The meaning of the symbols of dreams/ seen in a dream.

What does the symbols of dreams/ mean in a dream?

The keywords of this dream: Dreams/


Single or multicellular organisms belonging to Kingdom Prokaryotae. These single cell prokaryotic organisms are often coccoid or rod- shaped but can also be curved, pleomorphic or spiral. They can be Gram positive, Gram negative or Gram variable.... bacteria


A condition of inflammation of the penis or of the clitoris... balanitis


In?ammation of the eyelids. (See EYE, DISORDERS OF.)... blepharitis


A distinctly slow heartbeat, which may be a normal idiosyncrasy or with causes ranging from regular strenuous exercise to abnormally slow heart stimulus to the side-effects of medication. Bradycardia is usually defined as a pulse below sixty beats a minute, or seventy in children.... bradycardia


A zoonotic disease of humans contracted from goats, sheep, pigs or cattle. Can be caused by Brucella melitensis, B. abortus or B. suis Unpasteurised milk can be a source for human infection. Often presents as a PUO.... brucellosis


Presence of bacteria in the blood stream without multiplication.... bacteraemia


Slowing or stopping the proliferation of bacteria.... bacteriostatic


See ALOPECIA.... baldness

Basal Cell Carcinoma

A generally slow growing malignant epithelial tumour, which has potential to invade and metastasise, especially if untreated.... basal cell carcinoma


Astral Projection, Visions **TOXIC** ... belladonna


Non-malignant neoplasm; a neoplasm that is not locally invasive and does not spread to distant sites (metastasise).... benign


A process of loss, grief and recovery, usually associated with death.... bereavement


A deficiency disease caused by imbalance of carbohydrate and vitamin B... beriberi


Schistosomiasis; a diseases caused by a parasitic trematode and acquired by contact with water infected with cercariae shed by the snail intermediate host.... bilharzia

Biliary Colic

See CHOLECYSTITIS, CHOLECYSTALGIA, etc.... biliary colic


A waste product of hemoglobin recycling, it is primarily excreted in feces, oxidizing into that familiar brown color (except for beets).... bilirubin


A surgical process in which a small piece of tissue is cut out or otherwise sampled, e.g. through a needle biopsy, to enable a diagnosis to be made.... biopsy

Black Death

An old name for PLAGUE.... black death




See EYE, DISORDERS OF.... blepharospasm

Blood Pressure

Blood pressure is that pressure which must be applied to an artery in order to stop the pulse beyond the point of pressure. It may be roughly estimated by feeling the pulse at the wrist, or accurately measured using a SPHYGMOMANOMETER. It is dependent on the pumping force of the heart, together with the volume of blood, and on the elasticity of the blood vessels.

The blood pressure is biphasic, being greatest (systolic pressure) at each heartbeat and falling (diastolic pressure) between beats. The average systolic pressure is around 100 mm Hg in children and 120 mm Hg in young adults, generally rising with age as the arteries get thicker and harder. Diastolic pressure in a healthy young adult is about 80 mm Hg, and a rise in diastolic pressure is often a surer indicator of HYPERTENSION than is a rise in systolic pressure; the latter is more sensitive to changes of body position and emotional mood. Hypertension has various causes, the most important of which are kidney disease (see KIDNEYS, DISEASES OF), genetic predisposition and, to some extent, mental stress. Systolic pressure may well be over 200 mm Hg. Abnormal hypertension is often accompanied by arterial disease (see ARTERIES, DISEASES OF) with an increased risk of STROKE, heart attack and heart failure (see HEART, DISEASES OF). Various ANTIHYPERTENSIVE DRUGS are available; these should be carefully evaluated, considering the patient’s full clinical history, before use.

HYPOTENSION may result from super?cial vasodilation (for example, after a bath, in fevers or as a side-e?ect of medication, particularly that prescribed for high blood pressure) and occur in weakening diseases or heart failure. The blood pressure generally falls on standing, leading to temporary postural hypotension – a particular danger in elderly people.... blood pressure


A rare type of food poisoning with a mortality greater than 50 per cent, caused by the presence of the exotoxin of the anaerobic bacterium Clostridium botulinum, usually in contaminated tinned or bottled food. Symptoms develop a few hours after ingestion.

The toxin has two components, one having haemagglutinin activity and the other neurotoxic activity which produces most of the symptoms. It has a lethal dose of as little as 1 mg/kg and is highly selective for cholinergic nerves. Thus the symptoms are those of autonomic parasympathetic blockade (dry mouth, constipation, urinary retention, mydriasis, blurred vision) and progress to blockade of somatic cholinergic transmission (muscle weakness). Death results from respiratory muscle paralysis. Treatment consists of supportive measures and 4 aminopyridine and 3, 4 di-aminopyridine, which may antagonise the e?ect of the toxin.... botulism


A condition characterised by dilatation of the bronchi (see BRONCHUS). As a rule, this is the result of infection of the bronchial tree leading to obstruction of the bronchi. Due to the obstruction, the affected individual cannot get rid of the secretions in the bronchi beyond the obstruction; these accumulate and become infected. The initial infection may be due to bacterial or viral pneumonia or to the infection of the lungs complicating measles or whooping-cough. Once a common disease, immunisation of infants against infectious diseases and the use of antibiotics have greatly reduced the incidence of bronchiectasis. (See CHRONIC OBSTRUCTIVE PULMONARY DISEASE (COPD).)

Treatment consists of postural drainage of excessive lung secretions, and antibiotics.... bronchiectasis


Inflammation of the mucus membranes on the bronchi, usually caused by an infection, sometimes by allergies or chemical irritations.... bronchitis


An inflammatory swelling of a lymph gland... bubo

Bubonic Plague

A severe illness caused by the Gram negative rod, Yersinia pestis. The reservoirs for the infection are various species of rodent and the bacteria are transmitted through the bite of the rat flea, Xenopsylla cheopis. Patients present with enlarged lymph glands (‘buboes’) often in the groin or armpit. Can become septicaemic or develop into a pneumo nia (‘Pneumonic Plague’) and spread by droplet. Also known in the past as “The Black Death”.... bubonic plague


Barosma betulina. N.O. Rutaceae.

Habitat: South Africa, from where the leaves are imported.

Features ? Three varieties of Buchu leaves are used therapeutic-ally ? (1) Barosma betulina or Round Buchu are rhomboid-obovate in form with blunt, recurved apex, and are preferred to either (2) Barosma crenulata or oval Buchu. the apex of which leaf is not recurved; or (3) Barosma serratifolia or long Buchu, named from its distinctive, serrate-edged leaf and truncate apex.

Part used ? Leaves.

Action: Diuretic, diaphoretic, stimulant:

Complaints of the urinary system, especially gravel and inflammation or catarrh of the bladder. Infusion of 1 ounce leaves to 1 pint water three or four times daily in wineglass doses.... buchu


Arctium lappa

Description: This plant has wavy-edged, arrow-shaped leaves and flower heads in burrlike clusters. It grows up to 2 meters tall, with purple or pink flowers and a large, fleshy root.

Habitat and Distribution: Burdock is found worldwide in the North Temperate Zone. Look for it in open waste areas during the spring and summer.

Edible Parts: Peel the tender leaf stalks and eat them raw or cook them like greens. The roots are also edible boiled or baked.


Do not confuse burdock with rhubarb that has poisonous leaves.

Other Uses: A liquid made from the roots will help to produce sweating and increase... burdock


Inflammation of a bursa, the lubricating sac that reduces friction between tendons and ligaments or tendons and bones. The more common localities for bursitis are the shoulders, the elbows, the knees, and the big toe (a bunion).... bursitis

Apex Beat

This is the beat of the APEX of the HEART, which can be felt through the skin to the left of the breastbone between the ?fth and sixth ribs.... apex beat


This is a big group (genus) of gram-positive (see GRAM’S STAIN) rod-like BACTERIA. Found widely in the air and soil – commonly as spores

– they feed on dead organic matter. As well as infecting and spoiling food, some are pathogenic to humans, causing, for example, ANTHRAX, conjunctivitis (see EYE, DISORDERS OF) and DYSENTERY. They are also the source of some antibiotics (See under MICROBIOLOGY.)... bacillus


A powerful muscle-relaxant used for patients with chronic severe spasticity – increased muscle rigidity – resulting from disorders such as CEREBRAL PALSY, MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS (MS) or traumatic partial section of the SPINAL CORD. Important adverse effects include SEDATION, HYPOTONIA and DELIRIUM.... baclofen


See MICROBIOLOGY.... bacteriology


A virus which parasitises a bacterium; a bacterial virus.... bacteriophage


The presence of unusual bacteria in the urine, usually a sign of infection in the kidneys, bladder or urethra. Normal urine usually contains some harmless bacteria; however, if bacterial numbers in a cleanly caught mid-stream specimen exceed 10,000 in each millilitre, that is abnormal. Investigation is necessary to ?nd a cause and start treatment.

Patients found to have bacteriuria on SCREENING may never have consulted a doctor but nearly all have a few symptoms, such as frequency or urgency – so-called ‘covert bacteriuria’.

Men have longer urethras and fewer urinary tract infections (UTIs) than women. Risk factors include diabetes mellitus, pregnancy, impaired voiding and genito-urinary malformations. Over 70 per cent of UTIs are due to E. coli, but of UTIs in hospital patients, only 40 per cent are caused by E. coli.

Treatment Patients should be encouraged to drink plenty of water, with frequent urination. Speci?c antibiotic therapy with trimethoprim or amoxicillin may be needed.... bacteriuria


An industrial lung disease occurring in those who work with bagasse, which is the name given to the broken sugar cane after sugar has been extracted from it. Bagasse, which contains 6 per cent silica, is used in board-making. The inhalation of dust causes an acute lung affection, and subsequently in some cases a chronic lung disease. (See ALVEOLITIS.)... bagassosis


Melissa officinalis. N.O. Labiateae.

Synonym: Lemon Balm, Sweet Balm.

Habitat: Borders of woods and in hedges, particularly in south of England. Common in gardens.

Features ? Stem one to two feet high, freely branched, square, smoothish. Leaves stalked, opposite, broadly ovate, coarsely serrate, wrinkled, hairy. Numerous small, white or yellowish flowers, in loose bunches from leaf axils. Roots long, slender, creeping. Taste and odour of lemon.

Part used ? Herb.

Action: Carminative, diaphoretic, tonic.

In influenza and feverish colds, to induce perspiration. Aids digestion. Infusion of 1 ounce to 1 pint boiling water, taken freely.... balm


Various species including Bambusa, Dendrocalamus, Phyllostachys

Description: Bamboos are woody grasses that grow up to 15 meters tall. The leaves are grasslike and the stems are the familiar bamboo used in furniture and fishing poles.

Habitat and Distribution: Look for bamboo in warm, moist regions in open or jungle country, in lowland, or on mountains. Bamboos are native to the Far East (Temperate and Tropical zones) but have bean widely planted around the world.

Edible Parts: The young shoots of almost all species are edible raw or cooked. Raw shoots have a slightly bitter taste that is removed by boiling. To prepare, remove the tough protective sheath that is coated with tawny or red hairs. The seed grain of the flowering bamboo is also edible. Boil the seeds like rice or pulverize them, mix with water, and make into cakes.

Other Uses: Use the mature bamboo to build structures or to make containers, ladles, spoons, and various other cooking utensils. Also use bamboo to make tools and weapons. You can make a strong bow by splitting the bamboo and putting several pieces together.


Green bamboo may explode in a fire. Green bamboo has an internal membrane you must remove before using it as a food or water container.... bamboo


See also Wheat Cereals.

Nutritional Profile Energy value (calories per serving): Moderate Protein: Moderate Fat: Low Saturated fat: Low Cholesterol: None Carbohydrates: High Fiber: High Sodium: Low Major vitamin contribution: B vitamins, folate Major mineral contribution: Iron, potassium

About the Nutrients in This Food Barley is a high-carbohydrate food, rich in starch and dietary fiber, particu- larly pectins and soluble gums, including beta-glucans, the fiber that makes cooked oatmeal sticky. The proteins in barley are incomplete, limited in the essential amino acid lysine. Barley is a good source of the B vitamin folate. One-half cup cooked barley has 4.5 grams dietary fiber and 12.5 mg folate (3 percent of the R DA for healthy adults).

The Most Nutritious Way to Serve This Food With a calcium-rich food and with a food such as legumes or meat, milk, or eggs that supplies the lysine barley is missing.

Diets That May Restrict or Exclude This Food Gluten-free diet

Buying This Food Look for: Clean, tightly sealed boxes or plastic bags. Stains indicate that something has spilled on the box and may have seeped through to con- taminate the grain inside. * Values are for pearled barley.

Storing This Food Store barley in air- and moisture-proof containers in a cool, dark, dry cabinet. Well protected, it will keep for several months with no loss of nutrients.

Preparing This Food Pick over the barley and discard any damaged or darkened grains.

What Happens When You Cook This Food Starch consists of molecules of the complex carbohydrates amylose and amylopectin packed into a starch granule. When you cook barley in water, its starch granules absorb water mol- ecules, swell, and soften. When the temperature of the liquid reaches approximately 140°F, the amylose and amylopectin molecules inside the granules relax and unfold, breaking some of their internal bonds (bonds between atoms on the same molecule) and forming new bonds between atoms on different molecules. The result is a network that traps and holds water molecules. The starch granules swell and the barley becomes soft and bulky. If you continue to cook the barley, the starch granules will rupture, releasing some of the amylose and amylopectin molecules inside. These molecules will attract and immobilize some of the water molecules in the liquid, which is why a little barley added to a soup or stew will make the soup or stew thicker. The B vitamins in barley are water-soluble. You can save them by serving the barley with the liquid in which it was cooked.

How Other Kinds of Processing Affect This Food Pearling. Pearled barley is barley from which the outer layer has been removed. Milling, the process by which barley is turned into flour, also removes the outer coating (bran) of the grain. Since most of the B vitamins and fiber are concentrated in the bran, both pearled and milled barley are lower in nutrients and fiber than whole barley. Malting. After barley is harvested, the grain may be left to germinate, a natural chemical process during which complex carbohydrates in the grain (starches and beta-glucans) change into sugar. The grain, now called malted barley, is used as the base for several fermented and distilled alcohol beverages, including beer and whiskey.

Medical Uses and/or Benefits To reduce cholesterol levels. The soluble gums and pectins in barley appear to lower the amount of cholesterol circulating in your blood. There are currently two theories to explain how this might work. The first theory is that the pectins form a gel in your stomach that sops up fats and keeps them from being absorbed by your body. The second is that bacteria living in your gut may feed on the beta-glucans in the barley to produce short-chain fatty acids that slow the natural production of cholesterol in your liver. Barley is very rich in beta-glucans; some strains have three times as much as oats. It also has tocotrienol, another chemical that mops up cholesterol.... barley

Basal Metabolism

The basic rate of combustion by a person, usually measured after sleep and while resting.... basal metabolism


See Albahaca.... basil



Behaviour Therapy

A form of psychiatric treatment based on learning theory. Symptoms are considered to be conditioned responses, and treatment is aimed at removing them, regardless of the underlying diagnosis. Desensitisation, operant conditioning, and aversion therapy are examples of behaviour therapy. (See MENTAL ILLNESS.)... behaviour therapy


See ERUCTATION.... belching


North of England midwives ‘birth’ tea. Equal parts: Basil, Lavender and Raspberry leaves in infusion. To each cupful add few grains grated Nutmeg.

To arrest excessive bleeding: Yarrow or Nettle tea. After the event; to restore – Alfalfa tea.

To heal the placenta: inserts of powdered Comfrey. ... birth

Black Eye

Bruise. Cold compress: pulped. Any one – Plantain, Houseleek, Slippery Elm, Comfrey, Rue. Juice or gel of Aloe Vera. ... black eye




Purification, Prosperity... benzoin


See PENICILLIN.... benzylpenicillin


A disease of the lungs caused by the inhalation of particles of beryllium oxide.... berylliosis

Beta Blockers

Drugs used to slow the response to epinephrine (released by the adrenal medulla), usually to attempt controlling high blood pressure... beta blockers


One of the CORTICOSTEROIDS which has an action comparable to that of PREDNISOLONE, but in much lower dosage. In the form of betamethasone valerate it is used as an application to the skin as an ointment or cream.... betamethasone


A mass of ingested foreign material found in the stomach, usually in children or people with psychiatric illnesses. It may cause gastric obstruction and require surgical removal. The commonest type consists of hair and is known as a trichobezoar.... bezoar


In general, any factor that distorts the true nature of an event or observation. In clinical observations, a bias is any systematic factor other than the intervention of interest that affects the magnitude of an observed difference (i.e. trends to increase or decrease) in the outcomes of a treatment group and control group. Bias diminishes the accuracy (though not necessarily the precision) of an observation. Randomization is a technique used to decrease this form of bias. Bias also refers to a prejudiced or partial viewpoint that would affect someone’s interpretation of a problem. Double-blinding is a technique used to decrease this type of bias. See “blinding”.... bias


Having two cusps. The premolars are bicuspid teeth, and the mitral valve of the HEART is a bicuspid valve.... bicuspid


Occurring on both sides of the body.... bilateral


A thick, bitter, greenish-brown ?uid, secreted by the liver and stored in the gall-bladder (see LIVER). Consisting of water, mucus, bile pigments including BILIRUBIN, and various salts, it is discharged through the bile ducts into the intestine a few centimetres below the stomach. This discharge is increased shortly after eating, and again a few hours later. It helps in the digestion and absorption of food, particularly fats, and is itself reabsorbed, passing back through the blood of the liver. In JAUNDICE, obstruction of the bile ducts prevents discharge, leading to a build-up of bile in the blood and deposition in the tissues. The skin becomes greenish-yellow, while the stools become grey or white and the urine dark. Vomiting of bile is a sign of intestinal obstruction, but may occur in any case of persistent retching or vomiting, and should be fully investigated.... bile


One of the dozen or so vitamins included in the vitamin B complex. It is found in liver, eggs and meat, and also synthesised by bacteria in the gut. Absorption from the gut is prevented by avidin, a constituent of egg-white. The daily requirement is small: a fraction of a milligram daily. Gross de?ciency results in disturbances of the skin, a smooth tongue and lassitude. (See APPENDIX 5: VITAMINS.)... biotin

Birth Control

See CONTRACEPTION.... birth control

Birth Rate

In 2003, 695,500 live births were registered in the United Kingdom; 38 per cent occurred outside marriage. Overall, total fertility is falling slowly. The number of births per 1,000 women aged over 40 years has been rising, and in 1999 was 8.9 per cent. In Great Britain in 2003, 193,817 legal abortions were performed under the Abortion Act 1967.... birth rate


Polygonum bistorta. N.O. Polygonaceae.

Synonym: Adderwort, Patient Dock, Snakeweed.

Habitat: Found growing in damp meadows in many parts of Britain, and is also distributed throughout Northern Europe, as well as Northern and Western Asia.

Features ? The oval leaves, similar in appearance to those of the Dock, are blue-green above, grey and purplish underneath, and spring from the roots. The leaf stalks and blades are six to eight inches long, the slender flower stems carrying fewer and smaller leaves, reaching to a height of from one to two feet. A dense, cylindrical spike of pale-hued flowers blossoms from the top of the stem between June and September.

Part used ? The root is the part in most demand, and is reddish-brown in colour.

Action: There is no odour, and the taste is astringent, which is the chief therapeutic action of the root—indeed it is, perhaps, the most powerful astringent in the botanic practice.

The decoction of 1 ounce of the crushed root to 1 pint (reduced) of water is used chiefly in hemorrhages and as a gargle and mouth-wash in cases of

sore throat or gums. Combined with Flag-root it has been known to give relief from intermittent fever and ague. The old-time herbalists enthused over the virtues of Bistort root in "burstings, bruises, falls, blows and jaundice."... bistort

Blackwater Fever

This is caused by rapid breakdown of red blood cells (acute intravascular haemolysis), with resulting kidney failure as the breakdown products block the vessels serving the kidney ?ltration units (see KIDNEYS). It is associated with severe Plasmodium falciparum infection.

The complication is frequently fatal, being associated with HAEMOGLOBINURIA, JAUNDICE, fever, vomiting and severe ANAEMIA. In an extreme case the patient’s urine appears black. Tender enlarged liver and spleen are usually present. The disease is triggered by quinine usage at subtherapeutic dosage in the presence of P. falciparum infection, especially in the non-immune individual. Now that quinine is rarely used for prevention of this infection (it is reserved for treatment), blackwater fever has become very unusual. Treatment is as for severe complicated P. falciparum infection with renal impairment; dialysis and blood transfusion are usually indicated. When inadequately treated, the mortality rate may be over 40 per cent but, with satisfactory intensive therapy, this should be reduced substantially.... blackwater fever


A deep (systemic) mycotic infection caused by dimorphic fungi. North American Blastomycosis caused by Blastomyces dermatitidis in N. America and tropical Africa while Paracoccidioides braziliensis causes S. American Blastomycosis in South America.... blastomycosis

Blind Loop Syndrome

A disorder in which abnormal FAECES occur as a result of a redundant loop in the small INTESTINE. The loop obstructs the normal ?ow of the contents of the bowel, causing stagnation. The syndrome is characterised by light-yellow, smelly, fatty, bulky faeces. The patient suffers from tiredness, malaise and loss of weight. Previous abdominal surgery is sometimes the cause, but the condition can be inherited. Blockage of intestinal contents upsets the bowel’s normal bacterial balance and hinders the normal absorption of nutrients. Treatment is either with antibiotics or, if that fails, surgery.... blind loop syndrome


The statutory de?nition – for the purposes of registration as a blind person under the National Assistance Act 1948 – is that the person is ‘so blind as to be unable to perform any work for which eyesight is essential’. Generally this is vision worse than 6/60 in the better eye, or with better acuity than this but where ‘the ?eld of vision is markedly contracted in the greater part of its extent’. Partial sight has no statutory de?nition, but there are o?cial guidelines for registering a person as partially sighted: generally these are a corrected visual acuity of 3/ 60 or less in the better eye with some contraction of the peripheral ?eld, or better with gross ?eld defects. In the UK more than 100,000 people are registered as legally blind and some 50,000 as partially sighted. The World Health Organisation has estimated that there are over 40 million binocularly blind people in the world. The causes of blindness vary with age and degree of development of the country. In western society the commonest causes are glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, other retinal diseases and senile cataract. (See also VISION.)

Any blind person, or his or her relatives, can obtain help and advice from the Royal National Institute for the Blind (

Night blindness An inability to see in the dark. It can be associated with retinitis pigmentosa or vitamin A de?ciency (see EYE, DISORDERS OF).... blindness

Blood Clot

A blood clot arises when blood comes into contact with a foreign surface – for example, damaged blood vessels – or when tissue factors are released from damaged tissue. An initial plug of PLATELETS is converted to a de?nitive clot by the deposition of FIBRIN, which is formed by the clotting cascade and erythrocytes. (See COAGULATION.)... blood clot

Blood Count

The number of each of the cellular components per litre of blood. It may be calculated using a microscope or by an automated process.... blood count


Blood consists of cellular components suspended in plasma. It circulates through the blood vessels, carrying oxygen and nutrients to the organs and removing carbon dioxide and other waste products for excretion. In addition, it is the vehicle by which hormones and other humoral transmitters reach their sites of action.

Composition The cellular components are red cells or corpuscles (ERYTHROCYTES), white cells (LEUCOCYTES and lymphocytes – see LYMPHOCYTE), and platelets.

The red cells are biconcave discs with a diameter of 7.5µm. They contain haemoglobin

– an iron-containing porphyrin compound, which takes up oxygen in the lungs and releases it to the tissue.

The white cells are of various types, named according to their appearance. They can leave the circulation to wander through the tissues. They are involved in combating infection, wound healing, and rejection of foreign bodies. Pus consists of the bodies of dead white cells.

Platelets are the smallest cellular components and play an important role in blood clotting (see COAGULATION).

Erythrocytes are produced by the bone marrow in adults and have a life span of about 120 days. White cells are produced by the bone

marrow and lymphoid tissue. Plasma consists of water, ELECTROLYTES and plasma proteins; it comprises 48–58 per cent of blood volume. Plasma proteins are produced mainly by the liver and by certain types of white cells. Blood volume and electrolyte composition are closely regulated by complex mechanisms involving the KIDNEYS, ADRENAL GLANDS and HYPOTHALAMUS.... blood

Blood Transfusion

See TRANSFUSION – Transfusion of blood.... blood transfusion


See SEPTICAEMIA.... blood-poisoning



Body Mass Index

Body Mass Index (BMI) provides objective criteria of size to enable an estimation to be made of an individual’s level or risk of morbidity and mortality. The BMI, which is derived from the extensive data held by life-insurance companies, is calculated by dividing a person’s weight by the square of his or her height (kilograms/ metres2). Acceptable BMIs range from 20 to 25 and any ?gure above 30 characterises obesity. The Index may be used (with some modi?cation) to assess children and adolescents. (See OBESITY.)... body mass index


A lump of food prepared for swallowing by chewing and mixing with saliva. The term is also used to describe the rapid intravenous injection of ?uid or a drug, as opposed to a slower infusion.... bolus


The formation of a close, selective attachment between two individuals, as in the relationship between a mother and her baby.... bonding

Bone Graft

See BONE TRANSPLANT.... bone graft


Eupatorium perfoliatum. N.O. Compositae.

Synonym: Indian Sage, Thoroughwort.

Habitat: Damp places.

Features ? One or more erect stems, branched at top. Leaves opposite, lanceolate, four to six inches long, united at base, crenate edges, tiny, yellow resin dots beneath. Flowers August to October. Persistently bitter taste.

Part used ? Herb.

Action: Diaphoretic, febrifuge, tonic, laxative, expectorant.

Influenza and feverish conditions generally, for which purpose it is very successfully used by the American negroes. Also used in catarrhs. The infusion of 1 ounce to 1 pint boiling water may be given in wineglassful doses frequently, hot as a diaphoretic and febrifuge, cold as a tonic.

F. H. England, of the College of Medicine and Surgery, Chicago (Physio- Medical) says ? "It is a pure relaxant to the liver. It acts slowly and persistently. Its greatest power is manifested upon the stomach, liver, bowels and uterus."... boneset


The framework upon which the rest of the body is built up. The bones are generally called the skeleton, though this term also includes the cartilages which join the ribs to the breastbone, protect the larynx, etc.

Structure of bone Bone is composed partly of ?brous tissue, partly of bone matrix comprising phosphate and carbonate of lime, intimately mixed together. The bones of a child are about two-thirds ?brous tissue, whilst those of the aged contain one-third; the toughness of the former and the brittleness of the latter are therefore evident.

The shafts of the limb bones are composed of dense bone, the bone being a hard tube surrounded by a membrane (the periosteum) and enclosing a fatty substance (the BONE MARROW); and of cancellous bone, which forms the short bones and the ends of long bones, in which a ?ne lace-work of bone ?lls up the whole interior, enclosing marrow in its meshes. The marrow of the smaller bones is of great importance. It is red in colour, and in it red blood corpuscles are formed. Even the densest bone is tunnelled by ?ne canals (Haversian canals) in which run small blood vessels, nerves and lymphatics, for the maintenance and repair of the bone. Around these Haversian canals the bone is arranged in circular plates called lamellae, the lamellae being separated from one another by clefts, known as lacunae, in which single bone-cells are contained. Even the lamellae are pierced by ?ne tubes known as canaliculi lodging processes of these cells. Each lamella is composed of very ?ne interlacing ?bres.

GROWTH OF BONES Bones grow in thickness from the ?brous tissue and lime salts laid down by cells in their substance. The long bones grow in length from a plate of cartilage (epiphyseal cartilage) which runs across the bone about 1·5 cm or more from its ends, and which on one surface is also constantly forming bone until the bone ceases to lengthen at about the age of 16 or 18. Epiphyseal injury in children may lead to diminished growth of the limb.

REPAIR OF BONE is e?ected by cells of microscopic size, some called osteoblasts, elaborating the materials brought by the blood and laying down strands of ?brous tissue, between which bone earth is later deposited; while other cells, known as osteoclasts, dissolve and break up dead or damaged bone. When a fracture has occurred, and the broken ends have been brought into contact, these are surrounded by a mass of blood at ?rst; this is partly absorbed and partly organised by these cells, ?rst into ?brous tissue and later into bone. The mass surrounding the fractured ends is called the callus, and for some months it forms a distinct thickening which is gradually smoothed away, leaving the bone as before the fracture. If the ends have not been brought accurately into contact, a permanent thickening results.

VARIETIES OF BONES Apart from the structural varieties, bones fall into four classes: (a) long bones like those of the limbs; (b) short bones composed of cancellous tissue, like those of the wrist and the ankle; (c) ?at bones like those of the skull; (d) irregular bones like those of the face or the vertebrae of the spinal column (backbone).

The skeleton consists of more than 200 bones. It is divided into an axial part, comprising the skull, the vertebral column, the ribs with their cartilages, and the breastbone; and an appendicular portion comprising the four limbs. The hyoid bone in the neck, together with the cartilages protecting the larynx and windpipe, may be described as the visceral skeleton.

AXIAL SKELETON The skull consists of the cranium, which has eight bones, viz. occipital, two parietal, two temporal, one frontal, ethmoid, and sphenoid; and of the face, which has 14 bones, viz. two maxillae or upper jaw-bones, one mandible or lower jaw-bone, two malar or cheek bones, two nasal, two lacrimal, two turbinal, two palate bones, and one vomer bone. (For further details, see SKULL.) The vertebral column consists of seven vertebrae in the cervical or neck region, 12 dorsal vertebrae, ?ve vertebrae in the lumbar or loin region, the sacrum or sacral bone (a mass formed of ?ve vertebrae fused together and forming the back part of the pelvis, which is closed at the sides by the haunch-bones), and ?nally the coccyx (four small vertebrae representing the tail of lower animals). The vertebral column has four curves: the ?rst forwards in the neck, the second backwards in the dorsal region, the third forwards in the loins, and the lowest, involving the sacrum and coccyx, backwards. These are associated with the erect attitude, develop after a child learns to walk, and have the e?ect of diminishing jars and shocks before these reach internal organs. This is aided still further by discs of cartilage placed between each pair of vertebrae. Each vertebra has a solid part, the body in front, and behind this a ring of bone, the series of rings one above another forming a bony canal up which runs the spinal cord to pass through an opening in the skull at the upper end of the canal and there join the brain. (For further details, see SPINAL COLUMN.) The ribs – 12 in number, on each side – are attached behind to the 12 dorsal vertebrae, while in front they end a few inches away from the breastbone, but are continued forwards by cartilages. Of these the upper seven reach the breastbone, these ribs being called true ribs; the next three are joined each to the cartilage above it, while the last two have their ends free and are called ?oating ribs. The breastbone, or sternum, is shaped something like a short sword, about 15 cm (6 inches) long, and rather over 2·5 cm (1 inch) wide.

APPENDICULAR SKELETON The upper limb consists of the shoulder region and three segments – the upper arm, the forearm, and the wrist with the hand, separated from each other by joints. In the shoulder lie the clavicle or collar-bone (which is immediately beneath the skin, and forms a prominent object on the front of the neck), and the scapula or shoulder-blade behind the chest. In the upper arm is a single bone, the humerus. In the forearm are two bones, the radius and ulna; the radius, in the movements of alternately turning the hand palm up and back up (called supination and pronation respectively), rotating around the ulna, which remains ?xed. In the carpus or wrist are eight small bones: the scaphoid, lunate, triquetral, pisiform, trapezium, trapezoid, capitate and hamate. In the hand proper are ?ve bones called metacarpals, upon which are set the four ?ngers, each containing the three bones known as phalanges, and the thumb with two phalanges.

The lower limb consists similarly of the region of the hip-bone and three segments – the thigh, the leg and the foot. The hip-bone is a large ?at bone made up of three – the ilium, the ischium and the pubis – fused together, and forms the side of the pelvis or basin which encloses some of the abdominal organs. The thigh contains the femur, and the leg contains two bones – the tibia and ?bula. In the tarsus are seven bones: the talus (which forms part of the ankle joint); the calcaneus or heel-bone; the navicular; the lateral, intermediate and medial cuneiforms; and the cuboid. These bones are so shaped as to form a distinct arch in the foot both from before back and from side to side. Finally, as in the hand, there are ?ve metatarsals and 14 phalanges, of which the great toe has two, the other toes three each.

Besides these named bones there are others sometimes found in sinews, called sesamoid bones, while the numbers of the regular bones may be increased by extra ribs or diminished by the fusion together of two or more bones.... bone


The bubbling, gurgling passage of gas across the transverse colon...NOT a small North African rodent. BPH Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy, or Hyperplasia.... borborygmus

Bornholm Disease

Bornholm disease, also known as devil’s grip, and epidemic myalgia, is an acute infective disease due to COXSACKIE VIRUSES. It is characterised by the abrupt onset of pain around the lower margin of the ribs, headache, and fever; it occurs in epidemics, usually during warm weather, and is more common in young people than in old. The illness usually lasts seven to ten days. It is practically never fatal. The disease is named after the island of Bornholm in the Baltic, where several epidemics have been described.... bornholm disease

Botulinum Toxin

The toxin of the anaerobic bacterium CLOSTRIDIUM botulinum is now routinely used to treat focal DYSTONIA in adults. This includes blepharospasm (see EYE, DISORDERS OF), SPASMODIC TORTICOLLIS, muscular spasms of the face, squint and some types of tremor. Injected close to where the nerve enters the affected muscles, the toxin blocks nerve transmissions for up to four months, so relieving symptoms. The toxin is also used in cerebral palsy. Although very e?ective, there are many possible unwanted effects, especially if too high a dose is used or the injection is misplaced.... botulinum toxin


A plasma polypeptide that tends to lower blood pressure and increase capillary permeability.... bradykinin


A system of printing or writing devised for blind people. Developed by the Frenchman Louis Braille, the system is based on six raised dots which can be organised in di?erent combinations within two grades. Each system in Grade I represents an individual letter or punctuation mark. Grade II’s symbols represent common combinations of letters or individual words. Braille is accepted for all written languages, mathematics, science and music, with Grade II the more popular type.... braille


The meal derived from the outer covering of a cereal grain. It contains little or no carbohydrate, and is mainly used to provide ROUGHAGE in the control of bowel function and the prevention of constipation.... bran


The brain and spinal cord together form the central nervous sytem (CNS). Twelve cranial nerves leave each side of the brain (see NERVES, below) and 31 spinal nerves from each side of the cord: together these nerves form the peripheral nervous system. Complex chains of nerves lying within the chest and abdomen, and acting largely independently of the peripheral system, though linked with it, comprise the AUTONOMIC NERVOUS SYSTEM and govern the activities of the VISCERA.

The control centre of the whole nervous system is the brain, which is located in the skull or cranium. As well as controlling the nervous system it is the organ of thought, speech and emotion. The central nervous system controls the body’s essential functions such as breathing, body temperature (see HOMEOSTASIS) and the heartbeat. The body’s various sensations, including sight, hearing, touch, pain, positioning and taste, are communicated to the CNS by nerves distributed throughout the relevant tissues. The information is then sorted and interpreted by specialised areas in the brain. In response these initiate and coordinate the motor output, triggering such ‘voluntary’ activities as movement, speech, eating and swallowing. Other activities – for example, breathing, digestion, heart contractions, maintenance of BLOOD PRESSURE, and ?ltration of waste products from blood passing through the kidneys – are subject to involuntary control via the autonomic system. There is, however, some overlap between voluntary and involuntary controls.... brain


See STERNUM.... breastbone


See RESPIRATION.... breathing

Breast Feeding

This is the natural way to feed a baby from birth to WEANING. Human milk is an ideal food, containing a proper balance of nutrients as well as an essential supply of antibodies to protect the infant against infections. Breast feeding also strengthens the physical bond between mother and child. For the ?rst few weeks, feeding should be on demand. Di?culties over breast feeding, discouragement from health-care providers and the pressures of modern life, especially for working mothers, can make it hard to continue breast feeding for more than a few weeks, or even to breast feed at all. Sometimes infections occur, producing soreness and even an abscess. Mothers should seek advice from their health visitor about breast feeding, especially if problems arise.... breast feeding


Breathlessness, or dyspnoea, may be due to any condition which renders the blood de?cient in oxygen, and which therefore produces excessive involuntary e?orts to gain more air. Exercise is a natural cause, and acute anxiety may provoke breathlessness in otherwise healthy people. Deprivation of oxygen – for example, in a building ?re – will also cause the victim to raise his or her breathing rate. Disorders of the lung may diminish the area available for breathing – for example, ASTHMA, PNEUMONIA, TUBERCULOSIS, EMPHYSEMA, BRONCHITIS, collections of ?uid in the pleural cavities, and pressure caused by a TUMOUR or ANEURYSM.

Pleurisy causes short, rapid breathing to avoid the pain of deep inspiration.

Narrowing of the air passages may produce sudden and alarming attacks of di?cult breathing, especially among children – for example, in CROUP, asthma and DIPHTHERIA.

Most cardiac disorders (see HEART, DISEASES OF) cause breathlessness, especially when the person undergoes any special exertion.

Anaemia is a frequent cause.

Obesity is often associated with shortness of breath. Mountain climbing may cause breathlessness

because, as altitude increases, the amount of oxygen in the air falls (see ALTITUDE SICKNESS). (See also LUNGS and RESPIRATION.)... breathlessness

Brittle Bone Disease

Brittle Bone Disease is another name for OSTEOGENESIS IMPERFECTA.... brittle bone disease


A drug that stimulates DOPAMINE receptors in the brain. It inhibits production of the hormone PROLACTIN and is used to treat GALACTORRHOEA (excessive milk secretion) and also to suppress normal LACTATION. The drug is helpful in treating premenstrual breast engorgement and also ACROMEGALY.... bromocriptine


The name sometimes applied to bronchitis affecting the ?nest bronchial tubes, also known as capillary bronchitis. Major epidemics occur every winter in Northern Europe in babies under 18 months due to respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). Many are admitted to hospital; some need arti?cial ventilation for a time and a very small number die.... bronchiolitis


A radiographic procedure using a radio-opaque substance injected into the bronchial tree to show its outline. This is a simple procedure carried out under general anaesthesia and allows the accurate location of, for example, a lung ABSCESS, BRONCHIECTASIS, or a TUMOUR in the lung.... bronchography


Muscular contraction of the bronchi (air passages) in the LUNGS, causing narrowing. The cause is usually a stimulus, as in BRONCHITIS and ASTHMA. The result is that the patient can inhale air into the lungs but breathing out becomes di?cult and requires muscular e?ort of the chest. Exhalation is accompanied by audible noises in the airways which can be detected with a STETHOSCOPE. Reversible obstructive airways disease can be relieved with a BRONCHODILATOR drug; if the bronchospasm cannot be relieved by drugs it is called irreversible. (See CHRONIC OBSTRUCTIVE PULMONARY DISEASE (COPD).)... bronchospasm


Bronchus, or bronchial tube, is the name applied to tubes into which the TRACHEA divides, one going to either lung. The name is also applied to the divisions of these tubes distributed throughout the lungs, the smallest being called bronchioles.... bronchus


Cytisus scoparius. N.O. Leguminosae.

Synonym: Irish Broom and Besom.

Habitat: Dry, hilly wastes.

Features ? The stem is angular, five-sided, dark green, and branches at an acute angle.

Yellow pea-like flowers appear in May and June. The lower leaves are on short stalks and consist of three small obovate leaflets, the upper leaves being stalkless and frequently single.

Part used ? Tops.

Action: Powerfully diuretic.

Broom tops are often used with Agrimony and Dandelion root for dropsy and liver disorders. For this purpose a decoction of 1 ounce each of Broom tops and Agrimony and 1/2 ounce Dandelion root to 3 pints of water simmered down to 1 quart is taken in wineglassful doses every four or five hours.

Coffin recommends us to ? "Take of broom-tops, juniper-berries and dandelion-roots, each half-an-ounce, water, a pint and a half, boil down to a pint, strain, and add half-a-teaspoonsful of cayenne pepper. Dose, half- a-wineglassful four times a day."... broom


Bruxism, or teeth-grinding, refers to a habit of grinding the teeth, usually while asleep and without being aware of it. The teeth may feel uncomfortable on wakening. It is common in children and is usually of no signi?cance. In adults it may be associated with stress or a mal-positioned or over?lled tooth. The underlying cause should be treated but, if unsuccessful, a plastic splint can be ?tted over the teeth.... bruxism


Relating to the mouth or inside of the cheek.... buccal


Bumetanide is a strong loop diuretic which is active when taken by mouth. It acts quickly – within a half-hour – and its action is over in a few hours. (See THIAZIDES; DIURETICS.)... bumetanide

Bundle Branch Block

An abnormality of the conduction of electrical impulses through the ventricles of the HEART, resulting in delayed depolarisation of the ventricular muscle. The electrocardiograph (see ELECTROCARDIOGRAM (ECG)) shows characteristic widening of the QRS complexes. Abnormalities of the right and left bundle branches cause delayed contraction of the right and left ventricles respectively.... bundle branch block


A local anaesthetic, about four times as potent as LIDOCAINE. It has a slow onset of action (up to 30 minutes for full e?ect), but its e?ect lasts up to eight hours, making it particularly suitable for continuous epidural analgesia in labour (see PREGNANCY AND LABOUR). It is commonly used for spinal anaesthesia, particularly lumbar epidural blockade (see ANAESTHESIA). It is contraindicated in intravenous regional anaesthesia.... bupivacaine


Bulimia means insatiable appetite of psychological origin. This eating-disorder symptom may be of psychological origin or the result of neurological disease – for example, a lesion of the HYPOTHALAMUS. Bulimia nervosa is linked to anorexia nervosa and is sometimes called the binge and purge syndrome. Bulimia nervosa is characterised by overpowering urges to eat large amounts of food, followed by induced vomiting or abuse of laxatives to avoid any gain in weight. Most of the victims are prone to being overweight and all have a morbid fear of obesity. They indulge in bouts of gross overeating, or ‘binge rounds’ as they describe them, to ‘?ll the empty space inside’. By their bizarre behaviour, most of them manage to maintain a normal weight. The condition is most common in women in their 20s; it is accompanied by irregular menstruation, often amounting to amenorrhoea (see MENSTRUATION). Although there are many similarities to anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa di?ers in that there is no attempt at deceit; sufferers freely admit to an eating disorder and feel distress about the symptoms that it produces. In spite of this, the response to treatment is, as in anorexia nervosa, far from satisfactory. (See EATING DISORDERS.)... bulimia


A mental state of physical and emotional exhaustion; an anxiety disorder that is a stress reaction to a person’s reduced capability to cope with the demands of his or her occupations. Symptoms of burnout include tiredness, poor sleeping pattern, irritability and reduced performance at work; increased susceptibility to physical illness and abuse of alcohol and addictive drugs can also occur. Treatment can be dif?cult and may require a change to a less stressful lifestyle, counselling and, in severe cases, psychotherapy and carefully supervised use of ANXIOLYTICS or ANTIDEPRESSANT DRUGS.... burnout


An umbrella-like expansion of the cuticle at the posterior end of some male nematodes as in Ancylostomatidae and Metastrongylidae. The bursa is supported by elongated stalks called “rays”. The shape and size of the bursa and the arrangement and size of the rays are used for identification of the nematodes... bursa


Chronic in?ammatory thickening of the lung tissue, due to the inhalation of dust in textile factories. It is found chie?y among cotton and ?ax workers and, to a lesser extent, among workers in soft hemp. It is rare or absent in workers in jute and the hard ?bres of hemp and sisal. With much-improved working conditions in the UK, where byssinosis is one of the PRESCRIBED DISEASES, the disease is rare, but it is still common in some Asian countries where textiles are manufactured.... byssinosis

Cardiopulmonary Bypass

A procedure in which the body’s circulation of blood is kept going when the heart is intentionally stopped to enable heart surgery to be carried out. A HEART-LUNG MACHINE substitutes for the heart’s pumping action and the blood is oxygenated at the same time.... cardiopulmonary bypass

Ciliary Body

That part of the EYE that connects the iris and the choroid. The ciliary ring is next to the choroid; the ciliary processes comprise many ridges behind the iris, to which the lens’s suspensory ligament is attached; and the ciliary muscle contracts to change the curvature of the lens and so adjust the accommodation of the eye.... ciliary body

Colour Blindness

See VISION – Defective colour vision.... colour blindness

Epstein Barr Virus

The virus that causes glandular fever or infectious MONONUCLEOSIS. It is similar to the viruses that cause herpes and is associated with BURKITT’S LYMPHOMA. It has been suggested as precipitating some attacks of MYALGIC ENCEPHALOMYELITIS (ME), also known as CHRONIC FATIGUE SYNDROME (CFS).... epstein barr virus

Guillain-barré Syndrome

A disease of the peripheral nerves causing weakness and numbness in the limbs. It customarily occurs up to three weeks after an infection – for example, CAMPYLOBACTER infection of the gastrointestinal tract provoking an allergic response in the nerves. It may begin with weakness of the legs and gradually spread up the body. In the worst cases the patient may become totally paralysed and require to be arti?cially ventilated. Despite this, recovery is the rule.... guillain-barré syndrome

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

(IBS) This is a common and generally benign condition of the colon, taking different forms but usually characterized by alternating constipation and diarrhea. There is often some pain accompanying the diarrhea phase. The bowel equivalent of spasmodic asthma, its main cause is stress, often accompanied by a history of GI infections. Adrenalin stress slows the colon and causes constipation, followed by a cholinergic rebound overstimulation of the colon. It is also called spastic colon, colon syndrome, mucous colitis, even chronic colitis. True colitis is a potentially or actually serious pathology.... irritable bowel syndrome

Double Blind Trial

A scienti?c study in which di?erent patients receive a di?erent drug, the same drug at a different dose, or a placebo – with neither the investigators assessing the outcome nor the subjects being treated knowing which of these the latter are receiving. The aim is to remove any hint of bias due to the investigators’ or patients’ preferences or preconceptions. The results are analysed after all the data have been collected and the code has been broken. Trials should have a separate supervising committee, the members of which know the code but do not take part in the study. Their job is to check the results at intervals so they can stop the trial if one arm of treatment is clearly better than another. Otherwise, it would be unethical to continue. (See INTERVENTION STUDY.)... double blind trial

Evidence-based Medicine

The process of systematically identifying, appraising and using the best available research ?ndings, integrated with clinical expertise, as the basis for clinical decisions about individual patients. The aim is to encourage clinicians, health-service managers and consumers of health care to make decisions, taking account of the best available evidence, on the likely consequences of alternative decisions and actions. Evidence-based medicine has been developing internationally for the past 25 years, but since around 1990 its development has accelerated. The International COCHRANE COLLABORATION ?nds and reviews relevant research. Several other centres have been set up to look at the clinical application of research results, including the Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine in Oxford.... evidence-based medicine


A common practice in schoolchildren, most of whom gradually give it up as they approach adolescence. Too much signi?cance should therefore not be attached to it; in itself it does no harm, and punishment or restraining devices are not needed. It is a manifestation of tension or insecurity, the cause of which should be removed. In some people the habit is carried into adulthood.... nail-biting

Nerve Block

See ANAESTHESIA – Local anaesthetics.... nerve block

Nervous Breakdown

A non-medical description of a variety of emotional crises ranging from an outburst of hysterical behaviour to a major neurotic illness that may have a lasting e?ect on an individual’s life. Sometimes the term is used to describe an overt psychotic illness – for example, SCHIZOPHRENIA (see also MENTAL ILLNESS; NEUROSIS).... nervous breakdown

Night Blindness

See under BLINDNESS.... night blindness

Snow Blindness

Damage caused to the cornea of an unprotected EYE by the re?ection of the sun’s rays from snow. ULTRAVIOLET RAYS (UVR) are the damaging agent and people going out in snow and sunlight should wear protective goggles. The condition is painful but resolves if the eyes are covered with pads for a day or two. Prolonged exposure may seriously damage the cornea and impair vision.... snow blindness

Word Blindness

Alexia: a condition in which, as the result of disease in the brain, a person becomes unable to associate their proper meanings with words, although he or she may be quite able to spell the letters.

Word deafness is an associated condition in which, although hearing remains perfect, the patient has lost the power of referring the names heard to the articles they denote. (See also DYSPHASIA.)... word blindness


A term used to describe any substance that kills bacteria.

(See also antibacterial drugs; antibiotic drugs.)... bactericidal

Bell’s Palsy

Paralysis of the 7th (facial) nerve which controls muscles of the face. One-sided stiffness and distortion of the face which lacks expression. Inability to close eyes or whistle. Rarely painful.

Aetiology. Injury, virus infection, cold, stroke. Recovery usually spontaneous. Herpes Simp. Alternatives. Chamomile, Wood Betony, Bryonia, Black Cohosh, Barberry, Asafoetida, Lobelia, Rosemary, Valerian, Sage. Echinacea has been used with convincing results internally and externally.

Tea. Equal parts. Chamomile, Wood Betony. Sage. 1 heaped teaspoon to each cup boiling water; infuse 15 minutes. 1 cup 3 times daily.

Decoctions. Black Cohosh, Rosemary, Valerian, Echinacea.

Tablets/capsules. Black Cohosh. Ginseng. Echinacea. Valerian.

Powders. Formula. Rosemary 1; Echinacea 2; Valerian 1. Dose: 500mg (two 00 capsules or one-third teaspoon) thrice daily.

Tinctures. Formula. Echinacea 2; Rosemary 1; Black Cohosh 1; Pinch Tincture Capsicum. 1-2 teaspoons 3 times daily.

Evening Primrose oil. 4 × 500mg capsules daily.

Aromatherapy. 10 drops Oil Juniper to eggcup Almond oil; gentle massage affected side of face. Diet. Lacto-vegetarian.

Vitamin E. (400iu daily). ... bell’s palsy

Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy


Scrapie. Notifiable disease. Fatal disease in the nervous system of cattle, unknown before 1985. Microscopic holes appear in the brain giving a spongiform appearance, but with little inflammation. Can spread from one animal to another: sheep, goats, deer, mules, mink, hamsters, mice, pigs and monkeys. Cause: not a virus. Animals itch and scrape themselves against trees or posts for relief. May spread from animals to humans, with brain infection after the character of polio.

Symptoms. (Human). Speech impairment, short-term-memory-loss, difficulty in controlling body movements. Zinc deficiency.

Treatment. Hospitalisation.

Suggested treatment for human infection, unproven.

Tinctures. Echinacea 5; Black Cohosh 3; Yarrow 2; Senna leaf 1.2-3 teaspoons in water (or cup hot Yarrow tea) 3-4 times daily. For headache: Gelsemium.

Supplement: Zinc.

To be treated by a general medical practitioner or hospital specialist. ... bovine spongiform encephalopathy

Heart Block

A disorder that occurs in the transmission of impulses between the atria (upper chambers) and ventricles (lower chambers) of the heart. A blocking of the normal route of electrical conduction through the ventricles not responding to initiation of the beat by the atria. Beats are missed with possible blackouts.

Causes: myocardial infarction, atherosclerosis, coronary thrombosis or other heart disorder.

Symptoms: slow feeble heart beats down to 36 beats per minute with fainting and collapse, breathlessness, Stoke Adams syndrome.

Treatment. Intensive care. Until the doctor comes: 1-5 drops Oil of Camphor in honey on the tongue or taken in a liquid if patient is able to drink. Freely inhale the oil. On recovery: Motherwort tea, freely. OR, Formula of tinctures: Lily of the Valley 2; Cactus 1; Motherwort 2. Mix. Dose – 30-60 drops in water thrice daily. A fitted pace-maker may be necessary.

Spartiol. 20 drops thrice daily. (Klein) ... heart block

Abo Blood Groups

See BLOOD GROUPS.... abo blood groups

Acid Base Balance

The balance between the acid and alkaline elements present in the blood and body ?uids.

The normal hydrogen ion concentration of the PLASMA is a constant pH 7·4, and the lungs and kidneys have a crucial function in maintaining this ?gure. Changes in pH value will cause ACIDOSIS or ALKALOSIS.... acid base balance


Most people suffer from backache at times during their lives, much of which has no identi?able cause – non-speci?c back pain. This diagnosis is one of the biggest single causes of sickness absence in the UK’s working population. Certain occupations, such as those involving long periods of sedentary work, lifting, bending and awkward physical work, are especially likely to cause backache. Back pain is commonly the result of sporting activities.

Non-speci?c back pain is probably the result of mechanical disorders in the muscles, ligaments and joints of the back: torn muscles, sprained LIGAMENTS, and FIBROSITIS. These disorders are not always easy to diagnose, but mild muscular and ligamentous injuries are usually relieved with symptomatic treatment – warmth, gentle massage, analgesics, etc. Sometimes back pain is caused or worsened by muscle spasms, which may call for the use of antispasmodic drugs. STRESS and DEPRESSION (see MENTAL ILLNESS) can sometimes result in chronic backache and should be considered if no clear physical diagnosis can be made.

