Agnimanth (Premna serratifolia)

Agnimantha (Premna serratifolia): The Versatile Medicinal Vine

Basonym of Drug: The medicinal plant known as Agnimantha is scientifically referred to as Premna serratifolia.

Main Synonyms: In Ayurveda, Agnimantha is known by various synonyms, including:

  1. Arani
  2. Ativisha
  3. Shaliparni
  4. Vanishiga
  5. Dhamnyashtika
  6. Maharasnadi
  7. Rasaugandhi
  8. Pachamula

Regional Name: Agnimantha is also known by different names in various regional languages. Some common regional names include:

  • Hindi: Arani/Vansa
  • Bengali: Agnimath
  • Kannada: Alalukatti
  • Malayalam: Narakappuli
  • Marathi: Rananimba
  • Tamil: Siruviyalan
  • Telugu: Yegisa

Botanical Name: The botanical name of Agnimantha is Premna serratifolia.

Family: Agnimantha belongs to the Verbenaceae family.

Classification of Dravya (Gana) as described in Charak and Sushrut: In the classical Ayurvedic texts of Charak and Sushrut, Agnimantha is classified as follows:

  • Charak: Agnimantha is categorized under the group of “Kandughna,” which means it is beneficial in relieving itching and skin-related conditions.
  • Sushrut: In Sushrut Samhita, Agnimantha is classified as a “Haritakyadi Varga” drug, indicating its use in formulations with other herbs like Haritaki.

External Morphology: Agnimantha is a deciduous shrub or small tree with a height ranging from 2 to 8 meters. The leaves are opposite, serrated, and lance-shaped. The flowers are small, greenish-white, and occur in dense panicles. The fruit is a small drupe.

Useful Parts: The useful parts of Agnimantha are primarily the leaves, stem, and root.

Important Phytoconstituents: Agnimantha contains various phytochemicals, including alkaloids, flavonoids, and tannins. It is also a rich source of essential oils.

Rasa Panchaka: The Rasa Panchaka (five tastes) of Agnimantha is as follows:

  • Rasa (Taste): Bitter (Tikta), Astringent (Kashaya)
  • Guna (Quality): Light (Laghu), Dry (Ruksha)
  • Virya (Potency): Heating (Ushna)
  • Vipaka (Post-digestive taste): Pungent (Katu)

Action on Dosha, Dhatu, and Mala: Agnimantha primarily pacifies the Kapha and Vata doshas. It acts on the Rakta (blood) and Mamsa (muscle) dhatus and has an effect on the Purisha (stool).

Prayogarha Vyadhi (Therapeutic Indications): Agnimantha is utilized in Ayurvedic medicine for various therapeutic purposes. Some of its essential indications include:

  • Rheumatic and joint disorders
  • Skin diseases
  • Fever (Jvara)
  • Respiratory conditions (Shwasa and Kasa)
  • Digestive disorders (Agnimandya)

Amayikaprayoga and Matra (Therapeutic Administration and Dose): Agnimantha can be used in various forms, and the dosage depends on the specific application and the individual’s condition. Commonly used forms include:

  • Decoction (for respiratory and digestive disorders): 50-100 ml, once or twice a day
  • Powder (for skin conditions): 3-6 grams, once or twice a day

Vishishta Yoga (Names of Important Formulations): Agnimantha is an integral component of several Ayurvedic formulations. Some notable formulations include:

  • Dashamoola Kwath
  • Maharasnadi Kwath
  • Triphala Churna

Vishakta Lakshan (Adverse Effects): Agnimantha is generally safe and well-tolerated when used in recommended doses. However, excessive consumption may cause digestive discomfort in some individuals.

Chikitsopachara (Remedial Measures): Agnimantha is best used under the guidance of a qualified Ayurvedic practitioner. Proper dosing, combining with suitable adjuvants, and considering an individual’s specific condition are essential aspects of its therapeutic application.

Shodhana (If Required): Agnimantha does not typically require shodhana (purification) procedures.

Agnimantha’s versatility in addressing a range of health conditions makes it a valuable herb in Ayurvedic medicine. Its applications extend to various systems of the body, reflecting its importance in traditional healthcare practices.

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