Ethnomedicinal documentation of polyherbal formulations and other folk medicines in Aurora, Zamboanga del Sur, Philippines




Abstract. Pucot JR, Demayo CG. 2021. Ethnomedicinal documentation of polyherbal formulations and other folk medicines in Aurora, Zamboanga del Sur, Philippines. Biodiversitas 22: 5331-5343. In Aurora-a rural municipality in western Mindanao, Philippines, wide patronization of folk medicines has been observed, and polyherbal formulations are one of the treatments used. However, knowledge of these formulations has not been documented, imposing a threat that might lead to its eventual loss. The lack of baseline information on these formulations also stagnates its development, and the danger of possible herb-herb interactions might remain high. Therefore, this study aims to compile polyherbal formulations and other folk medicine used by the healers and locals of Aurora and assess the utilization and knowledge of these indigenous practices with implications for its conservation and strengthening localized folk medicine pharmacovigilance. Through purposive and snowball sampling, a total of 23 key informants volunteered and were interviewed using semi-structured questionnaires. Knowledge and practices about medicinal plants were analyzed using descriptive statistics. A total of 34 polyherbal formulations and ten other folk medicines were recorded. Most of the plant species used belonged to the Poaceae family (14 species), Arecaceae, and Musaceae families (10 species each) and were mainly utilized for bughat, pasmo, and kabuhi-illnesses linked with cultural beliefs. The concept of synergism was also observed when it comes to folk medicine usage. It is recommended that more surveys of polyherbal medicines be conducted along with chemical profiling and pharmacological investigations, especially in the rural areas where these folk medicines are still widely utilized.


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