If back pain is severe and/or recurrent, possibly radiating around to the abdomen or down the back of a leg (sciatica – see below), or is accompanied by weakness or loss of feeling in the leg(s), it may be caused by a prolapsed intervertebral disc (slipped disc) pressing on a nerve. The patient needs prompt investigation, including MRI. Resting on a ?rm bed or board can relieve the symptoms, but the patient may need a surgical operation to remove the disc and relieve pressure on the affected nerve.

The nucleus pulposus – the soft centre of the intervertebral disc – is at risk of prolapse under the age of 40 through an acquired defect in the ?brous cartilage ring surrounding it. Over 40 this nucleus is ?rmer and ‘slipped disc’ is less likely to occur. Once prolapse has taken place, however, that segment of the back is never quite the same again, as OSTEOARTHRITIS develops in the adjacent facet joints. Sti?ness and pain may develop, sometimes many years later. There may be accompanying pain in the legs: SCIATICA is pain in the line of the sciatic nerve, while its rarer analogue at the front of the leg is cruralgia, following the femoral nerve. Leg pain of this sort may not be true nerve pain but referred from arthritis in the spinal facet joints. Only about 5 per cent of patients with back pain have true sciatica, and spinal surgery is most successful (about 85 per cent) in this group.

When the complaint is of pain alone, surgery is much less successful. Manipulation by physiotherapists, doctors, osteopaths or chiropractors can relieve symptoms; it is important ?rst to make sure that there is not a serious disorder such as a fracture or cancer.

Other local causes of back pain are osteoarthritis of the vertebral joints, ankylosing spondylitis (an in?ammatory condition which can severely deform the spine), cancer (usually secondary cancer deposits spreading from a primary tumour elsewhere), osteomyelitis, osteoporosis, and PAGET’S DISEASE OF BONE. Fractures of the spine – compressed fracture of a vertebra or a break in one of its spinous processes – are painful and potentially dangerous. (See BONE, DISORDERS OF.)

Backache can also be caused by disease elsewhere, such as infection of the kidney or gall-bladder (see LIVER), in?ammation of the PANCREAS, disorders in the UTERUS and PELVIS or osteoarthritis of the HIP. Treatment is e?ected by tackling the underlying cause. Among the many known causes of back pain are:

Mechanical and traumatic causes

Congenital anomalies. Fractures of the spine. Muscular tenderness and ligament strain. Osteoarthritis. Prolapsed intervertebral disc. Spondylosis.

In?ammatory causes

Ankylosing spondylitis. Brucellosis. Osteomyelitis. Paravertebral abscess. Psoriatic arthropathy. Reiter’s syndrome. Spondyloarthropathy. Tuberculosis.

Neoplastic causes

Metastatic disease. Primary benign tumours. Primary malignant tumours.

Metabolic bone disease

Osteomalacia. Osteoporosis. Paget’s disease.

Referred pain

Carcinoma of the pancreas. Ovarian in?ammation and tumours. Pelvic disease. Posterior duodenal ulcer. Prolapse of the womb.

Psychogenic causes

Anxiety. Depression.

People with backache can obtain advice from backache


See BACTERIA.... bacterium


A type of gram-negative (see GRAM’S STAIN), anaerobic, rod-like bacteria. They are generally non-motile and usually found in the alimentary and urogenital tracts of mammals. Often present in the mouth in association with periodontal disease (see TEETH, DISEASES OF).... bacteroides


Aegle marmelos


San: Bilva, Sriphal Hin, Ben, Ass: Bael Mal: Koovalam

Tam: Vilvam Mar,

Ben: Baela

Tel: Marendu, Bilvapondu

Guj: Bilviphal

Kan: Bilvapatra

Importance: Bael or Bengal quince is a deciduous sacred tree, associated with Gods having useful medicinal properties, especially as a cooling agent. This tree is popular in ‘Shiva’ and ‘Vishnu’ temples and it can be grown in every house. Its leaves are trifoliate symbolizing the ‘Thrimurthies’-Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva, with spear shaped leaflets resembling “Thrisoolam” the weapon of Lord Shiva. Many legends, stories and myths are associated with this tree. The leaflets are given to devotees as ‘prasadam’ in Shiva temples and as ‘Tulasi’ in Vishnu temples.

Every part of the tree is medicinal and useful. The roots are used in many Ayurvedic medicines for curing diabetes and leprosy. It is an ingredient of the ‘dasamoola’. The Bark is used to cure intestinal disorders. Leaves contain an alkaloid rutacin which is hypoglycaemic.

‘Two leaves before breakfast’ is said to keep diabetes under control. Leaves and fruits are useful in controlling diarrhoea and dysentery. Fruit pulp is used as ‘shampoo’ and cooling agent. It is also a rich source of carbohydrate, protein, fat, fibre, minerals and vitamin B and C. Fruit pulp is used to cure mouth ulcers as it is the richest natural source of riboflavin (1191 units/ 100 g). ‘Bael sharbat’ is prepared by mixing the fruit pulp with sugar, water and tamarind juice, which is very useful for stomach and intestinal disorders. The rind of the fruit is used for dyeing and tanning. The aromatic wood is used to make pestles in oil and sugar mills and also to make agricultural implements (Rajarajan, 1997).

Distribution: Bael tree is native to India and is found growing wild in Sub-Himalayan tracts from Jhelum eastwards to West Bengal, in central and south India. It is grown all over the country, especially in the premises of temples and houses.

Botany: Aegle marmelos (Linn.) Corr.ex Roxb. belongs to the citrus family Rutaceae. The golden coloured bael fruit resembles a golden apple and hence the generic name Aegle. The specific name marmelos is derived from marmelosin contained in the fruit (Nair, 1997). Aegle marmelos is a medium sized armed deciduous tree growing upto 8m in height with straight sharp axillary thorns and yellowish brown shallowly furrowed corky bark. Leaves are alternate, trifoliate and aromatic; leaflets ovate or ovate-lanceolate, crenate, pellucid- punctate, the laterals subsessile and the terminal long petioled. Flowers are greenish-white, sweet scented, borne on axillary panicles. Fruit is globose, woody berry with golden yellow rind when ripe. Seeds are numerous oblong, compressed and embedded in the orange brown sweet gummy pulp.

Agrotechnology: Bael comes up well in humid tropical and subtropical climate. It grows on a wide range of soils from sandy loam to clay loam. North Indian varieties are preferred to South Indian types for large scale cultivation. Twelve varieties are cultivated in North India for their fruits. Kacha, Ettawa, Seven Large, Mirsapuri and Deo Reo Large are varieties meant specially for ‘Sharbat’. The plant is propagated mainly by seeds and rarely by root cuttings. Seeds are freshly extracted from ripe fruits after removing the pulp and then dried in sun. Seeds are soaked in water for 6 hours and sown on seed beds which are covered with rotten straw and irrigated regularly. Seeds germinate within 15-20 days. One month old seedlings can be transplanted into polybags which can be planted in the field after 2 months. Budded or grafted plants as well as new saplings arising from injured roots can also be used for planting. Grafted plants start yielding from the 4th year while the trees raised from seeds bear fruits after 7-10 years. Planting is done in the main field with onset of monsoon in June-July at a spacing of 6-8m. Pits of size 50cm3 are dug. Pits are filled with a mixture of top soil and 10kg of well decomposed FYM and formed into a heap. Seedlings are transplanted in the middle of the heap and mulched. Chemical fertilisers are not usually applied. The dose of organic manure is increased every year till 50kg/tree of 5 years or more. Regular irrigation and weeding are required during early stages of growth. No serious pests and diseases are noted in the crop. Bael tree flowers during April. The flowers are aromatic with pleasant and heavenly odour. The fruits are set and slowly develop into mature fruits. Fruits are seen from October-March. A single tree bears 200-400 fruits each weighing 1-2 kg. Roots can be collected from mature trees of age 10 years or more. Tree is cut down about 1m from the ground. The underground roots are carefully dug out. Roots with the attached wood is then marketed (Rajarajan,1997).

Properties and activity: Bael is reported to contain a number of coumarins, alkaloids, sterols and essential oils. Roots and fruits contain coumarins such as scoparone, scopoletin, umbelliferone, marmesin and skimmin. Fruits, in addition, contain xanthotoxol, imperatorin and alloimperatorin and alkaloids like aegeline and marmeline identified as N-2-hydroxy-2- 4 - (3’,3’-dimethyl allyloxy) phenyl ethyl cinnamide. - sitosterol and its glycoside are also present in the fruits. Roots and stem barks contain a coumarin - aegelinol. Roots also contain psoralen, xanthotoxin, 6,7-dimethoxy coumarin, tembamide, mermin and skimmianine. Leaves contain the alkaloids - O-(3,3-dimethyl allyl)-halfordinol, N-2-ethoxy-2 (4-methoxy phenyl) ethyl cinnamide, N-2-methoxy-2-(4-3’,3’-dimethyl allyloxy) phenyl ethyl cinnamide, N- 2-4-(3’,3’-dimethyl allyloxy) phenyl ethyl cinnamide, N-2-hydroxy-2- 4-(3’,3’-dimethyl allyloxy) phenyl ethyl cinnamide, N-4-methoxy steryl cinnamide and N-2-hydroxy-2-(4- hydroxy phenyl) ethyl cinnamide. Mermesinin, rutin and -sitosterol - -D-glucoside are also present in the leaves (Husain et al, 1992).

Root, bark, leaves and fruits are hypoglycaemic, astringent and febrifuge. Root, stem and bark are antidiarrhoeal and antivenin. Leaf is antiinflammatory, expectorant, anticatarrhal, antiasthamatic, antiulcerous and ophthalmic. Flower is emetic. Unripe fruit is stomachic and demulcent. Ripe fruit is antigonorrhoeal, cardiotonic, restorative, laxative, antitubercular, antidysenteric and antiscorbutic. Seed is anthelmintic and antimicrobial (Warrier et al, 1993).... bael


BAL is the abbreviation for British Anti-Lewisite. (See DIMERCAPROL.)... bal


The ability to balance is essential for a person to stand, walk and run. Maintaining this ability is a complex exercise of coordination dependent on the brain, sensory and motor nerves, and joints. There is a regular supply of information to the brain about the positions of various parts of the body and it responds with relevant instructions to the motor parts of the body. Eyes, the inner ear, skin and muscles all provide information. The cerebellum (part of the brain) collates all the information and initiates action. Balance may be affected by disorders in the balancing mechanism of the inner ear (semicircular canals) such as MENIERE’S DISEASE, and in?ammation of the labyrinth (labyrinthitis). Infection of the middle ear, such as otitis media (see under EAR, DISEASES OF), can also disturb the ability to balance, sometimes accompanied by dizziness or VERTIGO. If the cerebellum is affected by disease – a tumour or a stroke, for example – the result will be faulty muscular coordination leading to clumsiness and the inability to walk properly.... balance


A form of dysentery caused by a protozoon known as Balantidium coli – a common parasite in pigs, which are usually the source of infection. It responds to metronidazole.... balantidiasis


The technique of examining a ?uid-?lled part of the body for the presence of a ?oating object. For example, a fetus can be pushed away by a ?nger inside the mother’s vagina. The fetus ?oats away from the examining ?nger and then bounces back on to it.... ballottement


Soft or hard plant or tree resins composed of aromatic acids and oils. These are typically used as stimulating dressings and aromatic expectorants and diuretics. This term is also applied loosely to many plants that may not exude resins but which have a soothing, pitchy scent. Examples: Balsam Poplar, Eriodicyon.... balsamic


Chelone glabra. N.O. Scrophulariaceae.

Synonym: Bitter Herb. Snake Head, Turtle Bloom, Turtle Head

Habitat: Common in North America.

Features ? Short-stalked leaves, opposite, oblong, lanceolate. Fruits ovate, half-inch long, bunched on short spike, two-celled, with roundish, winged, dark-centred seeds. Very bitter taste.

Part used ? Leaves.

Action: Anthelmintic, detergent, tonic.

Used in constipation, dyspepsia, debility, and children's worms. Sometimes added to alteratives. Infusion of 1 ounce to 1 pint water in

wineglassful doses. Powdered herb, 5-10 grains.... balmony


Fertility, Potency, Prosperity... banana


Bath; common ingredients in baths include herbs, flowers, aguas (fragrant flower or plant essences, usually alcohol-based and artificially colored) and scented oils or perfumes; popular bath ingredients can be used individually or combined as a mixture of dried herbs and powders in packets or already prepared and infused in water. They are often sold at botánicas as packets or already prepared in liter-size bottles (usually recycled plastic soda bottles, juice jugs or milk containers). Bath preparations are used therapeutically for physical illness or as part of spiritual healing traditions to attract positive energy or dispel unwanted energy.... baño

Barium Sulphate

A radio-opaque white powder used in X-ray examinations of the stomach and gastrointestinal tract. The barium sulphate may be swallowed to enable the oesophagus, stomach and small and large intestines to be assessed for disorders such as ulceration, tumours, DIVERTICULAR DISEASE and polyps. It may also be inserted into the RECTUM or descending COLON to investigate for possible disease. These procedures are usually done after endoscopy examinations have been carried out.... barium sulphate


Specialised nerve ending which lines certain blood vessels and acts as a stretch receptor in the carotid sinus, aortic arch, atria, pulmonary veins and left ventricle. Increased pressure in these structures increases the rate of discharge of the baroreceptors. This information is relayed to the medulla and is important in the control of blood pressure.... baroreceptor

Barrier Nursing

The nursing of a patient suffering from an infectious disease in such a way that the risk of their passing on the disease to others is reduced. Thus, precautions are taken to ensure that all infective matter – such as stools, urine, sputum, discharge from wounds, and anything that may be contaminated by such infective matter (e.g. nurses’ uniforms, bedding and towels) – is so treated that it will not convey the infection. (See NURSING.)... barrier nursing


A genus of small Gram negative bacilli. Include the agents for Bartonellosis (Carrion’s Disease) caused by B. bacilliformis in South America. Other species include B. henselae , the cause of Cat Scratch Fever and B. quintana, the cause of Trench Fever.... bartonella

Basilic Vein

The prominent vein which runs from near the bend of the elbow upwards along the inner side of the upper arm.... basilic vein


The blueish appearance under the microscope of immature red blood corpuscles when stained by certain dyes. This appearance, with the blue areas collected in points, is seen in lead poisoning and the condition is called punctate basophilia. The term basophilia may also mean an increase in the numbers of basophil cells in the blood.... basophilia

Bat Ears

The term commonly applied to prominent ears. The condition may be familial, but this is by no means the rule. Strapping the ears ?rmly back has no e?ect and is merely an embarrassment to the child. Where the patient wishes it, the condition can be recti?ed by plastic surgery.... bat ears


(French) Resembling a berry Baye, Bai, Bae... bay


(Bacillus Calmette-Guêrin) A live attenuated vaccine used in tuberculosis.... bcg


Anything which relieves or cures cough... bechic

Bed Bath

A procedure for thoroughly washing a patient who is con?ned to bed. It helps to maintain a healthy skin, especially over pressure-points such as elbows, buttocks and heels. An invaluable preventive measure against the development of bed sores (see ULCER).... bed bath

Bed Bug

Bed bug, or Cimex lectularius, is a wingless, blood-sucking insect, parasitic on humans. It is a ?at, rusty-brown insect, 5 mm long and 3 mm wide, which has an o?ensive, never-forgotten smell and cannot ?y. The average life is 3–6 months, but it can live for a year without food. The bed bug remains hidden during the day in cracks in walls and ?oors, and in beds. It does not transmit any known disease. Eggs hatch out into larvae in 6–10 days, which become adult within about 12 weeks. A temperature of 44 °C kills the adult in an hour. Various agents have been used to disinfect premises, such as sulphur dioxide, ethylene oxide mixed with carbon dioxide, hydrogen cyanide and heavy naphtha, but insecticide is the most e?ective disinfecting agent.... bed bug


Fagus species

Description: Beech trees are large (9 to 24 meters), symmetrical forest trees that have smooth, light-gray bark and dark green foliage. The character of its bark, plus its clusters of prickly seedpods, clearly distinguish the beech tree in the field.

Habitat and Distribution: This tree is found in the Temperate Zone. It grows wild in the eastern United States, Europe, Asia, and North Africa. It is found in moist areas, mainly in the forests. This tree is common throughout southeastern Europe and across temperate Asia. Beech relatives are also found in Chile, New Guinea, and New Zealand.

Edible Parts: The mature beechnuts readily fall out of the husklike seedpods. You can eat these dark brown triangular nuts by breaking the thin shell with your fingernail and removing the white, sweet kernel inside. Beechnuts are one of the most delicious of all wild nuts. They are a most useful survival food because of the kernel’s high oil content. You can also use the beechnuts as a coffee substitute. Roast them so that the kernel becomes golden brown and quite hard. Then pulverize the kernel and, after boiling or steeping in hot water, you have a passable coffee substitute.... beech



Nutritional Profile Energy value (calories per serving): Low Protein: Moderate Fat: None Saturated fat: None Cholesterol: None Carbohydrates: High Fiber: None Sodium: Low Major vitamin contribution: B vitamins Major mineral contribution: Phosphorus

About the Nutrients in This Food Beer and ale are fermented beverages created by yeasts that convert the sugars in malted barley and grain to ethyl alcohol (a.k.a. “alcohol,” “drink- ing alcohol”).* The USDA /Health and Human Services Dietary Guidelines for Americans defines one drink as 12 ounces of beer, five ounces of wine, or 1.25 ounces of distilled spirits. One 12-ounce glass of beer has 140 calo- ries, 86 of them (61 percent) from alcohol. But the beverage—sometimes nicknamed “liquid bread”—is more than empty calories. Like wine, beer retains small amounts of some nutrients present in the food from which it was made. * Because yeasts cannot digest t he starches in grains, t he grains to be used in mak ing beer and ale are allowed to germinate ( “malt” ). When it is t ime to make t he beer or ale, t he malted grain is soaked in water, forming a mash in which t he starches are split into simple sugars t hat can be digested (fermented) by t he yeasts. If undisturbed, t he fermentat ion will cont inue unt il all t he sugars have been digested, but it can be halted at any t ime simply by raising or lowering t he temperature of t he liquid. Beer sold in bott les or cans is pasteurized to k ill t he yeasts and stop t he fermentat ion. Draft beer is not pasteurized and must be refrigerated unt il tapped so t hat it will not cont inue to ferment in t he container. The longer t he shipping t ime, t he more likely it is t hat draft beer will be exposed to temperature variat ions t hat may affect its qualit y—which is why draft beer almost always tastes best when consumed near t he place where it was brewed. The Nutrients in Beer (12-ounce glass)

  Nutrients   Beer   %R DA
Calcium 17 mg 1.7
Magnesium 28.51 mg 7–9*
Phosphorus 41.1 mg 6
Potassium 85.7 mg (na)
Zinc 0.06 mg 0.5– 0.8*
Thiamin 0.02 mg 1.6 –1.8*
R iboflavin 0.09 mg 7– 8*
Niacin 1.55 mg 10
Vitamin B6 0.17 mg 13
Folate 20.57 mcg 5
  * t he first figure is t he %R DA for a man; t he second, for a woman Source: USDA Nut rient Database: w w /nut

Diets That May Restrict or Exclude This Food Bland diet Gluten-free diet Low-purine (antigout) diet

Buying This Food Look for: A popular brand that sells steadily and will be fresh when you buy it. Avoid: Dusty or warm bottles and cans.

Storing This Food Store beer in a cool place. Beer tastes best when consumed within two months of the day it is made. Since you cannot be certain how long it took to ship the beer to the store or how long it has been sitting on the grocery shelves, buy only as much beer as you plan to use within a week or two. Protect bottled beer and open bottles or cans of beer from direct sunlight, which can change sulfur compounds in beer into isopentyl mercaptan, the smelly chemical that gives stale beer its characteristic unpleasant odor.

When You Are Ready to Serve This Food Serve beer only in absolutely clean glasses or mugs. Even the slightest bit of grease on the side of the glass will kill the foam immediately. Wash beer glasses with detergent, not soap, and let them drain dry rather than drying them with a towel that might carry grease from your hands to the glass. If you like a long-lasting head on your beer, serve the brew in tall, tapering glasses to let the foam spread out and stabilize. For full flavor, serve beer and ales cool but not ice-cold. Very low temperatures immo- bilize the molecules that give beer and ale their flavor and aroma.

What Happens When You Cook This Food When beer is heated (in a stew or as a basting liquid), the alcohol evaporates but the flavor- ing agents remain intact. Alcohol, an acid, reacts with metal ions from an aluminum or iron pot to form dark compounds that discolor the pot or the dish you are cooking in. To prevent this, prepare dishes made with beer in glass or enameled pots.

Medical Uses and/or Benefits Reduced risk of heart attack. Data from the American Cancer Society’s Cancer Prevention Study 1, a 12-year survey of more than 1 million Americans in 25 states, shows that men who take one drink a day have a 21 percent lower risk of heart attack and a 22 percent lower risk of stroke than men who do not drink at all. Women who have up to one drink a day also reduce their risk of heart attack. Numerous later studies have confirmed these findings. Lower risk of stroke. In January 1999, the results of a 677-person study published by researchers at New York Presbyterian Hospital-Columbia University showed that moder- ate alcohol consumption reduces the risk of stroke due to a blood clot in the brain among older people (average age: 70). How the alcohol prevents stroke is still unknown, but it is clear that moderate use of alcohol is a key. Heavy drinkers (those who consume more than seven drinks a day) have a higher risk of stroke. People who once drank heavily, but cut their consumption to moderate levels, can also reduce their risk of stroke. Numerous later studies have confirmed these findings. Lower cholesterol levels. Beverage alcohol decreases the body’s production and storage of low-density lipoproteins (LDLs), the protein and fat particles that carr y cholesterol into your arteries. As a result, people who drink moderately tend to have lower cholesterol levels and higher levels of high density lipoproteins (HDLs), the fat and protein particles that carr y cholesterol out of the body. The USDA /Health and Human Services Dietar y Guidelines for Americans defines moderation as two drinks a day for a man, one drink a day for a woman. Stimulating the appetite. Alcoholic beverages stimulate the production of saliva and the gastric acids that cause the stomach contractions we call hunger pangs. Moderate amounts of alcoholic beverages, which may help stimulate appetite, are often prescribed for geriatric patients, convalescents, and people who do not have ulcers or other chronic gastric problems that might be exacerbated by the alcohol. Dilation of blood vessels. Alcohol dilates the capillaries (the tiny blood vessels just under the skin), and moderate amounts of alcoholic beverages produce a pleasant flush that temporar- ily warms the drinker. But drinking is not an effective way to warm up in cold weather since the warm blood that flows up to the capillaries will cool down on the surface of your skin and make you even colder when it circulates back into the center of your body. Then an alco- hol flush will make you perspire, so that you lose more heat. Excessive amounts of beverage alcohol may depress the mechanism that regulates body temperature.

Adverse Effects Associated with This Food Increased risk of breast cancer. In 2008, scientists at the National Cancer Institute released data from a seven-year survey of more than 100,000 postmenopausal women showing that even moderate drinking (one to two drinks a day) may increase by 32 percent a woman’s risk of developing estrogen-receptor positive (ER+) and progesterone-receptor positive (PR+) breast cancer, tumors whose growth is stimulated by hormones. No such link was found between consuming alcohol and the risk of developing ER-/PR- tumors (not fueled by hor- mones). The finding applies to all types of alcohol: beer, wine, and spirits. Increased risk of oral cancer (cancer of the mouth and throat). Numerous studies confirm the American Cancer Society’s warning that men and women who consume more than two drinks a day are at higher risk of oral cancer than are nondrinkers or people who drink less. Note: The Dietary Guidelines for Americans describes one drink as 12 ounces of beer, five ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces of distilled spirits. Increased risk of cancer of the colon and rectum. In the mid-1990s, studies at the University of Oklahoma suggested that men who drink more than five beers a day are at increased risk of rectal cancer. Later studies suggested that men and women who are heavy beer or spirits drinkers (but not those who are heavy wine drinkers) have a higher risk of colorectal cancers. Further studies are required to confirm these findings. Fetal alcohol syndrome. Fetal alcohol syndrome is a specific pattern of birth defects—low birth weight, heart defects, facial malformations, and mental retardation—first recognized in a study of babies born to alcoholic women who consumed more than six drinks a day while pregnant. Subsequent research has found a consistent pattern of milder defects in babies born to women who consume three to four drinks a day or five drinks on any one occasion while pregnant. To date, there is no evidence of a consistent pattern of birth defects in babies born to women who consume less than one drink a day while pregnant, but two studies at Columbia University have suggested that as few as two drinks a week while preg- nant may raise a woman’s risk of miscarriage. (“One drink” means 12 ounces of beer, five ounces of wine, or 1.25 ounces of distilled spirits.) Alcoholism. Alcoholism is an addiction disease, the inability to control one’s alcohol consumption. It is a potentially life-threatening condition, with a higher risk of death by accident, suicide, malnutrition, or acute alcohol poisoning, a toxic reaction that kills by para- lyzing body organs, including the heart. Malnutrition. While moderate alcohol consumption stimulates appetite, alcohol abuse depresses it. In addition, an alcoholic may drink instead of eating. When an alcoholic does eat, excess alcohol in his/her body prevents absorption of nutrients and reduces the ability to synthesize new tissue. Hangover. Alcohol is absorbed from the stomach and small intestine and carried by the bloodstream to the liver, where it is oxidized to acetaldehyde by alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH), the enzyme our bodies use to metabolize the alcohol we produce when we digest carbohydrates. The acetaldehyde is converted to acetyl coenzyme A and either eliminated from the body or used in the synthesis of cholesterol, fatty acids, and body tissues. Although individuals vary widely in their capacity to metabolize alcohol, on average, normal healthy adults can metabolize the alcohol in one quart of beer in approximately five to six hours. If they drink more than that, they will have more alcohol than the body’s natural supply of ADH can handle. The unmetabolized alcohol will pile up in the bloodstream, interfering with the liver’s metabolic functions. Since alcohol decreases the reabsorption of water from the kidneys and may inhibit the secretion of an antidiuretic hormone, they will begin to urinate copiously, losing magnesium, calcium, and zinc but retaining more irritating uric acid. The level of lactic acid in the body will increase, making them feel tired and out of sorts; their acid-base balance will be out of kilter; the blood vessels in their heads will swell and throb; and their stomachs, with linings irritated by the alcohol, will ache. The ultimate result is a “hangover” whose symptoms will disappear only when enough time has passed to allow their bodies to marshal the ADH needed to metabolize the extra alcohol in their blood. Changes in body temperature. Alcohol dilates capillaries, tiny blood vessels just under the skin, producing a “flush” that temporarily warms the drinker. But drinking is not an effective way to stay warm in cold weather. Warm blood flowing up from the body core to the surface capillaries is quickly chilled, making you even colder when it circulates back into your organs. In addition, an alcohol flush triggers perspiration, further cooling your skin. Finally, very large amounts of alcohol may actually depress the mechanism that regulates body temperature. Impotence. Excessive drinking decreases libido (sexual desire) and interferes with the ability to achieve or sustain an erection. “Beer belly.” Data from a 1995, 12,000 person study at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill show that people who consume at least six beers a week have more rounded abdomens than people who do not drink beer. The question left to be answered is which came first: the tummy or the drinking.

Food/Drug Interactions Acetaminophen (Tylenol, etc.). The FDA recommends that people who regularly have three or more drinks a day consult a doctor before using acetaminophen. The alcohol/acetamino- phen combination may cause liver failure. Disulfiram (Antabuse). Taken with alcohol, disulfiram causes flushing, nausea, low blood pressure, faintness, respiratory problems, and confusion. The severity of the reaction gener- ally depends on how much alcohol you drink, how much disulfiram is in your body, and how long ago you took it. Disulfiram is used to help recovering alcoholics avoid alcohol. (If taken with alcohol, metronidazole [Flagyl], procarbazine [Matulane], quinacrine [Atabrine], chlorpropamide (Diabinase), and some species of mushrooms may produce a mild disulfi- ramlike reaction.) Anticoagulants. Alcohol slows the body’s metabolism of anticoagulants (blood thinners) such as warfarin (Coumadin), intensif ying the effect of the drugs and increasing the risk of side effects such as spontaneous nosebleeds. Antidepressants. Alcohol may increase the sedative effects of antidepressants. Drinking alcohol while you are taking a monoamine oxidase (M AO) inhibitor is especially hazard- ous. M AO inhibitors inactivate naturally occurring enzymes in your body that metabolize tyramine, a substance found in many fermented or aged foods. Tyramine constricts blood vessels and increases blood pressure. If you eat a food containing tyramine while you are taking an M AO inhibitor, you cannot effectively eliminate the tyramine from your body. The result may be a hypertensive crisis. Ordinarily, fermentation of beer and ale does not produce tyramine, but some patients have reported tyramine reactions after drinking some imported beers. Beer and ale are usually prohibited to those using M AO inhibitors. Aspirin, ibuprofen, ketoprofen, naproxen, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Like alcohol, these analgesics irritate the lining of the stomach and may cause gastric bleeding. Combining the two intensifies the effect. Insulin and oral hypoglycemics. Alcohol lowers blood sugar and interferes with the metabo- lism of oral antidiabetics; the combination may cause severe hypoglycemia. Sedatives and other central nervous system depressants (tranquilizers, sleeping pills, antidepres- sants, sinus and cold remedies, analgesics, and medication for motion sickness). Alcohol inten- sifies sedation and, depending on the dose, may cause drowsiness, respiratory depression, coma, or death.... beer


(Indian) From the sacred wood... bel


A container made of metal, ?bre or plastic into which a person con?ned to bed can defaecate and, in the case of a female, urinate. Men use a urinal – a ?ask-shaped container – to urinate. Hospitals have special cleaning and sterilising equipment for bedpans. They are much less used than in the past because patients are encouraged to be mobile as soon as possible, and also because bedside commodes are preferred where this is practical.... bedpan

Bee Stings

See BITES AND STINGS.... bee stings

Bell’s Palsy

Bell’s palsy, or idiopathic facial nerve palsy, refers to the isolated paralysis of the facial muscles on one or both sides. It is of unclear cause, though damage to the seventh cranial, or FACIAL NERVE, possibly of viral origin, is thought likely. Occurring in both sexes at any age, it presents with a facial pain on the affected side, followed by an inability to close the eye or smile. The mouth appears to be drawn over to the opposite side, and ?uids may escape from the angle of the mouth. Lines of expression are ?attened and the patient is unable to wrinkle the brow. Rare causes include mastoiditis, LYME DISEASE, and hypertension.

Treatment Oral steroids, if started early, increase the rate of recovery, which occurs in over 90 per cent of patients, usually starting after two or three weeks and complete within three months. Permanent loss of function with facial contractures occurs in about 5 per cent of patients. Recurrence of Bell’s palsy is unusual.... bell’s palsy

Benzyl Benzoate

An emulson that was widely used as a treatment for SCABIES but is less e?ective and more irritant than newer scabicides. It is not advised for use in children.... benzyl benzoate


One of the antimuscarinic (see ANTIMUSCARINE) group of drugs used to treat PARKINSONISM. Acting by correcting the relative central cholinergic excess resulting from DOPAMINE de?ciency, the drug has a moderate e?ect, reducing tremor and rigidity but with little action on BRADYKINESIA. It has a synergistic (see SYNERGIST) e?ect when used with LEVODOPA and is useful in reducing SIALORRHOEA. Valuable in treating cases of Parkinsonian side-effects occurring with neuroleptic drugs. Tardive DYSKINESIA is not improved and may be made worse.

There are few signi?cant di?erences between the various antimuscarinic drugs available, but some patients may tolerate one drug better than another or ?nd that they need to adjust their drug regimen in relation to food.... benzhexol


A large family of drugs used as HYPNOTICS, ANXIOLYTICS, TRANQUILLISERS, ANTICONVULSANTS, premedicants, and for intravenous sedation. Short-acting varieties are used as hypnotics; longer-acting ones as hypnotics and tranquillisers. Those with high lipid solubility act rapidly if given intravenously.

Benzodiazepines act at a speci?c centralnervous-system receptor or by potentiating the action of inhibitory neuro-transmitters. They have advantages over other sedatives by having some selectivity for anxiety rather than general sedation. They are safer in overdose. Unfortunately they may cause aggression, amnesia, excessive sedation, or confusion in the elderly. Those with long half-lives or with metabolites having long half-lives may produce a hangover e?ect, and DEPENDENCE on these is now well recognised, so they should not be prescribed for more than a few weeks. Commonly used benzodiazepines include nitrazepam, ?unitrazepam (a controlled drug), loprazolam, temazepam (a controlled drug) and chlormethiazole, normally con?ned to the elderly. All benzodiazepines should be used sparingly because of the risk of dependence.... benzodiazepines

Bicarbonate Of Soda

Also known as baking soda. Bicarbonate of soda is an alkali, sometimes used as a home remedy for indigestion or for soothing insect bites.... bicarbonate of soda


A term used for a muscle that has two heads. The biceps femoris ?exes the knee and extends the hip, and the biceps brachii supinates the forearm and ?exes the elbow and shoulder.... biceps

Bifocal Lens

A spectacle lens in which the upper part is shaped to assist distant vision and the lower part is for close work such as reading.... bifocal lens


The point at which a structure (for example, a blood vessel) divides into two branches.... bifurcation


Group of antimalarial drugs which includes Proguanil (Paludrine) used for malaria prophylaxis.... biguanides

Bile Duct

The channel running from the gall-bladder (see LIVER) to the DUODENUM; carries BILE.... bile duct


Bilharziasis is another name for SCHISTOSOMIASIS.... bilharziasis


A symptom-picture resulting from a short-term disordered liver, with constipation, frontal headache, spots in front of the eyes, poor appetite, and nausea or vomiting. The usual causes are heavy alcohol consumption, poor ventilation when working with solvents, heavy binging with fatty foods, or moderate consumption of rancid fats. The term is genially archaic in medicine; people who are bilious are seldom genial, however.... biliousness


Relating to both ears.... binaural


Relating to both eyes. Binocular vision involves focusing on an object with both eyes simultaneously and is important in judging distance.... binocular


Assessment of the efficacy and persistence of an insecticidal treatment by exposing mosquitoes of known susceptibility to a treated surface or area for a standard period of time.... bioassay


A technique whereby an auditory or visual stimulus follows on from a physiological response. Thus, a subject’s ELECTROCARDIOGRAM (ECG) may be monitored, and a signal passed back to the subject indicating his or her heart rate: for example, a red light if the rate is between 50 and 60 beats a minute; a green light if it is between 60 and 70 a minute. Once the subject has learned to discriminate between these two rates, he or she can then learn to control the heart rate. How this is learned is not clear, but by utilising biofeedback some subjects can control heart rate and blood pressure, relax spastic muscles, bring migraine under control and even help constipation.... biofeedback

Biomechanical Engineering

The joint utilisation of engineering and biological knowledge to illuminate normal and abnormal functions of the human body. Blood ?ow, the reaction of bones and joints to stress, the design of kidney dialysis machines, and the development of arti?cial body parts are among the practical results of this collaboration.... biomechanical engineering

Bipolar Disorder

A type of mental illness typi?ed by mood swings between elation (mania) and depression (see MENTAL ILLNESS).... bipolar disorder

Birth Canal

The passage that extends from the neck of the womb (UTERUS), known as the CERVIX UTERI, to the opening of the VAGINA. The baby passes along this passage during childbirth.... birth canal

Birth Defects

See CONGENITAL.... birth defects


Bisacodyl is a laxative which acts by stimulation of the nerve endings in the colon by direct contact with the mucous lining.... bisacodyl


Having the qualities of both sexes. The term is used to describe people who are sexually attracted to both men and women.... bisexual


Various bismuth chelates and complexes, such as sucralfate, e?ective in healing gastric and duodenal ulcers are available. They may act by a direct toxic e?ect on gastric HELICOBACTER PYLORI, or by stimulating mucosal prostaglandin (see PROSTAGLANDINS) or bicarbonate secretion. Healing tends to be longer than with H2-RECEPTOR ANTAGONISTS and relapse still occurs. New regimens are being developed involving co-administration with antibiotics. ENCEPHALOPATHY, described with older high-dose bismuth preparations, has not been reported.... bismuth


Bisphosphonates, of which disodium etidronate is one, are a group of drugs used mainly in the treatment of PAGET’S DISEASE OF BONE and in established vertebral osteoporosis (see BONE, DISORDERS OF). Their advantage over CALCITONIN (which has to be given by subcutaneous or intramuscular injection) is that they can be taken orally. They act by reducing the increased rate of bone turnover associated with the disease. Disodium etidronate is used with calcium carbonate in a 90-day cycle (duration of therapy up to three years) in the treatment of osteoporosis.... bisphosphonates


The use of teeth or other similar hard substance to puncture the skin of a victim, possibly resulting in the introduction of venom (eg snake bite). c.f. poison and sting.... bite

Bitter Melon

See Cundeamor.... bitter melon

Bitter Orange

See Naranja agria.... bitter orange


Protection, Healing ... bittersweet

Bitter Root

Apocynum androsaemifolium. N.O. Asclepiadaceae.

Synonym: Dogsbane, Milkweed.

Habitat: Indigenous to North America.

Features ? Root is nearly three-quarters of an inch thick, light brown, transversely- wrinkled bark, easily parting from white, woody centre ; groups of stone cells in outer bark. Whole plant gives a gelatinous, milky juice when wounded.

Part used ? Root.

Action: Cathartic, diuretic, detergent, emetic, tonic.

2-5 grains thrice daily as a general tonic, useful in dyspepsia. 5-15 grain doses in cardiac dropsy. Has been recommended in the treatment of Bright's disease. Large doses cause vomiting. Tendency to gripe can be eliminated by adding Peppermint, Calamus or other carminative.... bitter root


Healing, Money, Protection... blackberry


Protection, Sea Spells, Wind Spells, Money, Psychic Powers... bladderwrack

Black Haw

Viburnum prunifolium. N.O. Caprifoliaceae.

Synonym: American Sloe, Stagbush.

Habitat: Dry woods, throughout Central and Southern States of North America. Features ? A tree-like shrub, ten to twenty feet high. Fruit shiny black, sweet and

edible. Young bark glossy purplish-brown, with scattered warts. Old bark greyish-

brown, inner surface white. Fracture short. Root bark cinnamon colour. Taste bitter,


Part used ? Root bark (preferred); also bark of stem and branches.

Action: Uterine tonic, nervine, anti-spasmodic.

Uterine weaknesses, leucorrhaea, dysmenorrhea. Prevention of miscarriage—given four or five weeks before. Infusion of 1 ounce to 1 pint of boiling water—table-spoonful doses.... black haw


Free discharge of mucus... blennorrhagia


An excessive discharge of mucus or slimy material from a surface, such as that of the eye, nose, bowel, etc. The word ‘catarrh’ is used with the same meaning, but also includes the idea of in?ammation as the cause of such discharge.... blenorrhoea


A CYTOTOXIC antibiotic, obtained from Streptomyces verticillus, used to treat solid cancerous tumours of the upper part of the gut and genital tract, and lymphomas. Like other cytotoxic drugs it can have serious side-effects, and bleomycin may cause pulmonary ?brosis and skin pigmentation.... bleomycin

Blood Bank

A department in which blood products are prepared, stored, and tested prior to transfusion into patients.... blood bank

Blood Brain Barrier

A functional, semi-permeable membrane separating the brain and cerebrospinal ?uid from the blood. It allows small and lipid-soluble molecules to pass freely but is impermeable to large or ionised molecules and cells.... blood brain barrier

Blood Corpuscle

See ERYTHROCYTES and LEUCOCYTES.... blood corpuscle

Blood Donor

An individual who donates his or her own blood for use in patients of compatible blood group who require transfusion.... blood donor

Blood Gases

Speci?cally, this describes the measurement of the tensions of oxygen and carbon dioxide in blood. However, it is commonly used to describe the analysis of a sample of heparinised arterial blood for measurement of oxygen, carbon dioxide, oxygen saturation, pH, bicarbonate, and base excess (the amount of acid required to return a unit volume of the blood to normal pH). These values are vital in monitoring the severity of illness in patients receiving intensive care or who have severe respiratory illness, as they provide a guide to the e?ectiveness of oxygen transport between the outside air and the body tissues. Thus they are both a guide to whether the patient is being optimally ventilated, and also a general guide to the severity of their illness.... blood gases

Blood Root

Sanguinaria canadensis. N.O. Papaveraceae.

Habitat: Widely distributed throughout North America.

Features ? Root reddish-brown, wrinkled lengthwise, about half-inch thick. Fracture short. Section whitish, with many small, red resin cells which sometimes suffuse the whole. Heavy odour, bitter and harsh to the taste.

Part used ? Root.

Action: Stimulant, tonic, expectorant.

Pulmonary complaints and bronchitis. Should be administered in whooping-cough and croup until emesis occurs. The powdered root is used as a snuff in nasal catarrh, and externally in ringworm and other skin eruptions. The American Thomsonians use it in the treatment of adenoids. Dose, 10 to 20 grains of the powdered root.... blood root

Blood Test

Removal of venous, capillary or arterial blood for haematological, microbiological or biochemical laboratory investigations.... blood test

Blood Vessel

Tube through which blood is conducted from or to the heart. Blood from the heart is conducted via arteries and arterioles through capillaries and back to the heart via venules and then veins. (See ARTERIES and VEINS.)... blood vessel

Blood Groups

People are divided into four main groups in respect of a certain reaction of the blood. This depends upon the capacity of the serum of one person’s blood to cause the red cells of another’s to stick together (agglutinate). The reaction depends on antigens (see ANTIGEN), known as agglutinogens, in the erythrocytes and on ANTIBODIES, known as agglutinins, in the serum. There are two of each, the agglutinogens being known as A and B. A person’s erythrocytes may have (1) no agglutinogens, (2) agglutinogen A, (3) agglutinogen B, (4) agglutinogens A and B: these are the four groups. Since the identi?cation of the ABO and Rhesus factors (see below), around 400 other antigens have been discovered, but they cause few problems over transfusions.

In blood transfusion, the person giving and the person receiving the blood must belong to the same blood group, or a dangerous reaction will take place from the agglutination that occurs when blood of a di?erent group is present. One exception is that group O Rhesus-negative blood can be used in an emergency for anybody.

Agglutinogens Agglutinins Frequency
in the in the in Great
Group erythrocytes plasma Britain
AB A and B None 2 per cent
A A Anti-B 46 per cent
B B Anti-A 8 per cent
O Neither Anti-A and 44 per cent
A nor B Anti-B

Rhesus factor In addition to the A and B agglutinogens (or antigens), there is another one known as the Rhesus (or Rh) factor – so named because there is a similar antigen in the red blood corpuscles of the Rhesus monkey. About 84 per cent of the population have this Rh factor in their blood and are therefore known as ‘Rh-positive’. The remaining 16 per cent who do not possess the factor are known as ‘Rh-negative’.

The practical importance of the Rh factor is that, unlike the A and B agglutinogens, there are no naturally occurring Rh antibodies. However, such antibodies may develop in a Rh-negative person if the Rh antigen is introduced into his or her circulation. This can occur (a) if a Rh-negative person is given a transfusion of Rh-positive blood, and (b) if a Rh-negative mother married to a Rh-positive husband becomes pregnant and the fetus is Rh-positive. If the latter happens, the mother develops Rh antibodies which can pass into the fetal circulation, where they react with the baby’s Rh antigen and cause HAEMOLYTIC DISEASE of the fetus and newborn. This means that, untreated, the child may be stillborn or become jaundiced shortly after birth.

As about one in six expectant mothers is Rh-negative, a blood-group examination is now considered an essential part of the antenatal examination of a pregnant woman. All such Rh-negative expectant mothers are now given a ‘Rhesus card’ showing that they belong to the rhesus-negative blood group. This card should always be carried with them. Rh-positive blood should never be transfused to a Rh-negative girl or woman.... blood groups

Blue Flag

Iris versicolor. N.O. Iridaceae.

Synonym: Flag Lily, Liver Lily, Snake Lily, Water Lily.

Habitat: Marshy places in Central America.

Features ? Rhizome cylindrical, compressed towards larger end, where is cup-shaped stem scar. Breaks with sharp fracture, showing dark purple internally. Taste, acrid and pungent.

Part used ? Root.

Action: Alterative, diuretic, cathartic.

Skin affections; stimulates liver and other glands. Dose of the powdered root, 20 grains as a cathartic.... blue flag


(English) Resembling the blue flower

Bluebelle, Blubell, Blubelle, Bluebella, Blubella... bluebell



Bone Marrow

Bone marrow is the soft substance occupying the interior of bones. It is the site of formation of ERYTHROCYTES, granular LEUCOCYTES and PLATELETS.... bone marrow

Bone Marrow Transplant

The procedure by which malignant or defective bone marrow in a patient is replaced with normal bone marrow. Sometimes the patient’s own marrow is used (when the disease is in remission); after storage using tissue-freezing technique (cryopreservation) it is reinfused into the patient once the diseased marrow has been treated (autologous transplant). More commonly, a transplant uses marrow from a donor whose tissue has been matched for compatibility. The recipient’s marrow is destroyed with CYTOTOXIC drugs before transfusion. The recipient is initially nursed in an isolated environment to reduce the risk of infection.

Disorders that can be helped or even cured include certain types of LEUKAEMIA and many inherited disorders of the immune system (see IMMUNITY).... bone marrow transplant

Bone, Disorders Of

Bone is not an inert sca?olding for the human body. It is a living, dynamic organ, being continuously remodelled in response to external mechanical and chemical in?uences and acting as a large reservoir for calcium and phosphate. It is as susceptible to disease as any other organ, but responds in a way rather di?erent from the rest of the body.

Bone fractures These occur when there is a break in the continuity of the bone. This happens either as a result of violence or because the bone is unhealthy and unable to withstand normal stresses.

SIMPLE FRACTURES Fractures where the skin remains intact or merely grazed. COMPOUND FRACTURES have at least one wound which is in communication with the fracture, meaning that bacteria can enter the fracture site and cause infection. A compound fracture is also more serious than a simple fracture because there is greater potential for blood loss. Compound fractures usually need hospital admission, antibiotics and careful reduction of the fracture. Debridement (cleaning and excising dead tissue) in a sterile theatre may also be necessary.

The type of fracture depends on the force which has caused it. Direct violence occurs when an object hits the bone, often causing a transverse break – which means the break runs horizontally across the bone. Indirect violence occurs when a twisting injury to the ankle, for example, breaks the calf-bone (the tibia) higher up. The break may be more oblique. A fall on the outstretched hand may cause a break at the wrist, in the humerus or at the collar-bone depending on the force of impact and age of the person. FATIGUE FRACTURES These occur after the bone has been under recurrent stress. A typical example is the march fracture of the second toe, from which army recruits suffer after long marches. PATHOLOGICAL FRACTURES These occur in bone which is already diseased – for example, by osteoporosis (see below) in post-menopausal women. Such fractures are typically crush fractures of the vertebrae, fractures of the neck of the femur, and COLLES’ FRACTURE (of the wrist). Pathological fractures also occur in bone which has secondary-tumour deposits. GREENSTICK FRACTURES These occur in young children whose bones are soft and bend, rather than break, in response to stress. The bone tends to buckle on the side opposite to the force. Greenstick fractures heal quickly but still need any deformity corrected and plaster of Paris to maintain the correction. COMPLICATED FRACTURES These involve damage to important soft tissue such as nerves, blood vessels or internal organs. In these cases the soft-tissue damage needs as much attention as the fracture site. COMMINUTED FRACTURES A fracture with more than two fragments. It usually means that the injury was more violent and that there is more risk of damage to vessels and nerves. These fractures are unstable and take longer to unite. Rehabilitation tends to be protracted. DEPRESSED FRACTURES Most commonly found in skull fractures. A fragment of bone is forced inwards so that it lies lower than the level of the bone surrounding it. It may damage the brain beneath it.

HAIR-LINE FRACTURES These occur when the bone is broken but the force has not been severe enough to cause visible displacement. These fractures may be easily missed. Symptoms and signs The fracture site is usually painful, swollen and deformed. There is asymmetry of contour between limbs. The limb is held uselessly. If the fracture is in the upper

limb, the arm is usually supported by the patient; if it is in the lower limb then the patient is not able to bear weight on it. The limb may appear short because of muscle spasm.

Examination may reveal crepitus – a bony grating – at the fracture site. The diagnosis is con?rmed by radiography.

Treatment Healing of fractures (union) begins with the bruise around the fracture being resorbed and new bone-producing cells and blood vessels migrating into the area. Within a couple of days they form a bridge of primitive bone across the fracture. This is called callus.

The callus is replaced by woven bone which gradually matures as the new bone remodels itself. Treatment of fractures is designed to ensure that this process occurs with minimal residual deformity to the bone involved.

Treatment is initially to relieve pain and may involve temporary splinting of the fracture site. Reducing the fracture means restoring the bones to their normal position; this is particularly important at the site of joints where any small displacement may limit movement considerably.

with plaster of Paris. If closed traction does not work, then open reduction of the fracture may

be needed. This may involve ?xing the fracture with internal-?xation methods, using metal plates, wires or screws to hold the fracture site in a rigid position with the two ends closely opposed. This allows early mobilisation after fractures and speeds return to normal use.

External ?xators are usually metal devices applied to the outside of the limb to support the fracture site. They are useful in compound fractures where internal ?xators are at risk of becoming infected.

Consolidation of a fracture means that repair is complete. The time taken for this depends on the age of the patient, the bone and the type of fracture. A wrist fracture may take six weeks, a femoral fracture three to six months in an adult.

Complications of fractures are fairly common. In non-union, the fracture does not unite

– usually because there has been too much mobility around the fracture site. Treatment may involve internal ?xation (see above). Malunion means that the bone has healed with a persistent deformity and the adjacent joint may then develop early osteoarthritis.

Myositis ossi?cans may occur at the elbow after a fracture. A big mass of calci?ed material develops around the fracture site which restricts elbow movements. Late surgical removal (after 6–12 months) is recommended.

Fractured neck of FEMUR typically affects elderly women after a trivial injury. The bone is usually osteoporotic. The leg appears short and is rotated outwards. Usually the patient is unable to put any weight on the affected leg and is in extreme pain. The fractures are classi?ed according to where they occur:

subcapital where the neck joins the head of the femur.

intertrochanteric through the trochanter.

subtrochanteric transversely through the upper end of the femur (rare). Most of these fractures of the neck of femur

need ?xing by metal plates or hip replacements, as immobility in this age group has a mortality of nearly 100 per cent. Fractures of the femur shaft are usually the result of severe trauma such as a road accident. Treatment may be conservative or operative.

In fractures of the SPINAL COLUMN, mere damage to the bone – as in the case of the so-called compression fracture, in which there is no damage to the spinal cord – is not necessarily serious. If, however, the spinal cord is damaged, as in the so-called fracture dislocation, the accident may be a very serious one, the usual result being paralysis of the parts of the body below the level of the injury. Therefore the higher up the spine is fractured, the more serious the consequences. The injured person should not be moved until skilled assistance is at hand; or, if he or she must be removed, this should be done on a rigid shutter or door, not on a canvas stretcher or rug, and there should be no lifting which necessitates bending of the back. In such an injury an operation designed to remove a displaced piece of bone and free the spinal cord from pressure is often necessary and successful in relieving the paralysis. DISLOCATIONS or SUBLUXATION of the spine are not uncommon in certain sports, particularly rugby. Anyone who has had such an injury in the cervical spine (i.e. in the neck) should be strongly advised not to return to any form of body-contact or vehicular sport.

Simple ?ssured fractures and depressed fractures of the skull often follow blows or falls on the head, and may not be serious, though there is always a risk of damage which is potentially serious to the brain at the same time.

Compound fractures may result in infection within the skull, and if the skull is extensively broken and depressed, surgery is usually required to check any intercranial bleeding or to relieve pressure on the brain.

The lower jaw is often fractured by a blow on the face. There is generally bleeding from the mouth, the gum being torn. Also there are pain and grating sensations on chewing, and unevenness in the line of the teeth. The treatment is simple, the line of teeth in the upper jaw forming a splint against which the lower jaw is bound, with the mouth closed.

Congenital diseases These are rare but may produce certain types of dwar?sm or a susceptibility to fractures (osteogenesis imperfecta).

Infection of bone (osteomyelitis) may occur after an open fracture, or in newborn babies with SEPTICAEMIA. Once established it is very di?cult to eradicate. The bacteria appear capable of lying dormant in the bone and are not easily destroyed with antibiotics so that prolonged treatment is required, as might be surgical drainage, exploration or removal of dead bone. The infection may become chronic or recur.

