anaphalis triplinervis

Ekle ghans (N)

A paste made from flowers is applied locally

Annona squamosa

Mondal (Santhal)

Jangali shareefa (UPH)

Custard apple (E)

Leaves are bandaged and leaf juice is given with lime to cattle

Azadirachta indica

Neem (N)

Leaf decoction is used locally as antiseptic to wash cuts and wounds

Betula alnoides

Bhujpatra (H)

Indian birch (E)

Bark paste is applied locally

Baschniackia himalaica

Ganelu (UPH)

Whole plant poultice is applied locally

Chenopodium album

Bathua (H)

Crushed leaves applied locally

Circium veratum

Kandaru (UPH)

Root paste is applied locally

Circum longa

Haldi (H)

Indian saffron (E)

Rhizome paste is prepared using Brassica species oil and applied locally

Eclipta prostrate

Bharanjraj (H)

Leaf juice is squeezed locally for quick healing

Eclipta alba

Bhangra (H)

Pounded leaves with oil of kusum is applied

Erythrma variegate

Badisa (APC)

Leaf juice is applied locally


Chuplya (UPH)

Latex of plant is applied locally

Jatropha gossypifolia

Lal-gab-jara (Lodhas)

Piece of root is tied around the neck

Lens culninaris

Musuro (N)

Fried seeds are mixed with curds and given locally until recovery in  cases of mechanical injuries to anus

Oroxylum indicum

Sonpatha (H)

Seeds fried in rape oil (Brassica napus) and made in to paste are applied locally on wounds and cracks

Picorrhixa scrophulariiflora

Kutki (N)

Root paste is applied locally as antiseptic for speedy healing

Prunus amygdalus

Badam (H)

Paste is made with equal amount of cow’s butter with half the amount of salt and applied locally

Solena heterophylla

Chengor (santhal)

Leaf juice is applied locally

Syzygium cumini

Jamun (H)

Stem bark or fruit is given orally

Tarrena asciatica

Kommichetu (APR)

Leaf infusion is given orally in plough injuries

Trachyspermun ammi

Jwano (N)

Ammi or Bishop’s weed (E)

Seed paste is applied locally

Tridox procumbens

Balapaku (APC)

Fine leaf paste with a pinch of lime is applied locally

Bergenia stracheyi

Gatlis (L)

Root paste applied locally

Codonopsis rotundifolia

Kaerempo (L)

Root poultice is used to stop cutaneous eruptions

Trapopogon dubis

Budege (K)

Latex is applied on heel wounds

Rumex orientalis

Bedahabul (K)

Root and leaves on boils

Indigofera heterantha

Keiche (K)

Flower infusion on wound

Euphorbia helioscopia

Gurschel (K)

Latex applied on skin eruptions

Datura stramonium

Datur (L/K)

Leaf poultice on eruptions

Bibersteinia emodi

Drakspore (L)

Plant used to treat wound, cuts, ulcers

Codonopsis ovale

Ludut (L)

Leaf poultice applied on wounds


Table 2. Plants Used in Treatment of Horn Injuries

Name of Plant

Part(s) Used and mode of usage

Botanical Name

Local Name (Region)

Boschniackia himalaica

Ganelu (UPH)

Whole plant poultice is applied locally

Carissa opaca

Karaunda (H)

Root paste applied locally


Table 3. Plants Used in Treatment of Septic Wounds

Name of Plant

Part(s) Used and mode of usage

Botanical Name

Local Name (Region)

Basella alba

Poi-ara (Santhal)

Dried stem burnt in a sealed earthen pot until a fine powder is obtained which is made as a balm with oil of Schleichera oleosa and applied locally

Cuscuta reflexa

Amarbel (H)

Whole plant extract is used locally

Eclipta alba

Bhangra (H)

Pounded root is used with oil of kusum

Lygodium flexuosum

Durga-japhi (Santhal)

Root powder is applied locally

Madhuca longifolia

Mahua (H)

Seed oil is applied locally

Trachspermum ammi

Jwano (N)

Seed paste is applied locally

Woodfordia fruticosa

Dhai (H)

Fire flame bush (E)

Decoction of leaves is applied locally



Table 4. Plants Used in Treatment of Bruises and Contusions

Name of Plant

Part(s) Used and mode of usage

Botanical Name

Local Name (Region)

Asparagus adscendens

Safed musli (H)

Infusion of rhizomes is given orally

Solanum nigrum

Makoy (H)

Garden night shade (E)

Leaf juice is applied locally to provide quick healing after castration

Solena heterophylla

Chengor (Santhal)

Leaf juice is applied locally


Table 5. Plants Used in Treatment of Maggot Wounds

Name of Plant

Part(s) Used and mode of usage

Botanical Name

Local Name (Region)

Betula alnoides

Bhurjpatra (H)

Bark paste applied locally

Caltha palustris

Mamiri (H)

Root paste applied locally

Carissa opaca

Karaunda (H)

Root paste applied locally

Canthium parviflorum

Balasa (APR)

Decoction of leaves is poured locally

Caryopteris odorata

Karwi (UPH)

Leaf juice is applied locally

Filipendula vestita

Toser (UPH)

Leaf paste is applied locally

Micromeria biflora

Gorakhphan (UPH)

Whole plant paste is applied locally

Milletlia racemosa

Galuga (APR)

Root paste is applied locally

Morina longifolia

Biskandra (UPH)

Root paste is mixed with camphor and applied

Neolitsea pallens

Kaula (UPH)

Seed oil is applied locally

Schleichera oleosa

Kusum (H)

Honey tree (E)

Seed paste is applied locally

Tectona grandis

Sagwan (H)

Teak tree (E)

Wood powder mixed with mustard oil is applied locally

Prunus persica

Aaruu (H)

Peach tree (E)

Juice of young leaves mixed with common salt and applied locally to expel maggots

Syzygium cumini

Jamun (H)

Black plum (E)

Bark paste is applied locally to eliminate maggots

Filipendula spp.

Perennial herbaceous flowering plant

Leaf paste is applied locally on maggot wounds

Mimosa pudica

Lajjavanthi (H)

Touch-me-not (E)

Leaves given as fodder to treat maggots

Allium sativum

Lasun (H)

Garlic (E)

Bulb paste is applied locally

Crotalaria linifolia


Narrow-leaved crotalaria (E)

Whole plant is powdered with salt and applied externally










Andhra Pradesh, Chitoor, District


Andhra Pradesh, Rayalseema Bhamij, Birhore, Kondhs, Lodhas, Munda, Oranand, Santhal, Tribles in Bihar, Eastern India Orissa and West Bengal


Tribe in Rajasthan


Jammu , Kashmir, Ladakh and Morni hills of Haryana 


Central Nepal


Sikkim and Darjeeling Hills


Uttar Pradesh hills








  1. Dinesh, K; Tripathi, HC; Tandon, SK; Lal, J; Malik, JK (1997) Ethnoveterinary phytomedicines used in Indai and Nepal in the treatment of fractures, wounds and allied disorders: An update. Ind. J. Vet. Surgery 18:2, p 65-72

  2. Haque, M and Bhargava, AK (1988) A note on the use of neem ointment for the post-operative management of wounds in goats. Ind. J. Vet. Surgery 9:2 p165


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