Introduction of IPECAC:Brazilian ipecac or Ipecacuanha Rio.

Popular Herbs. ✵The article gives records of the herb IPECAC, its English name, Latin name, common names, property and flavor, its botanical source one plant species, ①.Cephaelis ipecacuanha(Brot.)A.Rich., with a detailed introduction to the botanical features of this plant species, the growth characteristics, and ecological environment of this plant species, the features of the herb IPECAC, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

IPECAC(Ipecacuanha Rio).

 English Name: IPECAC.
 Latin Name: Cephaelis ipecacuanha(Brot.)A.Rich, sometimes referred to as Psychotria ipecacuanha Stokes, or Cephaelis acuminata Karsten.Sometimes a mixture of species is used.
 Common Names: Brazilian/Cartagena/Costa Rica/Matto Grosso/Nicaragua/Panama/Rio ipecac, Brazilian root, golden root, ipecacuanha,Ipecacuanha Rio.
 Property and flavor: 

 Brief introduction: Ipecac is a small evergreen shrub, it is native to the tropical area of South and Central America, and the dried roots and rhizomes are used medicinally.

 Botanical source: Common herbal classics defined the herb IPECAC (Ipecacuanha Rio) as the dried root and rhizomes of the species (1).Cephaelis ipecacuanha(Brot.)A.Rich. It is a plant species of the Cephaelis genus, the Rubiaceae family (madder family). The dried fruit and essential oil from the ripe fruit are used medicinally. This commonly used species is introduced:

(1).Cephaelis ipecacuanha(Brot.)A.Rich.

 Botanical description: Cephaelis ipecacuanha is a perennial, evergreen, leafy plant about 40 cm high with a 2 to 4 mm thick rhizome from which sprout numerous 20 cm long fibrous roots. Some of these roots grow into root tubers. The green stem may be creeping or ascending, simple or branched. It is somewhat quadrangular and occasionally bears adventitious roots. The opposite leaves are entire-margined, and the leaf blade, narrows into the short petiole. There are stipules at the base of the leaf, which are slit-like awls and fused together with the petiole-like leaf shealth.

 The flowers are in terminal, capitulum-shaped inflorescences surrounded by 4 to 6 bracts. The individual florets have a 5-tipped calyx, ciliated at the tips with a white campanulate-conical, 5-tipped corolla. A bitter, dark purple, fleshy drupe develops from the 2-carpeled ovary.

 Ecological environment: The plant is native to the sparser woods of Brazil, and cultivated in other tropical regions.

 Growth characteristics: The plant favors shady woods.

 Characters of herbs: Ipecac is the root of Cephaelis ipecacuanha, the subterranean parts of the 3 to 4-year-old plants are quickly dried in the sun and then cut into pieces of 5 to 10 cm in length.

 Pharmacological actions: ①.induce vomiting; ②.expectorant action; ③.kill amoebas; ④.anti-inflammatory.

 Ipecac syrup induces vomiting in the recommended amount with plenty of fluid, in 15 to 16 minutes, Ipecac syrup causes vomiting by directly irritating the lining of the stomach and stimulating the vomiting center in the brain.

 Ipecac in a small dose is useful as expectorants because of the irritation of the stomach and intestines, and Ipecac is added to some cough and cold remedies.

 Ipecac root contains alkaloid components emetine and cephaeline, these components kill amoebas, which explains the traditional use of the herb for amebic dysentery and infectious diarrhea, but its application is limited due to severe side effects.

 Ipecac root has anti-inflammatory properties in rodent tests.

 Medicinal efficacy: The herb Ipecac was used by Brazilian Indians as a remedy for dysentery and infectious diarrhea in the seventeenth century. It is used today in North America as a syrup to induce vomiting in selected cases of accidental poisoning, especially in children. In commercial formulations smaller doses of ipecac are used to stimulate the appetite, aid digestion, induce perspiration in cases of flu, relieve pain, encourage expectoration in cold and cough remedies, and combat nausea.

 Administration of IPECAC (Ipecacuanha Rio): 
Reference: Administration Guide of IPECAC (Ipecacuanha Rio)
Herbal classic books: Dosage: The root tincture is taken in doses of 0.25 to 1 ml, and the powder in doses of 25 to 100 mg. Infusion 0.5%: 10 ml for adults. The tincture is prepared with 1 part root powder with 8 to 12 parts 70% ethanol. To use commercial cough formulations containing ipecac, follow the package instructions. The herb should be stored carefully in the dark in tightly sealed containers.
 Contraindications, Precautions and Adverse Reactions: Ipecac products should be used with great caution, misuse can cause severe and chronic toxicity, and even death. Severe complications including major fluid imbalances, muscle weakness, and heart damage have also developed in individuals who abuse ipecac syrup for various reasons, including to lose weight or maintain weight loss through vomiting. Administration over extended periods can lead to myopathias. Frequent contact with the herb can trigger allergic reactions in the skin and the mucous membranes. The herb should not be used during pregnancy.
 Warning: the fluid extract is far more concentrated than ipecac syrup, do not use the extract for its poisonings.

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