Osteomalacia (rickets) is the loss of mineralisation of the bone rather than simple loss of bone mass. It is caused by vitamin D de?ciency and is probably the most important bone disease in the developing world. In sunlight the skin can synthesise vitamin D (see APPENDIX 5: VITAMINS), but normally rickets is caused by a poor diet, or by a failure to absorb food normally (malabsorbtion). In rare cases vitamin D cannot be converted to its active state due to the congenital lack of the speci?c enzymes and the rickets will fail to respond to treatment with vitamin D. Malfunction of the parathyroid gland or of the kidneys can disturb the dynamic equilibrium of calcium and phosphate in the body and severely deplete the bone of its stores of both calcium and phosphate.

Osteoporosis A metabolic bone disease resulting from low bone mass (osteopenia) due to excessive bone resorption. Su?erers are prone to bone fractures from relatively minor trauma. With bone densitometry it is now possible to determine individuals’ risk of osteoporosis and monitor their response to treatment.

By the age of 90 one in two women and one in six men are likely to sustain an osteoporosis-related fracture. The incidence of fractures is increasing more than would be expected from the ageing of the population, which may re?ect changing patterns of exercise or diet.

Osteoporosis may be classi?ed as primary or secondary. Primary consists of type 1 osteoporosis, due to accelerated trabecular bone loss, probably as a result of OESTROGENS de?ciency. This typically leads to crush fractures of vertebral bodies and fractures of the distal forearm in women in their 60s and 70s. Type 2 osteoporosis, by contrast, results from the slower age-related cortical and travecular bone loss that occurs in both sexes. It typically leads to fractures of the proximal femur in elderly people.

Secondary osteoporosis accounts for about 20 per cent of cases in women and 40 per cent of cases in men. Subgroups include endocrine (thyrotoxicosis – see under THYROID GLAND, DISEASES OF, primary HYPERPARATHYROIDISM, CUSHING’S SYNDROME and HYPOGONADISM); gastrointestinal (malabsorption syndrome, e.g. COELIAC DISEASE, or liver disease, e.g. primary biliary CIRRHOSIS); rheumatological (RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS or ANKYLOSING SPONDYLITIS); malignancy (multiple MYELOMA or metastatic CARCINOMA); and drugs (CORTICOSTEROIDS, HEPARIN). Additional risk factors for osteoporosis include smoking, high alcohol intake, physical inactivity, thin body-type and heredity.

Individuals at risk of osteopenia, or with an osteoporosis-related fracture, need investigation with spinal radiography and bone densitometry. A small fall in bone density results in a large increase in the risk of fracture, which has important implications for preventing and treating osteoporosis.

Treatment Antiresorptive drugs: hormone replacement therapy – also valuable in treating menopausal symptoms; treatment for at least ?ve years is necessary, and prolonged use may increase risk of breast cancer. Cyclical oral administration of disodium etidronate – one of the bisphosphonate group of drugs – with calcium carbonate is also used (poor absorption means the etidronate must be taken on an empty stomach). Calcitonin – currently available as a subcutaneous injection; a nasal preparation with better tolerance is being developed. Calcium (1,000 mg daily) seems useful in older patients, although probably ine?ective in perimenopausal women, and it is a safe preparation. Vitamin D and calcium – recent evidence suggests value for elderly patients. Anabolic steroids, though androgenic side-effects (masculinisation) make these unacceptable for most women.

With established osteoporosis, the aim of treatment is to relieve pain (with analgesics and physical measures, e.g. lumbar support) and reduce the risk of further fractures: improvement of bone mass, the prevention of falls, and general physiotherapy, encouraging a healthier lifestyle with more daily exercise.

Further information is available from the National Osteoporosis Society.

Paget’s disease (see also separate entry) is a common disease of bone in the elderly, caused by overactivity of the osteoclasts (cells concerned with removal of old bone, before new bone is laid down by osteoblasts). The bone affected thickens and bows and may become painful. Treatment with calcitonin and bisphosphonates may slow down the osteoclasts, and so hinder the course of the disease, but there is no cure.

If bone loses its blood supply (avascular necrosis) it eventually fractures or collapses. If the blood supply does not return, bone’s normal capacity for healing is severely impaired.

For the following diseases see separate articles: RICKETS; ACROMEGALY; OSTEOMALACIA; OSTEOGENESIS IMPERFECTA.

Tumours of bone These can be benign (non-cancerous) or malignant (cancerous). Primary bone tumours are rare, but secondaries from carcinoma of the breast, prostate and kidneys are relatively common. They may form cavities in a bone, weakening it until it breaks under normal load (a pathological fracture). The bone eroded away by the tumour may also cause problems by causing high levels of calcium in the plasma.

EWING’S TUMOUR is a malignant growth affecting long bones, particularly the tibia (calfbone). The presenting symptoms are a throbbing pain in the limb and a high temperature. Treatment is combined surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy.

MYELOMA is a generalised malignant disease of blood cells which produces tumours in bones which have red bone marrow, such as the skull and trunk bones. These tumours can cause pathological fractures.

OSTEOID OSTEOMA is a harmless small growth which can occur in any bone. Its pain is typically removed by aspirin.

OSTEOSARCOMA is a malignant tumour of bone with a peak incidence between the ages of ten and 20. It typically involves the knees, causing a warm tender swelling. Removal of the growth with bone conservation techniques can often replace amputation as the de?nitive treatment. Chemotherapy can improve long-term survival.... bone, disorders of


Courage, Psychic Powers... borage

Brachial Plexus

A collection of large nerve trunks that are formed from nerve roots of the lower part of the cervical spine (in the neck) and the upper part of the thoracic spine (in the chest). These nerve trunks divide into the musculocutaneous, axillary, median, ulnar, and radial nerves, which control muscles in and receive sensation from the arm and hand. Injuries to this plexus can cause loss of movement and sensation in the arm.

In severe injuries, there may be damage to both the upper and the lower nerve roots of the brachial plexus, producing complete paralysis of the arm.

Paralysis may be temporary if the stretching was not severe enough to tear nerve fibres.

Nerve roots that have been torn can be repaired by nerve grafting, a microsurgery procedure.

If a nerve root has become separated from the spinal cord, surgical repair will not be successful.

Apart from injuries, the brachial plexus may be compressed by the presence of a cervical rib (extra rib).... brachial plexus

Brain Death

The irreversible cessation of all functions of the brain, including the brainstem. (See also death.)... brain death


A stalk of nerve tissue that forms the lowest part of the brain and links with the spinal cord. The brainstem acts partly as a highway for messages travelling between other parts of the brain and spinal cord. It also connects with 10 of the 12 pairs of cranial nerves (which emerge directly from the underside of the brain) and controls basic functions such as breathing, vomiting, and eye reflexes. Brainstem activities are below the level of consciousness, and they operate mainly on an automatic basis.

The brainstem is composed of 3 main parts: the midbrain, pons, and medulla. The midbrain contains the nuclei (nervecell centres) of the 3rd and 4th cranial nerves. It also contains cell groups involved in smooth coordination of limb movements. The pons contains nerve fibres that connect with the cerebellum. It also houses the nuclei for the 5th–8th cranial nerves. The medulla contains the nuclei of the 9th–12th cranial nerves. It also contains the “vital centres” (groups of nerve cells that regulate the heartbeat, breathing, blood pressure, and digestion (information on which is relayed via the 10th cranial nerve (see vagus nerve). Nerve-cell groups in the brainstem, known collectively as the reticular formation, alert the higher brain centres to sensory stimuli that may require a conscious response. Our sleep/wake cycle is controlled by the reticular formation.

The brainstem is susceptible to the same disorders that afflict the rest of the central nervous system (see brain, disorders of). Damage to the medulla’s vital centres is rapidly fatal; damage to the reticular formation may cause coma. Damage to specific cranial nerve nuclei can sometimes lead to specific effects. For example, damage to the 7th cranial nerve (the facial nerve) leads to facial palsy. Degeneration of the substantia nigra in the midbrain is thought to be a cause of Parkinson’s disease.... brainstem

Breakbone Fever

A tropical viral illness, also called dengue, that is spread by mosquitoes.... breakbone fever

Breast Implant

An artificial structure surgically introduced into the breast to increase its size (see mammoplasty).... breast implant

Breath-holding Attacks

Periods during which a toddler holds his or her breath, usually as an expression of pain, frustration, or anger.

The child usually becomes red or even blue in the face after a few seconds, and may faint.

Breathing quickly resumes as a natural reflex, ending the attack.

Attacks cause no damage and are usually outgrown.... breath-holding attacks


A genus of spirochaetes causing Lyme Disease (Borrelia burgdorferi) and Relapsing fever (B. recurrentis; B. duttoni). These zoonotic infections are transmitted through the bites of argassid ticks (tampans).... borrelia


Brachial means ‘belonging to the upper arm’. There are, for example, a brachial artery, and a brachial plexus of nerves through which run all the nerves to the arm. The brachial plexus lies along the outer side of the armpit, and is liable to be damaged in dislocation at the shoulder.... brachial


(English) Resembling a large, coarse fern Braken, Braccan

... bracken


(Irish) A large-chested woman Bradey, Bradee, Bradi, Bradie, Bradea, Bradeah... brady


Bradykinesia refers to the slow, writhing movements of the body and limbs that may occur in various brain disorders (see ATHETOSIS).... bradykinesia

Branchial Cyst

A cyst arising in the neck from remnants of the embryological branchial clefts. They are usually ?uid-?lled and will therefore transilluminate.... branchial cyst

Breast Reconstruction

See MAMMOPLASTY.... breast reconstruction

Breast Reduction

See MAMMOPLASTY.... breast reduction

Breath Sounds

The transmitted sounds of breathing, heard when a stethoscope is applied to the chest. Normal breath sounds are described as vesicular. Abnormal sounds may be heard when there is increased ?uid in the lungs or ?brosis (crepitation or crackles), when there is bronchospasm (rhonchi or wheezes), or when the lung is airless (consolidated – bronchial breathing). Breath sounds are absent in people with pleural e?usion, pneumothorax, or after pneumonectomy.... breath sounds

Breech Delivery

See BREECH PRESENTATION.... breech delivery


Breasts, or mammary glands, occur only in mammals and provide milk for feeding the young. These paired organs are usually fully developed only in adult females, but are present in rudimentary form in juveniles and males. In women, the two breasts over-lie the second to sixth ribs on the front of the chest. On the surface of each breast is a central pink disc called the areola, which surrounds the nipple. Inside, the breast consists of fat, supporting tissue and glandular tissue, which is the part that produces milk following childbirth. Each breast consists of 12–20 compartments arranged radially around the nipple: each compartment opens on to the tip of the nipple via its own duct through which the milk ?ows. The breast enlargement that occurs in pregnancy is due to development of the glandular part in preparation for lactation. In women beyond childbearing age, the glandular part of the breasts reduces (called involution) and the breasts become less ?rm and contain relatively more fat.

... breasts

Breech Presentation

By the 32nd week of pregnancy most babies are in a head-down position in the womb. Up to 4 per cent of them, however, have their buttocks (breech) presenting at the neck of the womb. If the baby is still a breech presentation at the 34th to 35th week the obstetrician may, by external manipulation, try to turn it to the head-down position. If this is not successful, the fetus is left in the breech position. Breech deliveries are more di?cult for mother and baby because the buttocks are less e?cient than the head at dilating the cervix and vagina. An EPISIOTOMY is usually necessary to assist delivery, and obstetric FORCEPS may also have to be applied to the baby’s head. If the infant and/or the mother become unduly distressed, the obstetrician may decide to deliver the baby by CAESAREAN SECTION; some obstetricians prefer to deliver most breech-presentation babies using this method. (See PREGNANCY AND LABOUR.)... breech presentation


A plant in the family which includes pineapples. They often have small collections of water at the base of the leaves and are favoured breeding places of Aedes aegypti and other mosquitoes.... bromeliad


A binary salt of bromine, formerly used as a simple sedative. Given so freely and with no intent of affecting a healing, it became synonymous with a useless treatment only meant to shut up the patient. Excessive bromide use can cause some pronounced neurologic disturbances... they disappear with cessation of the drug.... bromides


This type of drug reduces the tone of smooth muscle in the lungs’ BRONCHIOLES and therefore increases their diameter. Such drugs are used in the treatment of diseases that cause bronchoconstriction, such as ASTHMA and BRONCHITIS. As bronchiolar tone is a balance between sympathetic and parasympathetic activity, most bronchodilators are either B2 receptor agonists or cholinergic receptor antagonists – although theophyllines are also useful.... bronchodilator


An instrument constructed on the principle of the telescope, which on introduction into the mouth is passed down through the LARYNX and TRACHEA and enables the observer to see the interior of the larger bronchial tubes. The bronchoscope has largely been superseded by ?breoptic bronchoscopy. (See ENDOSCOPE.)... bronchoscope


The use of a bronchoscope to visualise the interior of the bronchial tubes.... bronchoscopy


Bruises, or contusions, result from injuries to the deeper layers of the skin or underlying tissues, with variable bleeding but without open wounds. Bruises range from a slight bluish discoloration, due to minimal trauma and haemorrhage, to a large black swelling in more severe cases. Diseases such as HAEMOPHILIA and SCURVY, which reduce COAGULATION, should be suspected when extensive bruises are produced by minor injuries. Bruises change colour from blue-black to brown to yellow, gradually fading as the blood pigment is broken down and absorbed. Bruising in the abdomen or in the back in the area of the kidneys should prompt the examining doctor to assess whether there has been any damage to internal tissues or organs. Bruising in children, especially repeated bruising, may be caused by physical abuse (see CHILD ABUSE and NON-ACCIDENTAL INJURY (NAI)). Adults, too, may be subjected to regular physical abuse.... bruises


Bryonia alba. N.O. Cucurbitaceae.

Synonym: Bryonia, English Mandrake, Mandragora, Wild Vine.

Habitat: Hedges and thickets.

Features ? Stem rough, hairy, freely branched, climbs several feet by numerous curling tendrils. Leaves vine-like, five- or seven-lobed, coarse and rough. Flowers (May to September), white, green-veined, in axillar panicles. Berries scarlet when ripe. Branched root one to two feet long, white internally and externally. Not to be confused with American Mandrake (q.v.).

Part used ? Root.

Action: Cathartic, hydragogue.

Cough, influenza, bronchitis. Cardiac disorders resulting from rheumatism and gout. Is also used in malarial and zymotic diseases. Dose of the fluid extract, 1/2 to 1 drachm. Large doses to be avoided.... bryony

Bryophyllum Pinnatum

(Lam.) Kurz. 103 stearic, palmitic, myristic, oleic and Bryonopsis laciniosa

(Linn.) Naud.

Synonym: Bryonia laciniosa Linn. Diplocyclos palmatus Jeff.

Family: Cucurbitaceae.

Habitat: Throughout India.

English: Bryony.

Ayurvedic: Lingini, Shivalingi, Chitraphalaa.

Siddha/Tamil: Iyaveli, Iyaviraali.

Folk: Lingadonda (Telugu).

Action: Seeds—anti-inflammatory, spasmolytic. Used for vaginal dysfunctions, as a fertility promoting drug. Powdered seeds, also roots, are given to help conception in women. Plant is also used in venereal diseases.... bryophyllum pinnatum


Money, Protection... buckwheat


An air- or ?uid-?lled bubble occurring in the skin or lungs. The latter may be congenital or the result (in adults) of EMPHYSEMA. Skin bullae are really blisters.... bulla

Bundle Of His

Bundle of His, or atrioventricular bundle, is a bundle of special muscle ?bres which pass from the atria to the ventricles of the HEART and which form the pathway for the impulse which makes the ventricles contract, the impulse originating in the part of the atria known as the sinuatrial node.... bundle of his


See CORNS AND BUNIONS.... bunions


Lycopus virginicus. N.O. Labiateae.

Synonym: Sweet Bugle, Water Bugle.

Habitat: Shady and damp places in the northern regions of U.S.A.

Features ? Stem smooth, square, up to eighteen inches high. Leaves opposite, short- stalked, elliptic-lanceolate, serrate above, entire lower down. Small white flowers, in axillary clusters. Bitter taste"

Part used ? Herb.

Action: Sedative, astringent.

Coughs, pulmonary hemorrhage. Dose, frequent wineglasses of the 1 ounce to 1 pint infusion. England says, "Lycopus and Capsicum is the remedy for hemorrhage from the lungs."... bugleweed

Burkitt’s Lymphoma

Lymphoid tumour associated with Epstein-Barr (EB) virus. Especially common in malaria endemic areas, such as Africa and Papua New Guinea. May be associated with the immunosuppressive effects of the malaria infection.... burkitt’s lymphoma

Burr Marigold

Bidens tripartite. N.O. Compositae.

Synonym: Water Agrimony.

Habitat: Ditches, by waterways, and in wet places generally; also cultivated in gardens.

Features ? Erect, smooth, angular, brown-spotted stem, two to three feet high. Leaves opposite, stalked, smooth, serrate, usually in three or five segments. Flowers (July to September) in terminal heads, small, tawny. Numerous seeds, four-cornered, reflexed prickles. Root tapering, many-fibred.

Part used ? Whole plant.

Action: Astringent, diuretic, diaphoretic.

Dropsy, gout and bleeding of the urinary and respiratory organs, as well as uterine hemorrhage. 1 ounce to 1 pint infusion, in wineglass doses, three or four times daily. Ginger is usually added to this herb. Hool recommends 2 ounces Burr Marigold to 1 of crushed Ginger in 3 pints of water simmered down to 1 quart, given in the above quantity five times daily, or oftener if necessary.... burr marigold


A non-benzodiazepine drug used to treat anxiety. It is believed to act at speci?c serotonin receptors of NEURON(E) cells. The patient may take as long as two weeks to respond to treatment.... buspirone


A drug used almost exclusively to treat chronic myeloid LEUKAEMIA; it is given by mouth. Excessive suppression of myelocytes may lead to irreversible damage to BONE MARROW and therefore to the manufacture of blood cells, so frequent blood counts are necessary to check on the numbers of red and white cells.... busulfan

Bypass Operation

A technique by which narrowing or blockage of an artery (see ARTERIES), vein (see VEINS) or a section of the gastrointestinal tract is bypassed using surgery. Arterial blockages – usually caused by ATHEROSCLEROSIS – in the carotid, coronary or iliofemoral arteries are bypassed utilising sections of artery or vein taken from elsewhere in the patient. Tumour growths in the intestines are sometimes too large to remove and can be bypassed by linking up those parts of the intestines on each side of the growth.... bypass operation

Calcium-channel Blockers

Calcium-channel blockers inhibit the inward ?ow of calcium through the specialised slow channels of cardiac and arterial smooth-muscle cells. By thus relaxing the smooth muscle, they have important applications in the treatment of HYPERTENSION and ANGINA PECTORIS. Various types of calcium-channel blockers are available in the United Kingdom; these di?er in their sites of action, leading to notable di?erences in their therapeutic effects. All the drugs are rapidly and completely absorbed, but extensive ?rst-pass metabolism in the liver reduces bioavailability to around one-?fth. Their hypotensive e?ect is additive with that of beta blockers (see BETA-ADRENOCEPTOR-BLOCKING DRUGS); the two should, therefore, be used together with great caution – if at all. Calcium-channel blockers are particularly useful when beta blockers are contraindicated, for example in asthmatics. However, they should be prescribed for hypertension only when THIAZIDES and beta blockers have failed, are contraindicated or not tolerated.

Verapamil, the longest-available, is used to treat angina and hypertension. It is the only calcium-channel blocker e?ective against cardiac ARRHYTHMIA and it is the drug of choice in terminating supraventricular tachycardia. It may precipitate heart failure, and cause HYPOTENSION at high doses. Nifedipine and diltiazem act more on the vessels and less on the myocardium than verapamil; they have no antiarrhythmic activity. They are used in the prophylaxis and treatment of angina, and in hypertension. Nicardipine and similar drugs act mainly on the vessels, but are valuable in the treatment of hypertension and angina. Important di?erences exist between di?erent calcium-channel blockers so their use must be carefully assessed. They should not be stopped suddenty, as this may precipitate angina. (See also HEART, DISEASES OF.)... calcium-channel blockers

Carotid Body

A small reddish-brown structure measuring 5–7 × 2·5–4 millimetres, situated one on each side of the neck, where the carotid artery divides into the internal and external carotid arteries. Its main function is in controlling breathing so that an adequate supply of oxygen is maintained to the tissues of the body. Oxygen levels are controlled by a re?ex operating between the carotid body and the respiratory centre in the brain.... carotid body

Cavernous Breathing

A peculiar quality of the respiratory sounds heard on AUSCULTATION over a cavity in the lung.... cavernous breathing

Coliform Bacteria

Intestinal bacilli that are gram-negative, sugar-digesting, and both aerobic and anaerobic. They are usually from the family Enterobacteriaceae; Escherichia coli is the best known of the group.... coliform bacteria


See CLAVICLE.... collar-bone

Day Blindness

A condition in which the patient sees better in a dim light or by night than in daylight. It is only found in conditions in which the light is very glaring, as in the desert and on snow, and is relieved by resting the retina (see EYE) – for example, by wearing coloured glasses for a time.... day blindness

Delhi Boil

Delhi boil is a form of chronic body sore occurring in Eastern countries, caused by a protozoan parasite, Leishmania tropica. (See LEISHMANIASIS.)... delhi boil

Cohosh, Black

Cimicifuga racemosa. N.O. Ranunculaceae.

Synonym: Known also as Black Snakeroot.

Habitat: The dried rhizome and roots are imported from the U.S.A., to which country and Canada the plant is indigenous.

Features ? Thick, hard and knotty, the root is bitter and acrid in taste, and gives off a rather nauseating smell.

Part used ? Rhizome and roots.

Action: Astringent, diuretic, emmenagogue and alterative.

The decoction of 1 ounce to 1 pint (reduced from 1 1/2 pints) of water, is administered in wineglassful doses. Its chief importance lies in the treatment of rheumatism, and the root figures frequently in herbal prescriptions for this complaint. In small doses it is useful in children's diarrhoea, and is reputed to be a remedy for St. Vitus' Dance (chorea), although its efficacy here is dubious.

Cimicifuga should be taken with care, as overdoses produce nausea and vomiting.... cohosh, black


See SLEEP.... dreams

Ectopic Beat

A heart muscle contraction that is outside the normal sequence of the cardiac cycle (see HEART). The impulse is generated outside the usual focus of the SINOATRIAL NODE. Also known as extrasystoles, ectopic beats are called ventricular if they arise from a focus in the ventricles and supraventricular if they arise in the atria. They may cause no symptoms and the affected subject may be unaware of them. The beat may, however, be the result of heart disease or may be caused by NICOTINE or CAFFEINE. If persistent, the individual may suffer from irregular rhythm or ventricular ?brillation and need treatment with anti-arrhythmic drugs.... ectopic beat

Cost-benefit Analysis

The systematic comparison, in monetary terms, of all the costs and benefits of proposed alternative schemes with a view to determining: which scheme or combination of schemes will contribute most to the achievement of predetermined objectives at a fixed level of investment; or the magnitude of the benefit that can result from schemes requiring the minimum investment. The resources required per unit of benefit must be determined, account being taken of the fact that costs and benefits accrue with time. For example, the cost of establishing a home and community care programme might be compared with the total cost of building residential facilities. Cost-benefit analysis can also be applied to specific medical tests and treatments.... cost-benefit analysis

Cramp Bark

Viburnum opulus. N.O. Caprifoliaceae.

Synonym: Guelder Rose, High Cranberry, Snowball Tree.

Habitat: Cultivated in shrubberies, etc., for decorative purposes.

Features ? Very thin bark, greyish-brown outside with corky growths (lenticels), slight longitudinal crackings, laminate, light brown internally. Fracture forms flat splinters.

Part used ? Bark.

Action: Antispasmodic, nervine.

As the name indicates, in cramp and other involuntary spasmodic muscular contractions. The decoction of 1 ounce to 1 pint of water (simmered from 1 1/2 pints) is administered in 1-2 tablespoon doses.... cramp bark

Fetal Blood Sampling

A procedure performed during a mother’s labour in which a blood sample is taken from a vein in the scalp of the FETUS. This enables tests to be performed that indicate whether the fetus is, for example, suffering from a shortage of oxygen (HYPOXIA). If so, the obstetrician will usually accelerate the baby’s birth.... fetal blood sampling

Frontal Bone

The bone which forms the forehead and protects the frontal lobes of the brain. Before birth, the frontal bone consists of two halves, and this division may persist throughout life – a deep groove remaining down the centre of the forehead. Above each eye is a heavy ridge in the bone, most marked in men; behind this, in the substance of the bone, is a cavity on each side (the frontal sinus) which communicates with the nose. CATARRH in these cavities produces the frontal headache characteristic of a ‘cold in the head’, and sometimes infection develops known as SINUSITIS (see NOSE, DISORDERS OF).... frontal bone

Devil's Bit

Scabiosa succisa. N.O. Compositae.

Synonym: Ofbit.

Habitat: Heaths and pastures.

Features ? Stem up to eighteen inches, slender, hairy, well-branched. Leaves opposite, oval-lanceolate, slightly serrate, nearly sessile ; root leaves stalked, ovoid, smooth at margins. Flowers dark purple, on long stalk, florets bunched together.

The common name is derived from the root. which appears to have been bitten off at the end, with which vandalism "the devil" is credited.

Part used ? Herb.

Action: Demulcent, diaphoretic.

Included in formulae for coughs and feverish conditions generally. A 1 ounce to 1 pint infusion may be taken warm in wineglassful doses frequently.... devil's bit


See LIVER.... gall-bladder

Inclusion Bodies

Particles found in the CYTOPLASM and NUCLEUS of CELLS, usually a consequence of a viral infection. This phenomenon can be helpful in the diagnosis of such an infection.... inclusion bodies


Also known as croup – see under LARYNX, DISORDERS OF.... laryngo-tracheo-bronchitis

Lemon Balm Tea

Lemon balm tea is fragrant to drink and is a very effective tonic to calm nerves and anxiety. Cold lemon balm tea bags help relieve cold sores, or genital sores caused by the herpes simplex virus. Mix lemon balm leaves with valerian to treat anxiety, stress and insomnia. Lemon Balm contains several properties, which control herpes and also regulate the thyroid. Lemon balm when mixed with peppermint can calm an upset stomach, sooth the digestive track and reduce flatulence. Drink lemon balm tea if you suffer from nerve pain. Drinking lemon balm tea also helps strengthen memory and brain functions and also uplifts one’s mood.... lemon balm tea

Marginal Benefit

The additional benefit (e.g. in units of health outcome) produced by an additional resource use (e.g. another health care intervention).... marginal benefit

Methylene Blue

Methylene blue, or methylthionin chloride, is used in a dose of 75–100 mg, as a 1-per-cent intravenous injection, in the treatment of METHAEMOGLOBINAEMIA, which may occur following high doses of local anaesthetics such as prilocaine.... methylene blue

Molecular Biology

The study of molecules (see MOLECULE) that are part of the structure of living organisms.... molecular biology

Mongolian Blue Spots

Irregularly shaped areas of bluish-black pigmentation found occasionally on the buttocks, lower back or upper arms in newborn infants of African, Chinese and Japanese parentage, and sometimes in the babies of black-haired Europeans. They measure from one to several centimetres in diameter, and usually disappear in a few months. They are commonly mistaken for bruises.... mongolian blue spots

Neuropathic Bladder

A URINARY BLADDER with complete or partial loss of sensation. As there is no sensation of fullness, the individual either develops complete retention of URINE, or the bladder empties automatically – usually every few hours. The condition predisposes affected individuals to urinary-tract infections and back pressure on the KIDNEYS, leading to renal failure. It may be caused by spinal injury, SPINA BIFIDA or any disorder which produces NEUROPATHY.... neuropathic bladder

Ginkgo Biloba


Family: Ginkgoaceae.

Habitat: Native to China and Japan; cultivated in Indian gardens as an ornamental.

English: Maidenhair tree called Living Fossils (in India), Kew tree.

Action: Antagonizes bronchospasm, used as a circulatory stimulant, peripheral vasodilator.

Key application: Standardized dry extract—for symptomatic treatment of disturbed performance in organic brain syndrome within the regimen ofa therapeutic concept in cases of dementia syndromes— memory deficits, disturbance in concentration, depressive emotional conditions, dizziness, tinnitus and headache. (German Commission E, ESCOP, WHO.) As vasoactive and platelet aggregation inhibitor.

(The British Herbal Pharmacopoeia.) (For pharmocological studies in humans and clinical studies, see ESCOP.)

The majority of pharmacological studies and clinical trials have been conduced using a standardized extract which contains 24% flavonoid glyco- sides (Ginko flavone glycosides) and 6% terpenoids (ginkgolides and bilob- alide).

The extract increases tolerance to hypoxia and exhibits anti-ischaemic effect. It simultaneously improves the fluidity of blood, decreases platelet adhesion, decreases platelet and erythro- cyte aggregation and reduces plasma and blood viscosity. The extract protects erythrocytes from haemolysis. The extract also decreases the permeability of capillaries and protects the cell membrane by trapping deleterious free radicals.

The extract also increased cerebral blood flow in about 70% patients evaluated (patients between 30-50 year age had 20% increase from the base line, compared with 70% in those 50- to 70- year-olds).

A reversal of sexual dysfunction with concurrent use of ginkgo with antidepressant drugs has been reported. (Am J Psychiatry, 2000 157(5), 836837.)

The National Centre for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, USA, is conducting a 5-year study of 3000 people aged 75 and older to determine if ginkgo, 240 mg daily, prevents dementia or Alzheimer's disease.... ginkgo biloba

Paradoxical Breathing

The reverse of the normal movements of breathing (see RESPIRATION). The chest wall moves in instead of out when breathing in (inspiration), and out instead of in when breathing out (expiration). The spaces between the ribs are indrawn on inspiration – a symptom seen in children with respiratory distress, say, as a result of ASTHMA or lung infections. Patients with CHRONIC OBSTRUCTIVE PULMONARY DISEASE (COPD) often suffer from paradoxical breathing; and trauma to the rib cage, with fractured sternum and ribs, also cause the condition. Treatment is of the underlying cause.... paradoxical breathing

Horehound, Black

Ballota nigra. N.O. Labiateae.

Synonym: Crantz, Marrubium nigrum.

Habitat: Hedgerows, waste ground.

Features ? Stem stiff, erect, freely branched, up to four feet high. Leaves greyish-

green, upper ovate, lower cordate, in pairs, each pair pointing in opposite direction to next pair, crenate, hairy, stalked. Flowers (July and August) purplish, labiate, in rings just above leaves. Disagreeable odour.

Part used ? Herb.

Action: Stimulant, expectorant, diaphoretic, antispasmodic.

Coughs, colds and bronchial complaints generally. Hool prefers this herb to the white Horehound (Marrubium vulgare), and makes wide claims on its behalf. He recommends it in the treatment of consumption, various menstrual troubles, and parturition—in the last-named instance combined with Motherwort. "In chronic coughs, accompanied by spitting of blood," he tells us, "it will be found most excellent, either of itself or combined with other reliable remedies such as Lobelia, Marshmallow, Hyssop, etc."... horehound, black

Parietal Bone

Either one of a pair of bones that form the top and sides of the cranium of the SKULL.... parietal bone

Premature Beat

See ECTOPIC BEAT.... premature beat

Premature Birth


Rat-bite Fever

An infectious disease following the bite of a rat. There are two causative organisms – Spirillum minus and Actinobacillus muris – and the incubation period depends upon which is involved. In the case of the former it is 5–30 days; in the case of the latter it is 2–10 days. The disease is characterised by fever, a characteristic skin rash and often muscular or joint pains. It responds well to PENICILLIN.... rat-bite fever

Red Blood Cell

See ERYTHROCYTES; BLOOD.... red blood cell

Ring Block

A local anaesthetic agent (see ANAESTHESIA) injected into the circumference of the base of a digit. It numbs the nerves of the ?nger or toe and so permits minor surgery to be performed. Care must be taken to avoid damage to local blood vessels which can lead to GANGRENE.... ring block

Risk-benefit Analysis

The process of analysing and comparing, on a single scale, the expected positive (benefits) and negative (risks, costs) results of an action, or lack of an action.... risk-benefit analysis

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (ibs)

A disorder of the intestinal tract that affects its motility and causes abdominal distension and irregular defaecation. Traditional, but now discarded, names have been spastic or irritable colon. The disease affects around 20 per cent of the general population but in most it is no more than a minor nuisance. The causes are not fully understood, but it is generally believed that symptoms develop in response to psychological factors, changed gastrointestinal motility, or altered visceral sensation. About 50 per cent of patients meet criteria for a psychiatric diagnosis. Anxiety, depression, neurosis, panic attacks, acute disease are among possible triggering factors. Some patients have diarrhoea, others are constipated, and some alternate between the two. Many have increased sensitivity to distension of the intestine. Dietary factors such as intolerance to dairy products and wheat are apparent in certain patients.

Common features of IBS include:

abdominal distension.

altered bowel habit.

colicky lower abdominal pain, eased by defaecation.

mucous discharge from rectum.

feelings of incomplete defaecation.

Investigations usually produce normal results. Positive diagnosis in people under 40 is usually straightforward. In older patients, however, barium ENEMA, X-rays and COLONOSCOPY should be done to exclude colorectal cancer.

Reassurance is the initial and often e?ective treatment. If this fails, treatment should be directed at the major symptoms. Several months of the antidepressant amitriptyline (see ANTIDEPRESSANT DRUGS) may bene?t patients with intractable symptoms, given at a dose lower than that used to treat depression. The majority of patients follow a relapsing/remitting course, with episodes provoked by stressful events in their daily lives. (See also INTESTINE, DISEASES OF.)... irritable bowel syndrome (ibs)

Scaphoid Bone

The outside bone on the thumb side of the HAND in the row of carpal (wrist) bones nearest to the forearm. Fracture of the scaphoid is a common wrist injury that usually occurs when someone falls on to their outstretched hand. The fracture may not be diagnosed at ?rst (even an X-ray may not be abnormal). Pain in and permanent damage to the wrist can occur.... scaphoid bone

Sycosis Barbae

(Barber’s itch.) A chronic staphylococcal folliculitis (infection of the hair follicles with staphylococci bacteria – see STAPHYLOCOCCUS) of the beard area in males, causing a papulopustular in?ammation clearly centred on hair follicles. It must be distinguished from RINGWORM infection of the face and hair follicles (tinea barbae) and from pseudo-folliculitis due to ingrowing hairs. Topical and oral antistaphyloccoccal antibiotics are e?ective.... sycosis barbae

Test-tube Baby

See EMBRYO TRANSFER.... test-tube baby

Urinary Bladder

The urinary bladder is a highly distensible organ for storing URINE. It consists of smooth muscle known as the detrusor muscle and is lined with urine-proof cells known as transitional cell epithelium.

The bladder lies in the anterior half of the PELVIS, bordered in front by the pubis bone and laterally by the side wall of the pelvis. Superiorly the bladder is covered by the peritoneal lining of the abdomen. The bottom or base of the bladder lies against the PROSTATE GLAND in the male and the UTERUS and VAGINA in the female.... urinary bladder

Van Den Bergh Test

A test done on SERUM from patients with JAUNDICE to discover whether the excess BILIRUBIN in the blood – which causes the jaundice

– is conjugated or unconjugated. If conjugated, this indicates that HAEMOLYSIS is causing the jaundice; if unconjugated, disease of the LIVER or BILE DUCT is the likely diagnosis.... van den bergh test

Vesicular Breathing

Normal breath sounds heard in the lung by means of a stethoscope. These are soft regular sounds which become altered by disease; the changed characteristics may help the physician to diagnose a disease in the lung.... vesicular breathing

Water Bed

A bed with a water-?lled mattress can help prevent bed sores (see ULCER – Decubitus ulcer) in patients con?ned to bed for more than a few days. Its ?exibility provides uniform support for the whole body. Air beds are now more often used: they are light and more comfortable and the modern version, called a ripple bed, has a little motor that ?lls and empties tubes in the mattress. The patient’s circulation is stimulated and pressure is regularly changed on susceptible parts of the body – elbows, buttocks and heels – thus reducing the likelihood of pressure sores developing, particularly in the elderly.... water bed

White Blood Cell

See LEUCOCYTES.... white blood cell

Withdrawal Bleeding

Loss of blood from the UTERUS via the VAGINA occurring when the women’s level of oestrogen hormones (OESTROGENS), PROGESTERONE hormone or PROGESTOGEN drugs falls quickly. The withdrawal bleeding that happens at the end of each month’s cycle of combined oral contraceptive pills (see CONTRACEPTION) imitates the woman’s menstrual period (see MENSTRUATION) but is normally briefer and less in amount.... withdrawal bleeding

Bamboo Spine

See: ANKYLOSING SPONDYLITIS. ... bamboo spine

Barber’s Itch

Sycosis. See: FOLLICULITIS. ... barber’s itch

Blurred Vision


Breast, Abscess

See: ABSCESS. ... breast, abscess

Breast, Cyst


Delhi Belly

Treatment same as for irritable bowel or diarrhoea. ... delhi belly

Baby Blues

A common name for a mild form of depression that sometimes occurs in women after childbirth. Baby blues almost always disappears without treatment but can occasionally develop into a more serious depressive illness (see postnatal depression).... baby blues

Bad Breath

Aetiology: Infection of throat, lungs, gullet, or stomach. A common cause is bad teeth and gums. The rock-like scale (plaque) on or between teeth may be due to neglected mouth hygiene. Halitosis is the anti-social disease. Where stomach and intestines are at fault, charcoal biscuits have some reputation.

Bad breath is often indicative of toxaemia or defective elimination via liver, kidneys and skin which should be the focus of treatment. Palliatives such as Papaya fruit (or tablets), Peppermint or Chlorophyll may not reach the heart of the trouble which could demand deeper-acting agents.

Liver disorders (Blue Flag root); hyperacidity (Meadowsweet); excessive smoking and alcohol (Wormwood); bad teeth and septic tonsils (Poke root); diverticulitis (Fenugreek seeds); gastro-intestinal catarrh (Senna, Agrimony, Avens); smell of acetone as of diabetes (Goat’s Rue); constipation (Senna, Psyllium seed).

May be necessary for serious ear, nose and throat problems to be resolved by surgery. For blockage of respiratory channels, Olbas oil, Tea Tree oil or Garlic drops relieve congestion. Many cases have chronic gingivitis and arise from dental problems improved by 1 part Tea Tree oil to 20 parts water used as a spray. Alfalfa sprouts have a sweetening effect upon the breath. Chew Parsley or Peppermint. Alternatives. Teas. Dill seeds, Fennel seeds, Sage, Nettles, Mint, Liquorice root, Alfalfa, Wormwood. Dandelion (coffee). Parsley.

Tablets/capsules. Blue Flag root, Goldenseal, Echinacea. Wild Yam. Chlorophyll. Calamus.

Powders. Mix, parts: Blue Flag root 1; Myrrh half; Liquorice half. Dose: 250mg (one 00 capsule or one- sixth teaspoon) thrice daily before meals.

Gargle. 5 drops Tincture Myrrh to glass water, frequently.

Diet. Lacto-vegetarian. Lemon juice.

Supplements. Vitamins A, B-complex, B6, Niacin, C (500mg). ... bad breath

Bacterial Vaginosis

An infection of the vagina that causes a greyish-white discharge and itching. The disorder is due to excessive growth of bacteria that normally live in the vagina. It is more common in sexually active women and is treated with antibiotic drugs.... bacterial vaginosis

Baker’s Cyst

A fluid-filled lump behind the knee. A Baker’s cyst is caused by increased pressure in the knee joint due to a buildup of fluid in a disorder such as rheumatoid arthritis. Most Baker’s cysts are painless, and some disappear spontaneously. Occasionally, a cyst may rupture, producing pain and swelling in the calf that can mimic a deep vein thrombosis (see thrombosis, deep vein). Diagnosis of a Baker’s cyst is confirmed by ultrasound scanning. Treatment is rarely needed.... baker’s cyst


A strip or tube of fabric used to keep dressings in position, to apply pressure, to control bleeding, or to support a sprain or strain. Roller bandages are the most widely used. Tubular gauze bandages require a special applicator and are used mainly for areas that are awkward to bandage, such as a finger. Triangular bandages are used to make slings. (See also wounds.)... bandage

Barrier Cream

A cream used to protect the skin against the effects of irritant substances and of excessive exposure to water. (See also sunscreens.)... barrier cream


An infection of Bartholin’s glands, at the entrance to the vagina, that may be due to a sexually transmitted infection such as gonorrhoea. It causes an intensely painful red swelling at the opening of the ducts. Treatment is with antibiotic drugs, analgesic drugs, and warm baths. Bartholinitis sometimes leads to an abscess or a painless cyst (called a Bartholin’s cyst), which may become infected. Abscesses are drained under general anaesthesia. Recurrent abscesses or infected cysts may need surgery to convert the duct into an open pouch (see marsupialization) or to remove the gland completely... bartholinitis

Bartholin’s Glands

A pair of oval, peasized glands whose ducts open into the vulva (the folds of flesh that surround the opening of the vagina). During sexual arousal, these glands secrete a fluid to lubricate the vulval region. Infection of the glands causes bartholinitis.... bartholin’s glands

Basal Ganglia

Paired nerve cell clusters deep within the cerebrum (the main mass of the brain) and upper part of the brainstem.

The basal ganglia play a vital part in producing smooth, continuous muscular actions and in stopping and starting movement.

Any disease or degeneration affecting the basal ganglia and their connections may lead to the appearance of involuntary movements, trembling, and weakness, as occur in Parkinson’s disease.... basal ganglia


A type of white blood cell that plays a part in inflammatory and allergic reactions.... basophil


A unit of radioactivity (see radiation units).... becquerel


An American school of psychology founded by John Broadus Watson early in the 20th century. He argued that, because behaviour, rather than experience, was all that could be observed in others, it should constitute the sole basis of psychology.

BEHÇET’S... behaviourism

Behçet’s Syndrome

A rare, multisystem disorder with recurrent mouth ulcers and genital ulcers and inflammation of the eyes, skin joints, blood vessels, brain, and intestines. The cause of Behçet’s syndrome is unknown, but it is strongly associated with a genetically determined histocompatability antigen, -B51. Treatment is difficult and may require corticosteroid and immunosuppressant drugs. The condition often becomes long-term.... behçet’s syndrome


A thiazide diuretic drug used to treat hypertension and heart failure.... bendroflumethiazide

Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia

(BPH) A medical term for enlargement of the prostate gland (see prostate, enlarged).... benign prostatic hyperplasia

Benzoyl Peroxide

An antiseptic agent used in the treatment of acne and fungal skin infections (see fungal infections). In acne, benzoyl peroxide also acts by removing the surface layer of skin, unblocking sebaceous glands.... benzoyl peroxide

Berry Aneurysm

An abnormal swelling that occurs at the junction of arteries supplying the brain. Berry aneurysms, which are usually due to a congenital weakness, can sometimes rupture, resulting in a subarachnoid haemorrhage.

(See also aneurysm.)... berry aneurysm


A drug used to treat Ménière’s disease, reducing the frequency and severity of the attacks of nausea and vertigo.... betahistine

Biliary Atresia

A rare disorder, present from birth, in which some or all of the bile ducts fail to develop or have developed abnormally.

As a result, bile is unable to drain from the liver (see cholestasis).

Unless the atresia can be treated, secondary biliary cirrhosis will develop and may prove fatal.

Symptoms include deepening jaundice, usually beginning a week after birth, and the passing of dark urine and pale faeces.

Treatment is by surgery to bypass the ducts.

If this fails, or if the jaundice recurs, a liver transplant is the only possible treatment.... biliary atresia


Breakdown and ulceration of tissues from pressure on parts of the body overlying bone in those confined to bed for long periods. Poor or obstructed circulation interferes with tissue replacement and drainage, giving place to local gangrene. Weak body health disposes: anaemia, poor nutrition or absence of a fatty barrier between skin and bone. Commences with superficial redness, turning to blue and progressing to fat and muscle necrosis. Prognosis: destruction of bone and septicaemia.

Prevention is best. Wipe over possible areas with whisky or Vodka following with Oil of St John’s Wort. Bed patients are encouraged to spend at least 2 or 3 hours out of bed daily. Many kinds of bed-care aids exist: inflatable rings, water beds and padded protection. Vitamin C deficiency exists in most cases. Treatment. Herbal antibiotics: Wild Indigo, Myrrh, Milk Thistle, Goldenseal, Echinacea, Marigold. Supportives: Comfrey, Sarsaparilla, Vitamin E.

Tablets/capsules. Goldenseal, Echinacea, Sarsaparilla.

Powders. Parts: Echinacea 2; Goldenseal 1; Liquorice 1. Dose: 750mg (three 00 capsules or half a teaspoon) thrice daily.

Tinctures. Wild Indigo 1; Echinacea 2; Goldenseal quarter. 1-2 teaspoons in water 3 times daily. Practitioner. Tincture Echinacea BHP (1983) 20ml; Tincture Goldenseal BPC (1949) 5ml; Tincture Marigold BPC (1934) 10ml. Low alcohol vodka to 100ml. Sig: 5ml (3i) tds aq. cal. AC. (Anonymous) Topical. Early stages: Comfrey poultice or ointment. Marshmallow and Slippery Elm ointment; Oil St John’s Wort, Rue tea. Fresh pulp of Aloe Vera. Later stages: Sunlight soap plaster. Official medicine at the turn of the century used Lassar’s paste or zinc and castor oil ointment which are still effective. Distilled extract of Witch Hazel. For threatened gangrene, skin breakdown with formation of slough: (1) Zinc and Castor oil ointment (or cream) plus a little powdered Myrrh. (2) Cold poultice of Comfrey powder. ... bedsores


A prefix describing a relationship to life, as in biology, the science of life.... bio-


The proportion of a drug that reaches the target organs and tissues, usually expressed as a percentage of the dose administered. Intravenous administration results in 100 per cent bioavailability because the drug is injected directly into the bloodstream. Drugs taken orally have a much lower bioavailability. Preparations that have equal bioavailabilities are described as bioequivalent. (See also drug.)... bioavailability


See biomechanical engineering.... bioengineering


The use of living organisms such as bacteria in industry and science (for example, in drug production).... biotechnology


An area of discoloured skin present from birth, or very soon afterwards, such as moles, freckles, and other types of melanocytic naevus (various flat, brown to blue-grey skin patches), strawberry marks, and port-wine stains.

The last 2 are types of haemangioma (malformation of blood vessels).

Strawberry marks often increase in size in the first year, but most disappear after the age of 9 years.

Port-wine stains seldom fade, but laser treatment performed in adulthood can make some of them fade.... birthmark

Body Odour

A personal and social problem. Over-activity of the sweat glands. Offensive smell is caused by the action of bacteria on stale sweat. The purpose of antiperspirants is to reduce skin bacterial action on apocrine sweat. Almost all antiperspirants sold over the counter are made from aluminium salts which have been implicated in skin granulomas. Deodorants that bear labels describing contents as dangerous to the eyes, nose and mouth should be rejected.

Bowel and kidney function should be investigated, as body odour is not normally offensive when these organs are healthy. Zinc is a powerful deodorant – zinc and castor oil cream being a traditional combination of pharmacy. Key herbal agent is Thuja, but it is sometimes advisable to add to this an agent for liver and kidneys.

Alternatives. Teas: Sage, Pennyroyal, Thyme, Betony. Decoctions: Sarsaparilla, Wild Yam.

Tablets/capsules. Seaweed and Sarsaparilla. Wild Yam, Thuja.

Formula: equal parts: Dandelion Root, Clivers, Thuja. Dosage – Powders: One-third teaspoon. Liquid Extracts: 30-60 drops. Tinctures: 1-2 teaspoons in water, thrice daily.

Topical. Dilute oil of Sage, or Sage tea, to under-arms, hands, feet.

Diet. Lacto-vegetarian. Safflower oil.

Vitamins. B-complex.

Minerals. Zinc. Dolomite. ... body odour


A semi-solid, black-capped plug of greasy material, also known as a comedo, blocking the outlet of a sebaceous (oil-forming) gland in the skin. Blackheads occur most commonly on the face, chest, shoulders, and back and are associated with increased sebaceous gland activity. They are one of the features of most types of acne.... blackhead


A cell cluster that develops from a fertilized ovum and grows into an embryo (see fertilization).... blastocyst


A cosmetic operation to remove wrinkled, drooping skin from the upper and/or lower eyelids.... blepharoplasty

Blind Spot

The small, oval-shaped area on the retina of the eye where the optic nerve leaves the eyeball.

The area is not sensitive to light because it has no light receptors (nerve endings responsive to light).

The blind spot can also be used to describe the part of the visual field in which objects cannot be detected.... blind spot


A collection of fluid beneath the outer layer of the skin that forms a raised area. A blister contains fluid that has leaked from blood vessels in underlying skin layers after minor damage and protects the damaged tissue. Common causes are burns and friction. Blisters may also occur with pemphigus, pemphigoid, dermatitis herpetiformis, some types of porphyria, and some skin diseases. These include eczema, epidermolysis bullosa, impetigo, and erythema multiforme. Small blisters develop in the viral infections chickenpox, herpes zoster (shingles), and herpes simplex. Generally, blisters are best left intact, but large or unexplained blisters need medical attention.... blister


Distension of the abdomen, commonly due to wind in the stomach or intestine (see abdominal swelling).... bloating


Inability to express true feelings or thoughts, usually as a result of emotional or mental conflict. In Freudian- based psychotherapies, blocking is regarded as originating from repression of painful emotions in early life. A very specific form of thought blocking occurs in schizophrenia: trains of thought are persistently interrupted involuntarily to

be replaced by unrelated new ones.

(See also psychotherapy.)... blocking

Blood Sugar

See blood glucose.... blood sugar

Blue Baby

An infant with a cyanotic (bluish) complexion, especially of the lips and tongue, caused by a relative lack of oxygen in the blood.

This is usually due to a structural defect of the heart or the major arteries leaving the heart.

Such defects may need to be corrected surgically (see heart disease, congenital).... blue baby

Bronchitis, Acute

Inflammatory condition of the bronchial tubes caused by cold and damp or by a sudden change from a heated to a cold atmosphere. Other causes: viral or bacterial infection, irritating dust and fumes, colds which ‘go down to the chest’.

Symptoms: short dry cough, catarrh, wheezing, sensation of soreness in chest; temperature may be raised. Most cases run to a favourable conclusion but care is necessary with young children and the elderly. Repeated attacks may lead to a chronic condition.

Alternatives. Teas – Angelica, Holy Thistle, Elecampane leaves, Fenugreek seeds (decoction), Hyssop, Iceland Moss, Mouse Ear, Mullein, Nasturtium, Plantain, Wild Violet, Thyme, White Horehound, Wild Cherry bark (decoction), Lobelia, Liquorice, Boneset. With fever, add Elderflowers.

Tea. Formula. Equal parts: Wild Cherry bark, Mullein, Thyme. Mix. 1 heaped teaspoon to cup water simmered 5 minutes in closed vessel. 1 cup 2-3 times daily. A pinch of Cayenne assists action.

Irish Moss (Carragheen) – 1 teaspoon to cup water gently simmered 20 minutes. It gels into a viscous mass. Cannot be strained. Add honey and eat with a spoon, as desired.

Tablets/capsules. Iceland Moss. Lobelia. Garlic. Slippery Elm.

Prescription No 1. Morning and evening and when necessary. Thyme 2; Lungwort 2; Lobelia 1. OR Prescription No 2. Morning and evening and when necessary. Iceland Moss 2; Wild Cherry bark 1; Thyme 2.

Doses:– Powders: one-third teaspoon (500mg) or two 00 capsules. Liquid Extracts: 30-60 drops. Tinctures: 1-2 teaspoons.

Practitioner. Alternatives:–

(1) Tincture Ipecacuanha BP (1973). Dose, 0.25-1ml.

(2) Tincture Grindelia BPC (1949). Dose, 0.6-1.2ml.

(3) Tincture Belladonna BP (1980). Dose, 0.5-2ml.

Black Forest Tea (traditional). Equal parts: White Horehound, Elderflowers and Vervain. One teaspoon to each cup boiling water; infuse 5-15 minutes; drink freely.

Topical. Chest rub: Olbas oil, Camphorated oil. Aromatherapy oils:– Angelica, Elecampane, Mullein, Cajeput, Lemon, Eucalyptus, Lavender, Mint, Onion, Pine, Thyme.

Aromatherapy inhalants: Oils of Pine, Peppermint and Hyssop. 5 drops of each to bowl of hot water.

Inhale: head covered with a towel to trap steam.

