About Aconite


Botanical Name :
Aconitum napellus.
Family : Ranunculaciae

Description :----
The plant is a hardy perennial, with a fleshy, spindle-shaped root, palecoloured when young, but subsequently acquiring a dark brown skin. The stem is about 3 feet high, with dark green, glossy leaves, deeply divided in palmate manner and flowers in erect clusters of a dark blue colour. The shape of the flower is specially designed to attract and utilize bee visitors, especially the humble bee. The sepals are purple - purple being specially attractive to bees - and are fancifully shaped, one of them being in the form of a hood. The petals are only represented by the two very curious nectaries within the hood, somewhat in the form of a hammer; the stamens are numerous and lie depressed in a bunch at the mouth of the flower. They are pendulous at first, but rise in succession and place their anthers forward in such a way that a bee visiting the flower for nectar is dusted with the pollen, which he then carries to the next flower he visits and thereby fertilizes the undeveloped fruits, which are in a tuft in the centre of the stamens, each carpel containing a single seed.

The chief collecting centres for foreign Aconite root have been the Swiss Alps, Salzburg, North Tyrol and Vorarlberg. Much was also formerly collected in Germany. This official Aconite is also the species generally cultivated in gardens.

Part Used:----
The leaves, stem, flowering tops and root: the leaves and tops fresh, the root dried. The leaves and flowering tops are of less importance, they are employed for preparing Extract of Aconitum, and for this purpose are cut when the flowers are just breaking into blossom and the leaves are in their best condition.

Chemical Constituents:----
It contents 0.3 to 1 per cent alkaloidal matter, consisting of Aconitine - crystalline, acrid and highly toxic - with the alkaloids Benzaconine (Picraconitine) and Aconine.Aconite acid, starch, etc., are also present.

Medicinal Action and Uses:----
Homeopathic physicians prescribe Aconite for those patients whose symptoms resemble the effects of the poison - who seem distressed or fearful and complain of thirst and unbearable aches and pains that accompany their illnesses.It also used for Eye and ear infections - inflamed eyes with aching, burning pain, typically due to injury or conjunctive. The eyes may be oversensitive to light. Ear infection develop rapidly, causing intense pain, bright red ears, and hypersensitivity to noise. Symptoms may be accompanied by a high fever and restless, fearful agitation.Labor's problems - strong fear of impending death experienced by a mother during labor. There may be urine retention in either the mother or baby, or in both the mother and baby, immediately after the birth of the child, especially if the mother experienced fear during labor.

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