Diet: Low salt, low fat, high fibre. Halibut liver oil. Wholefoods. Avoid all dairy products. Supplements. Vitamins A, C, D, E. ... bronchitis, acute

Body Dysmorphic Disorder

A psychiatric disorder in which a person suffers intense anxiety about an imagined defect in part of his or her body.... body dysmorphic disorder

Body Image

A person’s perception of the different parts of his or her own body.... body image


An inflamed, pus-filled area of skin, usually an infected hair follicle. A more severe and extensive form of a boil that involves several hair follicles is a carbuncle. The usual cause of a boil is infection with the bacterium STAPHYLOCOCCUS AUREUS. Recurrent boils may occur in people with known or unrecognized diabetes mellitus or with other conditions in which general resistance to infection is impaired. Treatment may be with antibiotic drugs but, if pus is released surgically, the boil will usually heal without antibiotics.... boil

Bronchitis, Chronic

The ‘English Disease’. The result of repeated attacks of the acute condition. Menace to the elderly when bronchi becomes thickened and narrowed. Inelastic walls secrete a thick purulent mucus of fetid odour which plugs tubes and arrests oxygen intake. Aggravated by cold and damp, hence the need of a warm house with warm bedroom. Causes are many: smoking, industrial pollution irritants, soot, fog, etc. Breathlessness and audible breathing sounds may present an alarming spectacle.

A steady herbal regime is required including agents which may coax sluggish liver or kidneys into action (Dandelion, Barberry). Sheer physical exhaustion may require Ginseng. For purulent sputum – Boneset, Elecampane, Pleurisy root. To increase resistance – Echinacea. Where due to tuberculosis – Iceland Moss. For blood-streaked mucus – Blood root. For fever – Elderflowers, Yarrow. To conserve cardiac energies – Hawthorn, Motherwort. A profuse sweat affords relief – Elderflowers.

Alternatives. Capsicum, Ephedra, Fenugreek, Garlic, Grindelia, Holy Thistle, Iceland Moss, Lobelia, Mullein, Pleurisy Root, Wild Cherry.

Tea. Formula. Iceland Moss 2; Mullein 1; Wild Cherry bark 1. 1 heaped teaspoon to each cup water gently simmered 10 minutes. Dose: 1 cup 2-3 times daily.

Powders. Pleurisy root 2; Echinacea 1; Holy Thistle 1. Pinch Ginger. Mix. Dose: 500mg (two 00 capsules or one-third teaspoon) 2-3 times daily.

Tinctures. Formula. Iceland Moss 2; Lobelia 2; Grindelia quarter; Capsicum quarter. Dose: 1-2 teaspoons two or more times daily.

Practitioner. Liquid Extract Ephedra BHP (1983), dose 1-3ml. Or: Tincture Ephedra BHP (1983), dose 6-8ml.

Topical. Same as for acute bronchitis.

Note: In a test at Trafford General Hospital, Manchester, blowing-up balloons proved of benefit to those with chronic bronchitis. Fourteen patients were asked to inflate balloons and 14 refrained from doing so. After 8 weeks, the balloon-blowers showed considerable improvement in walking and a sense of well- being. Breathlessness was reduced. Condition of the others was either unchanged or worse. ... bronchitis, chronic

Buerger’s Disease

(Thromboangiitis obliterans). An inflammatory condition of blood vessels of the legs, tobacco said to be the causative factor. Confined to men, especially Jews.

Symptoms. Intermittent claudication. Affected parts of the leg are much paler than others, the condition regressing to ulceration and possible gangrene. Inflammation of nerves, veins and arteries may lead to clot formation (thrombosis).

Treatment. Stop smoking. Vasodilator herbs.

Alternatives. Cayenne (minute doses), Bayberry, Lime flowers, Lobelia, Prickly Ash, Wahoo bark, Mistletoe, Skullcap, Cactus.

BHP (1983) recommends: Angelica root, Hawthorn berry, Wild Yam.

Decoction. Formula. Equal parts: Hawthorn, Mistletoe, Valerian. 2 teaspoons to two cups water gently simmered 10 minutes. Dose half-1 cup thrice daily, and when necessary.

Tablets/capsules. Alternatives. Prickly Ash 100mg. Hawthorn 200mg. Wild Yam 200mg. Dosage as on bottles.

Powders. Formula. Equal parts: Hawthorn, Wild Yam, Prickly Ash. Dose: 500mg (two 00 capsules or one-third teaspoon) thrice daily.

Tinctures. Formula. Equal parts: Bayberry, Hawthorn, Prickly Ash. Dose: 1-2 teaspoons thrice daily. Practitioner. Tincture Gelsemium BPC (1973). 0.3ml (5 drops) when necessary for relief of pain.

Diet. Low fat, low salt, high fibre.

Supplements. Daily. Vitamin E 1000-1500iu. Vitamin B-complex. Magnesium, Calcium.

Exercise. Physiotherapy exercise. From the sitting position raise legs to horizontal; rest for a few minutes. Lie down and raise legs to 45 degrees; rest for a few minutes. Reverse movements resting each time to equalise the circulation. (Brenda Cooke FNIMH) ... buerger’s disease


A common name for the large and/or small intestines.... bowel

Bowen’s Disease

A rare skin disorder that sometimes becomes cancerous. A flat, regular-shaped, patch of red, scaly skin forms, most commonly on the face or hands. The diseased skin is removed surgically or destroyed by freezing or cauterization.... bowen’s disease

Brachial Artery

The artery that runs down the inner side of the upper arm, between the armpit and the elbow.... brachial artery


See interstitial radiotherapy.... brachytherapy

Bright’s Disease

Another name for glomerulonephritis.... bright’s disease

Broca’s Area

An area of the cerebral cortex (the outer layer of the brain) that is responsible for speech origination.... broca’s area


One of many small airways of the lungs.

Bronchioles branch from larger airways (bronchi) and subdivide into progressively smaller tubes before reaching the alveoli (see alveolus, pulmonary), where gases are exchanged.... bronchiole


A substance that causes constriction (narrowing) of the airways in the lungs. Bronchoconstrictors, such as histamine, are released during an allergic reaction. They may

provoke an asthma attack. The effect can be reversed by a bronchodilator drug.... bronchoconstrictor


The most common form of pneumonia; it differs from the other main type of pneumonia (lobar pneumonia) in that the inflammation is spread throughout the lungs in small patches around the airways, rather than being confined to one lobe.... bronchopneumonia

Brown Fat

A special type of fat, found in infants and some animals.

Brown fat is located between and around the scapulae (shoulderblades) on the back.

It is a source of energy and helps infants to maintain a constant body temperature.... brown fat


A discoloured area under the skin caused by leakage of blood from damaged capillaries (tiny blood vessels). At first, the blood appears blue or black; then the breakdown of haemoglobin turns the bruise yellow. If a bruise does not fade after a week, or if bruises appear for no apparent reason or are severe after only minor injury, they may be indications of a bleeding disorder. (See also black eye; purpura.)... bruise


The abbreviation for bovine spongiform encephalopathy.... bse

Friar’s Balsam

Tincture Benzoin Co (BPC).

Action. Expectorant for chronic bronchitis, asthma and other respiratory disorders.

Use. An inhalant. One 5ml teaspoon of the balsam to 500ml boiling water; patient inhales the vapour with a towel over the head.

Still used as an alternative to pressurised devices that may evoke a diminished response by over-use. Children may develop an unhealthy dependence upon a nebuliser resulting in bronchitis, the area of aerosol mists being an area of controversy. Friar’s balsam may still be used with effect.

Formula: macerate Benzoin 10 per cent, prepared Storax 7.5 per cent, Tolu balsam 2.5 per cent and Aloes 2 per cent with alcohol 90 per cent. ... friar’s balsam

Insect Bites

Reaction to any insect bite is due to either venom released or allergic response. Symptoms: redness, pain, itching, swelling. Remove sting where possible.

Alternatives. External.

Tinctures: Arnica, Acid tincture of Lobelia, Echinacea, Marigold, Myrrh, St John’s Wort.

Fresh plants. Crush and apply: Comfrey, Garlic, Houseleek, Marigold, Onion, Plantain. St John’s Wort: specific – horsefly.

Witch Hazel Lotion.

Cider Vinegar: wasp bites.

Bee and ant bites: in absence of any of the above: bicarbonate of soda.

Aromatherapy. Any one oil – Eucalyptus, Clove, Lavender.

For shock: with faintness and pallor: few grains Cayenne pepper in honey or cup of tea. Supplements. Vitamin A and B-complex. ... insect bites


A thickened pad of tissue or a fluid-filled bursa overlying a deformed big-toe joint. The underlying cause is an abnormal outward projection of the big toe called a hallux valgus. Small bunions are remedied by wearing wellfitting shoes and a special toe pad to straighten the big toe. Large bunions may require surgery to realign the joint and relieve the pressure.... bunion


A large, prominent eyeball in an infant as a result of increased

pressure inside the eyeball due to congenital glaucoma.

Treatment of the condition usually involves surgery to reduce the pressure, otherwise the child’s sight is progressively damaged.... buphthalmos

Burkitt’s Lymphoma

A cancer of lymph tissues that is characterized by tumours within the jaw and/or abdomen. It is confined almost exclusively to children living in low-lying, moist, tropical regions of Africa and New Guinea. Anticancer drugs or radiotherapy give complete or partial cure in about 80 per cent of cases. (See also lymphoma.)... burkitt’s lymphoma


Damage or pain, mainly affecting the middle ear and facial sinuses, that is caused by changes in surrounding air pressure. Air travellers are at the greatest risk, but scuba divers face similar problems (see scuba-diving medicine). Aircraft cabin pressure decreases as the plane ascends and increases as it descends. As the aircraft ascends, the ears may “pop” as the air in the middle ear expands and is expelled via the eustachian tubes, which connect the middle ear to the back of the throat. On descent, the higher pressure may push the eardrum inwards and cause pain. Minor pressure damage in the middle ear may cause pain, hearing loss, and tinnitus for a few days; damage within the facial sinuses may also cause pain, and possibly a discharge of mucus or blood. Symptoms usually wear off within hours or days, but treatment may be needed if they worsen or persist. Large pressure changes can rupture the eardrum (see eardrum, perforated).

Barotrauma can be avoided by vigorous swallowing or by forcibly breathing out with the mouth closed and the nose pinched (the Valsalva manoeuvre). This action equalizes the internal and external pressures in the middle ear and sinuses. If the eustachian tubes are blocked, as commonly occurs with a cold, use of a nasal spray containing a decongestant drug is recommended shortly before the descent of the aircraft. Infants should be breast- or bottle-fed during descent to encourage swallowing. (See also aviation medicine.)... barotrauma

Cone Biopsy

A surgical procedure in which a conical or cylindrical section of the lower part of the cervix is removed. A cone biopsy is performed after an abnormal cervical smear test result if the exact precancerous or cancerous area (see cervix, cancer of) cannot be identified by colposcopy.... cone biopsy


A corticosteroid drug that is used in the treatment of asthma and hay fever (see rhinitis, allergic). Beclometasone, which is prescribed as an inhaler or nasal spray, controls the symptoms by reducing inflammation and mucus production in the lining of the nose or, in asthma, inflammation of the airways. The drug is often given with bronchodilator drugs in the management of asthma. A severe asthma attack may require the dose to be increased. The action of beclometasone is slow, however, and its full effect takes several days to occur. Adverse effects of the drug may include hoarseness, throat irritation, and, on rare occasions, fungal infections in the mouth. Beclometasone is also prescribed in the form of a cream or ointment to treat inflammation of the skin caused by eczema.... beclometasone

Epidermolysis Bullosa

A group of rare, inherited conditions, varying widely in severity, in which blisters appear on the skin after minor injury or occur spontaneously. The conditions can be diagnosed by a skin biopsy. There is no specific treatment. The outlook varies from gradual improvement in mild cases to progressive serious disease in the most severe cases.... epidermolysis bullosa


A science that studies the chemistry of living organisms. It includes the chemical processes involved in the maintenance and reproduction of body cells and the chemical reactions carried out inside cells that make up the metabolism of the body. Overall regulation of these chemical processes is a function of hormones, whereas regulation of individual reactions is carried out by enzymes. A constant interchange occurs between cell fluids and blood and urine. Biochemists can therefore learn about the chemical changes going on inside cells from measurements of the various minerals, gases, enzymes, hormones, and proteins in blood, urine, and other body fluids. Such tests are used to make diagnoses and to screen for a disease and to monitor its progress. The most common biochemical tests are performed on blood, and they include liver function tests and kidney function tests. Biochemical tests can also be performed on urine (see urinalysis) and other body fluids.... biochemistry


The hollow, muscular organ in the lower abdomen that acts as a reservoir for urine. It lies within, and is protected by, the pelvis. An adult bladder can hold about 0.5 litres of urine before the need to pass urine is felt.

The bladder walls consist of muscle and an inner lining.

Two ureters carry urine to the bladder from the kidneys.

At the lowest point of the bladder is the opening into the urethra, which is known as the bladder neck.

This is normally kept tightly closed by a ring of muscle (the urethral sphincter).

The function of the bladder is to collect and store urine until it can be expelled.

Defective bladder function, leading to problems such as incontinence and urinary retention, can have a variety of causes.

(See also bladder, disorders of; enuresis).... bladder

Inflammatory Bowel Disease

A collective term for chronic disorders affecting the small and/or large intestine that cause abdominal pain, bleeding, and diarrhoea. Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis are the most common types of inflammatory bowel disease.... inflammatory bowel disease

Jejunal Biopsy

A diagnostic test in which a small piece of tissue is removed from the lining of the jejunum for microscopic examination.

It is especially useful in the diagnosis of Crohn’s disease, coeliac disease, lymphoma, and other causes of malabsorption.

The biopsy is taken using an endoscope passed down the throat into the small intestine, via the stomach.... jejunal biopsy

Blood Clotting

The process of blood solidification. Clotting is important in stemming bleeding from damaged blood vessels. However, unwanted blood clotting can occur inside major blood vessels and cause a myocardial infarction (heart attack) or stroke (see thrombosis).

When a blood vessel is damaged, it constricts immediately to reduce blood flow to the area. The damage sets off a series of chemical reactions that lead to the formation of a clot to seal the injury. First, platelets around the injury site are activated, becoming sticky and adhering to the blood-vessel wall. Then, the activated platelets release chemicals, which, in turn, activate blood clotting factors. These factors, together with vitamin K, act on fibrinogen and convert it to fibrin. Strands of fibrin form a meshwork, which traps red blood cells to form a clot.

There are several anticlotting mechanisms to prevent the formation of unwanted clots. These include prostacyclin (a prostaglandin), which prevents platelet aggregation, and plasmin, which breaks down fibrin (see fibrinolysis). Blood flow washes away active coagulation factors; and the liver deactivates excess coagulation factors.

Defects in blood clotting may result in bleeding disorders.

Excessive clotting (thrombosis) may be due to an inherited increase or defect in a coagulation factor (see factor V), the use of oral contraceptives, a decrease in the level of enzymes that inhibit coagulation, or sluggish blood flow through a particular area.

Treatment is usually with anticoagulant drugs such as heparin or warfarin.... blood clotting

Marble Bone Disease

See osteopetrosis.... marble bone disease

Brain Tumour

An abnormal growth in or on the brain. Tumours may be primary growths arising directly from tissues within the skull or metastases (secondary growths) that have spread from tumours elsewhere in the body. The cause of primary brain tumours is not known. About 60 per cent are gliomas (frequently cancerous), which arise from the brain tissue. Other primary tumours include meningiomas, acoustic neuromas, and pituitary tumours. Most of these tumours are noncancerous, but their size can cause local damage. Certain types of primary brain tumour mainly affect children. These include 2 types of glioma called medulloblastoma and cerebellar astrocytoma. Primary brain tumours virtually never spread (metastasize) outside the central nervous system.

Symptoms include muscle weakness, loss of vision, or other sensory disturbances, speech difficulties, and epileptic seizures. Increased pressure within the skull can cause headache, visual disturbances, vomiting, and impaired mental functioning. Hydrocephalus may occur.

When possible, primary tumours are removed by surgery after opening the skull (see craniotomy).

In cases where a tumour cannot be completely removed, as much as possible of it will be cut away to relieve pressure.

For primary and secondary tumours, radiotherapy or anticancer drugs may also be given.

Corticosteroid drugs are often prescribed temporarily to reduce the size of a tumour and associated brain swelling.... brain tumour


Either 1 of the 2 mammary glands, which, in women, provide milk to nourish a baby and are secondary sexual characteristics. In males, the breast is an immature version of the female breast. At puberty, a girl’s breasts begin to develop: the areola (the circular area of pigmented skin around the nipple) swells and the nipple enlarges. This is followed by an increase in glandular tissue and fat. The adult female breast consists of 15–20 lobes of milk-secreting glands embedded in fatty tissue. The ducts of these glands have their outlet in the nipple. Bands of fine ligaments determine the breast’s height and shape. The areolar skin contains sweat glands, sebaceous glands, and hair follicles.

The size and shape and general appearance of the breasts may vary during the menstrual cycle, during pregnancy and lactation, and after the menopause.

During pregnancy, oestrogen and progesterone, secreted by the ovary and placenta, cause the milkproducing glands to develop and become active and the nipple to become larger.

Just before and after

childbirth, the glands in the breast produce a watery fluid known as colostrum.

This fluid is replaced by milk a few days later.

Milk production and its release is stimulated by the hormone prolactin.... breast

Breast Cancer

A cancerous tumour of the breast. The incidence is raised in women whose menstrual periods began at an early age and whose menopause was late; in those who had no children or had their first child later in life; in those with mothers or sisters who had breast cancer; and in those who are obese. The disease is also more common in countries in which the typical diet contains a lot of fat. One form of breast cancer has a genetic component; 2 genes called BRAC1 and BRAC2 have been identified and appear to be involved in this type of breast cancer.

The first sign of breast cancer may be a painless lump. Other symptoms may include a dark discharge from the nipple, retraction (indentation) of the nipple, and an area of dimpled, creased skin over the lump. In 90 per cent of the cases, only 1 breast is affected. The cancer may be suspected after discovering a lump during breast self-examination or mammography. If a lump is detected, cells will be collected from it by needle aspiration or surgical biopsy. If the lump is cancerous, the treatment given depends on the woman’s age, the size of the tumour, whether or not there are signs of spread to the lymph nodes, and the sensitivity of the tumour cells to hormones, as assessed in the laboratory. A small tumour, with no evidence of having spread outside the breast, is removed surgically. Lymph nodes in the armpit are also commonly removed at the same time. Surgery may be combined with radiotherapy and/or anticancer drugs.

Secondary tumours in other parts of the body are treated with anticancer drugs and hormones. Regular check-ups are required to detect recurrence or the development of a new cancer in the other breast. If the cancer recurs, it can be controlled, in some cases, for years by drugs and/or radiotherapy.... breast cancer


An inhaled corticosteroid drug used in the treatment of bronchial asthma to prevent asthma attacks. It is administered using an inhaler. Side effects of budesonide, which include hoarseness, throat irritation and, rarely, fungal infections, can be reduced by rinsing the mouth after administration.


Buerger’s disease A rare disorder, also called thromboangiitis obliterans, in which the arteries, nerves, and veins in the legs, and sometimes those in the arms, become severely inflamed. Blood supply to the toes and fingers becomes cut off, eventually causing gangrene. The disease is most common in men under the age of 45 who smoke heavily. bulimia An illness that is characterized by bouts of overeating usually followed by self-induced vomiting or excessive laxative use. Most sufferers are girls or women between the ages of 15 and 30. In some cases, the symptoms coexist with those of anorexia nervosa. Repeated vomiting can lead to dehydration and loss of potassium, causing weakness and cramps, and tooth damage due to the gastric acid in vomit. Treatment includes supervision and regulation of eating habits, and sometimes, antidepressant drugs and/or psychotherapy. bulk-forming agent A substance that makes stools less liquid by absorbing water: a type of antidiarrhoeal drug. bulla A large air- or fluid-filled bubble, usually in the lungs or skin. Lung bullae in young adults are usually congenital. In later life, lung bullae develop in patients with emphysema. Skin bullae are large, fluid-filled blisters with a variety of causes, including the bullous disease pemphigus.... budesonide

Out-of-body Experience

A feeling of leaving one’s body and observing oneself from another dimension.

The experience, which is thought to be due to disturbance of brain function, is reported by some patients following a general anaesthetic or a medical emergency.... out-of-body experience

River Blindness

See onchocerciasis.... river blindness

Rectal Bleeding

The passage of blood from the rectum or anus. The blood may be red, dark brown, or black. It may be mixed with, or on the surface of, faeces or passed separately, and there may be pain. Haemorrhoids are the most common cause of rectal bleeding. Small amounts of bright red blood appear on the surface of faeces or on toilet paper. Anal fissure, anal fistula, proctitis, or rectal prolapse may also cause rectal bleeding.Cancer of the colon (see colon, cancer of) or the rectum (see rectum, cancer of), or polyps can also cause bleeding. Disorders of the colon such as diverticular disease may cause dark red faeces. Black faeces (melaena) may be due to bleeding high in the digestive tract. Bloody diarrhoea may be due to ulcerative colitis, amoebiasis, or shigellosis. Diagnosis may be made from a rectal examination, from proctoscopy, sigmoidoscopy, colonoscopy, or a double-contrast barium X-ray examination.

rectal examination Examination of the anus and rectum, performed as part of a general physical examination, to assess symptoms of pain or changes in bowel habits, and to check for the presence of tumours of the rectum or prostate gland. rectal prolapse Protrusion outsid.

nent in elderly people. If the prolapse is large, leakage of faeces may occur.

Treatment is with a fibre-rich diet.

Surgery may also be performed.... rectal bleeding

Sodium Bicarbonate

An over-thecounter antacid drug used to relieve indigestion, heartburn, and pain caused by a peptic ulcer.

It often causes belching and abdominal discomfort.

Long-term use may cause swollen ankles, muscle cramps, tiredness, and nausea.... sodium bicarbonate

Spina Bifida

A congenital defect that is a type of neural tube defect in which part of 1 or more vertebrae fails to develop completely. As a result, a portion of the spinal cord is left exposed.

spinal anaesthesia Injection of an anaesthetic into the cerebrospinal fluid in the spinal canal to block pain sensations before they reach the central nervous system. It is used mainly during surgery on the lower abdomen and legs.

(See also epidural anaesthesia.)... spina bifida


adj. 1. containing bile; for example bilious vomiting is the vomiting of bile-containing fluid. 2. a lay term used to describe attacks of nausea or vomiting.... bilious


n. an important cause of serious soft-tissue injury that is associated with explosions or high-velocity missiles. The eardrums, lungs, and gastrointestinal tract are especially vulnerable to the indirect effects of the blast wave.... blast


n. an essential oil used, in preparations with other essential oils, such as camphene, cineole, and pinene, to disperse gallstones and kidney stones.... borneol

Achyranthes Bidentata


Family: Amaranthaceae.

Habitat: The temperate and subtropical Himalayas from Kishtwar to Sikkim at 1,200-3,200 m, Khasi hills.

Ayurvedic: Shveta Apaamaarga. (Rakta Apaamaarga is equated with Achyranthes rubra-fusca Hook. f. and A. verschaffeltii Lam., synonym Iresine herbstii Hook. f.)

Siddha/Tamil: Naayurivi.

Action: Astringent, diuretic, spasmolytic. Plant is given in whooping cough, roots in hemicrania.

A water-soluble oligosaccharide, composed of six glucose units and three mannose units, has been isolated from the roots. It enhanced immune response and prolonged survival time of mice bearing Ehrlich carcinoma.

The roots contain free oleanolic acid (0.096%) and its saponins (1.93%). An alcoholic extract of the root showed presence of amino acids, steroids, tri- terpenoids, alkaloids and coumarins. The seeds afforded achyranthin.

Extract of the plant—antimicrobial.... achyranthes bidentata

Aerobic Bacterium

A bacterium (see BACTERIA) that needs the presence of free oxygen for its life and multiplication.... aerobic bacterium

Agua Bendita

Holy water or water that has been blessed and sanctified by a priest or bishop, typically in the Catholic church and some other religions. This water may be attributed healing properties and used in spiritual and ritual healing or in therapies for physical ailments.... agua bendita

Ajuga Bracteosa

Wall. ex Benth.

Family: Labiatae Lamiaceae.

Habitat: The sub-Himalayan tract, plains of Punjab and the upper Gangetic plain.

Ayurvedic: Neelkanthi.

Folk: Ratapaati (Kumaon), Khur- banti (Punjab).

Action: Astringent, febrifugal (given in intermittent fever), stimulant, aperient, diuretic. Used for the treatment of gout and rheumatism; also for amenorrhoea. Juice of the leaves—blood purifier. The powder is used for burns and boils. The leaves are used in fever as a substitute for cinchona.

An aqueous extract of the leaves showed diuretic activity. An alkaloidal fraction showed stimulant action on the perfused frog heart. The plant exhibited anticancer activity.... ajuga bracteosa

Alangium Begoniaefolium

(Roxb.) Baill.

Synonym: A. chinense (Lour.) Harms.

Family: Alangiaceae.

Habitat: The plains and foothills, up to an altitude of 2,100 m.

Ayurvedic: Ankola (related sp.).

Folk: Akhani.

Action: Bark and roots—sedative, anthelmintic.

A triterpenoid was responsible for the sedative effect on motor activity of rat brain.

Chloroform extract of the drug, which was devoid of anabasine, exhibited prominent sedative effect in rat. It significantly decreased concentration of norepinephrine in cortex, of dopamine and serotonin (5-HT) in brain stem, but increased concentration of 5-HT in cortex.... alangium begoniaefolium

Aloe Barbadensis


Synonym: A. Vera Tourn. Ex Linn. A. indica Royle A. littoralis Koening

Family: Liliaceae; Agavaceae.

Habitat: Cultivated throughout India, wild on coasts of Maharashtra, Gujarat and South India.

English: Curacao Aloe, Barbados Aloe, Indian Aloe, Jaffarabad Aloe.

Ayurvedic: Kanyaasaara, Eleyaka (dried juice of the leaves). Kumaari, Kumaarikaa, Kanyaa, Grihkanyaa, Ghritkumaarika (plant).

Unani: Gheekwaar, Sibr.

Siddha/Tamil: Sotru Kattraazhai, Kumaari. Moosaambaram (dried juice).

Folk: Elwaa, Musabbar (dried juice of leaves).

Action: Purgative (causes griping), emmenagogue. Gel—topically emollient, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial (used for wound healing, sunburn).

Key application: In occasional constipation; contraindicated in intestinal obstruction and acutely inflamed intestinal diseases, ulcerative colitis, appendicitis. (German Commission E, ESCOP, WHO.)

The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India recommends the use of dried juice of leaves in dysmenorrhoea and diseases of the liver.

Aloe vera improved the hypoglycaemic effect of glyburide (gliben- clamide) when one tablespoonful aloe juice was given orally in the morning and at bedtime to 36 diabetic patients for 42 days. The juice (same dose) showed antihyperglycaemic activity (independently). (Francis Brinker.)

Anthraquinone glycosides, known as aloin, in small doses act as a tonic to the digestive system, and at higher doses become a strong purgative, as well as increase colonic secretions and peristaltic contractions. Resin fraction is also as important as aloin in cathartic action. In A. barbadensis the highest percentage of aloin is 21.8%.

Aloe produces pelvic congestion and is used for uterine disorders, generally with Fe and carminatives. The pulp is used in menstrual suppressions.

A molecule in the Aloe vera gel, ace- mannan, stimulates macrophages and releases immune system potentiators; enhances function of T cells and interferon production. Animal studies have shown promising results in sarcoma.

The carboxypeptidase and salicylate components of Aloe gel can inhibit bradykinin, a pain-producing agent; C-glycosyl chromone appears to reduce topical inflammation. Aloe gel also slows or inhibits the synthesis of thromboxane, which may accelerate the healing of burns. (Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, 2007.)

Dosage: Leaf pulp juice—10-20 ml. (CCRAS.) Dried leaf pulp juice— 125-500 mg powder. (API Vol. I.)... aloe barbadensis

Alpha Adrenergic Blockers

Also called adrenoceptor-blocking agents or alpha blockers, these drugs stop the stimulation of alpha-adrenergic receptors at the nerve endings of the SYMPATHETIC NERVOUS SYSTEM by HORMONES with ADRENALINE-like characteristics. The drugs dilate the arteries, causing a fall in blood pressure, so they are used to treat HYPERTENSION and also benign enlargement of the PROSTATE GLAND. Examples of this group of drugs are doxazosin, indoramin, phentolamine and prazosin. The drugs should be used with caution as some may cause a severe drop in blood pressure when ?rst taken.... alpha adrenergic blockers

Amaranthus Blitum

Linn. var. oleraceus Duthie

Family: Amaranthaceae.

Habitat: Throughout India.

English: Trailing Amaranth, Wild Blite.

Ayurvedic: Maarisha.

Siddha/Tamil: Aarumathathandu, Kiraitandu.

Folk: Marasaa.

Action: Cooling, stomachic, emollient. Used in biliousness, haemorrhagic diathesis.... amaranthus blitum

Amazing Health Benefits Of Carrots

1. Beta carotene: Carrots are a rich source of this powerful antioxidant, which, among other vital uses, can be converted into vitamin A in the body to help maintain healthy skin. 2. Digestion: Carrots increase saliva and supply essential minerals, vitamins and enzymes that aid in digestion. Eating carrots regularly may help prevent gastric ulcers and other digestive disorders. 3. Alkaline elements: Carrots are rich in alkaline elements, which purify and revitalize the blood while balancing the acid/alkaline ratio of the body. 4. Potassium: Carrots are a good source of potassium, which can help maintain healthy sodium levels in the body, thereby helping to reduce elevated blood pressure levels. 5. Dental Health: Carrots kill harmful germs in the mouth and help prevent tooth decay. 6. Wounds: Raw or grated carrots can be used to help heal wounds, cuts and inflammation. 7. Phytonutrients: Among the many beneficial phytochemicals that carrots contain is a phytonutrient called falcarinol, which may reduce the risk of colon cancer and help promote overall colon health. 8. Carotenoids: Carrots are rich in carotenoids, which our bodies can use to help regulate blood sugar. 9. Fiber: Carrots are high in soluble fiber, which may reduce cholesterol by binding the LDL form (the kind we don’t want) and increasing the HDL form (the kind our body needs) to help reduce blood clots and prevent heart disease. 10. Eyes, hair, nails and more! The nutrients in carrots can improve the health of your eyes, skin, hair, nails and more through helping to detoxify your system and build new cells! 11. Improves vision There’s some truth in the old wisdom that carrots are good for your eyes. Carrots are rich in beta-carotene, which is converted into vitamin A in the liver. Vitamin A is transformed in the retina, to rhodopsin, a purple pigment necessary for night vision. Beta-carotene has also been shown to protect against macular degeneration and senile cataracts. A study found that people who eat large amounts of beta-carotene had a 40 percent lower risk of macular degeneration than those who consumed little. 12. Helps prevent cancer Studies have shown carrots reduce the risk of lung cancer, breast cancer and colon cancer. Falcarinol is a natural pesticide produced by the carrot that protects its roots from fungal diseases. Carrots are one of the only common sources of this compound. A study showed 1/3 lower cancer risk by carrot-eating rats. 13. Slows down aging The high level of beta-carotene in carrots acts as an antioxidant to cell damage done to the body through regular metabolism. It help slows down the aging of cells. 14. Promotes healthier skin Vitamin A and antioxidants protect the skin from sun damage. Deficiencies of vitamin A cause dryness to the skin, hair and nails. Vitamin A prevents premature wrinkling, acne, dry skin, pigmentation, blemishes and uneven skin tone. 15. Helps prevent infection Carrots are known by herbalists to prevent infection. They can be used on cuts—shredded raw or boiled and mashed. 16. Promotes healthier skin (from the outside) Carrots are used as an inexpensive and very convenient facial mask. Just mix grated carrot with a bit of honey. See the full recipe here: carrot face mask. 17. Prevents heart disease Studies show that diets high in carotenoids are associated with a lower risk of heart disease. Carrots have not only beta-carotene but also alpha-carotene and lutein. The regular consumption of carrots also reduces cholesterol levels because the soluble fibers in carrots bind with bile acids. 18. Cleanses the body Vitamin A assists the liver in flushing out the toxins from the body. It reduces the bile and fat in the liver. The fiber present in carrots helps clean out the colon and hasten waste movement. 19. Protects teeth and gums It’s all in the crunch! Carrots clean your teeth and mouth. They scrape off plaque and food particles just like toothbrushes or toothpaste. Carrots stimulate gums and trigger a lot of saliva, which, being alkaline, balances out the acid-forming, cavity-forming bacteria. The minerals in carrots prevent tooth damage. 20. Prevents stroke From all the above benefits it’s no surprise that in a Harvard University study, people who ate five or more carrots a week were less likely to suffer a stroke than those who ate only one carrot a month or less.... amazing health benefits of carrots

Aralia Binnatifida

(Seem.) Clarke.

Synonym: A. pseudo-ginseng Wall. ssp. himalaicus Hara.

Family: Araliaceae.

Habitat: Nepal, Sikkim and Bhutan, Khasi Hills.

Folk: Taapamaari (Maharashtra).

Action: Stimulant, aphrodisiac, antipyretic, dyspeptic, expectorant.... aralia binnatifida

Ammannia Baccifera


Family: Lythraceae.

Habitat: Marshy areas throughout India, as a weed.

English: Blistering Ammannia.

Ayurvedic: Agnipatri.

Folk: Daadmaari. (Also known as Paashaanabheda.)

Action: Stomachic, laxative, antirheumatic, febrifuge. Leaves— used externally for ringworm, herpic eruptions and other skin diseases; rubefacient.

Leaves contain lawsone. Plant extract—antibacterial. Extracts of stem, leaf and inflorescence are more effective as compared with the seed and root extract.... ammannia baccifera

Aristolochia Bracteolata


Synonym: A. bracteata Retz.

Family: Aristolochiaceae.

Habitat: Uttar Pradesh, Bengal, Madhya Pradesh and western peninsular India.

English: Bracteated Birthwort.

Ayurvedic: Kitamaari, Dhumrapa- traa, Naakuli.

Unani: Kiraamaar.

Siddha/Tamil: Aadutheendaappaalai, Kattusuragam.

Action: Oxytocic, abortifacient, emmenagogue.

Leaves and fruit contain ceryl alcohol, aristolochic acid and beta-sitos- terol. Aristolochic acid is insecticidal, poisonous, nephrotoxic. Leaf juice— vermifuge. Seeds—strong purgative. Products containing aristolochic acid are banned in the U.S., Canada, Great Britain, European countries and Japan.

The seed compounds, aristolochic acid and magnoflorine, induce contractions in the isolated uterus of pregnant rat and stimulate the isolated ileum of guinea pig. They also activate the muscarinic and serotoner- gic receptors in a variety of organs. Magnoflorine decreases arterial blood pressure in rabbits, and induces hypothermia in mice.

See also A. longa.... aristolochia bracteolata

Arnebia Benthamii

(Wall. ex G. Don) Johnston.

Synonym: Macrotomia benthamii A. DC.

Family: Boraginaceae.

Habitat: The alpine Himalayas from Kashmir to Kumaon, at altitude of 3,000-3,900 m, and in Nepal.

Folk: Kashmiri Gaozabaan, Kashmiri Kahzabaan.

Action: Stimulant, cardiac tonic, expectorant, diuretic (syrup and jam, used in diseases of the mouth and throat, also in the treatment of fevers and debility.) The roots possess antiseptic and antibiotic properties.... arnebia benthamii

Autologous Blood Transfusion

See TRANSFUSION – Transfusion of blood.... autologous blood transfusion

Averrhoa Bilimbi


Family: Oxalidaceae; Averrhoaceae.

Habitat: Native to Malaysia; cultivated throughout the country.

English: Bilimbi, Tree Sorrel.

Ayurvedic: Karmaranga (var.).

Unani: Belambu (a variety of Kamrakh).

Siddha/Tamil: Pilimbi, Pulichakkai.

Action: A syrup made from the fruits is used in febrile excitement, haemorrhages and internal haemorrhoids; also in diarrhoea, bilious colic and hepatitis. The fruit is used for scurvy. An infusion of flowers is given for cough.... averrhoa bilimbi

B Nosed. The Test For Brain-stem Death Are:

Fixed dilated pupils of the eyes



No cranial motor response to somatic (physical) stimulation

Absent gag and cough re?exes

No respiratory e?ort in response to APNOEA despite adequate concentrations of CARBON DIOXIDE in the arterial blood.... b nosed. the test for brain-stem death are:


(African) The firstborn child Bako, Bakko, Baakko... baako


(Hebrew) In the Bible, the wife of Shaharaim

Bara, Barah, Barra, Barrah ... baara


(Arabic) From the gate... bab


(African) Born on a Thursday Babah, Babba, Babbah, Baaba... baba


(French) Form of Barbara, meaning “a traveler from a foreign land; a stranger”; form of Elizabeth, meaning “my God is bountiful”

Babett, Babete, Babet, Babbet, Babbett, Babbette, Babbete, Babita, Babitta, Babbitta, Babs... babette

Babinski Reflex

When a sharp body is drawn along the sole of the foot, instead of the toes bending down towards the sole as usual, the great toe is turned upwards and the other toes tend to spread apart. After the age of about two years, the presence of this re?ex indicates some severe disturbance in the upper part of the central nervous system. The Babinski re?ex may occur transiently during COMA or after an epileptic ?t and need not indicate permanent damage.... babinski reflex


(English) A beloved child; a spoiled daughter

Babi, Babie, Babey, Babe, Bebe, Babea, Babeah... baby


(English) From the valley of tears Bacah, Bacca, Baka, Bakah, Backa, Backah, Baccah... baca

Bach Yen

(Vietnamese) A white-skinned woman... bach yen

Bachelor’s Buttons

Love... bachelor’s buttons

Bacillus Cereus

A Gram positive saprophytic rod which grows on parboiled unrefrigerated rice and other food. It produces potent exotoxins which can cause food poisoning – especially in Chinese and other restaurants specialising in rice dishes. Food poisoning from this organism can cause an emetic syndrome (associated with vomiting) or a diarrhoeal syndrome.... bacillus cereus


A polypeptide antibiotic, with a spectrum similar to penicillin. It is not absorbed if taken orally but is valuable topically as an ointment in conjunction with neomycin or polymyxin.... bacitracin

Bacterial Meningitis

See MENINGITIS.... bacterial meningitis


Anything which kills BACTERIA; the term is, however, usually applied to drugs and antiseptics which do this. Hence bactericidal.... bactericide

Bacopa Monnieri

(Linn.) Penn.

Synonym: Herpestis monnieria (Linn.) H. B. & K. Moniera cuneifolia Michx.

Family: Scrophulariaceae.

Habitat: Throughout the plains of India in damp marshy areas.

English: Thyme-leaved Gratiola.

Ayurvedic: Braahmi, Aindri, Nir- braahmi, Kapotavankaa, Bhaarati, Darduradalaa, Matsyaakshaka, Shaaluraparni, Mandukaparni (also equated with Centella asiatica Linn., synonym Hydrocotyle asiatica Linn. Umbelliferae, Apiaceae).

Unani: Brahmi.

Siddha/Tamil: Piramivazhukkai, Neerbrami.

Folk: Jalaneem, Safed-Chammi.

Action: Adaptogenic, astringent, diuretic, sedative, potent nervine tonic, anti-anxiety agent (improves mental functions, used in insanity, epilepsy), antispasmodic (used in bronchitis, asthma and diarrhoea).

Key application: In psychic disorders and as a brain tonic. (The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India; Indian Herbal Pharmacopoeia.)

B. monnieri has been shown to cause prolonged elevated level of cerebral glutamic acid and a transient increase in GABA level. It is assumed that endogenous increase in brain glutamine maybe helpful in the process oflearn- ing.

The herb contains the alkaloids brahmine, herpestine, and a mixture of three bases. Brahmine is highly toxic; in therapeutic doses it resembles strychnine. The herb also contains the saponins, monnierin, hersaponin, bacosides A and B. Bacosides A and B possess haemolytic activity. Her- saponin is reported to possess car- diotonic and sedative properties. It was found, as in case of reserpene, to deplete nor-adrenaline and 5-HT content of the rat brain.

An alcoholic extract of the plant in a dose of 50 mg/kg produced tranquil- izing effect on albino rats and dogs, but the action was weaker than that produced by chlorpromazine.

Dosage: Whole plant—1-3 g powder. (API Vol. II.)... bacopa monnieri


Bacup stands for the British Association of Cancer United Patients and their families and friends. It was founded by Dr Vicky Clement-Jones after she was treated for ovarian cancer, and it became fully operational on 31 October 1985. The aim of the Association is to provide an information service to cancer patients who want to know more about their illness or who need practical advice on how to cope with it. It does not seek to replace the traditional relationship between the doctor and patient, nor does it recommend speci?c treatment for particular patients; rather, its aim is to help patients to understand more about their illness so that they can communicate more e?ectively and freely with their medical advisers and their families and friends.

See bacup


(Arabic) An elegant lady; one who is unique

Badiah, Badi’a, Badiya, Badea, Badya, Badeah... badia


(African) The tenth-born child Badoo... badu

Bael Fruit

Aegle marmelos

Description: This is a tree that grows from 2.4 to 4.6 meters tall, with a dense spiny growth. The fruit is 5 to 10 centimeters in diameter, gray or yellowish, and full of seeds.

Habitat and Distribution: Bael fruit is found in rain forests and semievergreen seasonal forests of the tropics. It grows wild in India and Burma.

Edible Parts: The fruit, which ripens in December, is at its best when just turning ripe. The juice of the ripe fruit, diluted with water and mixed with a small amount of tamarind and sugar or honey, is sour but refreshing. Like other citrus fruits, it is rich in vitamin C.... bael fruit


(Arabic) Born during the spring Bahaar, Baharr, Baharre, Bahara, Baharah, Baharra, Baharrah... bahar


(African) One with good fortune Bahatie, Bahaty, Bahatii, Bahatee, Bahiti, Bahyti, Bahyty, Bakht, Bahatea, Bahateah, Bahatey... bahati


(Arabic) A cheerful woman Bahijah, Bahiga, Bahigah, Bahyja, Bahyjah, Bahyga, Bahygah... bahija


(Arabic) One who is sparkling; brilliant

Bahirah, Baheera, Bahyra, Bahiera, Baheira, Bahiya, Bahiyah, Baheerah, Bahyrah, Baheirah, Bahierah, Baheara, Bahearah... bahira


(Latin) A very strong woman Balbinah, Balbinna, Balbyna, Balbeena, Balara, Balbine, Balbyne, Balera, Balere, Balbeenah, Balbynah, Balbeina, Balbeinah, Balbienah, Balbiena, Balbeana, Balbeanah... baibina


(Spanish) One who dances Byla, Bayla, Baela... baila


(English) From the courtyard within castle walls; a public official Bailee, Bayley, Baylee, Baylie, Baili, Bailie, Baileigh, Bayleigh, Baileah, Bailea, Baylea, Bayleah, Baylee, Bayli... bailey

Bai Hao Oolong Tea - The Taiwanese Oolong Tea

Bai Hao Oolong Tea is a type of oolong tea, made from the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant. Although Oolong tea is known as a traditional Chinese tea, the Bai Hao Oolong tea is made in Taiwan. Find out more about the Bai Hao Oolong tea! About Bai Hao Oolong tea Bai Hao Oolong tea is a type of Oolong tea produced in Taiwan, in the Hsinchu County. In English, it means “white tip oolong tea”. It is also known by the name Dongfang meiren; in English, its name is translated as “oriental beauty tea”. It is also said that, at the beginning of the 20th century, a British tea merchant presented Queen Elizabeth II. After tasting it, she also called it “Oriental Beauty”, which became one of the tea’s well-known names. The name Bai Hao Oolong tea, translated as “white tip oolong tea”, refers to the leaves. Theyare dark purple or brown, while the tips have a white, silvery color. The Bai Hao Oolong tea has a sweet and fruity taste, while the color of the beverage is a beautiful bright reddish-orange. Production of Bai Hao Oolong tea The tea bushes that produce the leaves of Bai Hao Oolong tea are cultivated in Northern Taiwan. They are grown without using any kind of pesticide. This is to encourage the tea green leafhopper to feed on the leaves, stems, and buds in order to suck the phloem juice. The buds then turn white, as the plant becomes oxidized where it was bit. This is what gives the tea its unique, sweet flavor. In order to have the tea green leafhopper bite on the plants, it is necessary that the bushes producing Bai Hao Oolongtea leaves be cultivated in warmer areas. The tea bushes are planted in the northwestern part of the country, in lower altitude areas which have sufficient sunshine and humidity. It is harvested during mid-summer and then, it is fermented up to 70%. Only the bud and the top two leaves are used. How to prepare Bai Hao Oolong tea In order to prepare Bai Hao Oolong tea, use two grams of tea leaves for every 150 ml of water. The ideal water temperature is around 80°C-85°C, while the steeping time is of 1-2 minutes. The Bai Hao Oolongtea leaves can be used for more than one brewing, though you have to gradually increase steeping time. Benefits of Bai Hao Oolong tea Oolong teas are good for our health, and the Bai Hao Oolong tea is not an exception. Read more about some health benefits of the Bai Hao Oolong tea. First, the polyphenols in its composition help you to lose weight. They increase the function of the enzymes which are responsible with burning fat. That’s why it’s a good idea to drink cups of Bai Hao Oolong teaif you’re on a diet. Bai Hao Oolong tea also contains fluoride, which helps you maintain a good oral hygiene. It helps protect your teeth as it prevents the decaying of teeth and stops the plaque build-up. Overall, it makes your teeth stronger. The polyphenols in the Bai Hao Oolong tea also help treat skin problems such as eczema and rashes. Other skin problems can be treated with Bai Hao Oolong tea, as well. The antioxidants in its composition fight against the free radicals affecting your skin. Some of the skin benefits include reducing the dark spots and wrinkles, slowing down the aging process, and improving the color of the skin. They also help protect you against cardiovascular diseases and cancer. Drinking Bai Hao Oolong tea also helps reduce high blood pressure and blood sugar levels. It is especially good for diabetes patients, who can keep the blood glucose level under control. Lastly,Bai Hao Oolong teais also helpful when it comes to increasing energy, reducing stress and improving brain power. Side effects of Bai Hao Oolong tea While there are many health benefits when drinking Bai Hao Oolong tea, don’t forget that there are a few side effects, as well. One is related to the caffeine found in the Bai Hao Oolong tea. Although the amount is less than in most types of black tea, you still have to be careful if caffeine isn’t good for your body. Be careful not to get the following symptoms: insomnia, anxiety, headache, dizziness, irritability, and blurred vision. Also, pregnant women have to reduce the amount of tea they drink, as the caffeine may cause miscarriages and birth defects. It can also affect the child during breast feeding. It’s important not to drink too much tea either, including Bai Hao Oolong tea. IT is generally recommended that you not drink more than six cups of tea a day. General symptoms that may appear when drinking too much tea are loss of appetite, diarrhea, vomiting, headaches, dizziness, insomnia, and irregular heartbeats. Also, it was discovered that, among elderly people, excessive amount of Bai Hao Oolong tea can cause hypokalemia. The Bai Hao Oolong tea is a richly-flavored, fruity tea that also keeps you healthy. If you decide to include it in your daily diet, you surely won’t regret it.... bai hao oolong tea - the taiwanese oolong tea


(African) A sparkling woman Bayna, Baana, Baena, Bainah, Baenah... baina


(Spanish) From the lower region... baja


(Indian) Resembling a crane Bakah, Bakka, Backa, Bacca... baka


(Basque) One who dwells in solitude... bakarne


(Hebrew) Resembling ripened fruit Bakurah... bakura

Balance Billing

The practice of medical practitioners, dentists and other independent practitioners to seek payment from the patient for that portion of the patient’s bill not covered by the government or other third party payers.... balance billing

Balanophora Involucrata

Hook. f.

Family: Balanophoraceae.

Habitat: The Himalayas from Kashmir to Sikkim and Darjeeling at altitudes of 1,800-3,400 m

Ayurvedic: Chavya (tentative synonym).

Action: Astringent. Used in piles, also in rheumatism.

A related species, B.polyandra Griff., found in Nagaland, Manipur, West Bengal, Bihar, Orissa and Andhra Pradesh at 2,000 m, gave a phenolic gly- coside, coniferin. The plant is used as an antiasthmatic.... balanophora involucrata

Balanites Aegyptiaca

(Linn.) Delile,

Synonym: B. roxburghii Planch.

Family: Simaroubaceae; Balani- taceae.

Habitat: Drier parts of India, particularly in Rajasthan, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Deccan.

English: Desert Date.

Ayurvedic: Ingudi, Angaar Vrksha, Taapasadrum, Taapasa vrksha, Dirghkantaka.

Unani: Hingan, Hanguul.

Siddha/Tamil: Nanjunda.

Folk: Hingol, Hingota, Hingothaa.

Action: Seed—expectorant, bechic. Oil—antibacterial, antifungal. Fruit—used in whooping cough; also in leucoderma and other skin diseases. Bark—spasmolytic.

The plant is reported to be a potential source of diosgenin (used in oral contraceptives). The fruit pulp contains steroidal saponins. The dios- genin content of the fruit varies from 0.3 to 3.8%. Aqueous extract of fruits showed spermicidal activity without local vaginal irritation in human up to 4%; sperms became sluggish on contact with the plant extract and then became immobile within 30 s; the effect was concentration-related.

Protracted administration of the fruit pulp extract produced hypergly- caemia-induced testicular dysfunction in dogs. An aqueous extract of meso- carp exhibited antidiabetic activity in streptozotocin-induced diabetes in mice.

The seed contains balanitins, which exhibit cytostatic activity.

Dosage: Leaf, seed, bark, fruit— 50-100 ml decoction. (CCRAS.)... balanites aegyptiaca

Balantidium Coli

A ciliate protozoan of pigs which can infect humans causing balantidial dysentery.... balantidium coli


(German) A bold woman having great strength

Balhart, Baldhard, Balhard, Ballard, Balard, Balarde... baldhart


(Arabic) One who is forever eloquent

Balighah, Baleegha, Balygha, Baliegha, Baleagha, Baleigha... baligha

Baliospermum Montanum

(Willd.) Muell.-Arg.

Synonym: B. axillare Bl. B. polyandrum Wt. Croton polyandrus Roxb.

Family: Euphorbiaceae.

Habitat: The Himalayas, Assam, Khasi Hills, Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Peninsular India, ascending to 1,800 m.

Ayurvedic: Danti, Nikumbha, Udumbarparni, Erandphalaa, Shighraa, Pratyak-shreni, Vishaalya. Baliospermum calycinum Muell- Arg. is considered as Naagadanti.

Siddha/Tamil: Neeradimuthu, Danti.

Folk: Jangli Jamaalgotaa.

Action: Seed—purgative. Leaves— purgative (also used in dropsy), antiasthmatic (decoction is given in asthma). Latex—used for body ache and pain of joints. Root and seed oil—cathartic, antidropsical.

Along with other therapeutic applications, The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India indicated the use of dried root in jaundice, abdominal lump and splenomegaly.

The presence of steroids, terpenoids and flavonoids is reported in the leaves. The root contains phorbol derivatives. EtOH extract of roots showed in vivo activity in P-388 lymphocytic leukaemia.

Dosage: Root—103 g powder. (API Vol. III.)... baliospermum montanum


(English) A poetic woman Ballad, Ballaid, Ballaed, Ballayd... ballade


(Indian) One who walks softly Balari, Ballarie, Balarie, Ballary, Balary, Ballarey, Balarey, Ballaree, Balaree, Ballarea, Balarea, Ballareah, Balareah... ballari

Balm Of Gilead

Love, Manifestations, Protection, Healing... balm of gilead

Balm, Lemon

Love, Success, Healing... balm, lemon

Balsamodendron Mukul

Hook. ex Stocks

Synonym: Commiphora mukul (Hook. ex Stocks) Engl. C. wightii (Arn.) Bhandari.

Family: Burseraceae.

Habitat: Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka.

English: Indian Bdellium, Gum Guggul.

Ayurvedic: Guggul, Devadhoop, Kaushika, Pur, Mahishaaksha, Palankash, Kumbha, Uluukhala.

Unani: Muqallal yahood, Muql, Bu-e-Jahudaan

Siddha/Tamil: Erumaikan Kungiliyam.

Action: Oleo-gum-resin—used for reducing obesity and in rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, sciatica.

Key application: In the treatment of hyperlipidemia, hypercholestero- laemia and obesity. (WHO.)

Guggulipid is hypocholesteremic. Guggul resin contains steroids—gug- glsterones Z and E, guggulsterols IV, diterpenoids; volatile oil, including other constituents, contains a terpene hydrocarbon cembrene A. E- and Z- guggulsterones are characteristic constituents, which distinguish C. mukul from other Commiphore sp.

Guggul resin increases catechola- mine biosynthesis and activity in cholesterol-fed rabbits, inhibits platelet aggregation, exhibits anti-inflammatory activity and appears to activate the thyroid gland in rats and chicken. Z- guggulsterone may increase uptake of iodine by thyroid gland and increase oxygen uptake in liver and bicep tissues. (Planta Med 1984,1, 78-80.)

The gum is also used in hemiplegia and atherosclerotic disorders; as a gargle in pyrrhoea aveolaris, chronic tonsilitis and pharyngitis. Fumes are recommended in hay fever, chronic bronchitis and nasal catarrh.

Oleo-gum resin of Balsamodendron caudatum is also equated with Guggul in Siddha medicine.

Dosage: Oleo-gum-resin—2-4 g (API Vol. I.) 500 mg to 1 g (CCRAS.)... balsamodendron mukul

Balsamodendron Myrrha


Synonym: Commiphora molmol Engl.

C. abyssinica (Berg.) Engl.

Family: Burseraceae.

Habitat: Arabia, Somaliland.

Ayurvedic: Bola, Hiraabola, Surasa, Barbara, Gandharasa.

Unani: Murmakki, Bol.

Siddha/Tamil: Vellaibolam.

Action: Oleo-gum-resin—em- menagogue (used for irregular menstruation and painful periods), anti-inflammatory (on pharyngitis and gingivitis), antiseptic, bacteriostatic, antiviral, astringent, stimulant, expectorant, stomachic, carminative (in dyspepsia), a leuco- cytogenic agent (increases number of white cells in the blood). Used externally for treating acne, boils and pressure sores, internally as a blood purifier.

Key application: In topical treatment of mild inflammations of the oral and pharyngeal mucosa. (German Commission E.) As a gargle or mouth rinse for the treatment of aphthous ulcers, tonsillitis, common cold and gingivitis. (The British Herbal Pharmacopoeia, ESCOP.)

The gum (30-60%) contains acidic polysaccharides, volatile oil (2-10%) including other constituents, heer- abolene, eugenol, furanosequiterpenes and monoterpenes.

Myrrh is taken as a powder or a tincture, rather than as an infusion; used generally externally or as a gargle.

Aqueous suspension of the gum resin decreased ethanol-induced and indomethacin-induced ulcer in rats. (JEthnopharmacol, 1997, Jan 55(2), 141150.)

Dosage: Gum-resin—3-5 g (CCRAS.)... balsamodendron myrrha


Substances which contain resins and benzoic acid. Balsam of Peru, balsam of tolu, and Friars’ balsam (compound tincture of benzoin) are the chief. They are traditional remedies given internally for colds, and aid expectoration, while locally they are used to cover abrasions and stimulate ulcers.... balsams


(Italian) A young daughter; a baby girl

Bambyna, Bambinna, Bambie, Bambi, Bambey, Bambee, Bamhi, Bambea, Bambeah... bambina




(Arabic) Having delicate fingertips... banan


Nutritional Profile Energy value (calories per serving): Moderate Protein: Low Fat: Low Saturated fat: Low Cholesterol: None Carbohydrates: High Fiber: Moderate Sodium: Low Major vitamin contribution: B vitamins, vitamin C Major mineral contribution: Potassium, magnesium

About the Nutrients in This Food A banana begins life with more starch than sugar, but as the fruit ripens its starches turn to sugar, which is why ripe bananas taste so much better than unripe ones.* The color of a banana’s skin is a fair guide to its starch/ sugar ratio. When the skin is yellow-green, 40 percent of its carbohydrates are starch; when the skin is fully yellow and the banana is ripe, only 8 per- cent of the carbohydrates are still starch. The rest (91 percent) have broken down into sugars—glucose, fructose, sucrose, the most plentiful sugar in the fruit. Its high sugar content makes the banana, in its self-contained packet, a handy energy source. Bananas are a high-fiber food with insoluble cellulose and lignin in the tiny seeds and soluble pectins in the flesh. They are also a good source of vitamin C and potassium. One small (six-inch) banana or a half-cup of sliced banana has 2.6 g dietary fiber and 8.8 mg vitamin C (12 percent of the R DA for a woman, 10 percent of the R DA for a man), plus 363 mg potassium.

The Most Nutritious Way to Serve This Food Fresh and ripe. Green bananas contain antinutrients, proteins that inhibit the actions of amylase, an enzyme that makes it possible for us to digest * They are also more healt hful. Green bananas contain proteins t hat inhibit amy- lase, an enzyme t hat makes it possible for us to digest complex carbohydrates. starch and other complex carbohydrates. Raw bananas are richer in potassium than cooked bananas; heating depletes potassium.

Buying This Food Look for: Bananas that will be good when you plan to eat them. Bananas with brown specks on the skin are ripe enough to eat immediately. Bananas with creamy yellow skin will be ready in a day or two. Bananas with mostly yellow skin and a touch of green at either end can be ripened at home and used in two or three days. Avoid: Overripe bananas whose skin has turned brown or split open. A grayish yellow skin means that the fruit has been damaged by cold storage. Bananas with soft spots under the skin may be rotten.

Storing This Food Store bananas that aren’t fully ripe at room temperature for a day or two. Like avocados, bananas are picked green, shipped hard to protect them from damage en route and then sprayed with ethylene gas to ripen them quickly. Untreated bananas release ethylene natu- rally to ripen the fruit and turn its starches to sugar, but natural ripening takes time. Artificial ripening happens so quickly that there is no time for the starches to turn into sugar. The bananas look ripe but they may taste bland and starchy. A few days at room temperature will give the starches a chance to change into sugars. Store ripe bananas in the refrigerator. The cold air will slow (but not stop) the natural enzyme action that ripens and eventually rots the fruit if you leave it at room temperature. Cold storage will darken the banana’s skin, since the chill damages cells in the peel and releases polyphenoloxidase, an enzyme that converts phenols in the banana peel to dark brown compounds, but the fruit inside will remain pale and tasty for several days.

Preparing This Food Do not slice or peel bananas until you are ready to use them. When you cut into the fruit, you tear its cell walls, releasing polyphenoloxidase, an enzyme that hastens the oxidation of phenols in the banana, producing brown pigments that darken the fruit. (Chilling a banana produces the same reaction because the cold damages cells in the banana peel.) You can slow the browning (but not stop it completely) by dipping raw sliced or peeled bananas into a solution of lemon juice or vinegar and water or by mixing the slices with citrus fruits in a fruit salad. Overripe, discolored bananas can be used in baking, where the color doesn’t matter and their intense sweetness is an asset.

What Happens When You Cook This Food When bananas are broiled or fried, they are cooked so quickly that there is very little change in color or texture. Even so, they will probably taste sweeter and have a more intense aroma than uncooked bananas. Heat liberates the volatile molecules that make the fruit taste and smell good.

How Other Kinds of Processing Affect This Food Drying. Drying removes water and concentrates the nutrients and calories in bananas. Bananas may be treated with compounds such as sulfur dioxide to inhibit polyphenoloxi- dase and keep the bananas from browning as they dry. People who are sensitive to sulfites may suffer severe allergic reactions, including anaphylactic shock, if they eat these treated bananas. Freezing. Fresh bananas freeze well but will brown if you try to thaw them at room tem- perature. To protect the creamy color, thaw frozen bananas in the refrigerator and use as quickly as possible.

Medical Uses and/or Benefits Lower risk of stroke. Various nutrition studies have attested to the power of adequate potassium to keep blood pressure within safe levels. For example, in the 1990s, data from the long-running Harvard School of Public Health/Health Professionals Follow-Up Study of male doctors showed that a diet rich in high-potassium foods such as bananas, oranges, and plantain may reduce the risk of stroke. In the study, the men who ate the higher number of potassium-rich foods (an average of nine servings a day) had a risk of stroke 38 percent lower than that of men who consumed fewer than four servings a day. In 2008, a similar survey at the Queen’s Medical Center (Honolulu) showed a similar protective effect among men and women using diuretic drugs (medicines that increase urination and thus the loss of potassium). Improved mood. Bananas and plantains are both rich in serotonin, dopamine, and other natural mood-elevating neurotransmitters—natural chemicals that facilitate the transmis- sion of impulses along nerve cells. Potassium benefits. Because potassium is excreted in urine, potassium-rich foods are often recommended for people taking diuretics. In addition, a diet rich in potassium (from food) is associated with a lower risk of stroke. A 1998 Harvard School of Public Health analysis of data from the long-running Health Professionals Study shows 38 percent fewer strokes among men who ate nine servings of high potassium foods a day vs. those who ate less than four servings. Among men with high blood pressure, taking a daily 1,000 mg potas- sium supplement—about the amount of potassium in one banana—reduced the incidence of stroke by 60 percent.

Adverse Effects Associated with This Food Digestive Problems. Unripe bananas contain proteins that inhibit the actions of amylase, an enzyme required to digest starch and other complex carbohydrates. Sulfite allergies. See How other kinds of processing affect this food. Latex-fruit syndrome. Latex is a milky fluid obtained from the rubber tree and used to make medical and surgical products such as condoms and protective latex gloves, as well as rub- ber bands, balloons, and toys; elastic used in clothing; pacifiers and baby bottle-nipples; chewing gum; and various adhesives. Some of the proteins in latex are allergenic, known to cause reactions ranging from mild to potentially life-threatening. Some of the proteins found naturally in latex also occur naturally in foods from plants such as avocados, bananas, chestnuts, kiwi fruit, tomatoes, and food and diet sodas sweetened with aspartame. Persons sensitive to these foods are likely to be sensitive to latex as well. NOTE : The National Insti- tute of Health Sciences, in Japan, also lists the following foods as suspect: Almonds, apples, apricots, bamboo shoots, bell peppers, buckwheat, cantaloupe, carrots, celery, cherries, chestnuts, coconut, figs, grapefruit, lettuce, loquat, mangoes, mushrooms, mustard, nectar- ines, oranges, passion fruit, papaya, peaches, peanuts, peppermint, pineapples, potatoes, soybeans, strawberries, walnuts, and watermelon.

Food/Drug Interactions Monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors. Monoamine oxidase inhibitors are drugs used to treat depression. They inactivate naturally occurring enzymes in your body that metabolize tyra- mine, a substance found in many fermented or aged foods. Tyramine constricts blood vessels and increases blood pressure. If you eat a food containing tyramine while you are taking an M AO inhibitor, you cannot effectively eliminate the tyramine from your body. The result may be a hypertensive crisis. There have been some reports in the past of such reactions in people who have eaten rotten bananas or bananas stewed with the peel. False-positive test for tumors. Carcinoid tumors—which may arise from tissues of the endo- crine system, the intestines, or the lungs—secrete serotonin, a natural chemical that makes blood vessels expand or contract. Because serotonin is excreted in urine, these tumors are diagnosed by measuring the levels of serotonin by-products in the urine. Bananas contain large amounts of serotonin; eating them in the three days before a test for an endocrine tumor might produce a false-positive result, suggesting that you have the tumor when in fact you don’t. (Other foods high in serotonin are avocados, eggplant, pineapple, plums, tomatoes, and walnuts.)... bananas

Balsamodendron Opobalsamum


Synonym: Commiphora opobalsamum (L.) Engl.

Family: Burseraceae.

Habitat: Found in countries on both sides of Red Sea.

English: Balsam tree, Balsam of Mecca, Balsam of Gilead.

Unani: Balsaan, Roghan-e-Balsaan (oil), Hab-e-Balsaan (fruit). Ood-e- Balsaan (wood).

Action: Used in diseases of the urinary tract. Balsams are diuretic and stimulate mucous tissues in small doses (nauseatic and purgative in large doses).

In Unani medicine, the fruit is used as an expectorant and emmenagogue, also for neurological affections. The wood is also used as an ingredient in compounds for epilepsy and other nervine disorders. The oil is used externally for its anti-inflammatory and revitalizing properties.... balsamodendron opobalsamum

Bambusa Bambos

(L.) Voss.

Synonym: B. arundinaceae (Retz.) Roxb.

Arundo bambos L.

Family: Gramineae; Poaceae.

Habitat: Wild throughout India, especially in the hill forests of Western and Southern India.

English: Spiny or Thorny Bamboo.

Ayurvedic: Vansha, Venu, Kichaka, Trinadhwaj, Shatparvaa, Yavphala. Vanshalochana, Vansharochanaa, Shubhaa, tugaa, Tugaakshiri, Tvak- kshiri (Bamboo-manna). Starch of Curcuma angustifolia Roxb., Zingiberaceae, was recommended a substitute for Vanshalochana (Ayurvedic Formularly of India, Part I, First edn).

Unani: Qasab, Tabaashir (Bamboo- manna).

Siddha/Tamil: Moongil; Moongilup- pu, (Bambo-manna.)

Action: Leaf bud and young shoots—used in dysmenorrhoea; externally in ulcerations. Leaf—em- menagogue, antileprotic, febrifuge, bechic; used in haemoptysis. Stem and leaf—blood purifier (used in leucoderma and inflammatory conditions). Root—poisonous. Burnt root is applied to ringworm, bleeding gums, painful joints. Bark—used for eruptions. Leaf and Bamboo-manna—emmena- gogue. Bamboo-manna—pectoral, expectorant, carminative, cooling, aphrodisiac, tonic (used in debilitating diseases, urinary infections, chest diseases, cough, asthma).

The plant gave cyanogenic glu- coside—taxiphyllin. Bamboo-manna contains silicious crystalline substances.

The starch obtained from Maranta arundinacea Linn., Marantaceae, is also used as Bamboo-manna (known as Koovai Kizhangu, Kookaineer and Araroottu Kizangu in Siddha medicine).

Dosage: Manna—1-3 g (CCRAS.)... bambusa bambos

Banaba Tea Against Diabetes

Banaba Tea is a healthy beverage, well known for its ability to fight against diabetes and also kidney ailments. Banaba Tea description Banaba is a medicinal plant used as a natural remedy to treat diabetes. It has dark green leaves that are oblong. During autumn, leaves, acknowledged to be abundant in vitamins and minerals and rich in dietary fibers, turn to an orange-red color. Traditional uses include an infusion from the leaves as a treatment for hyperglycemia. The blood sugar lowering effect of Banaba leaf extract is similar to that of insulin. Banaba tea is normally found in the Philippines and Japan, being an extract from the herb’s plant. Banaba brewing To brew Banaba tea:
  • Bring 400 milliliters (1 and 1/2 cups or 12 ounces) water to a strong boil.
  • Reduce heat to low and drop in a tea bag.
  • Keep at or below a simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Evaporation will leave about 250 milliliters (1 cup or 8 ounces) of tea.
  • Pour fresh brewed tea into a cup and drink while it is still warm.
  • Save the tea bag. You should reuse each tea bag up to four times to achieve effective results.
It is advisable to take the tea before meals: 1 or 2 cups daily. In case of tincture intaking, 2-3 ml is the recommended daily dose (2 - 3 full droppers daily). Banaba Tea benefits Studies have proved that Banaba tea is successfully used to:
  • fight against diabetes by helping control blood sugar levels
  • control blood cholesterol levels
  • lower blood pressure
  • help urinary system related ailments
  • help in the treatment of diarrhea
  • help in the treatment of constipation
  • help reducing the absorption of carbohydrates, aiding the weight loss efforts
  • help in the treatment of gout
  • help in lowering uric acid levels
Banaba Tea side effects Banana tea is not recommended to children, pregnant women and nursing mothers. Patients suffering from diabetes should be cautious when using Banaba tea in combination with other hypoglycemic drugs. Banaba tea could be a healthy alternative to traditional drugs treating diabetes or kidney diseases, but not only.... banaba tea against diabetes


(Irish) In mythology, a patron goddess... banba

Banana And Plantain

Musa species

Description: These are treelike plants with several large leaves at the top. Their flowers are borne in dense hanging clusters.

Habitat and Distribution: Look for bananas and plantains in open fields or margins of forests where they are grown as a crop. They grow in the humid tropics.

Edible Parts: Their fruits are edible raw or cooked. They may be boiled or baked. You can boil their flowers and eat them like a vegetable. You can cook and eat the rootstocks and leaf sheaths of many species. The center or “heart” or the plant is edible year-round, cooked or raw.

Other Uses: You can use the layers of the lower third of the plants to cover coals to roast food. You can also use their stumps to get water (see Chapter 6). You can use their leaves to wrap other foods for cooking or storage.... banana and plantain


Pieces of material used to support injured parts or to retain dressings in position. They come in various forms including elastic materials and plaster of Paris.

For more detailed information about bandaging, the reader is referred to First Aid Manual, the authorised manual of the St John’s Ambulance Association, St Andrew’s Ambulance Association and British Red Cross Society.... bandages


(Spanish) A brightly colored head- wrap

Bandanah, Bandanna, Bandannah... bandana


(African) Child who is born away from home

Bandel, Bandelle, Bandell, Bandela, Bandella... bandele


(African) The second-born of twins Banjie, Banjey, Banjy, Banjee, Banjea, Banjeah... banji


(American) A decorative symbol Baner, Bannyr, Banyr, Bannor, Bannar, Bannir... banner


(Welsh) A woman sovereign... banon


(Indian) One who is musical Bansurie, Bansari, Banseri, Bansurri, Bansury, Bansurey, Bansuree, Bansurea, Bansureah... bansuri


Luck. Happiness... banyan


Adansonia digitata

Description: The baobab tree may grow as high as 18 meters and may have a trunk 9 meters in diameter. The tree has short, stubby branches and a gray, thick bark. Its leaves are compound and their segments are arranged like the palm of a hand. Its flowers, which are white and several centimeters across, hang from the higher branches. Its fruit is shaped like a football, measures up to 45 centimeters long, and is covered with short dense hair.

Habitat and Distribution: These trees grow in savannas. They are found in Africa, in parts of Australia, and on the island of Madagascar.

Edible Parts: You can use the young leaves as a soup vegetable. The tender root of the young baobab tree is edible. The pulp and seeds of the fruit are also edible. Use one handful of pulp to about one cup of water for a refreshing drink. To obtain flour, roast the seeds, then grind them.

Other Uses: Drinking a mixture of pulp and water will help cure diarrhea. Often the hollow trunks are good sources of fresh water. The bark can be cut into strips and pounded to obtain a strong fiber for making rope.... baobab


(Greek) Feminine form of Baptiste; the baptizer Baptistah, Baptistya, Baptistiya, Baptistia, Baptistina, Baptysta, Bapteesta, Baptiesta, Battista, Batista, Batysta, Bautista, Bautysta... baptista


(Hebrew) One who is chosen Barah, Barra, Barrah... bara


(Arabic) A white-skinned woman; fair; having God’s favor Barakka, Baracka, Baracca, Barakah... baraka

Barany’s Test

A test for gauging the e?ciency of the balancing mechanism (the vestibular apparatus) by applying hot or cold air or water to the external ear.... barany’s test


(Latin) A traveler from a foreign land; a stranger

Barbra, Barbarella, Barbarita, Baibin, Baibre, Bairbre, Barbary, Barb, Barbi, Barbie, Barby, Barbey, Bobbie, Barbro, Barabal, Barabell, Basha, Basham, Baubie, Bobbi, Bobby, Bora, Borbala, Borhala, Borka, Boriska, Borsca, Borska, Borsala, Brosca, Broska... barbara

Barber’s Itch

See SYCOSIS.... barber’s itch


(Spanish) Woman from the city in Spain... barcelona


(African) A flourishing woman; one who is successful

Barikah, Baryka, Barikka, Barykka, Baricka, Barycka, Baricca, Barycca... barika


(Basque) One who is lonely Barkarne, Barkarnia, Barkarniah, Barkarnya, Barkarniya, Barkarn... barkarna

Barleria Buxifolia


Family: Acanthaceae.

Habitat: Peninsular India from Maharashtra southwards up to an altitude of 1,200 m. An ornamental hedge plant in gardens.

Ayurvedic: Sahachara (purple, blue, rose or white-flowered var.)

Folk: Jhinti.

Action: Roots and leaves are used in cough, bronchitis, inflammations (applied to swellings).... barleria buxifolia

Barbarea Vulgaris

R. Br.

Family: Brassicaceae, Cruciferae.

Habitat: Subalpine and temperate Himalayas, at altitudes of 1,8003,750 m.

English: Bitter Cress, Hedge Mustard, Yellow Rocket, Winter Cress.

Folk: Cress.

Action: Diuretic, anthelmintic, stomachic, antiscorbutic, (leaves are rich in vitamin C 130 mg/100 g). Pulverised herb is used as an agent for stimulating spermatogenesis.

The roots contain sinigrin; seeds contain a glucoside, glucobarbarin, and myrosin.

The protein and phosphorus contents of the plant decrease with the maturity, whereas the calcium contents increase (tender stems are eaten as a salad). The leaves and buds are a rich source of provitamin A (beta- carotene).... barbarea vulgaris


Berberis vulgaris. N.O. Berberidaceae.

Synonym: Berberidis, Berbery, Gouan.

Habitat: Woods and hedges, also gardens.

Features ? Shrub or bush, three to eight feet high. Leaves obovate, bristly serratures. Flowers bright yellow clusters, raceme, pendulous. Berries red, oblong. Stem bark thin, yellowish-grey externally, inner surface orange yellow, separating in layers. Root dark brown, short fracture. Very bitter taste.

Part used ? Bark, rootbark.

Action: Tonic, antiseptic, purgative.

Jaundice and other liver derangements. General debility. Regulates digestion, corrects constipation. 1/4 teaspoonful of powdered bark, three or four times daily.... barberry

Barberry Tea For Body Health

Barberry tea is well known inAsia, Europe, Africa and America due to its medicinal properties. Nowadays, it is consumed worldwide as tincture, fluid extract or capsules. Barberry tea description Barberry is a shrub growing in gray-colored and tight thorny hedges, producing yellow flowers during spring and red berries in autumn. Its roots, bark and berries have been used for more than 2,500 years for a variety of health-promoting purposes. In ancient Egypt, barberry was mixed with fennel to fight plague. Nowadays, Barberry is available in the form of capsules, fluid extract and tincture. Barberry Tea is made of the dried roots and berries of barberry. Barberry tea brewing To prepare Barberry tea: steep 1 to 2 teaspoons of dried barberry root or 1 to 2 teaspoons of whole (or crushed berries) in about 2/3 of a cup of hot water for 10 to 15 minutes. Barberry Tea can be consumed three times, daily. Barberry tea benefits Barberry tea has proven its efficiency in treating:
  • inflammation due to bacterial ear, nose and throat infection
  • bacterial and viral forms of diarrhea
  • psoriasis
  • the function of the gallbladder
  • urinary tract infection
  • heartburn
  • candida
  • epilepsy
Barberry Tea may help stabilize blood pressure and normalize heart rhythm. Also, it has been claimed that Barberry Tea may help strengthen the immune system. Barberry tea side effects Studies conducted so far showed that Barberry tea should not be used beyond seven consecutive days, in order to avoid complications on excessive use of barberry. There have been cases when Barberry tea interacted with anti-coagulants, blood pressure medication and antibiotics, causing side effects. Pregnant, nursing women, and nursing infants also should avoid drinking this tea. Barberry tea is a medicinal beverage, effective in treating respiratory and urinary tract infections, as well as hypertension, diarrhea and gallbladder disease.... barberry tea for body health


A group of drugs which depress the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM by inhibiting the transmission of impulses between certain neurons. Thus they cause drowsiness or unconsciousness (depending on dose), reduce the cerebral metabolic rate for oxygen, and depress respiration. Their use as sedatives and hypnotics has largely been superseded by more modern drugs which are safer and more e?ective. Some members of this group of drugs – for instance, phenobarbitone – have selective anticonvulsant properties and are used in the treatment of GRAND MAL convulsions and status epilepticus (see EPILEPSY). The short-acting drugs thiopentone and methohexitone are widely used to induce general ANAESTHESIA. (See also DEPENDENCE.)... barbiturates

Barmah Forest Virus

A mosquito-borne arbovirus causing symptoms similar to Ross River virus infection in Australia. (See also Ross River virus).... barmah forest virus


(English) A lawyer Barre, Bar... barr


(Irish) From the little mountain’s top

Barrane, Baran, Barane, Barrayne, Barayne, Baranne, Barann, Barrann... barran


(English) From among the trees... barras


(German / English) Having the strength of a bear / an argumentative person

Barett, Barrette, Barette, Barrete, Barete, Barretta, Baretta, Barreta, Bareta... barrett


(Irish) A markswoman Barea, Baree, Barey, Barri, Barria, Barriah, Barrya, Barryah, Barya, Baryah... barrie

Barrier Creams

Substances, usually silicone-based, applied to the skin before work to prevent damage by irritants. They are also used in medicine – for the prevention of bedsores and nappy rash, for example.... barrier creams

Barleria Cristata


Family: Acanthaceae.

Habitat: Subtropical Himalaya, Sikkim, Khasi Hills, Central and Southern India at 1,350 m.

Ayurvedic: Sahachara, Shveta- Rakta-pushpa Saireyaka (white- and red-flowered var.).

Siddha/Tamil: Ottamulli.

Folk: Katsaraiyaa. Raktajhinti.

Action: Extract of the plant— sasmogenic and hypoglycaemic. Root extract—given in anaemia. The leaves are chewed in toothache. Roots and leaves are applied to swellings. An infusion is given in cough.

The roots contain anthraquinones; flowers gave apigenin, naringenin, quercetin and malvindin.... barleria cristata

Barleria Prionitis


Family: Acanthaceae.

Habitat: Throughout the hotter parts of India. Also, commonly grown as a hedge plant in gardens.

English: Common Yellow Nail Dye Plant.

Ayurvedic: Sahachara, Baana, Kurantaka, Kuranta, Koranda, Korandaka, Shairiya, Pita-saireyaka

(yellow-flowered var.). Also equated with Vajradanti.

Unani: Piyaabaansaa.

Siddha/Tamil: Chemmulli.

Folk: Piyaabaasaa, Jhinti, Kat- saraiyaa.

Action: Leaf—juicegiveninstomach disorders, urinary affections; mixed with honey and given to children with fever and catarrh; leaf juice is applied to lacerated soles of feet in the rainy season, mixed with coconut oil for pimples. Leaves and flowering tops—diuretic. Bark—diaphoretic and expectorant. Roots—paste is applied over boils and glandular swellings. Plant (Vajradanti)—antidontalgic, used for bleeding gums in Indian medicine. Ash, obtained from the whole plant, mixed with honey, is given in bronchial asthma.

The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India recommends oil extract of the plant for arresting greying of hair.

The leaves and flowering tops are diuretic, rich in potassium salts. Leaves and stems showed presence of iridoid glucosides, barlerin and acetylbarlerin. Flowers gave the flavonoid glycoside, scutellarein-7-neohesperidoside. The presence of beta-sitosterol is reported in the plant.

In the south, Nila Sahachara is equated with Ecbolium linneanun Kurz. (known as Nilaambari), and Shveta Sa- hachara with Justica betonica Linn.

Ecbolium linneanun plant is used for gout and dysuria; the root is prescribed for jaundice.

Dosage: Whole plant—50-100 g for decoction. (API Vol. III.)... barleria prionitis

Barleria Strigosa


Family: Acanthaceae.

Habitat: The Himalayas from Uttar Pradesh to West Bengal, up to an altitude of 1,200 m.

Ayurvedic: Sahachara (blue- flowered var.).

Siddha/Tamil: Nili.

Folk: Koilekhaa.

Action: Mild antiseptic, expectorant (given in spasmodic cough); also used as an antianaemic.

The plant gave beta-and gamma- sitosterol.... barleria strigosa

Barley Tea May Fight Cancer

Barley tea is widely consumed due to its medicinal properties. It fights effectively against several types of cancer, due to its high content of antioxidants. Barley Tea description Barley is a self-pollinating annual plant, member of the grass family. It grows to a height of 1 to 4 feet, being able to withstand various growing conditions. It is found in grasslands, woodlands, disturbed habitats, roadsides and orchards. The grass of barley is acknowledged to be a source of fiber, vitamins, minerals, and amino acids and it also has a high content of antioxidants. In traditional Chinese medicine, Barley grass has been prescribed to fight diseases of the spleen or poor digestion. It has also been effectively used to treat depression or emotional imbalance. Barley tea is the resulting beverage from brewing the abovementioned plant. This is a very common and appreciated drink in many parts of Asia including Japan, China, Malaysia and Singapore. Barley tea is popular in Japanese and Korean cuisine: the barley grass is often roasted and then stewed in hot water. It is also intaken as a caffeine-free coffee substitute in American cuisine. It is traditionally used for detoxification, to improve digestion and for urinary tract infections. Barley Tea brewing Barley tea is available in loose grains, tea bags or already prepared tea drinks. It is usually made by briefly simmering roasted barley grains. The resulting beverage has a toasty taste, with slight bitter undertones. Barley tea is best consumed hot, though some report that room temperature and even cold barley water is still effective. Barley Tea benefits Studies conducted so far showed that Barley tea is effective in treating:
  • certain forms of cancer
  • digestion
  • prostate
  • sleep disorder
Barley tea is believed to help relieving early symptoms of colds, acting as a daily nutritional supplement and successfully cleansing the body of toxins. This tea may help improve blood sugar levels and also reduce bad cholesterol levels. Barley Tea side effects Barley tea is not recommended for nursing and pregnant women because it may stop lactation. Barley tea is a healthy alternative to caffeine drinks and people choose it daily to replace the first mentioned beverage.... barley tea may fight cancer

Barringtonia Acutangula

(Linn.) Gaertn.

Synonym: Eugenia acutangula L.

Family: Lecythidaceae; Barringtoni- aceae.

Habitat: Sub-Himalayan tracts from the Ganges eastwards to Assam and Madhya Pradesh.

English: Indian Oak. (Oak is equated with Quercus robur L.)

Ayurvedic: Nichula, Hijjala, Ijjala, Vidula, Ambuj. (Central Council for Research in Ayurveda & Siddha has wrongly equated Hijjala, Nichula and Vidula with Argyreia nervosa, Elephant Creeper.)

Unani: Samandarphal. (Saman- darphal is also equated with Rhus parviflora Roxb. in National Formulary of Unani Medicine.)

Siddha/Tamil: Kadappai, Samudra- phullarni.

Action: Leaf juice—given in diarrhoea. Fruit—bitter, acrid, anthelmintic, haemolytic, vulnerary; prescribed in gingivitis as an expectorant. Powdered seeds— emetic and expectorant. Bark— astringent, used in diarrhoea and blennorrhoea. Febrifuge. Wood— haemostatic (in metrorrhagia).

Along with other therapeutic applications, The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India indicated the use of the fruit in goitre; also in psychological disorders.

The bark contains tannins (16%), also ellagic acid.

The fruits contain triterpenoid sa- pogenins. Saponins possess haemolyt- ic properties.

A related sp. B. racemosa (L.) Roxb., found in Assam, eastern and western coasts of India and the Andaman Islands, is also equated with Samu- draphala and Hijjala.

European Oak (Quercus robur) contains 15-20% tannins, consisting of phlobatannin, ellagitannins and gallic acid. The bark is used as astringent, antiseptic and haemostatic.

Dosage: Fruit—1-3 g (API Vol. III.)... barringtonia acutangula

Bartholin’s Glands

Two small glands opening either side of the external vaginal ori?ce. Their secretions help to lubricate the vulva, when a woman is sexually aroused. The glands may become infected and very painful; sometimes an abscess develops and local surgery is required. Otherwise antibiotics, analgesics and warm baths are usually e?ective.... bartholin’s glands


At or near the base, such as leaves sprouting directly from root or crown.... basal

Basal Ganglion

Grey matter near the base of the cerebral hemispheres, consisting of the corpus striatum (caudate nucleus and lenticular nucleus [globus pallidus and putamen]), claustrum, and amygdaloid nucleus (see BRAIN). The basal ganglia are involved in the subconscious regulation of voluntary movement, and disorders in this region cause DYSKINESIA.... basal ganglion


(Indian) Born during the spring Basantie, Basanty, Basantii, Basantey, Basantee, Basantea, Basanteah... basanti


An observation or value that represents the background level of a measurable quantity.... baseline

Basella Alba

Linn. var. rubra Stewart.

Synonym: B. rubra Linn.

Family: Basellaceae.

Habitat: Grown as a pot herb in almost every part of India, except hills.

English: Indian Spinach.

Ayurvedic: Upodikaa, Potaki, Maalvaa, Amritvallari.

Siddha/Tamil: Vaslakkirai.

Folk: Poi.

Action: Demulcent, diuretic, laxative (a good substitute for spinach and purslane). Used as a cooling medicine in digestive disorders. Leaf juice is used in balanitis and catarrhal affections. Externally applied in urticaria, burns, scalds. Root—decoction is given to stop bilious vomiting and in intestinal complaints. Used as poultice to reduce local swellings; sap is used in acne.

Used for checking malnutrition in children.

The essential amino acids are argi- nine, leucine, isoleucine, lysine, threonine and tryptophan. The plant contains several vitamins and minerals, is rich in calcium and iron compounds and contains a low percentage of soluble oxalates. The leaves also contain carotenoids, organic acids and water- soluble polysaccharides, bioflavonoids and vitamin K.

Dosage: Whole plant—10-20 ml juice. (CCRAS.)... basella alba


(Arabic) One who is joyful; a bringer of good tidings Bashira, Basheera, Bashyra, Bashiera, Basheira, Basheyra, Bashiga, Bashyga, Bushra, Basheerah, Bashyrah, Bashierah, Basheirah, Basheyrah, Basheara, Bashearah... bashirah

Basic Health Service

A network of health units providing essential health care to a population. Basic health services include communicable disease control, environmental sanitation, maintenance of records for statistical purposes, health education of the public, public health nursing and medical care.... basic health service

Basil Tea Has Anti-inflammatory Properties

Basil tea is an Ayurvedic natural remedy used to treat a wide variety of diseases such as asthma, diabetes and high cholesterol. Hindus worship the plant for its religious significance as well. Basil Tea description Basil, a plant from the mint family, is original from India and Asia. It is an aromatic herb with a strong fragrance being largely used in spaghetti sauces, stews and tomato recipes. Basil is a source of vitamins and other nutrients.  Studies showed that this herb has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory health properties, fighting against intestinal problems, headaches and ulcers, as well. In aromatherapy, basil is used to alleviate mental fatigue. Basil tea is the resulting beverage from brewing the abovementioned plant. Basil Tea brewing To prepare Basil tea:
  • bring the water and the basil leaves to boil (in a small tea pan)
  • lower the heat and allow it to brew for 3-4 minutes
  • add the tea leaves or tea bags and sugar according to taste
  • bring to boil
  • turn off the heat
  • strain it into cups and add milk according to taste
Basil Tea benefits Studies claimed that Basil Tea is successesfully used to:
  • treat intestinal colics, gastric ulcers and bloating/swelling of the abdomen
  • treat anorexia
  • fight urinary tract infections
  • help against diarrhea
  • help fight insomnia
  • help treat lesions and inflammations in the mouth
  • enhance the body’s ability to resist stress
  • help to relieve pain
Basil Tea side effects Basil tea side effects are generally associated to large intakes. There have been thus noticed:shallow breathing, blood in the urine or sputum, mouth and throat burns, nausea, racing heartbeat, seizures, dizziness and coma. Pregnant or breastfeeding women, as well as women trying to become pregnant should not use Basil tea. Basil tea has anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties, proving itself to be an important adjuvant in treating arthritis, fevers and other ailments. It is also constantly used to add savor to several dishes.... basil tea has anti-inflammatory properties


(Greek) Feminine form of Basil; of the royal line; queenly; one who is valiant Basiliya, Basilya, Basilie, Basilea, Basylia, Basylya, Basili, Basylie, Basyli, Basileah... basilia


(Arabic) One who smiles a lot Basima, Basimma, Basyma, Baseema, Basiema, Basmah, Basma, Basymah, Baseemah, Basiemah, Baseima, Baseimah, Baseama, Basemah... basimah

Bassia Longifolia


Synonym: Madhuca longifolia (Linn.) Macbride.

Family: Sapotaceae.

Habitat: South India; common in the monsoon forests of Western Ghats.

English: Mowra Butter tree, South Indian Mahua.

Siddha/Tamil: Illupei, Elupa, Naatu, Iluppei, Iruppei.

Action: Flowers—laxative, bechic (used in coughs, colds and bronchitis), stimulant and nervine tonic. Seed oil—galactogenic, anticephalalgic, laxative in cases of habitual constipation and piles; used externally in rheumatism and skin affections. Bark, seed oil and gum—antirheumatic.

The herb contains 17% tannins and is used for bleeding and spongy gums, tonsillitis, ulcers, rheumatism and diabetes mellitus. Roots are applied to ulcers.

Seed kernel gave protobassic acid (a sapogenol) and two major saponins— Mi-saponins A and B. Mi-saponins (bisdesmosides of protobassic acid) exhibit anti-inflammatory activity in rheumatism.

The carollas are a rich source of sugars and contain an appreciable amount of vitamins and calcium (total sugars 72.9%, calcium 140 mg/100 g). Sugars are identified as sucrose, maltose, glucose, fructose, arabinose and rham- nose. Flowers are largely used in the preparation of distilled liquors. They constitute the most important raw material for fermentative production of alcohol.... bassia longifolia


(Egyptian) A fiery woman; in mythology, goddess of fertility and the sun Bastett, Bastette, Basteta, Bastetta... bastet


Winged mammals which can be associated with the transmission of rabies, Lyssavirus and Australian Bat Morbillivirus infections to humans. Most species are insectivorous or fruit-eaters, but the vampire bats of Latin America feed on mammalian blood.... bat


Sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas).

Plant Part Used: Root (tuber), leaf, stem.

Dominican Medicinal Uses: The fresh root is traditionally prepared as a poultice and applied topically for burns and wounds. The root is also cooked and ingested, for women’s health conditions and nutrition. The leaves and stems may be prepared as an aqueous maceration and applied topically for wound-healing.

Safety: The tuber is widely consumed and generally considered safe except if contaminated by a toxic fungal infection. No data has been identified in the available literature on the safety of the leaves and stems.

Clinical Data: Human clinical trials: antidiabetic, improved vitamin A status (tuber).

Laboratory & Preclinical Data: In vivo: antidiabetic, antioxidant, hypoglycemic (tuber, extracts or constituents).

In vitro: aldose reductase inhibition, antimicrobial, antioxidant, immune-enhancing (tuber, extracts or constituents)

* See entry for Batata in “Part 3: Dominican Medicinal Plant Profiles” of this book for more information, including references.... batata

Batata De Burro

Caribbean coralfruit (Doyerea emetocathartica).

Plant Part Used: Leaf, root.

Dominican Medicinal Uses: Leaves: tea for diabetes. Root: infusion or multi-herb tincture, orally, for sexually transmitted infections, menstrual disorders, uterine fibroids, digestive and colon ailments.

Safety: No studies on the safety of this plant in humans or animals have been identified in the available literature.

Contraindications: Unknown; insufficient information identified in the available literature.

Drug Interactions: Unknown; insufficient information identified in the available literature.

Clinical, Laboratory & Preclinical Data: Unknown; insufficient information identified in the available literature.

* See entry for Batata de burro in “Part 3: Dominican Medicinal Plant Profiles” of this book for more information, including references.... batata de burro

Bather’s Itch

Bather’s itch, also called schistosome DERMATITIS, is the term given to a blotchy rash on the skin occurring in those bathing in water which is infested with the larvae of certain trematode worms known as schistosomes (see SCHISTOSOMIASIS). The worm is parasitic in snails. The skin rash is caused by penetration of the skin by the free-swimming larval cercaria. Bather’s itch is common in many parts of the world.... bather’s itch


(German) Heroine of a bold battle Bathilde, Bathilda... bathild


(Hebrew) The daughter of the oath, in the Bible, a wife of King David and mother of Solomon Bathshebah, Bathsheeba, Bathshyba, Bathshieba, Bethsheba, Bethshebah... bathsheba


(Arabic) The seventh daughter Bathshirah, Bathsheera, Bathsheerah, Bathshiera, Bathshierah, Bathsheira, Bathsheirah, Bathsheara, Bathshearah, Bathshyra, Bathshyrah... bathshira

Batoko Plum

Flacourtia inermis

Description: This shrub or small tree has dark green, alternate, simple leaves. Its fruits are bright red and contain six or more seeds.

Habitat and Distribution: This plant is a native of the Philippines but is widely cultivated for its fruit in other areas. It can be found in clearings and at the edges of the tropical rain forests of Africa and Asia.

Edible Parts: Eat the fruit raw or cooked.... batoko plum


(Hebrew) A daughter of Zion Batseyon, Batseyonne, Battzion, Batzion... battseeyon


(Arabic) Woman who is chaste; a virgin

Batulle, Batoole, Batool, Batula, Batulah, Betul, Betool, Betulle, Betula, Betoole... batul


(Hebrew) A daughter of God Batyah, Batiya, Bitya, Bitiya, Bityah... batya


(Greek) In mythology, the wife of Philemon... baucis


Bauhinia variegata


San: Kancanarah, Kovidarah;

Hin: Kancanar;

Ben: Rakta Kanchan;

Tam: Sigappu-mandarai

Mal: Mandaram, Chuvannamandaram, Malayakatti, Kongu, Kongumandaram;

Tel: Daeva Kanchanamu, Mandara;

Kan: Ullipe, Kanchavala, Kempu Mandara

Importance: In traditional medicine, Bauhinia is extensively used in glandular diseases and as an antidote to poison. The drug is also reported to be useful in dysentery, diarrhoea, piles and worms (Kurup et al, 1979; Sharma et al, 1983). They are useful in vitiated conditions of kapha and pitta, diarrhoea, dysentery, skin diseases, leprosy, intestinal worms, tumours, wounds, ulcers, inflammations, scrofula, protoptosis, haemorrhoids, haemoptysis, cough, menorrhagia and diabetics. Usirasavam and Candanasavam are some of the preparations using the drug. An important Ayurvedic preparation, “Kanchnar Guggal” contains bark of this plant. In Unani system, the flowers are used in “Hab Mussafi Khun”, for skin diseases, the bark is used in “Sufuf Kalan”-an aphrodisiac.

Distribution: The plant is distributed in the Sub-Himalayan tracts from the Indus eastwards and throughout the dry forests of India, ascending to 1300m. It is also cultivated throughout the plains.

Botany: Bauhinia variegata Linn. syn. B.

candida Roxb. belonging to the family Caesalpiniaceae is a moderate sized deciduous tree with vertically cracked grey bark, wood moderately hard, greyish brown with irregular darker patches. Leaves are of 2 leaflets, connate for about two-thirds up. Leaflets are ovate with rounded apex, 10-15cm long, pubescent beneath when young and coriaceous. Flowers are white or pink, the uppermost petal darker and variegated usually appearing before the leaves in short axillary or terminal racemes. Stamens are 5 and stamenodes absent. Fruits are flat dehiscent pods with 10-15 seeds (Warrier et al, 1993).

Other important species of the genus Bauhinia are as follows.

1. B. tomentosa Linn.

It is the yellow or golden flowered one, commonly known as Manja Mandaram. It is found in Africa and Asia. In India it is found wild in dry deciduous forests and often cultivated. The plant is antidysenteric, antidote for snakebite and scorpion sting and also used in liver complaints. The bark is astringent. Root bark is vermifuge. Fruit is diuretic. Seed is tonic, wound healing and aphrodisiac.

2. B. purpurea Linn.

Pink Bauhinia or Camel’s Foot tree is found in South and S. E. Asia. In India, it is found in deciduous forests. Root is carminative and tonic. Bark is astringent and antidiarrhoeal and is used in ulcer and goitre. Flowers are laxative. The experimental studies conducted by Sijoria and Prasad (1979) on animals indicate that B. purpurea is very effective in normalising the thyroid gland.

3. B. racemosa Lam.

The plant is found in Sub-Himalayan tracts, in U.P, West Bengal, Central and South India. The leaf is anticephalalgic and antimalarial. Bark is astringent, antidiarrhoeal. The seeds are antibacterial. Stem-bark is CVS and CNS active, hypothermic and anticancerous.

4. B. malabarica Roxb.

Malabar Mountain Ebony is found in Sub-Himalayan tracts, from Kumaon to West Bengal, ascending to 1350m, Assam, Bihar and South India. The flowers of this plant are antidysenteric.

5. B. retusa Roxb.

The plant is distributed in north-western Himalayas from the Beas eastwards, Himachal Pradesh, U.P., Orissa, M.P. and A.P. The gum of the plant is emmenagogue, diuretic and can be used externally in sores. The seed is hypoglycaemic and hypocholesterolaemic. The aerial part is CVS active and has effect on respiration.

6. B. vahlii W.&A.

Camel’s Foot climber is found in Punjab, Bihar, Assam, Madhy Pradesh, Andra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. Leaf is demulcent. Seed is tonic and aphrodisiac. Stem is CVS active, antiarrhythmic and spasmolytic.

Agrotechnology: Well drained hilly areas are ideal for the cultivation of Bauhinia. The plant is seed propagated. Seeds are formed in February-March. Seeds are to be collected from the dried pods, soaked in water for 12 hours before sowing in seedbeds. At four-leaved stage they are to be transferred to polybags. Two month old seedlings from polybags are used for field planting. Pits of size 60cm cube are to be taken and filled with 10kg dried cowdung mixed with topsoil and formed into a mound. On these seedlings are to be planted at a distance of 6-7.5m. Irrigation is to be given in the first year. Two weedings and application of organic manure once is required in a year. The plant is not attacked by any serious pests and diseases. The plant flowers on the third year. At the end of tenth year the tree can be cut and wood used for medicinal purposes (Prasad et al, 1997).

Properties and activity: Flowers contain flavanoids-kaempferol-3-galactoside and kaempferol-3- rhamnoglucoside. Stem bark yields hentriacontane, octacosanol and stigmasterol. Stem yields -sitisterol, lupiol and a flavanone glycoside-5, 7-dimethoxy flavanone 4-O- -L- rhamnopyranoside- -D-glucopyranoside. Seeds possess human blood agglutinating activity. Stem bark is hypothermic, CNS active and depressant. Bud, flower, leaf and stembark are antibacterial. Stem possesses juvenoid activity. Bark is alterative, tonic, antileprotic and antirheumatic. Bud is antidysenteric. Root is carminative and antidote for snakebite. Bark, flower and root promote suppuration. Bark and bud are astringent and vermifuge (Husain et al, 1992).... bauhinia


(Nigerian) One who finds joy... bayo




(English) A warrior woman... beadu


(Gaelic) A petite woman... beagan


Protection, Exorcism, Wart Charming, Reconciliation, Potency, Love... bean


(Black beans, chickpeas, kidney beans, navy beans, white beans) See also Bean sprouts, Lentils, Lima beans, Peas, Soybeans.

Nutritional Profile Energy value (calories per serving): Moderate Protein: High Fat: Low Saturated fat: Low Cholesterol: None Carbohydrates: High Fiber: Very high Sodium: Low Major vitamin contribution: Vitamin B6, folate Major mineral contribution: Iron, magnesium, zinc

About the Nutrients in This Food Beans are seeds, high in complex carbohydrates including starch and dietary fiber. They have indigestible sugars (stachyose and raffinose), plus insoluble cellulose and lignin in the seed covering and soluble gums and pectins in the bean. The proteins in beans are limited in the essential amino acids methionine and cystine.* All beans are a good source of the B vitamin folate, and iron. One-half cup canned kidney beans has 7.5 g dietary fiber, 65 mcg folate (15 percent of the R DA), and 1.6 mg iron (11 percent of the R DA for a woman, 20 percent of the R DA for a man). Raw beans contain antinutrient chemicals that inactivate enzymes required to digest proteins and carbohydrates. They also contain factors that inactivate vitamin A and also hemagglutinins, substances that make red blood cells clump together. Cooking beans disarms the enzyme inhibi- tors and the anti-vitamin A factors, but not the hemagglutinins. However, the amount of hemagglutinins in the beans is so small that it has no mea- surable effect in your body. * Soybeans are t he only beans t hat contain proteins considered “complete” because t hey contain sufficient amounts of all t he essent ial amino acids. The Folate Content of ½ Cup Cooked Dried Beans

  Bean   Folate (mcg)
Black beans 129
Chickpeas 191
Kidney beans canned 65
Navy beans 128
Pinto beans 147
  Source: USDA Nut rient Database: w w /nut, Nutritive Value of Foods, Home and Gardens Bullet in No. 72 (USDA, 1989).

The Most Nutritious Way to Serve This Food Cooked, to destroy antinutrients. With grains. The proteins in grains are deficient in the essential amino acids lysine and isoleucine but contain sufficient tryptophan, methionine, and cystine; the proteins in beans are exactly the opposite. Together, these foods provide “complete” proteins. With an iron-rich food (meat) or with a vitamin C-rich food (tomatoes). Both enhance your body’s ability to use the iron in the beans. The meat makes your stomach more acid (acid favors iron absorption); the vitamin C may convert the ferric iron in beans into ferrous iron, which is more easily absorbed by the body.

Diets That May Restrict or Exclude This Food Low-calcium diet Low-fiber diet Low-purine (antigout) diet

Buying This Food Look for: Smooth-skinned, uniformly sized, evenly colored beans that are free of stones and debris. The good news about beans sold in plastic bags is that the transparent material gives you a chance to see the beans inside; the bad news is that pyridoxine and pyridoxal, the natural forms of vitamin B6, are very sensitive to light. Avoid: Beans sold in bulk. Some B vitamins, such as vitamin B6 (pyridoxine and pyridoxal), are very sensitive to light. In addition, open bins allow insects into the beans, indicated by tiny holes showing where the bug has burrowed into or through the bean. If you choose to buy in bulk, be sure to check for smooth skinned, uniformly sized, evenly colored beans free of holes, stones, and other debris.

Storing This Food Store beans in air- and moistureproof containers in a cool, dark cabinet where they are pro- tected from heat, light, and insects.

Preparing This Food Wash dried beans and pick them over carefully, discarding damaged or withered beans and any that float. (Only withered beans are light enough to float in water.) Cover the beans with water, bring them to a boil, and then set them aside to soak. When you are ready to use the beans, discard the water in which beans have been soaked. Some of the indigestible sugars in the beans that cause intestinal gas when you eat the beans will leach out into the water, making the beans less “gassy.”

What Happens When You Cook This Food When beans are cooked in liquid, their cells absorb water, swell, and eventually rupture, releasing the pectins and gums and nutrients inside. In addition, cooking destroys antinutri- ents in beans, making them more nutritious and safe to eat.

How Other Kinds of Processing Affect This Food Canning. The heat of canning destroys some of the B vitamins in the beans. Vitamin B is water-soluble. You can recover all the lost B vitamins simply by using the liquid in the can, but the liquid also contains the indigestible sugars that cause intestinal gas when you eat beans. Preprocessing. Preprocessed dried beans have already been soaked. They take less time to cook but are lower in B vitamins.

Medical Uses and/or Benefits Lower risk of some birth defects. As many as two of every 1,000 babies born in the United States each year may have cleft palate or a neural tube (spinal cord) defect due to their moth- ers’ not having gotten adequate amounts of folate during pregnancy. The current R DA for folate is 180 mcg for a woman and 200 mcg for a man, but the FDA now recommends 400 mcg for a woman who is or may become pregnant. Taking a folate supplement before becoming pregnant and continuing through the first two months of pregnancy reduces the risk of cleft palate; taking folate through the entire pregnancy reduces the risk of neural tube defects. Lower risk of heart attack. In the spring of 1998, an analysis of data from the records for more than 80,000 women enrolled in the long-run ning Nurses Health Study at Har vard School of Public Health/ Brigham and Woman’s Hospital in Boston demonstrated that a diet providing more than 400 mcg folate and 3 mg vitamin B6 a day from either food or supple- ments, more than t wice the current R DA for each, may reduce a woman’s risk of heart attack by almost 50 percent. A lthough men were not included in the analysis, the results are assumed to apply to them as well. NOT E : Beans are high in B6 as well as folate. Fruit, green leaf y vegetables, whole grains, meat, fish, poultr y, and shellfish are good sources of vitamin B6. To reduce the levels of serum cholesterol. The gums and pectins in dried beans and peas appear to lower blood levels of cholesterol. Currently there are two theories to explain how this may happen. The first theory is that the pectins in the beans form a gel in your stomach that sops up fats and keeps them from being absorbed by your body. The second is that bacteria in the gut feed on the bean fiber, producing short-chain fatty acids that inhibit the production of cholesterol in your liver. As a source of carbohydrates for people with diabetes. Beans are digested very slowly, produc- ing only a gradual rise in blood-sugar levels. As a result, the body needs less insulin to control blood sugar after eating beans than after eating some other high-carbohydrate foods (such as bread or potato). In studies at the University of Kentucky, a bean, whole-grain, vegetable, and fruit-rich diet developed at the University of Toronto enabled patients with type 1 dia- betes (who do not produce any insulin themselves) to cut their daily insulin intake by 38 percent. Patients with type 2 diabetes (who can produce some insulin) were able to reduce their insulin injections by 98 percent. This diet is in line with the nutritional guidelines of the American Diabetes Association, but people with diabetes should always consult with their doctors and/or dietitians before altering their diet. As a diet aid. Although beans are high in calories, they are also high in bulk (fiber); even a small serving can make you feel full. And, because they are insulin-sparing, they delay the rise in insulin levels that makes us feel hungry again soon after eating. Research at the University of Toronto suggests the insulin-sparing effect may last for several hours after you eat the beans, perhaps until after the next meal.

Adverse Effects Associated with This Food Intestinal gas. All legumes (beans and peas) contain raffinose and stachyose, complex sug- ars that human beings cannot digest. The sugars sit in the gut and are fermented by intestinal bacteria which then produce gas that distends the intestines and makes us uncomfortable. You can lessen this effect by covering the beans with water, bringing them to a boil for three to five minutes, and then setting them aside to soak for four to six hours so that the indigestible sugars leach out in the soaking water, which can be discarded. Alternatively, you may soak the beans for four hours in nine cups of water for every cup of beans, discard the soaking water, and add new water as your recipe directs. Then cook the beans; drain them before serving. Production of uric acid. Purines are the natural metabolic by-products of protein metabo- lism in the body. They eventually break down into uric acid, sharp cr ystals that may concentrate in joints, a condition known as gout. If uric acid cr ystals collect in the urine, the result may be kidney stones. Eating dried beans, which are rich in proteins, may raise the concentration of purines in your body. Although controlling the amount of purines in the diet does not significantly affect the course of gout (which is treated with allopurinol, a drug that prevents the formation of uric acid cr ystals), limiting these foods is still part of many gout regimens.

Food/Drug Interactions Monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors. Monoamine oxidase inhibitors are drugs used to treat depression. They inactivate naturally occurring enzymes in your body that metabolize tyramine, a substance found in many fermented or aged foods. Tyramine constricts blood vessels and increases blood pressure. If you eat a food containing tyramine while you are taking an M AO inhibitor, you cannot effectively eliminate the tyramine from your body. The result may be a hypertensive crisis. Some nutrition guides list dried beans as a food to avoid while using M AO inhibitors.... beans

Bearberry Or Kinnikinnick

Arctostaphylos uvaursi

Description: This plant is a common evergreen shrub with reddish, scaly bark and thick, leathery leaves 4 centimeters long and 1 centimeter wide. It has white flowers and bright red fruits.

Habitat and Distribution: This plant is found in arctic, subarctic, and temperate regions, most often in sandy or rocky soil.

Edible Parts: Its berries are edible raw or cooked. You can make a refreshing tea from its young leaves.... bearberry or kinnikinnick

Bauhinia Acuminata


Family: Caesalpiniaceae.

Habitat: Central India.

English: Dwarf White Bauhinia.

Ayurvedic: Kaanchnaara, Kovidaara (white-flowered var.)

Unani: Kachnaal.

Siddha/Tamil: Vellaimandarai.

Action: Bark and leaves—a decoction is given in biliousness, stone in bladder, venereal diseases, leprosy and asthma. Root—boiled with oil is applied to burns.... bauhinia acuminata

Bauhinia Malabarica


Family: Caesalpiniaceae.

Habitat: South India, Assam and Bengal.

English: Malabar Mountain Ebony.

Ayurvedic: Ashmantaka var., Kaanchanaara var. (in the South).

Siddha/Tamil: Malaiyatti.

Folk: Aapataa (Maharashtra), Amli, Amlosaa.

Action: Antidysenteric.

The plant contains flavonoid gly- cosides—quercitroside, iso-quercitro- side, rutoside, taxifoline rhamnoside, kaempferol glycosides and quercetol glycoside.... bauhinia malabarica

Bauhinia Purpurea


Habitat: The Himalayas, and distributed in Northern India, Assam, Khasi Hills. Also cultivated in gardens.

English: Camel's Foot tree, Pink Bauhinia, Butterfly tree, Geramium tree, Orchid tree.

Ayurvedic: Kovidaara, Rakta Kaanchanaara.

Unani/Siddha: Sivappu mandaarai.

Siddha: Mandarai.

Folk: Koilaara, Khairwaal, Kaliaar, Rakta Kanchan.

Action: Bark—astringent, antidiar- rhoeal. Flower buds and flowers, fried in purified butter, are given to patients suffering from dysentery. Extract of stems are used internally and externally for fractured bones. Plant is used in goitre. It exhibited antithyroid-like activity in experimental animals.

The flowers contain astragalin, iso- quercitrin and quercetin, also antho- cyanins. Seeds contain chalcone gly- cosides.... bauhinia purpurea

Bauhinia Racemosa


Family: Caesalpiniaceae.

Habitat: Sub-Himalayan tracts from Ravi eastwards, ascending to 1,000 m. in the Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and Central and South India.

Ayurvedic: Ashmantaka, Kanchini.

Unani: Kachnaar.

Folk: Aapataa (Maharashtra), Kachnaala.

Action: Bark—highly astringent, anti-inflammatory (used in glandular inflammations, skin diseases, ulcers), cholagogue. Leaves—anthelmintic; with onion for diarrhoea. Flowers—used in haemorrhages, piles; also in cough. Seed—antibacterial.

Octacosane, beta-amyrin and beta- sitosterol have been isolated from the bark. EtOH (50%) extract of seeds exhibited anticancer activity.... bauhinia racemosa

Bauhinia Retusa


Synonym: B. semla Wunderlin.

Family: Caesalpiniaceae.

Habitat: Northwestern Himalayas up to 1500 m, also in Orissa, Madhya Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh.

Siddha: Nirpa (Telugu).

Folk: Semalaa, Kathmahuli. Gum— Thaur

Action: Gum—emmenagogue, diuretic. (Gum resembles Gum arabic; used as an external application for sores). Protein isolated from seeds—hypoglycaemic, hypoc- holesterolaemic in young, normal as well as alloxan-induced diabetic albino rats.

The bark contains quercetin-3-O- beta-D-glucoside and rutin.... bauhinia retusa


(Celtic) One who gives life Betha, Beathah, Bethah... beatha


(Hebrew) One who serves God... beathag


(Scottish) Having great wisdom... beathas


(Latin) One who blesses others Beatrix, Beatriz, Beatriss, Beatrisse, Bea, Beatrize, Beatricia, Beatrisa, Beate, Beata, Beat, Bee, Beitris, Betrys, Bettrys, Bice... beatrice


(Hebrew) One who is pledged to God Bebbah... bebba


Literally, “drink”; a mixture of plants (can be a few or several; i.e. up to 20-30 different plant species) prepared as a strong decoction, boiled for a long time and often sweetened and thickened after boiling with either molasses (melaza) or honey (miel de abeja); similar to a botella; often prescribed for women’s health conditions, especially as a postpartum tonic.... bebedizo


(Irish) An accomplished singer Bebhin, Bebhynn, Bebhyn, Bevin, Bevinne, Bevinn, Bevyn... bebhinn


(Hebrew) One who is chosen Bechirah, Bechyra, Bechyrah, Becheara, Bechearah, Becheera, Becheerah... bechira


(English) From the small brook Becket, Bekett, Beckette, Bekette, Beket... beckett

Bauhinia Tomentosa


Family: Caesalpiniaceae.

Habitat: Southern India, Assam and Bihar.

English: Yellow Bauhinia, St. Thomas tree, Bell Bauhinia.

Ayurvedic: Pita Kovidaara (yellow- flowered var.), Pita Kanchana.

Siddha/Tamil: Kokkumandarai, Tiruvaatti, Kanjani.

Folk: Kachnaar.

Action: Antidysenteric. Fruit— diuretic. Bark—astringent. Root bark—vermifuge. A decoction of the root bark is prescribed for liver diseases. Seed—used for wound healing.

Seeds yield a fatty oil called ebony oil, a water soluble mucilage and saponins. Flowers gave isoquercitrin (6%), rutin (4.6%) and quercetin (small amounts).... bauhinia tomentosa

Bauhinia Variegata


Synonym: B. candida Roxb.

Family: Caesalpiniaceae.

Habitat: Punjab, Western Peninsula and Assam. Also cultivated in gardens.

English: Mountain Ebony, Buddhist Bauhinia.

Ayurvedic: Kaanchanaara, Kaan- chanaaraka, Kanchanak, Kaan- chana, Gandhaari, Sonapushpaka, Ashmantaka.

Siddha/Tamil: Sivappumanchori.

Action: Buds—a decoction is given in piles (also used against tumours), haematuria, menorrhagia. Dried buds are used in diarrhoea, dysentery, worm infestation, piles and tumours. Root— carminative, used in dyspepsia and flatulence (a decoction is reported to prevent obesity). Bark—astringent, anthelmintic; used externally in scrofula and skin diseases. Seeds—possess human blood agglutinating activity. Leaf— antifungal.

Along with other therapeutic applications, The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India indicated the use of the stem bark in lymphadenitis and goitre. (Ka- anchnaar Guggulu is prescribed for glandular swellings and goitre.)

Water-soluble portion of alcoholic extract of the plant showed preventive effect against goitre in rats.

Flowers gave flavonoids, kaempfe- rol-3-galactoside and kaempferol-3- rhamnoglucoside. The stem bark yields hentriacontane, octacosanol and stigmasterol. Stem contains beta-sitos- terol, lupeol and a flavanone glyco- side.

Dosage: Stem bark—20-30 g for decoction. (API Vol. I.)... bauhinia variegata


Myrica cerifera. N.O. Myricaceae.

Synonym: Candleberry, Waxberry, Wax Myrtle.

Habitat: Near the sea in pastures and on stony soils.

Features ? The bark has a white, peeling epidermis covering a hard, reddish-brown layer beneath. It is slightly fibrous on the inner surface, and the fracture is granular. The taste is pungent, astringent and bitter, the odour faintly aromatic.

Part used ? The bark is the only part of the Bayberry shrub now used as a medicine.

Action: A powerful stimulant, astringent and tonic to the alimentary tract.

Bayberry bark is one of the most widely used agents in the herbal practice. It figures in many of the compound powders and is the base of the celebrated composition powder, a prescription of which will be found in the "Herbal Formulae" section of this volume. In cases of coldness of the extremities, chills and influenza, an infusion of 1 ounce of the powdered bark to 1 pint of water is taken warm. This assists circulation and promotes perspiration, especially when combined with Cayenne as in

the formula referred to above.

As an antiseptic the powder is added to poultices for application to ulcers, sores and wounds. It also makes an excellent snuff for nasal catarrh, and an ingredient in tooth powders, for which a prescription is given in the section previously mentioned.

The virtues of Bayberry bark were recognized and used beneficially by the herbalists of many generations ago. Indeed, their enthusiasm for this, as for certain other remedies also extremely efficacious within proper limits, led them to ascribe properties to the bark which it does not possess. Many affections of the uterine system, fistula, and even cancer were said to yield to its influence.

Even in these cases, however, Bayberry bark certainly did less harm than many of the methods employed by the more orthodox practitioners of that time !... bayberry


(English) Form of Rebecca, meaning “one who is bound to God” Beckey, Becki, Beckie, Becca, Becka, Bekka, Beckee, Beckea, Beckeah... becky

Beclomethasone Dipropionate

One of the CORTICOSTEROIDS used as an aerosol inhalant. It must be used regularly for its best e?ect. Unlike systemic corticosteroids, inhaled forms are much less likely to suppress adrenal-gland activity and have fewer side-effects.... beclomethasone dipropionate

Bed Sores

See ULCER.... bed sores


The continued occupation of a hospital bed by a patient who is ?t to be discharged but requires further care in a nursing home or in a community setting that cannot be arranged because of lack of suitable facilities and/or funding. Bed-blocking has become a common phenomenon in the NHS, particularly in the winter.

The result is that patients who need inpatient care cannot always be admitted. The term ‘bedblockers’ is derogatory and should not be used.... bed-blocking


(German) A goddess; warrior woman Bedah, Bedda, Beddah... beda


Blood sucking hemipterans belonging to the genus Cimex. Not important in the transmission of disease but can cause irritating allergic response to their saliva.... bedbugs

Bcg Vaccine

BCG (Bacillus Calmette-Guérin) vaccine, which was ?rst introduced in France in 1908, is the only vaccine that has produced signi?cant immunity against the tubercle bacillus (see TUBERCULOSIS) and at the same time has proved safe enough for use in human subjects. BCG vaccination is usually considered for the following groups of people. (1) Schoolchildren: the routine programme in schools usually covers children aged between ten and 14. (2) Students, including those in teacher training colleges. (3) Immigrants from countries with a high prevalence of tuberculosis (TB). (4) Children and newborn infants born in the UK to parents from Group 3, or other newborns at parents’ request. (5) Health workers, such as nurses, and others likely to be exposed to infection in their work. (6) Veterinary workers who handle animals susceptible to TB. (7) Sta? of prisons, residential homes and hostels for refugees and the homeless. (8) Household contacts of people known to have active TB and newborn infants in households where there is a history of the disease. (9) Those staying for more than one month in high-risk countries.

A pre-vaccination tuberculin test is necessary in all age-groups except newborn infants, and only those with negative tuberculin reactions are vaccinated. Complications are few and far between. A local reaction at the site of vaccination usually occurs between two and six weeks after vaccination, beginning as a small papule that slowly increases in size. It may produce a small ulcer. This heals after around two months, leaving a small scar. (See IMMUNITY; TUBERCULIN.)... bcg vaccine


love... beet

Begonia Laciniata

Roxb. var. nepalensis A. DC.

Family: Begoniaceae.

Habitat: Tropical and sub-tropical regions, especially in America. Found in Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Meghalaya, Nagaland and Manipur, ascending to an altitude to 2,100 m.

English: Beefsteak Geraniums, Elephant's Ear.

Folk: Hooirjo (West Bengal), Teisu (Nagaland).

Action: A decoction of the root is given for liver diseases and fever. The extract from succulent stalks is used for venereal diseases in folk medicine. Fresh shoots are chewed for tooth troubles. Aqueous extracts of the leaves and flowers of Begonia sp. are active against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria.

Hooirjo and Teisu are also equated with B. palmata D. Don var. gamblei Hara, found in northeastern regions of India.... begonia laciniata


(Arabic) A woman of rank Bagum, Baegum, Baigum, Baygum... begum

Behçet’s Syndrome

This is a syndrome characterised by oral and genital ulceration, UVEITIS and ARTHROPATHY. THROMBOPHLEBITIS is a common complication, and involvement of the central nervous system may occur.... behçet’s syndrome


(Indian) The perfect wife Behulah, Behulla, Behulia, Behoola, Behullah, Behuliah, Behoolah, Behulea, Behuleah... behula


(French) Of the beige color... beige

Bejuco De Barraco

See Timacle.... bejuco de barraco


(English) An African queen Bellakane, Belakayne, Bellakayne, Belakaine, Bellakaine, Belacane, Bellacane, Belacayne, Bellacayne, Belacaine, Bellacaine... belakane


(French) A fair maiden Beldah, Bellda, Belldah... belda

Bean Sprouts

See also Beans.

Nutritional Profile Energy value (calories per serving): Low Protein: High Fat: Low Saturated fat: Low Cholesterol: None Carbohydrates: High Fiber: Moderate Sodium: Low Major vitamin contribution: B vitamins, folate, vitamin C Major mineral contribution: Iron, potassium

About the Nutrients in This Food Because beans use stored starches and sugars to produce green shoots called sprouts, sprouted beans have less carbohydrate than the beans from which they grow. But bean sprouts are a good source of dietary fiber, including insoluble cellulose and lignin in leaf parts and soluble pectins and gums in the bean. The sprouts are also high in the B vitamin folate and vitamin C. One-half cup raw mung bean sprouts has 1.2 mg dietary fiber, 31.5 mcg folate (8 percent of the R DA), and 7 mg vitamin C (9 percent of the R DA for a woman, 7 percent of the R DA for a man). Raw beans contain anti-nutrient chemicals that inhibit the enzymes we use to digest proteins and starches; hemagglutinins (substances that make red blood cells clump together); and “factors” that may inactivate vita- min A. These chemicals are usually destroyed when the beans are heated. with the bean must be cooked before serving. Sprouted beans served

The Most Nutritious Way to Serve This Food Cooked (see Adverse effects associated with this food ).

Diets That May Restrict or Exclude This Food Low-fiber, low-residue diet

Buying This Food Look for: Fresh, crisp sprouts. The tips should be moist and tender. (The shorter the sprout, the more tender it will be.) It is sometimes difficult to judge bean sprouts packed in plastic bags, but you can see through to tell if the tip of the sprout looks fresh. Sprouts sold from water-filled bowls should be refrigerated, protected from dirt and debris, and served with a spoon or tongs, not scooped up by hands. Avoid: Mushy sprouts (they may be decayed) and soft ones (they have lost moisture and vitamin C).

Storing This Food Refrigerate sprouts in a plastic bag to keep them moist and crisp. If you bought them in a plastic bag, take them out and repack them in bags large enough that they do not crush each other. To get the most vitamin C, use the sprouts within a few days.

Preparing This Food R inse the sprouts thoroughly under cold running water to get rid of dirt and sand. Discard any soft or browned sprouts, then cut off the roots and cook the sprouts. Do not tear or cut the sprouts until you are ready to use them. When you slice into the sprouts, you tear cells, releasing enzymes that begin to destroy vitamin C.

What Happens When You Cook This Food Cooking destroys some of the heat-sensitive vitamin C in sprouts. To save it, steam the sprouts quickly, stir-fry them, or add them uncooked just before you serve the dish.

How Other Kinds of Processing Affect This Food Canning. Vitamin C is heat-sensitive, and heating the sprouts during the canning process reduces their vitamin C content.

Medical Uses and/or Benefits Lower risk of some birth defects. As many as t wo of ever y 1,000 babies born in the United States each year may have cleft palate or a neural tube (spinal cord) defect due to their mothers’ not having gotten adequate amounts of folate during pregnancy. The R DA for folate is 400 mcg for healthy adult men and women, 600 mcg for pregnant women, and 500 mcg for women who are nursing. Taking folate supplements before becoming pregnant and continuing through the first t wo months of pregnancy reduces the risk of cleft palate; taking folate through the entire pregnancy reduces the risk of neural tube defects. Lower risk of heart attack. In the spring of 1998, an analysis of data from the records for more than 80,000 women enrolled in the long-running Nurses’ Health Study at Harvard School of Public Health/Brigham and Woman’s Hospital, in Boston, demonstrated that a diet provid- ing more than 400 mcg folate and 3 mg vitamin B6 daily, from either food or supplements, more than twice the current R DA for each, may reduce a woman’s risk of heart attack by almost 50 percent. Although men were not included in the analysis, the results are assumed to apply to them as well. However, data from a meta-analysis published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in December 2006 called this theory into question. Researchers at Tulane University examined the results of 12 controlled studies in which 16,958 patients with preexisting cardiovascular disease were given either folic acid supplements or placebos (“look-alike” pills with no folic acid) for at least six months. The scientists, who found no reduction in the risk of further heart disease or overall death rates among those taking folic acid, concluded that further studies will be required to verif y whether taking folic acid supplements reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Adverse Effects Associated with This Food Food poisoning: Reacting to an outbreak of Salmonella and E. coli O157:H7 food poisoning associated with eating raw alfalfa sprouts, the Food and Drug Administration issued a warn- ing in 1998 and again in summer 1999, cautioning those at high risk of food-borne illness not to eat any raw sprouts. The high-risk group includes children, older adults, and people with a weakened immune system (for example, those who are HIV-positive or undergoing cancer chemotherapy). Tests conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in 1999 sug- gest that irradiating raw sprouts and bathing them in an antiseptic solution at the processing plant may eliminate disease organisms and prolong the vegetable’s shelf life; this remains to be proven.... bean sprouts


(English) From the castle Bedegraine, Bedegrain, Bedegrane, Bedegraene, Bedegrayn, Bedegraen... bedegrayne


(French) Woman of great strength Bedelea, Bedeleah, Bedeliah... bedelia

Bedstraw, Fragrant

Love... bedstraw, fragrant


Nutritional Profile Energy value (calories per serving): Moderate Protein: High Fat: Moderate Saturated fat: High Cholesterol: Moderate Carbohydrates: None Fiber: None Sodium: Low Major vitamin contribution: B vitamins Major mineral contribution: Iron, phosphorus, zinc

About the Nutrients in This Food Like fish, pork, poultry, milk, and eggs, beef has high-quality proteins, with sufficient amounts of all the essential amino acids. Beef fat is slightly more highly saturated than pork fat, but less saturated than lamb fat. All have about the same amount of cholesterol per serving. Beef is an excellent source of B vitamins, including niacin, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12, which is found only in animal foods. Lean beef pro- vides heme iron, the organic iron that is about five times more useful to the body than nonheme iron, the inorganic form of iron found in plant foods. Beef is also an excellent source of zinc. One four-ounce serving of lean broiled sirloin steak has nine grams fat (3.5 g saturated fat), 101 mg cholesterol, 34 g protein, and 3.81 mg iron (21 percent of the R DA for a woman, 46 percent of the R DA for a man). One four-ounce serving of lean roast beef has 16 g fat (6.6 g saturated fat), 92 mg cholesterol, and 2.96 mg iron (16 percent of the R DA for a woman, 37 percent of the R DA for a man).

The Most Nutritious Way to Serve This Food With a food rich in vitamin C. Ascorbic acid increases the absorption of iron from meat. * These values apply to lean cooked beef.

Diets That May Restrict or Exclude This Food Controlled-fat, low-cholesterol diet Low-protein diet (for some forms of kidney disease)

Buying This Food Look for: Fresh, red beef. The fat should be white, not yellow. Choose lean cuts of beef with as little internal marbling (streaks of fat) as possible. The leanest cuts are flank steak and round steak; rib steaks, brisket, and chuck have the most fat. USDA grading, which is determined by the maturity of the animal and marbling in meat, is also a guide to fat content. U.S. prime has more marbling than U.S. choice, which has more marbling than U.S. good. All are equally nutritious; the difference is how tender they are, which depends on how much fat is present. Choose the cut of meat that is right for your recipe. Generally, the cuts from the cen- ter of the animal’s back—the rib, the T-Bone, the porterhouse steaks—are the most tender. They can be cooked by dry heat—broiling, roasting, pan-frying. Cuts from around the legs, the underbelly, and the neck—the shank, the brisket, the round—contain muscles used for movement. They must be tenderized by stewing or boiling, the long, moist cooking methods that break down the connective tissue that makes meat tough.

Storing This Food Refrigerate raw beef immediately, carefully wrapped to prevent its drippings from contami- nating other foods. Refrigeration prolongs the freshness of beef by slowing the natural multi- plication of bacteria on the meat surface. Unchecked, these bacteria will convert proteins and other substances on the surface of the meat to a slimy film and change meat’s sulfur-contain- ing amino acids methionine and cystine into smelly chemicals called mercaptans. When the mercaptans combine with myoglobin, they produce the greenish pigment that gives spoiled meat its characteristic unpleasant appearance. Fresh ground beef, with many surfaces where bacteria can live, should be used within 24 to 48 hours. Other cuts of beef may stay fresh in the refrigerator for three to five days.

Preparing This Food Trim the beef carefully. By judiciously cutting away all visible fat you can significantly reduce the amount of fat and cholesterol in each serving. When you are done, clean all utensils thoroughly with soap and hot water. Wash your cutting board, wood or plastic, with hot water, soap, and a bleach-and-water solution. For ultimate safety in preventing the transfer of microorganisms from the raw meat to other foods, keep one cutting board exclusively for raw meats, fish, and poultry, and a second one for everything else. Finally, don’t forget to wash your hands.

What Happens When You Cook This Food Cooking changes the appearance and flavor of beef, alters nutritional value, makes it safer, and extends its shelf life. Browning meat after you cook it does not “seal in the juices,” but it does change the fla- vor by caramelizing sugars on the surface. Because beef’s only sugars are the small amounts of glycogen in the muscles, we add sugars in marinades or basting liquids that may also con- tain acids (vinegar, lemon juice, wine) to break down muscle fibers and tenderize the meat. (Browning has one minor nutritional drawback. It breaks amino acids on the surface of the meat into smaller compounds that are no longer useful proteins.) When beef is cooked, it loses water and shrinks. Its pigments, which combine with oxygen, are denatured (broken into fragments) by the heat and turn brown, the natural color of well-done meat. At the same time, the fats in the beef are oxidized. Oxidized fats, whether formed in cooking or when the cooked meat is stored in the refrigerator, give cooked meat a character- istic warmed-over flavor. Cooking and storing meat under a blanket of antioxidants—catsup or a gravy made of tomatoes, peppers, and other vitamin C-rich vegetables—reduces the oxidation of fats and the intensity of warmed-over flavor. Meat reheated in a microwave oven also has less warmed-over flavor. An obvious nutritional benefit of cooking is the fact that heat lowers the fat content of beef by liquif ying the fat so it can run off the meat. One concrete example of how well this works comes from a comparison of the fat content in regular and extra-lean ground beef. According to research at the University of Missouri in 1985, both kinds of beef lose mass when cooked, but the lean beef loses water and the regular beef loses fat and cholesterol. Thus, while regular raw ground beef has about three times as much fat (by weight) as raw ground extra-lean beef, their fat varies by only 5 percent after broiling. To reduce the amount of fat in ground beef, heat the beef in a pan until it browns. Then put the beef in a colander, and pour one cup of warm water over the beef. Repeat with a second cup of warm water to rinse away fat melted by heating the beef. Use the ground beef in sauce and other dishes that do not require it to hold together. Finally, cooking makes beef safer by killing Salmonella and other organisms in the meat. As a result, cooking also serves as a natural preservative. According to the USDA, large pieces of fresh beef can be refrigerated for two or three days, then cooked and held safely for another day or two because the heat of cooking has reduced the number of bacteria on the surface of the meat and temporarily interrupted the natural cycle of deterioration.

How Other Kinds of Processing Affect This Food Aging. Hanging fresh meat exposed to the air, in a refrigerated room, reduces the moisture content and shrinks the meat slightly. As the meat ages enzymes break down muscle pro- teins, “tenderizing” the beef. Canning. Canned beef does not develop a warmed-over flavor because the high tempera- tures in canning food and the long cooking process alter proteins in the meat so that they act as antioxidants. Once the can is open, however, the meat should be protected from oxygen that will change the flavor of the beef. Curing. Salt-curing preserves meat through osmosis, the physical reaction in which liquids flow across a membrane, such as the wall of a cell, from a less dense to a more dense solution. The salt or sugar used in curing dissolves in the liquid on the surface of the meat to make a solution that is more dense than the liquid inside the cells of the meat. Water flows out of the meat and out of the cells of any microorganisms living on the meat, killing the microor- ganisms and protecting the meat from bacterial damage. Salt-cured meat is much higher in sodium than fresh meat. Freezing. When you freeze beef, the water inside its cells freezes into sharp ice crystals that can puncture cell membranes. When the beef thaws, moisture (and some of the B vitamins) will leak out through these torn cell walls. The loss of moisture is irreversible, but some of the vitamins can be saved by using the drippings when the meat is cooked. Freezing may also cause freezer burn—dry spots left when moisture evaporates from the surface of the meat. Waxed freezer paper is designed specifically to hold the moisture in meat; plastic wrap and aluminum foil are less effective. NOTE : Commercially prepared beef, which is frozen very quickly at very low temperatures, is less likely to show changes in texture. Irradiation. Irradiation makes meat safer by exposing it to gamma rays, the kind of high- energy ionizing radiation that kills living cells, including bacteria. Irradiation does not change the way meat looks, feels or tastes, or make the food radioactive, but it does alter the structure of some naturally occurring chemicals in beef, breaking molecules apart to form new com- pounds called radiolytic products (R P). About 90 percent of R Ps are also found in nonirradiated foods. The rest, called unique radiolytic products (UR P), are found only in irradiated foods. There is currently no evidence to suggest that UR Ps are harmful; irradiation is an approved technique in more than 37 countries around the world, including the United States. Smoking. Hanging cured or salted meat over an open fire slowly dries the meat, kills micro- organisms on its surface, and gives the meat a rich, “smoky” flavor that varies with the wood used in the fire. Meats smoked over an open fire are exposed to carcinogenic chemicals in the smoke, including a-benzopyrene. Meats treated with “artificial smoke flavoring” are not, since the flavoring is commercially treated to remove tar and a-benzopyrene.

Medical Uses and/or Benefits Treating and/or preventing iron deficiency. Without meat in the diet, it is virtually impossible for an adult woman to meet her iron requirement without supplements. One cooked 3.5- ounce hamburger provides about 2.9 mg iron, 16 percent of the R DA for an adult woman of childbearing age. Possible anti-diabetes activity. CLA may also prevent type 2 diabetes, also called adult-onset diabetes, a non-insulin-dependent form of the disease. At Purdue University, rats bred to develop diabetes spontaneously between eight and 10 weeks of age stayed healthy when given CLA supplements.

Adverse Effects Associated with This Food Increased risk of heart disease. Like other foods from animals, beef contains cholesterol and saturated fats that increase the amount of cholesterol circulating in your blood, raising your risk of heart disease. To reduce the risk of heart disease, the National Cholesterol Education Project recommends following the Step I and Step II diets. The Step I diet provides no more than 30 percent of total daily calories from fat, no more than 10 percent of total daily calories from saturated fat, and no more than 300 mg of cholesterol per day. It is designed for healthy people whose cholesterol is in the range of 200 –239 mg/dL. The Step II diet provides 25– 35 percent of total calories from fat, less than 7 percent of total calories from saturated fat, up to 10 percent of total calories from polyunsaturated fat, up to 20 percent of total calories from monounsaturated fat, and less than 300 mg cho- lesterol per day. This stricter regimen is designed for people who have one or more of the following conditions: •  Existing cardiovascular disease •  High levels of low-density lipoproteins (LDLs, or “bad” cholesterol) or low levels of high-density lipoproteins (HDLs, or “good” cholesterol) •  Obesity •  Type 1 diabetes (insulin-dependent diabetes, or diabetes mellitus) •  Metabolic syndrome, a.k.a. insulin resistance syndrome, a cluster of risk fac- tors that includes type 2 diabetes (non-insulin-dependent diabetes) Increased risk of some cancers. According the American Institute for Cancer Research, a diet high in red meat (beef, lamb, pork) increases the risk of developing colorectal cancer by 15 percent for every 1.5 ounces over 18 ounces consumed per week. In 2007, the National Can- cer Institute released data from a survey of 500,000 people, ages 50 to 71, who participated in an eight-year A AR P diet and health study identif ying a higher risk of developing cancer of the esophagus, liver, lung, and pancreas among people eating large amounts of red meats and processed meats. Food-borne illness. Improperly cooked meat contaminated with E. coli O157:H7 has been linked to a number of fatalities in several parts of the United States. In addition, meats con- taminated with other bacteria, viruses, or parasites pose special problems for people with a weakened immune system: the very young, the very old, cancer chemotherapy patients, and people with HIV. Cooking meat to an internal temperature of 140°F should destroy Salmo- nella and Campylobacter jejuni; 165°F, the E. coli organism; and 212°F, Listeria monocytogenes. Antibiotic sensitivity. Cattle in the United States are routinely given antibiotics to protect them from infection. By law, the antibiotic treatment must stop three days to several weeks before the animal is slaughtered. Theoretically, the beef should then be free of antibiotic residues, but some people who are sensitive to penicillin or tetracycline may have an allergic reaction to the meat, although this is rare. Antibiotic-resistant Salmonella and toxoplasmosis. Cattle treated with antibiotics may pro- duce meat contaminated with antibiotic-resistant strains of Salmonella, and all raw beef may harbor ordinary Salmonella as well as T. gondii, the parasite that causes toxoplasmosis. Toxoplasmosis is particularly hazardous for pregnant women. It can be passed on to the fetus and may trigger a series of birth defects including blindness and mental retardation. Both Salmonella and the T. gondii can be eliminated by cooking meat thoroughly and washing all utensils, cutting boards, and counters as well as your hands with hot soapy water before touching any other food. Decline in kidney function. Proteins are nitrogen compounds. When metabolized, they yield ammonia, which is excreted through the kidneys. In laborator y animals, a sustained high-protein diet increases the flow of blood through the kidneys, accelerating the natural age-related decline in kidney function. Some experts suggest that this may also occur in human beings.

Food/Drug Interactions Tetracycline antibiotics (demeclocycline [Declomycin], doxycycline [ Vibtamycin], methacycline [Rondomycin], minocycline [Minocin], oxytetracycline [Terramycin], tetracycline [Achromycin V, Panmycin, Sumycin]). Because meat contains iron, which binds tetracyclines into com- pounds the body cannot absorb, it is best to avoid meat for two hours before and after taking one of these antibiotics. Monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors. Meat “tenderized” with papaya or a papain powder can interact with the class of antidepressant drugs known as monoamine oxidase inhibi- tors. Papain meat tenderizers work by breaking up the long chains of protein molecules. One by-product of this process is tyramine, a substance that constructs blood vessels and raises blood pressure. M AO inhibitors inactivate naturally occurring enzymes in your body that metabolize tyramine. If you eat a food such as papain-tenderized meat, which is high in tyramine, while you are taking a M AO inhibitor, you cannot effectively eliminate the tyramine from your body. The result may be a hypertensive crisis. Theophylline. Charcoal-broiled beef appears to reduce the effectiveness of theophylline because the aromatic chemicals produced by burning fat speed up the metabolism of the- ophylline in the liver.... beef


Precursor of Vitamin A. Increases resistance against infection. Antioxidant. Together with Vitamins C and E form a vital line of defence in protection of strands of DNA, the genetic code, from cancerous mutation. Immune booster. Increases lymphocytes and T cells, part of the defence system.

Deficiency. Sun sensitivity; exposure inducing itching, burning and swelling of the skin. Kidney, bladder, and gut infections. Severe earache in young children. Strokes, heart attacks.

It is claimed that those who eat a diet rich in beta-carotene are less likely to develop certain types of cancer.

Smokers usually have low levels of beta-carotene in the blood. Statistics suggest that people who eat a lot of beta-carotene foods are less likely to develop lung, mouth or stomach cancer. In existing cases a slow-down of the disease is possible.

Daily dose. Up to 300mg. Excess may manifest as yellow discoloration of the skin, giving appearance of sun-tan.

Sources. Mature ripe carrots of good colour. A Finland study suggests that four small carrots contain sufficient beta-carotene to satisfy the recommended daily amount of Vitamin A. Orange and dark green fruits and vegetables. Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, spinach, pumpkin, apricots, peaches, oranges, tomatoes. Harvard Medical School study. Among 333 subjects with a history of heart disease, those who received beta-carotene supplements of 50 milligrams every other day suffered half as many heart attacks as those taking placebos. (Dr Charles Hennekens, Harvard Medical School) ... beta-carotene

Beth Root

Wake Robin. Lamb’s Quarter. Birth Root. Trillium erectum L. Part used: rhizome. Action. Genito-urinary anti-haemorrhagic; alterative; soothing tonic astringent. “Natural sex-hormone precursor” (D. Hoffman)

Uses: Used in American Indian medicine for excessive bleeding from the womb, and for easy childbirth. Bleeding from lungs, kidneys, bladder and uterine fibroids. Flooding of the menopause. Candida, leucorrhoea (decoction used as a vaginal douche).

To strengthen female constitution.

Preparations: Thrice daily.

Decoction. Half-2 grams to each cupful water simmered gently 10 minutes. Dose: half-1 cup. Liquid extract. 10-30 drops in water.

Tincture. BHP (1983) 1:5 in 40 per cent alcohol.

Dose: 1-4ml in water.

Powdered root. Half-2 grams in capsules.

Poultice: for bleeding ulcers: equal parts Beth root and Slippery Elm bark powder. Snuff: for nosebleed.

Douche (per vagina). 1oz to 2 pints water (decoction). Allow to cool; inject warm. ... beth root


Wood Betony. Stachys betonica. Betonica officinalis L. German: Betonien. French: Be?toine. Spanish: Beto?nica. Italian: Betonica. Dried herb.

Action: Affinity for liver and nervous system. General tonic (emphasis on circulation of the brain). Bitter. Stomachic, Sedative (mild).

Uses: Headache, nervous debility, lack of energy, loss of memory, weak digestion, sciatica, chronic rheumatism, sinus congestion, temporal arteritis (temporary relief), dizziness, hiatus hernia, low back pain (to reduce). Myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME). Nightmare.

Combinations. With Valerian for anxiety states. With equal parts Agrimony and Raspberry leaves as a substitute for domestic tea. With Vervain to enhance its relaxing properties.

Caution. Avoid over-dosing in pregnancy.

Preparations: Tea: 1-2 teaspoons to cup boiling water; infuse 5-10 minutes. 1 cup freely. Liquid Extract: 1 teaspoon in water.

Tincture BHP (1983) 1 in 5 in 45 per cent alcohol. Dose 30-90 drops (2-6ml). ... betony


Huckleberry. Vaccinum myrtillus L. French: Petit Myrte. German: Echte Heidelbeere. Italian: Baceri mirtillo. Fresh berries, rarely leaves.

Action. Anti-inflammatory, anti-diarrhoeal, antemetic, astringent, diuretic, refrigerant, strengthens blood vessels, vein tonic. Inhibits growth of certain bacteria. Contains Vitamins A, C, P. Gather before fruit ripens.

Uses: Dropsy, gravel, violent irritable bowel, diverticulosis, nausea or vomiting, sore throat (gargle), leucorrhoea (douche), scurvy, Vitamin C deficiency. Popular in Russian Folk Medicine for gastro- enteritis and to reduce insulin intake in diabetes. Cleansing wash for old ulcers (decoction). Pharyngitis (gargle). Leukoplakia of the mouth, vagina and urethra – improvement reported. Crohn’s disease. Bacillus Coli infections. By stimulating production of visual purple improves vision, especially night vision. Varicose veins. Piles. Cystitis.

Preparations: Thrice daily.

Decoction: 1oz to 1 pint water, remove vessel when boiling point is reached. Wineglass freely.

Liquid Extract, dose: 2-8ml.

Home tincture. Handful bilberries to 1 pint Vodka. Cork or cap. Shake daily for 1 week. Filter. Wineglass freely.

Formula. Combines well with Meadowsweet and Horsetail (equal parts).

Powder, capsules: 280mg. 2 capsules thrice daily between meals. (Arkocaps)

Diet. Cooked fresh berries are a popular dessert. Equal parts leaves of Wild Strawberry, Thyme and Bilberry substitute for domestic tea.

Fresh berries. Chew 1-3 teaspoons daily. ... bilberry


A herb that initiates a change in the metabolism of the body. It exercises a specific chemical action relating to vitamins, hormones, enzymes and minerals. Parsley is one of the most important. Others – Watercress, Alfalfa, Fenugreek seeds, Lettuce, Marshmallow, Carrots. ... biocatalyst


Vitamin P factors usually found with Vitamin C. Sources: most fruits, particularly citrus, grapefruit, grapes, lemons; rutin as found in buckwheat. They are associated with maintaining the strength of capillary walls in the elderly. One of the most popular and effective sources is Ginkgo that increases oxygen and blood supply in the general circulation, particularly the brain. ... bioflavonoids

Bisr Khil

The Khil plant is native to the Nile Valley. Seeds have a long traditional reputation as a kidney-stone breaker. Half an ounce seeds to 1 pint water; bring to boil and simmer for 5 minutes. All is drunk over the course of the day. Continue until positive response, allowing one week’s rest after each three weeks. ... bisr khil

Bile Secretion Deficiency

Bile is a greenish-yellow alkaline substance secreted by the liver which emulsifies fat and prevents putrefaction in the intestines. An aid to pancreatic juices.

Alternatives. To stimulate flow, Boldo, Horsetail, Dandelion, Blue Flag root, Milk Thistle, Bogbean, Burdock. Teas, capsules, tablets, Liquid extracts, or Tinctures.

A. Vogel recommends: Barberry, Centuary, St John’s Wort, Sarsaparilla.

Combination tea. Equal parts: Peppermint leaves, Milk Thistle, Dandelion root. 1 teaspoon to each cup boiling water; infuse 15 minutes, 1 cup thrice daily for limited period (1 month).

Bile in the urine. (Bilviria)

Arthur Barker: Liquid Extract Black root 1oz (30ml). Liquid Extract Cornsilk 1oz (30ml). Essential Peppermint 30 drops (2ml). Water to 8oz (240ml). 2 teaspoons in water 3 times daily before meals.

Diet. Dandelion coffee. Artichokes.

See: CHOLAGOGUES. CHOLERETICS. ... bile secretion deficiency


“Liverishness”. A common term used to describe sick headache, nausea and sour belching due to liver disorder. May also be associated with kidney disease, acidity, constipation or appendicitis. Most likely due to dietetic indiscretions, alcohol, fatty foods.

Alternatives:– Tea. Mixture. Equal parts, Black Horehound and Wood Betony. 1-2 teaspoons to each cup boiling water infused 5-15 minutes. Drink freely.

Decoction. Mixture. Parts: Fringe Tree bark 2; Parsley root 1; Dandelion root 1. One teaspoon to each cup water gently simmered 20 minutes. Half a cup 3 times daily before meals.

Tablets/capsules. Devil’s Claw, Milk Thistle, Blue Flag, Wild Yam.

Powders. Formula. Equal parts: Milk Thistle and Peppermint. Dose: 750mg (three 00 capsules or half a teaspoon) thrice daily.

Tinctures. Formula. Equal parts: Wahoo and Barberry. 30-60 drops every 2 hours in water.

Barberry bark. One teaspoon shredded Barberry bark to each cup cold water allowed to infuse overnight. Half-1 cup twice daily.

Arthur Barker. Liquid Extract Black root 30ml; Liquid Extract Meadowsweet 30ml; Liquid Extract Agrimony 15ml; Emulsion Peppermint water (1 in 60) 2ml (optional). Water to 240ml (8oz). Dose: 2 teaspoons in water 3 times daily.

Prevention. Weekly dose Epsom’s salts.

Milk Thistle. Acquires a reputation for the complaint.

Diet. Low fat, Dandelion coffee, artichokes. Reject alcohol and strong caffeine drinks.

See also: ACIDOSIS. LIVER. ... bilousness

Biostrath A. G.

Company founded by Fred Pestalozzi, Herrliberg on Lake Zurich, Switzerland. Pioneered herbal preparations in a base of candida utilis yeast. Yeast is fed with wild herbs plasmolysed in a fermentation process. Efficacy of products demonstrated by scientific experiment. Under special growing conditions the principles are absorbed by the yeast cells in the process of multiplication or are bound to the cell surface. They are then metabolised, i.e., undergo chemical change.

Candida utilis is a highly active wild yeast able to synthesise its own vitamins. More than 90 selected plant species from 14 countries are used in Biostrath preparations. The Company has pioneered an important advance in the preparation of herbal medicines. Results have in some instances led to completely new discoveries. ... biostrath a. g.

Biostrath Elixir

Herbal yeast food supplement. Ingredients: herbal yeast plasmolysate (saccharomyces cerevisiae) 85 per cent w/w, malt extract 9 per cent w/w, honey 3 per cent w/w, orange juice 3 per cent w/w. Biostrath Drops are a similar preparation but without malt, honey and orange juice, (Vessen). Builds up resistance, promotes vitality, combats stress, examination fatigue and lack of concentration. Said to protect the body against radiation.

Live yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae is cultivated on the herbs: Angelica, Balm, Basil, Caraway, Chamomile, Cinnamon, Elder, Fennel, Horseradish, Hyssop, Lavender, Liquorice, Parsley, Peppermint, Sage and Thyme. ... biostrath elixir

Birch, European

 Silver birch. Betula alba L., B. pendula Roth. German: Weissbirke. French: Bouleau. Spanish: Abidul. Italian: Betula. Bark and leaves.

Action: Astringent. Bitter. Anti-inflammatory. Cholagogue. Diuretic. Contains salicylates which have an aspirin-like effect. Young leaves increase the flow of urine. Popular in Scandinavia.

Uses: Rheumatism and gout (dried leaf tea). Sore mouth (gargle). Kidney and bladder complaints. Sluggish kidney function. ‘Heart’ oedema. Cellulitis due to retention of metabolic wastes.

Preparations: Tea: 1 teaspoon dried leaves to each cup boiling water; infuse 15 minutes. Strain. Wineglass thrice daily.

Methyl salicylate, a rheumatism remedy, obtained by distillation of the twigs. (A. Vogel) Birch tar oil. (Ointment) External use only (UK). ... birch, european


Of cats, dogs, fish, domestic and other animals. Treatment as for RABIES. For weever fish sting the best treatment is hot water. For bites of insects, see INSECT BITES. ... bites

Black Radish

Raphanus sativus L., var nigra. Roots.

Action: cholagogue, digestive, hepatic.

Uses: Indigestion. To increase bile production in liver disorders and to increase intestinal peristalsis. Dyskinesias. Gall bladder disorders. Constipation. Dyspepsia.

Preparations: Powder. 230mg capsules; 3 capsules midday and evening 15 minutes before meals. (Arkocaps)

Freshly pressed Juice: half-1 cup daily. If too pungent mix with a little Slippery Elm powder. ... black radish

Blackmore, Maurice

 Naturopath, Chiropractor. Pioneer of natural therapies in Australia of over 50 years. Founder of Australian based Blackmore Laboratories and the Maurice Blackmore Research Foundation. Manufacturers of herbal care preparations. A professional service is dedicated to the Australian Practitioner of Complementary Medicine. Address: 23 Roseberry Street, Balgowlah, Sydney, 2093 NSW, Australia. ... blackmore, maurice


Nutritional Profile Energy value (calories per serving): Low Protein: Moderate Fat: Low Saturated fat: Low Cholesterol: None Carbohydrates: High Fiber: Moderate Sodium: Moderate Major vitamin contribution: Vitamin C Major mineral contribution: Potassium

About the Nutrients in This Food Beets are roots, high-carbohydrate foods that provide sugars, starch, and small amounts of dietary fiber, insoluble cellulose in the skin, and soluble pectins in the flesh. Beets are also a good source of the B vitamin folate. One-half cup cooked fresh beets has one gram of dietar y fiber and 68 mcg folate (17 percent of the R DA).

The Most Nutritious Way to Serve This Food Cooked, to dissolve the stiff cell walls and make the nutrients inside available.

Diets That May Restrict or Exclude This Food Anti-kidney-stone diet Low-sodium diet

Buying This Food Look for: Smooth round globes with fresh, crisp green leaves on top. Avoid: Beets with soft spots or blemishes that suggest decay underneath.

Storing This Food Protect the nutrients in beets by storing the vegetables in a cool place, such as the vegetable crisper in your refrigerator. When stored, the beet root converts its starch into sugars; the longer it is stored, the sweeter it becomes. Remove the green tops from beets before storing and store the beet greens like other leaf y vegetables, in plastic bags in the refrigerator to keep them from drying out and losing vitamins (also see gr eens). Use both beets and beet greens within a week.

Preparing This Food Scrub the globes with a vegetable brush under cold running water. You can cook them whole or slice them. Peel before (or after) cooking.

What Happens When You Cook This Food Betacyamin and betaxanthin, the red betalain pigments in beets, are water-soluble. (That’s why borscht is a scarlet soup.) Betacyanins and betaxanthins turn more intensely red when you add acids; think of scarlet sweet-and-sour beets in lemon juice or vinegar with sugar. They turn slightly blue in a basic (alkaline) solution such as baking soda and water. Like carrots, beets have such stiff cell walls that it is hard for the human digestive tract to extract the nutrients inside. Cooking will not soften the cellulose in the beet’s cell walls, but it will dissolve enough hemicellulose so that digestive juices are able to penetrate. Cook- ing also activates flavor molecules in beets, making them taste better.

How Other Kinds of Processing Affect This Food Canning. Beets lose neither their color nor their texture in canning.

Medical Uses and/or Benefits Lower risk of some birth defects. As many as two of every 1,000 babies born in the United States each year may have cleft palate or a neural tube (spinal cord) defect due to their moth- ers’ not having gotten adequate amounts of folate during pregnancy. The R DA for folate is 400 mcg for healthy adult men and women, 600 mcg for pregnant women, and 500 mcg for women who are nursing. Taking folate supplements before becoming pregnant and continu- ing through the first two months of pregnancy reduces the risk of cleft palate; taking folate through the entire pregnancy reduces the risk of neural tube defects. Possible lower risk of heart attack. In the spring of 1998, an analysis of data from the records of more than 80,000 women enrolled in the long-running Nurses’ Health Study at Harvard School of Public Health/Brigham and Women’s Hospital, in Boston, demonstrated that a diet providing more than 400 mcg folate and 3 mg vitamin B6 daily, either from food or supple- ments, might reduce a woman’s risk of heart attack by almost 50 percent. Although men were not included in the study, the results were assumed to apply to them as well. However, data from a meta-analysis published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in December 2006 called this theory into question. Researchers at Tulane Univer- sity examined the results of 12 controlled studies in which 16,958 patients with preexisting cardiovascular diseases were given either folic acid supplements or placebos (“look-alike” pills with no folic acid) for at least six months. The scientists, who found no reduction in the risk of further heart disease or overall death rates among those taking folic acid, concluded that further studies will be required to verif y whether taking folic acid supplements reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Adverse Effects Associated with This Food Pigmented urine and feces. The ability to metabolize betacyanins and be taxanthins is a genetic trait. People with two recessive genes for this trait cannot break down these red pig- ments, which will be excreted, bright red, in urine. Eating beets can also turn feces red, but it will not cause a false-positive result in a test for occult blood in the stool. Nitrosamine formation. Beets, celery, eggplant, lettuce, radishes, spinach, and collard and turnip greens contain nitrates that convert naturally into nitrites in your stomach—where some of the nitrites combine with amines to form nitrosamines, some of which are known carcinogens. This natural chemical reaction presents no known problems for a healthy adult. However, when these vegetables are cooked and left standing for a while at room tempera- ture, microorganisms that convert nitrates to nitrites begin to multiply, and the amount of nitrites in the food rises. The resulting higher-nitrite foods may be dangerous for infants (see spinach).... beets


(Latin) A beautiful and loving woman Beffle, Befel, Beffel... befle


(English) Resembling the flower Begoniah, Begonea, Begoneah, Begoniya, Begoniyah... begonia


(Spanish) Woman from Bethlehem... belen


(Spanish) A woman dedicated to God

Beliciah, Beliciya, Belicya, Beleecia, Belycia, Belishia, Belisha, Belyshia, Beliecia, Belieciah, Beleicia, Beleiciah, Beleacia, Beleaciah... belicia


(English) A beautiful and tender woman

Belindah, Belynda, Balinda, Balynda, Belienda, Beliendah, Balyndah, Belyndah, Beleinda, Beleindah... belinda


(Celtic) In mythology, a goddess of rivers and lakes

Belisamah, Belisamma, Belysama, Belisma, Belysma, Belesama... belisama


(Italian) A woman famed for her beauty

Belle, Bela, Bell, Belita, Bellissa, Belva, Belladonna, Belia, Bellanca, Bellance, Bellini... bella

Bejuco De Indio

Chewstick (Gouania lupuloides).

Plant Part Used: Stem, leaf, root, water from inside stem.

Dominican Medicinal Uses: The stem is traditionally used in multi-herb preparations and taken orally for infections, kidney ailments, reproductive disorders, venereal disease, blood-cleansing, menstrual disorders, uterine fibroids and menopause symptoms.

Safety: No data on the safety of this plant in humans has been identified in the available literature. This plant has shown some evidence of toxicity in animal studies, but more research is needed.

Contraindications: Unknown; insufficient information identified in the available literature.

Drug Interactions: Unknown; insufficient information identified in the available literature.

Laboratory & Preclinical Data: In animal studies the leaf and branch extract has shown muscle-relaxant effects. In vitro isolated compounds have demonstrated anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial activity and CNS sedative effects and the plant extract has shown vasodilatory effects.

* See entry for Bejuco de indio in “Part 3: Dominican Medicinal Plant Profiles” of this book for more information, including references.... bejuco de indio

Belamcanda Chinensis

(L.) DC.

Family: Iridaceae.

Habitat: Introduced from China; cultivated all over India, up to an altitude of 1,800 m.

Folk: Surajkaanti (Assam), Dasbaha, Dasbichandi (Bengal).

Action: Rhizomes—expectorant, deobstruent, resolvent, used in tonsillitis, chest and liver complaints (antiviral against pneumonia).

Presence of alkaloids is reported from the plant, glucoside, belamcan- din from the roots. The leaves and flowers contain a glycoflavone. The seeds tested positive for leucoantho- cyanins.... belamcanda chinensis

Belladonna Poisoning

Atropa belladonna (deadly nightshade) is a relatively rare plant and severe poisoning is not common. The berries, which are black, ripen from August to October and are the most commonly ingested part of the plant. However, all parts of the plant are toxic. The berries contain ATROPINE and other unidenti?ed ALKALOIDS, the leaves HYOSCINE and atropine, and the roots hyoscine. All these alkaloids have an ANTICHOLINERGIC e?ect which may cause a dry mouth, dilated pupils with blurred vision, TACHYCARDIA, HALLUCINATIONS and PYREXIA. There may also be ATAXIA, agitation, disorientation and confusion. In severe cases there may be CONVULSIONS, COMA, respiratory depression and ARRHYTHMIA. Clinical effects may be delayed in onset for up to 12 hours, and prolonged for several days. Treatment is supportive.... belladonna poisoning


(Latin) In mythology, the goddess of war

Bellonah, Belona, Bellonna, Belonna, Bellonia, Belonia... bellona


(African) A peaceful woman Berne... bem


(Native American) Resembling a pheasant

Benah, Benna, Bennah... bena


A level of care set as a goal to be attained. internal benchmarks: Goals derived from similar processes or services within an organization. competitive benchmarks: Goal comparisons with the best external competitors in the field. generic benchmarks: Goals drawn from the best performance of similar processes in other industries.... benchmark


(Latin) Feminine form of Benedict; one who is blessed Benedikta, Benedetta, Benetta, Benecia, Benicia, Benita, Bennett, Bente... benedicta


An individual who receives benefits from or is covered by an insurance policy or other health care financing programme. See “enrollee”.... beneficiary

Benefit In Kind

Non-cash forms of payment or assistance.... benefit in kind

Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy, Or Hyperplasia

(BPH) The benign buildup in the prostate of “warts” or epithelial neoplasias that can block or interrupt urination, and which are usually concurrent with moderate prostate enlargement. They cause a dull ache on urination, ejaculation, and/or defecation. The diagnosis is medical, since the same subjective conditions can result from cancer of the prostate. BPH is common in men over fifty and can be the result either of diminished production of complete testosterone or poor pelvic circulation. Alcohol, coffee, speed, and antihistamines can all aggravate the problem.... benign prostatic hypertrophy, or hyperplasia


(Spanish) Feminine form of Benigno; one who is kind; friendly... benigna


(Hebrew) Feminine form of Benjamin; child of my right hand Benjameena, Benyamina, Benyameena, Benjameana, Benyameana, Benjamyna, Benyamyna... benjamina

Benefits Of Gentian Tea

Gentian tea is a Chinese tea that has been recognized since many years for its medicinal properties. Gentian plant, also known as gentiana lutea, wild gentian or yellow gentian, grows mainly in pastures of the Alps and the Himalayas. The constituents of gentian tea are amarogentin, gentiopicroside and gentiobiose that are known for being very helpful in digestion, encouraging the flow of bile and aiding the intestines  to absorb  fat. How To Make Gentian Tea Gentian tea is usually made from the dry roots of gentian plant. To make your own gentian tea, add one teaspoon of chopped gentian root into a kettle and let the mix boil for at least 20 minutes. When the time is up, let it cool until it reaches the room temperature. Gentian tea has a bitter taste, which is the reason why many tea drinkers combine it with other herbs for a more pleasant taste. It is recommended to drink gentian tea 15-30 minutes before eating. Gentian Tea Benefits
  • Calms stomach ache and aids in better disgestion.
  • Increases food appetite.
  • Remedy for liver problems.
  • Stimulates blood circulation.
  • Alleviates fever and helps treating common cold and flu.
Gentian Tea Side Effects You should always consult your doctor before taking gentian, especially if you have stomach disorder, stomach ulcer or high blood pressure. Also, stop drinking gentian tea if you start experiencing symptoms such as:
  • Allergic reactions that include difficulty in breathing; swelled lips, tongue or face; hives.
  • Stomach irritation.
  • Nausea.
  • Vomiting.
  • Menstrual disorders.
Gentian tea makes a wonderful choice, having a lot of health benefits. Just make sure you read the possible side effects listed above in order not to experience any of them!... benefits of gentian tea

Benefits Of Lapsang Souchong Tea

Lapsang Souchong tea is a type of black tea originating from China. Out of all the types of black tea, this one is special thanks to its history, rich taste and health benefits. Find out more about the Lapsang Souchong tea in this article. About the Lapsang Souchong tea Lapsang Souchong tea is a type of black tea originating from China, from the Wuyi region of the Fujian province. It is the first type of black tea in history, having been discovered around the beginning of the 19th century. Later, people started to move the tea bushes even outside of China, for example to India or Sri Lanka. The flavor of this tea is smoky, rich and fruity. It goes well with salty and spicy dishes, as well as with cheese. Lapsang Souchong tea - a smoked tea It is said that the lapsang souchong tea was discovered by accident. During the Dao Guang era of the Qing Dynasty, an army unit passed through Xingcu village and decided to set camp at a tea factory filled with unprocessed tea leaves. The workers could only return at the company after the soldiers left. Discovering that they didn’t have enough time to let the leaves dry, the workers decided to speed up the process. What they did was to place the tea leaves into bamboo baskets and dry them over fires made from local pines. This is how the lapsang souchong tea was discovered. Because of this, it is also called “smoked tea”. Seeing as they are smoke-dried over fires made from pine wood, the lapsang souchong tea has a strong, smoky flavor. How to make lapsang souchong tea To make lapsang souchong tea, you need one teaspoon of leaves for a 6 ounce cup. Leave it to steep for 3-4 minutes before you remove the leaves. You can later use the leaves to resteep, but the flavor might differ after each steeping. The lapsang souchong tea is usually drunk without milk or sugar. People either love its taste, or completely hate it, so there’s no need to change it. Benefits of lapsang souchong tea The lapsang souchong tea, just like all other types of black teas, has many health benefits that should encourage you to drink more of it. First of all, drinking lapsang souchong tea can reduce your chances of getting cancer. It also helps reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases, as it lowers the cholesterol in your blood and helps the blood flow better in your veins. The lapsang souchong tea helps strengthen your immunity, protecting you from viruses that lead to colds, the flu or other diseases. It also helps you fight against various types of inflammations. During diets, it is recommended to drink black tea; this includes the lapsang souchong tea, as well. It helps burn fats faster and, therefore, helps you lose weight. Side effects of lapsang souchong tea The side effects of the lapsang souchong tea are those found at other types of black tea, as well. They are related to the caffeine found in the tea’s composition, and drinking too much tea. If you know caffeine isn’t good for you, be careful when drinking lapsang souchong tea. It may cause you to experience the following symptoms: insomnia, anxiety, headache, dizziness, irritability, blurred vision and skin rashes. You also have to be careful if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding. In the case of pregnancy, the caffeine in the lapsang souchong tea (and caffeine in general) can cause miscarriages and birth defects. If you’re breastfeeding, lapsang souchong tea can affect the baby, who might get insomnia, heart palpitations and tremors. Also, if you’re suffering from ulcer, don’t drink too much lapsang souchong tea. The caffeine in its composition may increase the production of stomach acid and, therefore, aggravate the ulcer symptoms. It is recommended that you not drink more than six cups of tea per day. Otherwise, it might end up becoming harmful rather than helpful. The side effects that you might get are headaches, dizziness, insomnia, irregular heartbeats, vomiting, diarrhea and loss of appetite. If you encounter any of these symptoms, reduce the amount of tea you drink. This applies to all types of tea, including the lapsang souchong tea. If you want a special kind of black tea, try the lapsang souchong tea. The smoky, fruity flavor will definitely charm you. And don’t forget, it’s also good for your health!... benefits of lapsang souchong tea

Bennett’s Fracture

Bennett’s fracture – so-called after an Irish surgeon, Edward Hallaran Bennett (1837–1907) – is a longitudinal fracture of the ?rst metacarpal bone in the wrist, which also involves the carpo-metacarpal joint.... bennett’s fracture

Benefits Of Meadowsweet Tea

Meadowsweet tea is one of the many herbal teas with plenty of health benefits. It is made from the meadowsweet herb, which can be found in Europe and Western Asia. The plant, as well as the tea, helps you stay healthy. Find out more information about meadowsweet tea! About Meadowsweet Tea Meadowsweet tea’s main ingredient is meadowsweet, a perennial herb that grows in moist meadows. It is found in Europe and Western Asia; it has also been introduced and naturalized in North America. The stems are 1-2m tall, with dark-green leaves and delicate, white flowers called cymes, which grow in clusters. The flowers bloom from June to early September, and have a strong, sweet smell. The plant has a rich history. The flowers of the plant were found in a Bronze Age cairn in Carmarthenshire, along with the cremated remains of three people. They were also found inside a Beaker from Ashgrove, Fife, and a vessel from North Mains, Strathallan. In Chaucer’s “The Knight’s tale”, it is called Meadwort, representing one of the ingredients for a drink called “save”. Also, during the 16th century, it was Queen Elizabeth I’s favorite herb for strewing the floors in her chambers. The plant can be used as a strewing herb, thanks to its strong, pleasant aroma, as well as to flavor wine, beer, and other vinegars. The flowers are used with jams, to give them a subtle almond flavor. How to prepare Meadowsweet Tea It isn’t difficult to make a cup of meadowsweet tea. Just add one teaspoon of dried meadowsweet herbs (usually the leaves of the plant) to a cup of boiling water and let it steep for about 10 minutes. Once the steeping time is done, strain to remove the herbs. You can add lemon and/or honey, based on your taste. Health Benefits of Meadowsweet Tea The meadowsweet tea comes with many health benefits, thanks to its main ingredient, the meadowsweet herb. The herb is known to include, among other substances, salicylic acid, essential oils, and tannins. The plant also contains the chemicals necessary to make aspirin, and from its roots you can obtain a natural black dye. The health benefits of the meadowsweet tea are just as important. First of all, it helps you with digestion. It protects the mucous membranes of the digestive tract by reducing excess acidity and easing nausea. It also helps with diarrhea. Meadowsweet teais often recommended when dealing with colds and the flu. It helps reduce the fever, as well as with headaches; it also treats coughs. Meadowsweet tea is used to treat heartburn, gastritis, peptic ulceration, and hyperacidity. It also helps relieve rheumatism-induced pain in muscles and joints. Side-effects of Meadowsweet Tea If you know that aspirin is not good for your health, be careful when drinking meadowsweet tea. As meadowsweet is one of the ingredients of aspirin, it might affect you to some extent. For example, in the case of about one out of five persons suffering from asthma, aspirin induced asthma symptoms. Those suffering from asthma need to keep in mind the fact that meadowsweet teamay induce asthma symptoms, as well. Meadowsweet tea might not be good for you if you’ve got internal bleeding problems. The herb might cancel the effects of prescribed blood thinners, therefore causing more harm than helping you. Also, don’t drink meadowsweet tea if you’re pregnant, as it might cause miscarriages. If you drink too much meadowsweet tea, you might get the following symptoms: blood in the stool, vomiting, or ringing in the ears; it might even lead to kidney problems. Plus, it is not recommended to drink more than six cups of tea a day, no matter the tea. If you drink too much, you’ll get headaches, dizziness, insomnia, irregular heartbeats, vomiting, diarrhea and loss of appetite. Meadowsweet tea is definitely good for your body! Having all these health benefits, you won’t regret including it in your daily diet. If you’re sure you won’t get any side effects, then you’re free to enjoy a cup of aromatic tea!... benefits of meadowsweet tea

Benefits Of Privet Tea

Privet tea has been known for its health benefits, especially related to liver and kidney problems. As an herbal tea, it is a good everyday drink which also helps you stay healthy. Find out more about it in this article! About Privet Tea Privet tea is made from privet, an herbal plant which grows all around the world. The privet is a semi-evergreen shrub which includes species of plants used as hedges in gardens. Some species can grow up to 20 meters tall. The plant has glossy, oppositely-arranged, dark green leaves; they can grow as long as 10-12cm. The flowers are small, white, fragrant and blooming in pinnacles. The fruits are purple-black drupes born in clusters; the fruits of some species can be poisonous to humans. How to prepare Privet Tea The fruit of the plant is used to make privet tea. To enjoy this tea, you need to add some dried privet fruit to a cup of freshly-boiled water. Let it steep for 5-7 minutes before you remove the dried fruit. Sweeten it with honey, if you want to. If not, your tea’s ready! You can also use granulated or powdered forms of the fruit in order to make privet tea. Privet Tea Benefits Privet tea has plenty of health benefits thanks to the active constituents which are transferred from the fruit of the herbal plant. Some of them include ligustrum, oleanolic acid, betulinic acid, ursolic acid, saponins and tannins. Drinking privet tea will help strengthen your immune system. Thanks to this, it is often recommended in the treatment for HIV, AIDS, and cancer. It is also often used in treating liver and kidney problems, as well as hepatitis, hypertension, Parkinson’s disease, and respiratory tract infections. Privet tea is also helpful when it comes to treating backaches, insomnia, palpitations, rheumatic pains, and tinnitus. You can use it if you’re feeling dizzy, tired or you’ve got blurred vision caused by stress. It also reduces the chances of getting grey hair, and helps you deal with premature menopause or general menopausal problems. Privet Tea Side Effects If you’re pregnant or breast feeding, you should stop drinking privet tea. Also, children with ages under 12 shouldn’t drink it either. Privet tea can worsen asthma symptoms to those already suffering from this disease. You should also avoid drinking it if you’ve got diarrhea. You should be careful with the amount of privet tea you drink: don’t drink more than 5-6 cups of tea a day. This counts for other types of tea, as well. If you drink too much, you might get some of these symptoms: headaches, dizziness, insomnia, diarrhea, vomiting, and loss of appetite. Privet tea has very few side effects, while it has plenty of important health benefits. It can be consumed every day with no worries.... benefits of privet tea

Benefits Of Mistletoe Tea

For a healthy beverage, try the mistletoe tea! You should already know the plant thanks to its association with the Christmas traditions. However, there’s more to mistletoe than just being a decorative plant. Find out about the health benefits ofmistletoe tea! About the Mistletoe Tea The main ingredient of the mistletoe tea is the hemi-parasitic plant, the mistletoe. It is an evergreen plant that usually grows on the branches of various trees, such as elms, pines or oak. The mistletoe can be found in Europe, Australia, North America, and some parts of North Asia. The woody stem has oval, evergreen leaves, and waxy, white berries. The berries are poisonous; the leaves are the ones used to produce themistletoe tea. Mistletoe is often used as a Christmas decoration. It is hung somewhere in the house, and remains so during next Christmas, when it gets replaced. It is said that it protects the house from lightning or fire. Also, legends say that a man and a woman who meet under a hanging of mistletoe are obliged to kiss. The origin of this custom may be Scandinavian, and the first documented case of a couple kissing under the mistletoe dates from 16th century England. There are two types of mistletoe that matter: the European mistletoe and the American mistletoe. Regarding their appearance, they look pretty similar. The difference is that the American mistletoe has shorter leaves, and longer clusters of 10 or more berries. Other differences between the two are related to health benefits. How to prepare Mistletoe Tea Properly preparing a cup of mistletoe tea takes some time. First, you add a teaspoon of the dried mistletoe herb to a cup of cold water. Let the cup stay overnight at room temperature. On the next day, heat the mix before drinking. To enjoy its rich flavor, don’t skip any of these steps! Benefits of Mistletoe Tea The mistletoe tea has many health benefits thanks to its main ingredient, the mistletoe. The herb includes various active constituents, such as amines, caffeic and myristic acids, mucilage, terpenoids, and tannins. Mistletoe is also an essential ingredient of the European anti-cancer extract called Iscador, which helps stimulate the immune system and kill cancer cells. Therefore, it’s said that mistletoe teahelps you fight against cancer. Another health benefit of the mistletoe tea is that it reduces symptoms associated with high blood pressure, such as irritability, dizziness, headaches, and loss of energy. This, however, applies to the mistletoe tea made leaves of European mistletoe. The leaves of the American mistletoe is said to raise blood pressure. Another health-related difference between the European and the American mistletoe is related to uterine and intestinal contractions. The European mistletoe acts as an antispasmodic and calming agent, while the American mistletoe increases uterine and intestinal contractions. Be careful with the type of mistletoe tealeavesyou use. Mistletoe tea can also help with relieving panic attacks, nervousness, and headaches. It is a useful treatment against hysteria, epilepsy, and tinnitus. It is also recommended in the treatment of type 1 and 2 diabetes, breast cancer, and to support HIV patients. Drinking mistletoe teahelps with diarrhea, as well. It is useful when it comes to menopause and pre-menstrual syndrome. It is also useful when dealing with respiratory ailments such as coughs and asthma. Side effects of Mistletoe Tea First of it, it is recommended not to have children drink mistletoe tea. Also, if you are pregnant or breast feeding, it is best that you stop drinking mistletoe tea. If you have hepatitis, you need to stay away from mistletoe tea. Consumption of mistletoe tea will only cause more damage to the liver. Also, despite being useful when treating diabetes, mistletoe tea mayinterfere with the action of anti-diabetic medications. It is best that you check with your doctor, to make sure it doesn’t cancel the effects of the medication. Cancer patients should also consult with their doctors first, before adding mistletoe tea to their daily diet. Other side effects that you might experience because of mistletoe tea are flu-like symptoms, including fever, nausea, abdominal pain, and various allergy-type symptoms. Lastly, don’t drink more than 6 cups of mistletoe tea a day. If you do, it might cause you more harm than good. You might get some of the following symptoms: headaches, dizziness, insomnia, irregular heartbeats, vomiting, diarrhea and loss of appetite. If you get any of these symptoms, reduce the amount of mistletoe tea you drink. Also, this can apply to all types of tea, not only mistletoe tea.   Don’t just think of Christmas when you hear someone talking about mistletoe. Remember the many health benefits of mistletoe tea. Check for side effects and if it’s all safe, feel free to include mistletoe teain your daily diet. It will definitely help you stay healthy!... benefits of mistletoe tea


(Egyptian) Resembling an eagle... bennu


(English) Feminine form of Bentley; from the clearing Bentleigh, Bently, Bentli, Bentlie, Bentley, Bentlea, Bentleah... bentlee


Proprietary name for amphetamine sulphate (see AMPHETAMINES).... benzedrine


Weak local anaesthetic found in some throat lozenges, creams and gels. It may cause allergic hypersensitivity.... benzocaine


See THIAZIDES.... benzothiadiazines


(Anglo-Saxon) Battlemaid Beomiya, Bemia, Beorhthilde, Beorhthild, Beorhthilda, Beomea, Beomeah... beomia


(Teutonic) Resembling a bear... bera


(English) A warrior woman bearing a spear

Berangarie, Berangary, Berangarey, Berangarri, Berangaree, Berangaria, Berangariya, Berengari, Berengaria... berangari

Benefits Of Muira Puama Tea

For a sweet tea, try the muira puama tea. As an herbal tea, it has many health benefits, especially for men. Read the article and find out more about the muira puama tea! About Muira Puama Tea The main ingredient of the muira puama tea is, of course, the muira puama herbal plant. It is a flowering plant with two species (Benth and Anselmino). Its origin can be found in the Amazonian rainforests, although at present it is grown in Europe, as well. The trees grow up to 4 meters, sometimes even taller. They have short-petioled leaves which are light green on upper surface and dark brown on lower surface. It has small, white flowers that have a similar scent to those of jasmine. How to prepare Muira Puama Tea In order to drink a cup of muira puama tea, pour boiling water in a cup that contains one teabag or a teaspoon of dried herbs. Cover the cup and let it steep for 2-4 minutes. Next, remove the teabag or tea herbs. If you want, you can add milk and honey to your cup of tea, to sweeten the taste. Muira Puama Iced Tea You can also enjoy muira puama tea during summertime, by preparing it as an iced tea. For 1 liter, you mainly need 5 teabags, 2 cups of boiling water, and a similar amount of cold water. Place the teabags into a teapot or a heat resistant pitcher, then pour the boiling water. Let it steep for about 5 minutes, while you fill a serving pitcher with cold water. Remove the tea bags and pour the tea into the serving pitcher. Add ice and more cold water to the serving pitcher. Sweeten it with honey, sugar or anything else that comes to your mind. Components of Muira Puama Tea Muira Puama tea’s components come from the herb with the same name. There are two medically active ones: long-chain fatty acids and alkaloid chemicals. Also, the bark and roots of the plant (which are used to make the tea) contain some of the following constituentsg: alpha-pinene, alpha-terpinene, beta-sitosterol, camphor, eugenol, imonene, linalool, stigmasterols, and various acids and essential oils. Muira Puama Tea Benefits The most important benefit of the muira puama tea is for men. After all, the muira puama herb is also known as the “Viagra of the Amazon”. That is because it helps with sexual impotence, by increasing the blood flow to the genital areas. It also helps in the treatment of male pattern baldness. Muira puama tea can be used as a tonic for nervous conditions and depressions. It is useful when it comes to improving one’s memory, especially among elders. The tea also increases your energy level, and improves mental focus and clarity. It is often used in the treatment for rheumatism and indigestion. It also helps women with treating the discomforts of menopause, as well as lessening the pain that comes with menstrual cramps. Muira Puama Tea side effects It is considered best to avoid drinking muira puama tea during pregnancy or when you are breast feeding. In both cases, it can affect the baby.The teaalsoincludes some enzymes which are harmful if you’re suffering from peptic ulcers. In this case, it is recommended that you not consume this type of tea. Consumption of muira puama tea can also lead to an increase in the blood pressure levels. For most people, it is only temporary, but it can be harmful for people with existing complications of blood pressure levels. If this is your case, it’s best that you consult your doctor first before you start drinking this tea. As muira puama acts as a stimulant, drinking too much muira puama tea may lead to anxiety and insomnia. It is generally advised that you not drink more than six cups of tea a day, no matter the type of tea. Other symptoms that you might get are headaches, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, dizziness, and irregular heartbeats.   Muira puama tea is clearly full of health benefits, especially for men. It is good for women, as well, as long as it is not consumed during pregnancy or breast feeding periods. Be careful not to get any side effects and you can enjoy this type of tea with no worries.... benefits of muira puama tea

Benefits Of Red Tea

Red Tea has gained popularity around the world due to its anti-viral, anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties. Often made under the name of „red tea” are Rooibos tea and Honeybush tea, because of their fiery shades similar to the color red. The constituents of Red Tea are basically antioxidants such as aspalathin and nothofagin. But red tea is also rich in vitamins and minerals: calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, potassium, sodium, vitamin C and zinc. It does not contain caffeine and it can be safely taken by people with kidney problems. How To Make Red Tea Brewing Rooibos Tea To brew Rooibos Tea, you will have to heat the water until it just begins to boil. Take it off the heat and pour it over a teaspoon of rooibos leaves or tea bag. Cover it and let the tea steep for about 4-6 minutes. You can either enoy rooibos tea as it is, or you can add honey, sugar or milk. Brewing Honeybush Tea To make Honeybush Tea, start by infusing 2 tablespoons of dried honeybush herbs in a liter of boiled water for about 20 minutes. After that, strain the Honeybush Tea and enjoy! To really maximize its health benefits, try not to add any sweetener or milk. Red Tea Benefits
  • Due to its antioxidant content, Red Tea may lower the risk of developing tumors and cancer.
  • Helps treat allergies like eczema, fever or asthma.
  • Keeps your skin healthy.
  • Strengthens your immune system.
  • Provides relaxation, calming the nervous system.
  • Helps control blood pressure.
Red Tea Side Effects
  • Red tea is not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women. The herb can harm both infant or fetus.
  • Young children should not drink red tea since the herb may have adverse reactions for young patients.
  • People who suffer from diabetes should not consume red tea. The herb can drastically lower blood sugar levels.
 Red Tea is an amazing tea with a lot of health benefits. Make sure you read the side effects listed above and experience only its benefits!... benefits of red tea

Bergamot, Orange

Money, Success... bergamot, orange


(Norse) Having divine protection Bergdiss, Bergdisse, Bergdys, Bergdyss, Bergdysse... bergdis

Benefits Of Pygeum Bark Tea

Try an herbal tea from Africa - pygeum bark tea. Despite its bitter, slightly unpleasant taste, this tea is becoming quite popular. It has plenty of health benefits which will surely help you stay healthy. Find out more about pygeum bark tea and give it a try! About Pygeum Bark Tea Pygeum bark tea is made from the bark of the pygeum tree, an evergreen tree which belongs to the rose family. It grows in central and southern Africa, although it has become endangered due to the large demands for the tree’s bark. A mature tree can be as tall as 25m. The bark is black-brown and scaly, with alternate, simple and long dark green leaves. The flowers bloom from October to May; they are androgynous and greenish-white. The fruit is red-brown, rather wide but not big (about 1cm) and has two lobs, with a seed in each one. The fruit can be used as food both for humans and animals. The wood can be used to make tools, or build homes. How to prepare Pygeum Bark Tea There are two ways in which you can make pygeum bark tea. One involves chopped bark; add it to a cup of freshly-boiled water and let it steep for 10-15 minutes. For the other, you can use the powdered form of the pygeum; you add it to a cup of boiled water, letting it steep for 3-5 minutes. Pygeum bark tea is known to be pretty bitter. If the taste is too much for you, sweeten it with milk, honey or fruit juice. Pygeum Bark Tea Benefits A few important active constituents that are transferred from the pygeum bark to the tea are: beta-sitosterol, ursolic acid, oleanic acid and ferulic acid. Pygeum bark tea can be drunk by men, as it has important health benefits for them. It is often added in the treatment for benign prostatic hyperplasia. It is also recommended in the case of male infertility, as it increases the quantity and quality of the sperm. It can even be used as an aphrodisiac, as it enhances the sexual performance. Pygeum bark tea is used to treat urinary tract infections (cystitis, prostatitis); it also increases the urinary function. You can drink pygeum bark tea if you’ve got symptoms of bronchitis, influenza, or various other respiratory infections. This tea will also help you if you’ve got a fever. An interesting benefit is related to hair: drinking pygeum bark tea is quite useful in the treatment for hair loss. The infusion can be applied on wet hair, after it’s been washed with shampoo. Try it if you’ve got these problems. Pygeum Bark Tea Side Effects If you’re pregnant or breast feeding, it is best not to drink pygeum bark tea; it can affect the baby in both cases. Also, it’s safer not to give it to children, either. It might neutralize the effects of various types of medication. Make sure you talk to your doctor first if you’re taking any kind of medication; he will tell you if it’s safe or not to drink pygeum bark tea. Also, drinking too much pygeum bark tea might not be good for you. It might lead to stomach discomfort, diarrhea, constipation, nausea, dizziness, headaches, or visual disturbances. Don’t let its bitter taste scare you - pygeum bark tea is good for your health. It is especially recommended for men, but it can be useful for women, as well.... benefits of pygeum bark tea

Benincasa Hispida

(Thunb.) Cogn.

Synonym: B. cerifera Savi. Cucurbita hispada Thunb.

Family: Cucurbitaceae.

Habitat: Cultivated largely in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Rajasthan and Bihar.

English: Ash Gourd, White Gourd, Wax Gourd, White Pumpkin.

Ayurvedic: Kuushmaanda, Kuush- maandaka, Kuushmaandanaadi.

Unani: Pethaa, Mahdabaa, Kaddu- e-Roomi.

Siddha/Tamil: Ven-poosani, Saambalpushani.

Action: Leaves—cooling, juice rubbed on bruises. Fruit decoction—laxative, diuretic, nutritious, styptic (given for internal haemorrhages and diseases of the respiratory tract.) Juice of fruit— used for treating epilepsy, insanity and other nervous diseases. The ash of fruit rind—applied on painful swellings. Seeds—anthelmintic.

The fruits contain lupeol, beta-sitos- terol, their acetates and several amino acids. The fruit juice produces tran- quilizing activity and mild CNS depressant effect in mice.

The roots of mature plant contain a pentacyclic triterpene, which exhibits antiallergic activity against both homologous passive cutaneous ana- phylaxis and delayed hypersensitivity in mice. The fruit beverage contains pyrazine compounds.

Isomultiflorenol acetate, a penta- cyclic triterpene, has been isolated as the major constituent of wax coating of fruits.

Dosage: Dried pieces of the fruit— 5-10 g (API Vol. IV.) Fruit juice— 10-20 m (CCRAS.)... benincasa hispida


(African) My child is my light Berhayne, Berhaine, Berhayn, Berhain, Berhaen, Berhaene... berhane


(German) A glorious woman Beret, Bereta, Berete, Berett, Beretta, Berette, Biret, Bireta, Birete, Birett, Biretta, Birette, Byret, Byreta, Byrete, Byrett, Byretta, Byrette... berit


(English) Feminine form of Bernard; one who has bearlike strength and courage

Bernadina, Bernadette, Bernadetta, Berdina, Berdine, Berdyne, Berdyna, Beranger, Bernadea, Bernarda, Bernetta, Bernette, Bernita, Bernelle, Berna, Berneen, Bernardina, Bernardine, Berne, Bern... bernadine


(Greek) One who brings victory Berenisa, Berenise, Berenice, Bernicia, Bernisha, Berniss, Bernyce, Bernys, Beryss... bernice


(English) Form of Veronica, meaning “displaying her true image” Beronicah, Beronic, Beronicca, Beronicka, Beronika, Beronicha, Beronique, Beranique, Beroniqua, Beronnica, Beronice, Baronica, Baronika, Berhonica, Berinica, Berohnica, Bironica, Bironiqua, Bironika, Bironique, Beronka, Beronkia, Beronne, Byronica, Bronica, Bronika, Broniqua, Bronique, Byroniqua, Byronique, Byronika, Beruka, Beruszhka... beronica


(English) Feminine form of Barry; fair-haired woman; resembling a berry fruit Berrey, Berri, Berrie, Berree, Beri, Berie, Bery, Beree, Berey, Berrea, Berea, Berreah, Bereah... berry

Benefits Of The Pomegranate Tea

The pomegranate tea is a refreshing, fruity tea whose main ingredient is the pomegranate. The fruit itself is refreshing, sweet and a bit bitter. Not only doespomegranate tea taste lovely, but it is also good for your health! About the Pomegranate Tea The pomegranate tea is a delicious beverage, sweet and fruity-flavored. The main ingredient is, of course, the pomegranate. Pomegranate trees are cultivated all over Asia, as well as in California, Arizona, tropical Africa, and in the Mediterranean region of Southern Europe. In the Northern Hemisphere, they are harvested from September to February, and in the Southern Hemisphere, from March to May. As a fruit, the pomegranate has vitamin C, vitamin B5, potassium, natural phenols, and polyphenols. Also, the edible seeds contain fiber. How to prepare Pomegranate Tea It isn’t difficult to prepare pomegranate tea. First, boil 6-8 ounce of water. Pour the hot water in the cups which contain either tea leaves or teabags. Let it steep for about 10 minutes before you remove the tea leaves or the teabag. For a calming effect, you can try to combine the pomegranate tea with chamomile tea. You can also mix it with black or green teas, based on your taste. Pomegranate Ice Tea If you miss the taste of pomegranate tea, but you don’t feel like drinking it during summer, you can try pomegranate ice tea. It shouldn’t take you more than 10 minutes to prepare it. For 5 serves, you need the following ingredients: 5 cups of boiling water, 5 teabags (of a non-fruity kind of tea), 2 cups of pomegranate juice, and sugar. First, boil the water. Pour it into a heat-resistant pitcher, add the teabags and let it steep for about 10 minutes. Next, remove the teabags and let the temperature cool. Add the pomegranate juice and the sugar, stir well and then put it in the refrigerator. Later, serve it with ice. For a richer flavor, you can add lemon, lime or mint leaves.  Or experiment a little and add anything else you like and think it might make it taste better. Benefits of Pomegranate Tea Pomegranate as a fruit, consumed in all its forms, contains lots of health benefits. The pomegranate tea is no exception. Pomegranate tea is rich in antioxidants. They are helpful when it comes to fighting against aging. They also strengthen the immune system, and lower the risk of getting cancer and diabetes. Pomegranate tea can also help reduce blood pressure and bad cholesterol levels. The chances of getting cardiovascular diseases become lower if you drink pomegranate tea. Pomegranates also have anti-inflammatory properties. Drinking pomegranate tea can slow down joint conditions (osteoarthritis), as well as reduce the pain caused by joint conditions and diseases. It will also help you protect your body’s cartilage. Also, pomegranate tea can help with strengthening your immunity, reducing LDL (bad cholesterol), and treating depression and preserving a good mental balance. Side effects of Pomegranate Tea There aren’t really any bad side effects related to pomegranate as a fruit, as well as pomegranate tea. Although rare, there are cases of allergies to pomegranate. Also, pomegranate juice and, based on how much you drink, possibly pomegranate tea as well, may neutralize the positive effects of some medications; it’s best to check with your doctor. Other side effects are related to drinking too much pomegranate tea; this applies to all types of tea, as well. It is advised that you not drink more than 6 cups of tea a day. Otherwise, you might get the following symptoms: headaches, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, insomnia, dizziness, and irregular heartbeats. In this case, you need to try and drink less. Whether hot during winter, or cold during summer, pomegranate tea is a great choice for a fruity, refreshing beverage.  It also brings many health benefits with it. Give it a try and you’ll surely enjoy it!... benefits of the pomegranate tea


(German) One who is famously bright and beautiful Berta, Berthe, Berth, Bertina, Bertyna, Bertine, Bertyne, Birte, Birtha, Birthe... bertha


(Welsh) A wealthy woman; one who is prosperous

... berthog


(English) A luminous battlemaiden Bertilde, Bertild... bertilda


(French) A heroine Bertill, Bertile, Bertil, Bertylle, Bertyll, Bertyle, Bertyl... bertille


(English) An intelligent advisor Bertraide, Bertrayde, Bertraed, Beortbtraed, Bertraid, Bertrayd, Bertraede... bertrade


(Hebrew) Woman selected by God Beruria, Beruriya, Berurea, Berurya, Berureah... beruriah


(English) Resembling the pale-green precious stone

Beryll, Berylle, Beril, Berill, Berille... beryl


(English) Form of Elizabeth, meaning “my God is bountiful” Besse, Bessi, Bessie, Bessy, Bessey, Bessee, Bessea, Besseah... bess


(Norse) In mythology, a frost giantess and mother of Odin... bestla

Beta (i) Error

See “Type II error”.... beta (i) error

Beta Adrenoceptor

See ADRENERGIC RECEPTORS.... beta adrenoceptor

Berberis Aristata


Sub sp. ? B. asiatica Roxb. ex DC.

Substi. ? B. lycium Royle & other species.

Family: Berberidaceae.

Habitat: Northwestern Himalayas, Nilgiris, Kulu and Kumaon.

English: Indian Barberry.

Ayurvedic: Daaruharidraa, Daaru, Daarvi, Daarunishaa, Daarura- jani, Vrahitaphala, Valliphala, Sthirphala. Pushpaphala, Somakaa, Parjanyaa, Parjani, Kantkateri, Taarthya, Pachampachaa. Kaaliyaka is now equated with Pita Chandana (Coscinium fenestratum (Gaertn.) Colebr., Menispermaceae). Extract—Rasaanjana.

Unani: Daarhald. Rasaut (extract). Zarishk (fruit).

Siddha/Tamil: Marmanjal.

Action: Rasaut, Rasasranjana (extract)—bitter, cholagogue, antidiarrhoeal, stomachic, laxative, diaphoretic, antipyretic, antiseptic. Used externally in opthalmia,conjunctivitis, ulcers, sores, swollen gums. Root bark— anti-inflammatory, hypoglycaemic hypotensive, antiamoebic, anticoagulant, antibacterial. Bark— used in liver complaints, diarrhoea, dysentery, cholera, gastric disorders, enlargement of spleen and for regulating metabolism. Berries— antiscorbutic, laxative.

Berberine hydrochloride and sulphate help in the diagnosis of latent malaria by releasing the parasites into the blood stream.

Alkaloid berberine possesses antibacterial and anti-inflammatory activities. It is used as an intestinal antiseptic and bitter stomachic. It also exhibits antineoplastic properties. (Its synthetic derivative dihydroberberine is used in brain tumour.)

Berberine has been found to inhibit the activity of enzymes trypsin (32%) and chymotrypsin (60%) in in-vitro studies.

B. asiatica Roxb.ex Dc. is found in the Himalaya at 900-3,000 m, Assam and Bihar.

See B. vulgaris.

Dosage: Extract—1-3 g (CCRAS.); dried stem—5-10 ml decoction. (API Vol. II.)... berberis aristata

Berberis Chitria


Synonym: B. aristata auct. Hook. f & Thoms.

Family: Berberidaceae.

Habitat: The Himalayas from Kashmir to Nepal, at altitudes of 1,500-2,400 m.

Ayurvedic: Daaruharidraa (var.).

Folk: Totaro, Kintodaa (Garhwal).

Action: Same as that of Berberis aristata.

The root and stem bark contain alkaloids (5 and 4.2% respectively, calculated as berberine.)

The alcoholic extract of the roots was found to be better antimicrobial agent than the aqueous extract. The alkaloid palmitine hydroxide possesses an- tispermatogenic properties. See B. aristata and B. vulgaris. Berberis ulicina Hook, known as Khicharmaa in Tibet, is also equated with Daaruharidraa.... berberis chitria

Berberis Vulgaris


Family: Berberidaceae.

Habitat: Distributed in Northwestern Himalayas.

English: Common Barberry, True Barberry.

Ayurvedic: Daruharidraa (var.).

Folk: Chatrod, Kashmal.

Action: Root and bark—used for ailments of gastrointestinal tract, liver, gallbladder, kidney and urinary tract, respiratory tract, also as a febrifuge and blood purifier.

Key application: Listed by German Commission E among unapproved herbs.

An extract with 80% berberine and additional alkaloids stimulated the bile secretion of rats by 72%. (PDR.) As cholagogue. (The British Herbal Pharmacopoeia.)

The main alkaloid is berberine (well tolerated up to 0.5 g). Berries are safe.

Bererine in small doses stimulates the respiratory system; poisonings have been observed from overdoses. Poisonings from the total herb have not been reported. (German Commission E.)

Berberine is bactericidal, amoebici- dal and trypanocidal. Berberine is an- tidiarrhoeal, asitentersinto the cytosol or binds to the cell membrane and inhibits the catalytic unit of andenylate cyclase. It is active in vitro and in animals against cholera.

Berberine stimulates bile secretion and shows sedative, hypotensive, anti- convulsant and uterine stimulant activity in animals. Alkaloid bermarine is also strongly antibacterial. It has been shown to increase white blood cell and platelet counts in animals with iatro- genic leukocytopaenia.

Berberine, berbamine and jatror- rhizine are hypotensive and sedative.

Many of the alkaloids are antineo- plastic.

The alkaloid berbamine (50 mg three times daily for 1-4 weeks) helped reverse leukopaenia induced by benzene, cancer chemotherapy or radiotherapy in a clinical study. (Francis Brinker.)

Berberine, when combined with pyrimethamine, was more effective than combinations with other antibiotics in treating chloroquine-resistant malaria. (Sharon M. Herr.)... berberis vulgaris


Eggplant (Solanum melongena).

Plant Part Used: Fruit.

Dominican Medicinal Uses: The raw fruit is traditionally chopped and soaked in water to extract its bitter constituents, and this water is taken as a drink for diabetes, high cholesterol and obesity.

Safety: The fruit is considered safe as a widely consumed vegetable.

Clinical Data: The fruit has been investigated in human clinical trials as a potential treatment for eye and vision problems due to its interocular pressure-lowering effects.

Laboratory & Preclinical Data: In laboratory and preclinical studies the fruit constituents have shown antioxidant activity in animal models. The following activities of this plant have been demonstrated using in vitro assays: antioxidant, antitumor and spasmogenic.

* See entry for Berenjena in “Part 3: Dominican Medicinal Plant Profiles” of this book for more information, including references.... berenjena

Bergenia Ligulata

(Wall.) Engl.

Synonym: B. ciliata Sternb. Saxífraga ligulata Wall.

Family: Saxifragaceae.

Habitat: Temperate Himalaya from Kashmir to Bhutan, between altitudes of 900 and 3,000 m.

Ayurvedic: Paashaanabheda, Ashmaribhedikaa, Ashmaribhit, Ashmghna, Shilaabhit, Shilaabheda. (These synonyms are also equated with Aerva lanata Juss.)

Siddha/Tamil: Padanbethi.

Action: Leaf and root—antiscorbutic, astringent, spasmolytic, antidiarrhoeal. Used in dysuria, spleen enlargement, pulmonary affections as a cough remedy, menorrhagia, urinary tract infections. Alcoholic extract of roots— antilithic. Acetone extract of root- bark—cardiotoxic, CNS depressant and anti-inflammatory; in mild doses diuretic but antidiuretic in higher doses. Anti-inflammatory activity decreases with increasing dosage.

Due to its depressant action on the central nervous system, the drug is used against vertigo, dizziness and headache in moderate or low dosage.

Key application: In lithiasis, dysuria, polyuria. (The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India; Indian Herbal Pharmacopoeia.)

The rhizome contains an active principle bergenin (0.6%), gallic acid, glucose (5.6%), tannins (14.2-016.3%), mucilage and wax; a C-glycoside and beta-sitosterol.

Bergenin prevented stress-induced erosions in rats and lowered gastric outputs.

(Paashaanabheda indicates that the plant grows between rocks appearing to break them; it does not necessarily mean that it possesses lithotriptic property.)

Dosage: Rhizome—20-30 g for decoction. (API Vol. I)... bergenia ligulata


Watercress (Nasturtium officinale).

Plant Part Used: Leaf.

Dominican Medicinal Uses: The fresh leaf is traditionally eaten raw or juiced and administered orally for anemia, diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, heart disease, upper respiratory tract infection, bronchitis and tuberculosis.

Safety: The leaves and stems of this plant are widely consumed and generally regarded as safe. Caution is advised as this plant may carry liver flukes or other parasites if grown in contaminated water.

Contraindications: Pregnancy, children under 4 y, stomach or intestinal ulcers, inflammatory renal disease.

Clinical Data: Clinical: anticancer, chemopreventive, potential inhibition of oxidative metabolism of acetaminophen (fresh plant).

* See entry for Berro in “Part 3: Dominican Medicinal Plant Profiles” of this book for more information, including references.... berro

Beta Lactams

Antibiotics with a beta-lactam ring in their molecular structure, including the penicillins and the cephalosporins. Act on penicillin binding proteins in the mucopeptides of the bacterial cell wall. Can be destroyed bybacterial beta-lactamases.... beta lactams

Beta Vulgaris

Linn. subsp. cicla (L.) Moq.

Synonym: B. vulgaris auct. non L.

Family: Chenopodiacae.

Habitat: Native to Mediterranean region; cultivated in North India, Maharashtra and South India.

English: Beet Root, Garden Beet, Chard.

Ayurvedic: Palanki.

Folk: Chukandar.

Action: Leaf—used in burns and bruises, also for diseases of spleen and liver. Tuber and seed— expectorant. Leaf and seed— diuretic. Leaf, tuber and seed— anti-inflammatory. Seed oil— analgesic.

Beet roots are eaten raw as salad or cooked. The leaves are nutritionally superior to roots and are a good source of vitamins and minerals.

The plant contains alkaloids ofwhich betaine is a mild diuretic and emme- nagogue.

In research, using rats, chard increased regeneration of beta cells in pancreas. Maximum reduction of blood glucose was after 42 days of administration. (J Ethnopharmacol, 2000, 73: 251-259.)

Beets are used orally as a supportive therapy in the treatment of liver diseases and fatty liver (possibly due to betaine). Ingestion of large quantities might worsen kidney disease. (Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, 2007.)... beta vulgaris


See RADIOTHERAPY.... betatron


An areca-nut chewed in India, south east Asia and the Pacific, including Papua New Guinea, as a stimulant. Betelnut can have side effects such a staining of teeth and is possibly carcinogenic.... betelnut


(English) Form of Elizabeth, meaning “my God is bountiful” Bethe... beth


(Hebrew) From the house of confidence

Bethebara, Bethabarra, Bethebarra, Bethbara, Bethbarra... bethabara

Beta-adrenoceptor-blocking Drugs

Also called beta blockers, these drugs interrupt the transmission of neuronal messages via the body’s adrenergic receptor sites. In the HEART these are called beta1 (cardioselective) receptors. Another type – beta2 (non-cardioselective) receptors – is sited in the airways, blood vessels, and organs such as the eye, liver and pancreas. Cardioselective beta blockers act primarily on beta1 receptors, whereas non-cardioselective drugs act on both varieties, beta1 and beta2. (The neurotransmissions interrupted at the beta-receptor sites through the body by the beta blockers are initiated in the ADRENAL GLANDS: this is why these drugs are sometimes described as beta-adrenergic-blocking agents.)

They work by blocking the stimulation of beta adrenergic receptors by the neurotransmitters adrenaline and noradrenaline, which are produced at the nerve endings of that part of the SYMPATHETIC NERVOUS SYSTEM – the autonomous (involuntary) network

– which facilitates the body’s reaction to anxiety, stress and exercise – the ‘fear and ?ight’ response.

Beta1 blockers reduce the frequency and force of the heartbeat; beta2 blockers prevent vasodilation (increase in the diameter of blood vessels), thus in?uencing the patient’s blood pressure. Beta1 blockers also affect blood pressure, but the mechanism of their action is unclear. They can reduce to normal an abnormally fast heart rate so the power of the heart can be concomitantly controlled: this reduces the oxygen requirements of the heart with an advantageous knock-on e?ect on the respiratory system. These are valuable therapeutic effects in patients with ANGINA or who have had a myocardial infarction (heart attack – see HEART, DISEASES OF), or who suffer from HYPERTENSION. Beta2 blockers reduce tremors in muscles elsewhere in the body which are a feature of anxiety or the result of thyrotoxicosis (an overactive thyroid gland – see under THYROID GLAND, DISEASES OF). Noncardioselective blockers also reduce the abnormal pressure caused by the increase in the ?uid in the eyeball that characterises GLAUCOMA.

Many beta-blocking drugs are now available; minor therapeutic di?erences between them may in?uence the choice of a drug for a particular patient. Among the common drugs are:

Primarily cardioselective Non-cardioselective
Acebutolol Labetalol
Atenolol Nadolol
Betaxolol Oxprenolol
Celiprolol Propanolol
Metoprolol Timolol

These powerful drugs have various side-effects and should be prescribed and monitored with care. In particular, people who suffer from asthma, bronchitis or other respiratory problems may develop breathing diffculties. Long-term treatment with beta blockers should not be suddenly stopped, as this may precipitate a severe recurrence of the patient’s symptoms – including, possibly, a sharp rise in blood pressure. Gradual withdrawal of medication should mitigate untoward effects.... beta-adrenoceptor-blocking drugs


(Hebrew) From the house of figs Bethan, Bethani, Bethanie, Bethanee, Bethaney, Bethane, Bethann, Bethanne, Bethanea, Bethaneah... bethany


(Hebrew) A maidservant of God Bethia, Betheah, Bethiya, Bethya, Betia, Betje, Bethiyah, Bethyah... bethea


(Hebrew) Of the house of God Bethell, Bethele, Bethelle, Bethelia, Betheliya, Betheli, Bethelie, Bethely, Bethelee, Bethiar, Betheley, Betheleigh, Bethelea, Betheleah... bethel


(Hebrew) From the house of mercy

Bethseda, Bethsaida... bethesda

Betony, Wood

Protection, Purification, Love... betony, wood


(English) Form of Elizabeth, meaning “my God is bountiful” Betti, Bettie, Bettey, Bettee, Bette, Betsy, Betsey, Betsi, Betsie, Betsee, Bettina, Bettine, Bettyne, Bettyna, Betje, Bettea, Betteah, Betsea, Betseah... betty


(Hebrew) Woman who is claimed as a wife

Beula, Beulla, Bulah, Bula, Beullah... beulah


(English) From the beaver’s stream Beverlee, Beverley, Beverlie, Beverli, Beverlee, Beverleigh, Beverlea, Beverleah... beverly


(Welsh) Daughter of Evan Bevan, Bevann, Bevanne, Bevina, Bevine, Bevinnah, Bevyn, Bevyna, Bevyne... bevin


(Norse) In mythology, an elf and minor goddess Beylah, Bayla, Baylah... beyla


(American) One who surpasses others

Beyoncay, Beyonsay, Beyonsai, Beyonsae, Beyonci, Beyoncie, Beyoncee, Beyoncea, Beyonceah... beyonce


(Indian) Having a starlike quality... bha

Betula Alnoides

Buch.-Ham. ex D. Don.

Synonym: B. acuminata Wall.

Family: Betulaceae.

Habitat: The temperate and subtropical Himalayas, Khasi Hills and Manipur.

English: Indian Birch, Naga Birch.

Ayurvedic: Bhojapatra (var.).

Action: Used in supportive therapy of rheumatic ailments.

Methyl salicylate (92.8%) has been reported from the essential oil of the bark (of the plant growing in northeastern region of India).... betula alnoides

Betula Utilis

D. Don.

Synonym: B. bhojpattra Wall.

Family: Betulaceae.

Habitat: Temperate Himalaya from Kashmir to Bhutan.

English: Himalayan Silver Birch, Indian Paper tree.

Ayurvedic: Bhuurja, Bahulvalkala, Bahuputa, Lekhyapatraka, Charmi, Chitrapatra, Bhutahaa.

Folk: Bhojapatra.

Siddha/Tamil: Boorjapattram (leaves).

Action: Resin—laxative. Leaves— diuretic; used in the form of infusion in gout, rheumatism, dropsy, and as a solvent of stones in the kidneys; used in skin affections, especially eczema. Bark—used in convulsions. Oil—astringent, antiseptic.

Key application: (B. pendula) In irrigation therapy for bacterial and inflammatory diseases of the urinary tract and for kidney gravel; supportive therapy for rheumatic ailment. (German Commission E, ESCOP.)

European Silver Birch is equated with Betula alba L., synonym B. pendula Roth. Astringent, diuretic, anti- inflammatory, bitter, cholagogue; contains salicylates. Used for kidney and bladder complaints, sluggish kidney functions, rheumatism and gout. Methyl salicylate is obtained by distillation of the twigs. In an Indian sp., B. acuminata, methyl salicylate (92.8%) has been reported in the essential oil of the bark. B. utilis is also a close relative of B. pendula.

Dosage: Bark—3-5 g powder; decoction—50-100 ml (CCRAS.)... betula utilis


(Hindi) In Hinduism, goddess of sacrifice

Bharatie, Bharaty, Bharatey, Bharatee, Bharatea, Bharateah, Barati, Baratie, Baraty, Baratey, Baratee, Baratea, Barateah... bharati


(Indian) A giver of life Bhavanie, Bhavany, Bhavaney, Bhavanee, Bhavanea, Bhavaneah, Bavani, Bavanie, Bavany, Bavaney, Bavanee, Bavanea, Bavaneah... bhavani


(Hindi) In Hinduism, goddess of the earth

Bhumi, Bhoomi, Bhu, Bhudevi... bhumidevi


(Vietnamese) A secretive woman... bian


(Italian) A shining, fair-skinned woman

Bianka, Byanca, Blanca, Blanche, Biana, Bianna, Biankeh, Byanka, Blanch, Blanka

... bianca


(African) A king’s daughter; a lady Bibsbebe, Beebee, Byby, Beabea... bibi


(Italian) Form of Vivian, meaning “one who is full of life; vibrant” Bibiane, Bibianna, Bibianne, Bibiann, Bibine... bibiana

Bibliographic Database

An indexed computer or printed source of citations of journal articles and other reports in the literature. Bibliographic citations typically include author, title, source, abstract and/or related information (including full text in some cases).... bibliographic database

Bicarbonato De Sodio

Baking soda; used as a gargle for sore throat and tonsillitis, sometimes combined with vinagre blanco (white vinegar) or with limón (lemon) and miel de abeja (honey); can be combined with other herbal remedies such as poultices that are applied externally.... bicarbonato de sodio


(Spanish) A welcome daughter Bienvenidah, Bienvenyda, Bienvenita, Bienvenyta... bienvenida


Split into two parts.... bifid


(Scandinavian) From the bridge Bifroste, Byfrost, Byfroste... bifrost

Bidens Pilosa


Family: Compositae; Asteraceae.

Habitat: Throughout India in gardens, waste places and tea plantations.

Folk: Phutium (Gujarat), Kuri (Garhwal).

Action: Plant—cytotoxic. Leaf— applied to ulcers and swollen glands.

The plant contains a number of poly- acetylenes which are toxic to bacteria, fungi and human fibroblast cells. Phenylheptatriyne is the major constituent of the leaves and stems.

B. pilosa Linn. var. minor (Blume) Sherff, synonym B. pilosa Linn. var. bi- pinnata Hook. f. in part, gave phytos- terin-B, which like insulin, showed hy- poglycaemic activity both in normal and diabetic rats. B. pilosa auct. non Linn., synonym B. chinensis Willd., is used for leprosy, fistulae, pustules, tumours.... bidens pilosa


Antidesma bunius

Description: Bignay is a shrub or small tree, 3 to 12 meters tall, with shiny, pointed leaves about 15 centimeters long. Its flowers are small, clustered, and green. It has fleshy, dark red or black fruit and a single seed. The fruit is about 1 centimeter in diameter.

Habitat and Distribution: This plant is found in rain forests and semievergreen seasonal forests in the tropics. It is found in open places and in secondary forests. It grows wild from the Himalayas to Ceylon and eastward through Indonesia to northern Australia. However, it may be found anywhere in the tropics in cultivated forms.

Edible Parts: The fruit is edible raw. Do not eat any other parts of the tree. In Africa, the roots are toxic. Other parts of the plant may be poisonous.


Eaten in large quantities, the fruit may have a laxative effect.... bignay


Annatto (Bixa orellana).

Plant Part Used: Seed coats, leaves.

Dominican Medicinal Uses: The powdered seed coats are traditionally combined with other plants to make a tea or vegetable juice drink for treating anemia, cysts, dysmenorrhea, tumors, uterine fibroids and to support post-partum recovery. The seeds coats and/or leaves are also used externally for topical burns, injury and musculoskeletal trauma.

Safety: The seeds and seed coats are generally regarded as safe and commonly used as a culinary flavoring and coloring agent. Animal studies have shown this plant to be relatively nontoxic, although allergic reactions reported.

Contraindications: Hypersensitivity; history of allergic reaction.

Laboratory & Preclinical Data: The seed extract has shown the following activities in animal studies: anti-inflammatory, chemopreventive, hyperglycemic. In vitro the plant extract has demonstrated antibacterial, antifungal, antimicrobial and antiplatelet effects, and the seed extract has shown anti-inflammatory, anti-tumor and immunomodulatory activity.

* See entry for Bija in “Part 3: Dominican Medicinal Plant Profiles” of this book for more information, including references.... bija


(French) As precious as a jewel... bijou


(African) Resembling an anteater Bikitah, Bikyta, Bykita, Bykyta, Bikeyta, Bikeita, Bikieta, Bikeata... bikita


(Hebrew) One who is bashful; in the Bible, a concubine of Jacob Bilha, Baalah, Balah, Bala, Bilhan, Billha, Billhah... bilhah


The presence of abnormally high bilirubin in the blood, usually signifying hepatitis, with jaundice due next week.... bilirubinemia


(English) Feminine form of William; having a desire to protect Billi, Billy, Billey, Billee, Billeigh, Billea, Billeah... billie


(Arabic) The queen of Sheba Bilqys, Bilqees, Bilquis... bilqis


(Indian) One who is pure Bimalla, Bymala, Bimalah, Bemala, Bemalla, Bymala... bimala


(Hebrew) Having intelligence and understanding Bina, Bynah, Byna... binah


(German) From the hollow Bingah, Bynga, Binge, Bynge, Bingeh, Byngeh... binga

Binovular Twins

Twins who result from the fertilisation of two separate ova. (See MULTIPLE BIRTHS.)... binovular twins


(African) With God Binte, Bint, Binti, Binty, Bintie, Bintee, Bintea, Binteah... binta


Bio-availability refers to the proportion of a drug reaching the systemic circulation after a particular route of administration. The most important factor is ?rst-pass metabolism – that is, pre-systemic metabolism in either the intestine or the liver. Many lipid-soluble drugs such as beta blockers (see BETAADRENOCEPTOR-BLOCKING DRUGS), some tricyclic ANTIDEPRESSANT DRUGS, and various opiate ANALGESICS are severely affected. Food may affect bio-availability by modifying gastric emptying, thus slowing drug absorption. Ingested calcium may combine with drugs such as tetracyclines, further reducing their absorption.... bio-availability


The state of life interdependency that is possible when large and small plants, soil organisms, insects, and fuzzy beasts exist in the ebb and flow created by the natural environment. Cut down the trees once and you lessen the biodiversity drastically. Wait fifty years and cut again and you have a small fraction of the life-form variety that you started with; the old diversity will never return...never.... biodiverse

Biological Control

Use of natural, indigenous predators or organisms to control medically important insects.... biological control

Biological Warfare

The use of living organisms – or infectious agents derived from them – to disable or kill men, animals or plants in the pursuit of war. Such warfare, along with chemical warfare, was condemned in 1925 by the Geneva Convention, and the United Nations has endorsed this policy. Even so, some countries have experimented with possible biological agents, including those causing ANTHRAX and BOTULISM, with the intention of delivering them by land, sea or water-based missiles. These developments have prompted other countries to search for ways of annulling the lethal consequences of biological warfare.... biological warfare


The actual amount of existing material within a species or genus.... biomass


Literally, the part of the earth that supports life; more broadly, a large community of life-forms sharing a similar environment, such as a rain forest or prairie grassland.... biosphere


A pinnate compound leaf whose leaflets, in turn, are stems that have pinnate leaflets.... bipinnate

Bipolar Staining

The effect of the two ends of a bacillus staining while the centre of the rod remains unstained (eg in Yersinia pestis, the cause of Bubonic Plague) when stained with Giemsa stain.... bipolar staining


Protection, Exorcism, Purification and Cleansing... birch

Biophytum Sensitivum

(Linn.) DC.

Synonym: Oxalis sensitiva Linn.

Family: Oxalidaceae.

Habitat: Throughout tropical India.

Ayurvedic: Lajjaalu (var.) Vipareet Lajjaalu (non-classical), Alam- bushaa (Hindi commentators have equated it with Gorakh Mun- di, Sphaeranthus indicus Linn., Asteraceae.)

Folk: Lajoni, Jhalai, Lakajana.

Action: Plant—used in insomnia, convulsions, cramps, chest-complaints, inflammations, tumours, chronic skin diseases. Ash—in stomachache. Leaves— diuretic, astringent, antiseptic. Paste is applied to burns, contusions and wounds. Decoction is given in strangury, asthma and phthisis. Roots—decoction is given in lithia- sis. Mature leaves are recommended in diabetes; contain an insulin-like principle.

A saline extract of leaves showed hy- poglycaemic activity in rabbits.... biophytum sensitivum


The use of the natural properties of living things to remove hazards that threaten human and animal health. When a pollutant ?rst appears in a local environment, existing microorganisms such as bacteria attempt to make use of the potential source of energy and as a side-e?ect detoxify the polluting substance. This is an evolutionary process that normally would take years.

Scientists have engineered appropriate genes from other organisms into BACTERIA, or sometimes plants, to accelerate this natural evolutionary process. For e?ective ‘digestion of waste’, a micro-organism must quickly and completely digest organic waste without producing unpleasant smells or noxious gases, be non-pathogenic and be able to reproduce in hostile conditions. For example, American researchers have discovered an anaerobic bacterium that neutralises dangerous chlorinated chemical compounds such as trichlorethane, which can pollute soil, into a harmless molecule called ethens. But the bacteria do not thrive in soil. So the dechlorinating genes in this bacterium are transferred to bacteria that are acclimatised to living in toxic areas and can more e?ciently carry out the required detoxi?cation. Other research has been aimed at detoxifying the byproducts of DDT, a troublesome and resistant pollutant. Bioremediation should prove to be an environmentally friendly and cost-e?ective alternative to waste incineration or chemically based processes for washing contaminated soils.... bioremediation

Biota Tea Health Benefits

Biota tea is a Chinese beverage, used nowadays to heal hemorrhages and other types of ailments, such as headaches, but not only. Biota tea description Biota is a slow-growing shrub or tree from the cypress family, originating from China. It is considered as one of the 50 fundamental herbs in the annals of Chinese herbalism. Biota has a central stem, scale-like leaves and little inconspicuous flowers. The biota leaves are small, and triangular-shaped, with a grayish-green color and a fragrant odor. The seeds are the eatable parts of this plant. Both the leaves and the seeds are used for medicinal purposes. Biota trees and shrubs have ornamental uses as they make beautiful natural fences and hedges. Also, they are good as wind breakers and as a good ground cover for a variety of wildlife. Parts from these plants make useful additions as culinary ingredients and medicinal herbs. These vegetative substances became part of the cosmetic industry, being added to lotions, shampoos and conditioners. Biota tea is the beverage resulting from brewing the abovementioned plant. Biota tea brewing To prepare Biota tea, add the dried leaves in the boiling water and stir the mixture. Strain it and drink it slowly. Biota tea benefits Biota tea has been successfully used to:
  • fight headaches
  • fight asthma, cough and bronchitis
  • fight fever
  • fight bacteria and viruses
  • heal wounds, treat burns, as well as improve the growth of hair, when applied topically
  • help in the treatment of excessive menstruation
  • fight hemorrhages
  • ease arthritic pain
  • help in the treatment of premature baldness
  • soothe and calm the nerves
  • fight constipation among the elderly
Biota tea side effects Pregnant or nursing women should not intake Biota tea. Biota tea is a healthy beverage able to fight against bacteria, viruses or even prevent baldness, if applied topically. It also proved its efficiency in dealing with arthritic pains.... biota tea health benefits

Bird Fancier’s Lung

Also known as pigeon breeder’s lung, this is a form of extrinsic allergic ALVEOLITIS resulting from sensitisation to birds. In bird fanciers, skin tests sometimes show sensitisation to birds’ droppings, eggs, protein and serum, even through there has been no evidence of any illness.... bird fancier’s lung


(American) Resembling a little bird Birdine, Byrdene, Byrdena, Birdina, Byrdina, Byrdine, Birdeena, Birdeene, Byrdeena, Byrdeene, Birdyna, Birdyne, Byrdyna, Byrdyne, Birdie, Birdi, Birdy, Birdey, Birdee, Burdette... birdena


(Celtic) Woman of great strength Birkitah, Birkyta, Byrkita, Byrkyta, Birkeyta, Birkeita, Birkeata, Birkieta... birkita

Birth Marks

Birth marks are of various kinds; the most common are port-wine marks (see NAEVUS). Pigment spots are found, very often raised above the skin surface and more or less hairy, being then called moles (see MOLE).... birth marks

Birth Pool

A pool of warm water in which a woman can give birth to her baby. The infant is delivered into the water. The method was introduced during the 1980s and is claimed to make delivery less painful and upsetting.... birth pool


Terror attacks on civilian communities using biological agents such as ANTHRAX and SMALLPOX. Particular problems in detecting and handling attacks are the time lags between exposure of a population to dangerous agents and the onset of victims’ symptoms, and the fact that early symptoms might initially be taken as the result of a naturally occurring disease. Management of any biological attack must depend on systems already in place for managing new diseases, new epidemics or traditional diseases. The e?ectiveness of public-health surveillance varies widely from country to country, and even advanced economies may not have the sta? and facilities to investigate anything other than a recognised epidemic. As attacks might well occur without warning, tackling them could be a daunting task. Intelligence warnings about proposed attacks might, however, allow for some preventive and curative measures to be set up. Medical experts in the US believe that deployment of existing community disaster teams working to pre-prepared plans, and the development of specially trained strike teams, should cut the numbers of casualties and deaths from a bioterrorist attack. Nevertheless, bioterrorism is an alarming prospect.... bioterrorism

Birch Tea: Not Only A Tasty Beverage

Birch tea is a medicinal beverage made from the leaves or the bark of the plant. It is enjoyed worldwide for its health benefits and also for its tasty flavor. Birch tea description Birch is a soft-wood tree, found in the woodlands of cold climate countries, especially in North America and Europe. It is a fast-growing tree that can reach 65 feet in height. The birch tree is known for its silvery-white bark that tends to peel off in layers. The ‘oil of birch’ has potent properties in the anti-cancer treatment. Birch is a natural pain reliever with salicylate, the compound found in aspirin. Birch leaf is a medicinal remedy for various forms of upset stomach. Birch tea is the resulting beverage from brewing the abovementioned plant. Birch tea brewing To make Birch tea from the leaves:
  • Place 2 to 3 teaspoonfuls in a cup and pour on boiling water.
  • Cover the mix and allow it to steep for 10 minutes.
  • Drink the tea about three times a day.
Birch tea can also be made using the bark of the tree:
  • Place a teaspoon of dried birch bark in a cup of boiling water.
  • Allow it to steep for 15 minutes.
  • Drink the tea twice or thrice a day.
Birch tea can be sweetened with honey. The resulting beverage has a very aromatic flavor. The parts used for tea are the leaves, twigs, and the bark. Birch tea benefits Birch tea has been successfully used to:
  • alleviate joint pain related to rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis
  • combat gout
  • fight urinary disorders
  • increase urination
  • treat melanoma
  • help fighting skin breakouts and other dermatological problems (applied topically as a wash or added to bath water)
  • soothe sore muscles
Also, Birch tea may help remove excess fluids from the body. Birch tea side effects Birch tea is not recommended to pregnant and nursing women. Also, it not advised to people allergic to aspirin. Birch tea is best known for itsanti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory and anti-viral properties. It is also largely used to remove excess fluids from the body.... birch tea: not only a tasty beverage


(African) A daughter who is greatly loved

Bisah, Bissa, Bissah, Bysa, Bysah, Byssa, Byssah... bisa


(Anglo-Saxon) A compassionate woman Bisgue, Bysgu, Bysgue ... bisgu


A compound leaf divided in threes, whose leaflets are in turn di- vided in pairs.... biternate


(Hebrew) A child of song ... bithron

Bistort Tea For Stomach Ailments

Bistort tea is widely known as an adjuvant in the areas of treating stomach, respiratory and bleeding problems. It can be intaken two or three times a day to fully enjoy its healthy benefits. Bistort Tea description Bistort is a perennially-growing plant from the Northern Hemisphere. It is normally grown as an ornamental plant because of its small white and pink blooms. It contains vitamins A and C, mucilage and antioxidants, acknowledged for their anti-cancer action. However, Bistort is also cultivated for medicinal purposes, being well-known as one of the most astringent herb. Bistort tea is the beverage resulting from brewing the abovementioned plant. Bistort Tea brewing Bistort tea can be made as a decoction:
  • Place one teaspoonful of the dried bistort rhizome in a 250 ml cup of water and boil the mix.
  • Let it steep for about 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Strain the liquid.
Bistort tea can be consumed twice or thrice a day. It can also be used as a gargle or mouthwash to treat infections inside the mouth. Bistort Tea benefits Bistort tea has been successfully used to:
  • treat diarrhea, dysentery and irritable bowel syndrome
  • aid in the treatment of diverticulitis
  • help treating oral and tongue inflammations
  • help fighting pharyngitis and sore throat
  • help in the treatment of jaundice
  • aid fighting measles and smallpox
  • fight hemorrhoids
  • ease menstrual bleeding
  • help in the healing of wounds, skin ruptures and burstings (when applied topically)
Bistort tea may also help expel worms. Bistort Tea side effects A long-term administration of Bistort tea is not recommended. Pregnant and nursing women are advised not to intake this tea. Bistort tea is a medicinal remedy against several digestive problems and, it also proved to be effective in treating menstrual bleeding, but not only.... bistort tea for stomach ailments

Bitter Mellon Tea Against Diabetes

Bitter Melon tea is a bitter beverage, very useful in treating a large array of diseases such as diabetes, but not only. Bitter Melon Tea description Bitter Melon is an herbaceous tendril-bearing vine that grows in parts of East Africa, Asia, the Caribbean islands, and parts of South America. It has dainty yellow flowers, bearing an oblong-shaped fruit that has a pockmarked and warty exterior which turns yellow when ripe. Its flesh is crunchy and watery in texture whereas its skin is tender and edible. The taste of the fruit is very bitter. Bitter Melon tea is the resulting beverage from brewing the abovementioned plant, best known for its efficiency against diabetes. The plant is also added to several types of food, as a culinary ingredient. Bitter Melon Tea brewing To prepare Bitter Melon tea:
  • Place a handful of leaves in a pot of boiling water
  • Boil the mix until the water turns green
  • Let the mix steep for about 5 minutes
The taste is quite bitter. Also, the Bitter Melon fruit can also be made into a tea. The majority of cultures prefer to use the leaves for making tea while the fruit is consumed as an addition to dishes. Bitter Melon Tea benefits Bitter Melon tea has proved its efficiency in treating:
  • abdominal gas and colic
  • liver problems
  • ulcers in different parts of the body
  • digestion (It may also help ease symptoms of dyspepsia and constipation)
Bitter Melon tea is said to help in regulating blood sugar levels, being widely used as a herbal remedy by diabetes patients. Bitter Melon tea can be used in the treatment of HIV. Bitter Melon Tea side effects Bitter Melon tea should never be taken in conjuncture with any form of diabetes medication. Pregnant and nursing women should also avoid this tea. Bitter Melon Tea is a natural remedy against type 1 and type 2 of diabetes. It is also consumed for its healing properties when dealing with abdominal gas and colic.... bitter mellon tea against diabetes

Bitter Tonic

A bitter-tasting substance or formula used to increase a deficient appetite, improve the acidity of stomach secretions and protein digestion, and slightly speed up the orderly emptying of the stomach. A good bitter tonic should possess little, if any, drug effect, only acting on oral and stomach functions and secretions. Dry mouth, bad gums, teeth problems with bad breath in the morning, and weak digestion, often with constipation, are the main deficiency symptoms. A bitter tonic has little effect in normal digestion. Example: Gentiana... bitter tonic


(Basque) A victorious woman... bixenta


(Scandinavian) Of the birch tree Bjorke, Bjork... bjork

Bites And Stings

Animal bites are best treated as puncture wounds and simply washed and dressed. In some cases ANTIBIOTICS may be given to minimise the risk of infection, together with TETANUS toxoid if appropriate. Should RABIES be a possibility, then further treatment must be considered. Bites and stings of venomous reptiles, amphibians, scorpions, snakes, spiders, insects and ?sh may result in clinical effects characteristic of that particular poisoning. In some cases speci?c ANTIVENOM may be administered to reduce morbidity and mortality.

Many snakes are non-venomous (e.g. pythons, garter snakes, king snakes, boa constrictors) but may still in?ict painful bites and cause local swelling. Most venomous snakes belong to the viper and cobra families and are common in Asia, Africa, Australia and South America. Victims of bites may experience various effects including swelling, PARALYSIS of the bitten area, blood-clotting defects, PALPITATION, respiratory di?culty, CONVULSIONS and other neurotoxic and cardiac effects. Victims should be treated as for SHOCK – that is, kept at rest, kept warm, and given oxygen if required but nothing by mouth. The bite site should be immobilised but a TOURNIQUET must not be used. All victims require prompt transfer to a medical facility. When appropriate and available, antivenoms should be administered as soon as possible.

Similar management is appropriate for bites and stings by spiders, scorpions, sea-snakes, venomous ?sh and other marine animals and insects.

Bites and stings in the UK The adder (Vipera berus) is the only venomous snake native to Britain; it is a timid animal that bites only when provoked. Fatal cases are rare, with only 14 deaths recorded in the UK since 1876, the last of these in 1975. Adder bites may result in marked swelling, weakness, collapse, shock, and in severe cases HYPOTENSION, non-speci?c changes in the electrocardiogram and peripheral leucocytosis. Victims of adder bites should be transferred to hospital even if asymptomatic, with the affected limb being immobilised and the bite site left alone. Local incisions, suction, tourniquets, ice packs or permanganate must not be used. Hospital management may include use of a speci?c antivenom, Zagreb®.

The weever ?sh is found in the coastal waters of the British Isles, Europe, the eastern Atlantic, and the Mediterranean Sea. It possesses venomous spines in its dorsal ?n. Stings and envenomation commonly occur when an individual treads on the ?sh. The victim may experience a localised but increasing pain over two hours. As the venom is heat-labile, immersion of the affected area in water at approximately 40 °C or as hot as can be tolerated for 30 minutes should ease the pain. Cold applications will worsen the discomfort. Simple ANALGESICS and ANTIHISTAMINE DRUGS may be given.

Bees, wasps and hornets are insects of the order Hymenoptera and the females possess stinging apparatus at the end of the abdomen. Stings may cause local pain and swelling but rarely cause severe toxicity. Anaphylactic (see ANAPHYLAXIS) reactions can occur in sensitive individuals; these may be fatal. Deaths caused by upper-airway blockage as a result of stings in the mouth or neck regions are reported. In victims of stings, the stinger should be removed as quickly as possible by ?icking, scraping or pulling. The site should be cleaned. Antihistamines and cold applications may bring relief. For anaphylactic reactions ADRENALINE, by intramuscular injection, may be required.... bites and stings

Bixa Orellana


Family: Bixaceae.

Habitat: Native to Central America, often cultivated in Madhya Pradesh and South India.

English: Annatto.

Ayurvedic: Sinduri, Sinduriyaa.

Siddha/Tamil: Jabara, Manjitti.

Action: Plant—astringent, antibil- ious, antiemetic, blood purifier. Leaves—infusion is given in jaundice, also in dysentery. Externally, scar-preventive. Root bark— febrifuge, antiperiodic. Seed pulp— haemostatic, antidysenteric, diuretic, laxative. Fruit—antidysenteric.

An antimicrobial constituent, mas- linic acid, alongwith gallic acid and pyrogallol, has been isolated from the leaves. Alcoholic extract of the leaves completely inhibited Micrococcus pyo- genes, but was inactive against E. coli. The aqueous extract, however, showed partial inhibition against E. coli. The aqueous extract also showed potent inhibitory activity towards lens aldose re- ductase, which plays an important role in the management of diabetic complications. The activity is attributed to a flavonoid, isoscutelarein.

Bixin, the main constituent of seed coat, shows cytostatic effect on the growth of human lymphoma cells. Bixin also has a hyperglycaemic effect and may disturb blood glucose control.... bixa orellana

Black Nightshade

See Hierba mora.... black nightshade

Blackberry Leaves

Picked, dried in the sun and infused with boiling water, blackberry leaves are the essence of most berry-flavored teas. Studies suggest that the leaves contain a healthy dose of flavonoids, which are known for their antioxidant activity.... blackberry leaves

Blackberry, Raspberry, And Dewberry

Rubus species

Description: These plants have prickly stems (canes) that grow upward, arching back toward the ground. They have alternate, usually compound leaves. Their fruits may be red, black, yellow, or orange.

Habitat and Distribution: These plants grow in open, sunny areas at the margin of woods, lakes, streams, and roads throughout temperate regions. There is also an arctic raspberry.

Edible Parts: The fruits and peeled young shoots are edible. Flavor varies greatly.

Other Uses: Use the leaves to make tea. To treat diarrhea, drink a tea made by brewing the dried root bark of the blackberry bush.... blackberry, raspberry, and dewberry

Black Cohosh Tea: Benefic In Menopause

Black Cohosh tea is recommended to people who want to prevent bone ailments or just to enhance their immune system. Black Cohosh Tea description Black Cohosh is a woodland plant, found in the New England region of the United States, as well as eastern Canada. Its roots and rhizomes are used for medicinal properties, particularly for female hormonal balance and arthritis. It also has acknowledged anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic properties. Black cohosh can be consumed as a fresh or dry root or as a supplement in liquid or tablet forms. The daily dosage should not exceed 80 mg Black cohosh in tablet form or 2 to 4 ml Black Cohosh tincture two to three times a day. Black Cohosh tea is the resulting beverage from brewing the abovementioned plant. Black Cohosh Tea brewing To make Black Cohosh tea, use the roots of the plant. Black Cohosh roots should be boiled for about 20 to 30 minutes in water. Strain it and drink it slowly. Black Cohosh Tea benefits Studies revealed Black Cohosh tea to be efficient in treating:
  • the symptoms of menopause and menstrual discomfort (hot flashes, mood swings and vaginal dryness)
  • infertility
  • rheumatism
  • cough
  • high cholesterol levels, as well as hardening of the arteries
  • osteoporosis
  • muscle aches
Black Cohosh side effects Black Cohosh tea is not recommended during pregnancy, as large doses may induce a miscarriage. An overdose can cause dizziness, nausea and increased perspiration. Also, Black Cohosh tea may cause gastrointestinal pain, diarrhea, vomiting and nausea. People intaking  this type of tea may experience dizziness, headaches, tremors and a slow heart rate. Individuals with an allergy to buttercup or crowfoot should avoid Black Cohosh tea because they are from the same plant family. People who are allergic to aspirin should not consume the tea because it contains small amounts of salicylic acid, the active ingredient in aspirin. Also people with a history of blood clots, seizures and high blood pressure should avoid Black Cohosh tea. Black Cohosh tea is known for its anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic action, being successfully used to treat women health issues such as menopause and menstrual discomfort.... black cohosh tea: benefic in menopause

Black Dragon Pearl Tea

Black Dragon Pearl tea is a type of black tea that provides a full range of benefits to consumers of all ages, worldwide. It distinguishes itself through its chocolate taste and therapeutical benefits. Black Dragon Pearl Tea description Black Dragon Pearl tea, originating from the Chinese province Yunnan, is a type of unsteady black tea, well-known in the area. Each tea pearl contains thirty hand-picked leaves and buds which are immediately rolled to prevent leaves from drying. A morning or afternoon cup of Black Dragon Pearl tea together served with fruits may be a pleasant way to relax oneself. How to prepare Black Dragon Pearl Tea Black Dragon Pearl Black tea can be infused up to three times and still keeps its malty flavor. In case of steeping too long, like any black tea, it can get bitter. When brewed, it has a reddish-brown color, whose aroma makes it identifiable for the senses and, when drunk it has a very delicate and chocolaty taste. Black Dragon Pearl Black tea can be served with or without sugar (or honey) and milk. It contains a relatively low caffeine level. When preparing Black Dragon Pearl tea:
  • Use 1 teaspoon of tea for 8 ounces of water ( 2ounces of tea equals 25-30 teaspoons)
  • Heat water until it is almost boiling (195 degrees).
  • Pour over the pearls.
  • Steep them for 3 or 4 minutes.
Black Dragon Pearl Tea benefits Studies revealed the important qualities of Black Dragon Pearl tea. Like any type of black tea, this luxurious beverage contains antioxidants - proven adjuvants in treating cancer and stopping tumors growth. This type of tea has been associated to lowering the risk of stomach, colon and breast cancer, although the connection is not fully scientifically proven. Researchers claim that a compound in Black Dragon Pearl tea caused colorectal cancer cells to disappear, whereas normal cells were not affected by it. Black Dragon Pearl tea is also recommended in dealing with:
  • poor arterial functioning that can cause heart attacks and strokes
  • inflammation
  • viruses
  • cholesterol reduction
  • teeth decay
  • blood toxins removing
  • aging effects
Black Dragon Pearl Tea side effects In case of intaking more than 3 cups of tea per day, headaches and dizziness can sometimes appear. Rarely, symptoms of upset stomach may follow Black Dragon Pearl tea consumption. A diet based on Black Dragon Pearl tea plays an important part in one’s life because it renders the sufficient quantity of antioxidants needed by human body to fight against a large array of diseases.... black dragon pearl tea


Blood-sucking flies belonging to the genus Simulium. Includes the vectors of human Onchocerciasis (River Blindness) in parts of Africa and Latin America.... blackfly


See ACNE.... blackheads

Bladder, Diseases Of

See URINARY BLADDER, DISEASES OF and GALLBLADDER, DISEASES OF; see also URINE.... bladder, diseases of


(Scottish / Irish) A saint’s servant / a thin woman

Blayne, Blane, Blain, Blayn, Blaen, Blaene... blaine


(Scottish) From the field of battle Blaire, Blare, Blayre, Blaer, Blaere, Blayr... blair


(French) One with a lisp or a stammer

Blayse, Blaze, Blaize, Blas, Blasa, Blase, Blasia, Blaese, Blaeze, Blayze... blaise


(English) A dark beauty Blayk, Blayke, Blaik, Blaike, Blaek, Blaeke... blake


(French) Resembling a white flower

Blancheflor, Blancheflour, Blancheflora... blanchefleur

Black Haw Tea For The Use Of Women

Black haw tea is made by brewing the bark of the plant. It is largely used for its healing properties in medical issues like menstrual cramps. Black Haw Tea description Black haw is a small deciduous shrub, originating from North America. It grows in moist woods, thickets, and along stream banks. It has red brown bark, flat-topped white flowers, and grooved branches. Black haw possesses edible red berries typically ripen in August. Its berries can be eaten or made into jams or preserves. During the pre-Civil War days in America, the black haw was believed to boost fertility. It is also said that Black haw tea has been drunk by slave women (at the behest of slave owners) to increase their ability to bear more children. Most of the health properties of this plant are derived from its bark. Black haw tea is the resulting beverage from brewing the abovementioned plant. Black Haw Tea brewing To make Black haw tea:
  • Boil two teaspoonfuls of dried Black haw bark in a cup of water (Bring water to a gentle boil).
  • Allowed it to simmer for ten minutes and then cool it and strain it.
The Black haw tea can be taken twice a day during the treatment period. Black Haw Tea benefits Black haw tea has been successfully used to:
  • help in alleviating symptoms of menopause and menstrual cramps in women
  • help prevent a miscarriage in women
  • alleviate labor pains
  • help in easing uterine disorders in women
  • help in the treatment of migraine headaches
  • help lower blood pressure
Black Haw Tea side effects Black haw tea is not recommended to pregnant and nursing women until further studies are conducted. Black haw tea is a medicinal beverage used for years to induce fertility and to alleviate labor pains, but not only.... black haw tea for the use of women


Sacs formed of muscular and ?brous tissue and lined by a mucous membrane, which is united loosely to the muscular coat so as freely to allow increase and decrease in the contained cavity. Bladders are designed to contain some secretion or excretion, and communicate with the exterior by a narrow opening through which their contents can be discharged. In humans there are two: the gall-bladder and the urinary bladder.

Gall-bladder This is situated under the liver in the upper part of the abdomen, and its function is to store the BILE, which it discharges into the intestine by the BILE DUCT. For further details, see LIVER.

Urinary bladder This is situated in the pelvis, in front of the last part of the bowel. In the full state, the bladder rises up into the abdomen and holds about 570 ml (a pint) of urine. Two ?ne tubes, called the ureters, lead into the bladder, one from each kidney; and the urethra, a tube as wide as a lead pencil when distended, leads from it to the exterior – a distance of 4 cm (1••• inches) in the female and 20 cm (8 inches) in the male. The exit from the bladder to the urethra is kept closed by a muscular ring which is relaxed every time urine is passed.... bladders


(Latin / Spanish) A mild-tempered woman / a flattering woman Blandah, Blandina, Blandine, Blandyna, Blandyne... blanda


(Irish) As delicate as a flower Blathnaide, Blathnade, Blathnayde, Blathnayd, Blathnaed, Blathnaede... blathnaid

Bleeding Heart

Love... bleeding heart


(Latin) Dazzling Blendah, Blinda, Blynda, Blindah, Blyndah... blenda


(Boysenberries, dewberries, youngberries)

Nutritional Profile Energy value (calories per serving): Low Protein: Low Fat: Low Saturated fat: Low Cholesterol: None Carbohydrates: High Fiber: Moderate Sodium: Low Major vitamin contribution: Vitamin A, vitamin C Major mineral contribution: Calcium

About the Nutrients in This Food Blackberries have no starch but do contain sugars and dietary fiber, pri- marily pectin, which dissolves as the fruit matures. Unripe blackberries contain more pectin than ripe ones. One-half cup fresh blackberries has 3.8 g dietary fiber, 15 mg vitamin C (20 percent of the R DA for a woman, 17 percent of the R DA for a man), and 18 mcg folate (5 percent of the R DA).

The Most Nutritious Way to Serve This Food Fresh or lightly cooked.

Buying This Food Look for: Plump, firm dark berries with no hulls. A firm, well-rounded berry is still moist and fresh; older berries lose moisture, which is why their skin wrinkles. Avoid: Baskets of berries with juice stains or liquid leaking out of the berries. The stains and leaks are signs that there are crushed—and possibly moldy—berries inside.

Storing This Food Cover berries and refrigerate them. Then use them in a day or two. Do not wash berries before storing. The moisture collects in spaces on the surface of the berries that may mold in the refrigerator. Also, handling the berries may damage their cells, releasing enzymes that can destroy vitamins.

Preparing This Food R inse the berries under cool running water, then drain them and pick them over carefully to remove all stems and leaves.

What Happens When You Cook This Food Cooking destroys some of the vitamin C in fresh blackberries and lets water-soluble B vitamins leach out. Cooked berries are likely to be mushy because the heat and water dis- solve their pectin and the skin of the berry collapses. Cooking may also change the color of blackberries, which contain soluble red anthocyanin pigments that stain cooking water and turn blue in basic (alkaline) solutions. Adding lemon juice to a blackberry pie stabilizes these pigments; it is a practical way to keep the berries a deep, dark reddish blue.

How Other Kinds of Processing Affect This Food Canning. The intense heat used in canning fruits reduces the vitamin C content of black- berries. Berries packed in juice have more nutrients, ounce for ounce, than berries packed in either water or syrup.

Medical Uses and/or Benefits Anticancer activity. Blackberries are rich in anthocyanins, bright-red plant pigments that act as antioxidants—natural chemicals that prevent free radicals (molecular fragments) from joining to form carcinogenic (cancer-causing) compounds. Some varieties of blackberries also contain ellagic acid, another anticarcinogen with antiviral and antibacterial properties.

Adverse Effects Associated with This Food Allergic reaction. Hives and angioedema (swelling of the face, lips, and eyes) are common allergic responses to berries, virtually all of which have been known to trigger allergic reactions. According to the Merck Manual, berries are one of the 12 foods most likely to trigger classic food allergy symptoms. The others are chocolate, corn, eggs, fish, legumes (peas, lima beans, peanuts, soybeans), milk, nuts, peaches, pork, shellfish, and wheat (see w h eat cer ea ls).... blackberries

Blepharis Edulis


Synonym: B. persica (Burm.f.) Kuntze.

Family: Acanthaceae.

Habitat: Punjab and western Rajasthan.

English: Acanthus.

Ayurvedic: Utangana, Kaamavridhi, Chatushpatri, Ucchataa (equated with Scirpus or Cyperus sp. during the classical period; with Shveta Gunjaa, Abrus sp. during the medieval period.)

Unani: Utangan.

Folk: Karadu (Maharashtra).

Action: Roots—diuretic. Used for urinary discharges and dys- menorrhoea. Seeds—deobstruent, resolvent, diuretic (used in strangury and sexual debility). Powdered plant is applied locally on infections of the genitals and on burns.

Key application: Seed in dysuria and impotency. (The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India.)

A benzoxazine glucoside, blephar- in, has been isolated from seeds, and a saponin, which on hydrolysis gave lupeol.

Dosage: Dried seed—3-6 g powder. (API Vol. IV.)... blepharis edulis

Blepharispermum Subsessile


Family: Compositae; Asteraceae.

Habitat: Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka.

Ayurvedic: Used as a substitute for Raasnaa in Madhya Pradesh.

Action: Anti-inflammatory (used internally and externally for rheumatic affections).... blepharispermum subsessile


(English) One who is blessed by God

Blerung, Blessing... bletsung


(Hebrew) One resembling a blossom

Blima, Blime, Blyma, Blymah... blimah

Blepharis Linariaefolia


Synonym: B. sindica T. Anders.

Family: Acanthaceae.

Habitat: Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and Gujarat.

Ayurvedic: Ushtrakaandi, Utangan (var.).

Folk: Utangana (Sindh). Asad.

Action: Seeds, boiled in milk, are taken as an invigorating tonic.

Blepharis molluginifolia Pers., used for urinary discharges, is also equated with Utangana.... blepharis linariaefolia

Blessed Thistle Tea Is Good For Health

Blessed Thistle tea is a medicinal beverage useful in treating a large array of ailments such as constipation, but not only. Blessed Thistle Tea description Blessed thistle was at first used in Ayurvedic medicine in India and Bhutan. It was introduced in Europe in the 1500s where it gained the title “blessed” for its use in treating plague. The blessed thistle is a weed with prickly leaves and yellow flowers surrounded by purple spikes, found mostly in North Africa, Western Asia and Southern Europe. The leaves, the flowers and the stem are used to prepare Blessed thistle tea. Blessed Thistle Tea brewing Blessed thistle tea can be prepared in the following way: douse about 1 to 3 dried blessed thistle herb in a cup of boiled water for 5 to 15 minutes. It can then be drunk three times a day before meals. Blessed Thistle Tea benefits Blessed Thistle tea has been successfully used to:
  • treat digestive problems, like gas, constipation and stomach upset
  • improve appetite
  • detoxify the body
  • support liver and gallbladder
  • stimulate menstrual flow
Blessed Thistle Tea side effects High doses of Blessed thistle tea can cause:
  • stomach irritation and vomiting
  • liver disease
  • gastrointestinal and liver problems and esophageal or nasal cancer
Blessed Thistle tea is a natural remedy to detoxify the body and thus, to enhance the immunity and support the normal functioning of the human organs.... blessed thistle tea is good for health


The concealment of group assignment (to either the treatment or control group) from the knowledge of participants and/or investigators in a clinical trial. Blinding eliminates the possibility that knowledge of assignment may affect individual response to treatment or investigator behaviours that may affect outcomes. Blinding is not always practical (e.g. when comparing surgery to drug treatment) but it should be used whenever it is possible and compatible with optimal care. There are various kinds of blinding: single-blind trial: one in which knowledge of group assignment is withheld only from participants double-blind trial: one in which the knowledge is withheld from participants and investigators triple-blind trial: one in which the knowledge is withheld from participants, investigators and those assessing outcomes of the assignment.... blinding


(English) Filled with extreme joy Blyss, Blysse, Blisse, Blix, Blyx... bliss


(Welsh) The face of a flower... blodwedd


(Welsh) Resembling a white flower

Blodwenne, Blodwyn, Blodwynne, Blodwin, Blodwinne, Blodwenn, Blodwynn, Blodwinn... blodwen


(French) A fair-haired woman Blondelle, Blondele, Blondene, Blondel, Blondela, Blondella... blondell


See VENESECTION.... blood-letting

Blood, Diseases Of



Love, Protection, Purification... bloodroot


(English) A woman who is lovely, fresh, and flowerlike Blosom, Blossum, Blosum... blossom


Colloquial term for Catostylus, the most common rhizostome jellyfish in Australia.... blubber


(American) A woman with bright-blue eyes Blu... blue

Blue Mallow

Malva sylvestyis. N.O. Malvaceae.

Synonym: Cheese Flower, Common Mallow, Mauls.

Habitat: Around ledges and roadsides.

Features ? Several erect, hairy stems, two to three feet high. Leaf and flower stalks also hairy. Roundish leaf has five to seven lobes, middle one longest. Numerous flowers (June-September), large reddish-purple, clustered four or five together on axillary stalk.

Part used ? Flowers, herb.

Action: Demulcent, mucilaginous, pectoral.

1 ounce to 1 pint infusion makes a popular cough and cold remedy.... blue mallow

Blue-ringed Octopus

Colloquial term for Hapalochlaena spp.... blue-ringed octopus


Protection ... blueberry

Blueberry And Huckleberry

Vaccinium and Gaylussacia species

Description: These shrubs vary in size from 30 centimeters to 3.7 meters tall. All have alternate, simple leaves. Their fruits may be dark blue, black, or red and have many small seeds.

Habitat and Distribution: These plants prefer open, sunny areas. They are found throughout much of the north temperate regions and at higher elevations in Central America.

Edible Parts: Their fruits are edible raw.... blueberry and huckleberry

Blue Flag Tea For A Healthy Liver

Blue Flag tea has a long history in treating liver ailments: Native American tribes used to consume it for its hepatic properties. Blue Flag Tea description Blue flag is a perennial herb also known as the liver lily and the fleur-de-lis, native to North America. It has smooth spear-shaped leaves topped with a light bluish-purple flower. Blue flag plants grow in bunches and bloom during late June and early July. Blue Flag tea is the resulting beverage from brewing the abovementioned plant. Blue Flag Tea brewing To prepare Blue Flag tea, place 1 teaspoon of the dried roots in a cup of boiling water. Let it steep for 10 minutes. The tea can be consumed three times a day. Blue Flag Tea benefits Blue Flag has been successfully used to:
  • stimulate the liver and thus, it is helpful in the treatment of jaundice and hepatitis
  • fight impurities of the blood
  • fight against skin problems like acne and psoriasis
  • detoxify the body by increasing the production of bile, as well as frequency of urination
  • help treat indigestion
  • treat rheumatism
  • help in weight loss
Blue Flag tea can be an effective laxative, diuretic and as an emetic. It is also effective in reducing inflammation of the skin, decreasing the symptoms of skin infections. It is also good in treating burns, bruises and wounds. Blue Flag Tea side effects Until further studies are conducted, pregnant and nursing women should avoid intaking this type of tea. Blue Flag tea has proven its efficiency in dealing with severe liver-related diseases. Also, applied topically, it can treat skin problems, but not only.... blue flag tea for a healthy liver

Blumea Balsamifera


Synonym: B. densiflora Hook. f. in part.

Family: Compositae; Asteraceae.

Habitat: Subtropical Himalayas, Nepal, Sikkim, Assam and Khasi Hills at 700-1,350 m.

English: Ngai Camphor.

Ayurvedic: Kukundara, Gangaapa- tri.

Unani: Kakarondaa.

Action: Tranquilizer (used in excitement and insomnia), expectorant, sudorific. Given in intestinal diseases, colic, diarrhoea. Essential oil from leaves—hypotensive.

The plant is a source of Ngai or Blumea Camphor. Camphor occurs in all parts of the plant, but is generally extracted from leaves. Ngai Camphor oil consists almost entirely of l-borneol. It is redistilled to obtain the refined camphor for use in medicine.

The dried leaves contain sesquiter- pene lactones. These lactones exhibit antitumour activity against Yoshida sacoma cells in tissue culture.

The plant exhibits moderate antibacterial activity against E. coli.... blumea balsamifera

Blumea Densiflora


Family: Compositae; Asteraceae.

Habitat: Sub-tropical Himalayas, Nepal, Sikkim, Assam and Khasia hills.

English: Ngai Camphor.

Ayurvedic: Kukundara (var.).

Action: Juice of fresh leaves— insecticidal, mosquito repellant. The plant yields an essential oil which yields camphor.

Aerial part contains sesquiterpene lactones, tagitinin A, tirolundin ethyl ether and iso-alantolactone derivatives.... blumea densiflora

Blumea Eriantha


Family: Compositae; Asteraceae.

Habitat: Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Kerala.

Ayurvedic: Kukundara (var.).

Unani: Kakarondaa.

Folk: Nirmudi (Maharashtra).

Action: Juice of the herb— carminative. A warm infusion of leaves is given as a sudorific, while a cold infusion is considered diuretic and emmenagogue. The oil possesses significant antibacterial and antifungal properties. The oil also shows insecticidal activity.

The essential oil contains 95% ketones, the chief constituent of which are d-carvotanacetone and l-tetrahydro- carvone and an alcohol.

The plant contains a flavonol, cri- anthin (isolated from the flowers). It is identical to artemetin, isolated from Artemisia absinthium.... blumea eriantha


(Native American) A tall child... bly


(Irish) Woman of great strength Blyanna, Bliana, Blianna, Blyann, Blyane, Blyanne, Bliane, Bliann, Blianne... blyana


(English) Filled with happiness Blyth, Blithe, Blith... blythe


(Korean) A treasured child... bo-bae


(English) A heroic queen... boadicea

Board And Care Home

See “adult care home”.... board and care home


(Polish) A gift of God Bodganah, Bodganna, Bodgane, Bodgann, Bodganne, Bogna, Bohdana, Bohdanna, Bohdane, Bohdann, Bohdanne, Bohgana, Bohganna, Bohgane, Bohgann, Bohganne... bodgana


Fertility, Protection, Wisdom, Meditation... bodhi


(Norse) A fighting woman Bodile, Bodille, Bodila, Bodilla... bodil



Nutritional Profile Energy value (calories per serving): Low Protein: Low Fat: Low Saturated fat: Low Cholesterol: None Carbohydrates: High Fiber: Moderate Sodium: Low Major vitamin contribution: Vitamin C Major mineral contribution: Calcium

About the Nutrients in This Food Blueberries have some protein and a little fat. They have no starch but do contain sugars and dietary fiber—primarily pectin, which dissolves as the fruit matures—and lignin in the seeds. (The difference between blueber- ries and huckleberries is the size of their seeds; blueberries have smaller ones than huckleberries.) One-half cup fresh blueberries has 1.5 g dietary fiber and 9.5 mg. vitamin C (13 percent of the R DA for a woman, 11 percent of the R DA for a man).

The Most Nutritious Way to Serve This Food Fresh, raw, or lightly cooked.

Buying This Food Look for: Plump, firm dark-blue berries. The whitish color on the ber- ries is a natural protective coating. Avoid: Baskets of berries with juice stains or liquid leaking out of the berries. The stains and leaks are signs that there are crushed (and possibly moldy) berries inside.

Storing This Food Cover berries and refrigerate them. Then use them in a day or two. Do not wash berries before storing. The moisture increases the chance that they will mold in the refrigerator. Also, handling the berries can damage them, tearing cells and releas- ing enzymes that will destroy vitamins. Do not store blueberries in metal containers. The anthocyanin pigments in the berries can combine with metal ions to form dark, unattractive pigment/metal compounds that stain the containers and the berries.

Preparing This Food R inse the berries under cool running water, then drain them and pick them over carefully to remove all stems, leaves, and hard (immature) or soft (over-ripe) berries.

What Happens When You Cook This Food Cooking destroys some of the vitamin C in fresh blueberries and lets water-soluble B vitamins leach out. Cooked berries are likely to be mushy because heat dissolves the pectin inside. Blueberries may also change color when cooked. The berries are colored with blue anthocyanin pigments. Ordinarily, anthocyanin-pigmented fruits and vegetables turn red- dish in acids (lemon juice, vinegar) and deeper blue in bases (baking soda). But blueberries also contain yellow pigments (anthoxanthins). In a basic (alkaline) environments, as in a batter with too much baking soda, the yellow and blue pigments will combine, turning the blueberries greenish blue. Adding lemon juice to a blueberry pie stabilizes these pigments; it is a practical way to keep the berries a deep, dark reddish blue.

How Other Kinds of Processing Affect This Food Canning and freezing. The intense heat used in canning the fruit or in blanching it before freezing reduces the vitamin C content of blueberries by half.

Medical Uses and/or Benefits Anticancer activity. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, wild blueberries rank first among all fruits in antioxidant content; cultivated blueberries (the ones sold in most food markets) rank second. Antioxidants are natural chemicals that inactivate free radicals, molecule fragments that can link together to form cancer-causing compounds. Several ani- mal studies attest to the ability of blueberries to inhibit the growth of specific cancers. For example, in 2005, scientists at the University of Georgia reported in the journal Food Research International that blueberry extracts inhibited the growth of liver cancer cells in laboratory settings. The following year, researchers at Rutgers University (in New Jersey) delivered data to the national meeting of the American Chemical Society from a study in which laboratory rats fed a diet supplemented with pterostilbene, another compound extracted from blueber- ries, had 57 percent fewer precancerous lesions in the colon than rats whose diet did not contain the supplement. The findings, however, have not been confirmed in humans. Enhanced memory function. In 2008, British researchers at the schools of Food Biosciences and Psychology at the University of Reading and the Institute of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences at the Peninsula Medical School (England) reported that adding blueberries to one’s normal diet appears to improve both long-term and short-term memory, perhaps because anthocyanins and flavonoids (water-soluble pigments in the berries) activate signals in the hippocampus, a part of the brain that controls learning and memory. If confirmed, the data would support the role played by diet in maintaining memory and brain function. Urinary antiseptic. A 1991 study at the Weizmann Institute of Science (Israel) suggests that blueberries, like cr anber r ies, contain a compound that inhibits the ability of Escherichia coli, a bacteria commonly linked to urinary infections, to stick to the wall of the bladder. If it cannot cling to cell walls, the bacteria will not cause an infection. This discovery lends some support to folk medicine, but how the berries work, how well they work, or in what “dos- ages” remains to be proven.

Adverse Effects Associated with This Food Allergic reaction. Hives and angiodemea (swelling of the face, lips, and eyes) are common allergic responses to berries, virtually all of which have been reported to trigger these reac- tions. According to the Merck Manual, berries are one of the 12 foods most likely to trigger classic food allergy symptoms. The others are chocolate, corn, eggs, fish, legumes (peas, lima beans, peanuts, soybeans), milk, nuts, peaches, pork, shellfish, and wheat (see wheat cer ea ls).... blueberries


Colloquial term for the single-tentacled Physalia utriculus.... bluebottle


(Irish) A white-skinned woman Bluince, Bluynse, Bluynce... bluinse


(Hebrew) Resembling a flower’s bloom

Blumah, Blumma, Blummah, Blooma, Bloomah... bluma

Boerhavia Verticillata


Family: Nyctaginaceae.

Habitat: Throughout plains of India.

Ayurvedic: Shveta Punarnavaa, Vrshchiva, Vrshchiraka. (Vrishchira is also equated with Trianthema sp.) B. erecta, synonym B. punarnava Saha and Krishnamurthy, is also equated with the white-flowered species of Boerhavia.

Action: See B. diffusa.... boerhavia verticillata

Blumea Fastulosa

(Roxb.) Kurz.

Synonym: B. glomerata DC.

Family: Compositae; Asteraceae.

Habitat: Tropical Himalayas, and throughout the plains of Assam and Penninsular India.

Ayurvedic: Kukundara (var.).

Unani: Kakarondaa.

Action: Plant—diuretic. Essential oil—CNS depressant.

The steam non-volatile fraction of plant extract contained a mixture of n-alkanes.

Blumea lacera.

Family: Compositae; Asteraceae.

Habitat: Throughout the plains of India, ascending to 700 m.

Ayurvedic: Kukundara, Kukuradru, Taamrachuuda.

Unani: Kakarondaa.

Siddha/Tamil: Narakkarandai, Kaatu Mullangi.

Folk: Kakranda.

Action: Plant—antipyretic. Leaf— astringent, febrifuge, diuretic, deobstruent, anthelmintic (particularly in case of thread worm). Root—anticholerin. Essential oil— antibacterial, antifungal.

The leaves on steam distillation yield 0.5% essential oil from which camphor is isolated.

The oil contains cineol 66, d-fen- chone 10 and citral about 6%. The plant gave a diester of coniferyl alcohol, acetylenic compounds, a thiophene derivative; aerial parts gave campes- terol, hentriacontane, hentriacontanol, alpha-amyrin and its acetate, lupeol and its acetate and beta-sitosterol.

The alcoholic extract of the plant showed marked anti-inflammatory activity in carrageenin and bradykinin- induced inflammation in rats.

Dosage: Root—5-10 g paste. (CCRAS.)... blumea fastulosa

Boerhavia Diffusa


Synonym: B. repens Linn. B. procumbens Roxb.

Family: Nyctaginaceae.

Habitat: Throughout India as a weed.

English: Horse-purslane, Hogweed.

Ayurvedic: Rakta-punarnavaa, Punarnavaa, Katthilla, Shophaghni, Shothaghni. Varshaabhu (also equated with Trianthema portu- lacastrum Linn., which exhibits anti-inflammatory, antipyretic and analgesic activity).

Unani: Itsit, Bishkhaparaa.

Siddha/Tamil: Mookkirattai.

Folk: Gadaha-purnaa.

Action: Diuretic, anti-inflammatory, antiarthritic, spasmolytic, antibacterial (used for inflammatory renal diseases, nephrotic syndrome, in cases of ascites resulting from early cirrhosis of liver and chronic peritonitis, dropsy associated with chronic Bright's diseases, for serum uric acid levels). Root—anticon- vulsant, analgesic, expectorant, CNS depressant, laxative, diuretic, abortifacient.

Key application: As diuretic, hepatoprotective. (Indian Herbal Pharmacopoeia.)

B. repanda, synonym B. chinensis Linn., roots exhibited antihepatotox- ic activity against carbon tetrachloride galactosamine-and paracetamol- induced intoxication in rats. Powdered root gave encouraging results in spermatorrhoea and leucorrhoea.

The chloroform and methanolic extracts of the roots and aerial parts of B. diffusa also exhibited antihepatotox- ic activity against carbon tetrachloride- induced intoxication in rats.

Punarnavaa is official in IP as a diuretic. The diuretic action of the drug is attributed to the presence of xanthone, beta-ecdysone. Flavonoid, arbinofura- noside, present in the drug, was found to lower serum uric acid in experimental animals, as also in humans.

Punarnavaa has been reported to increase serum protein level and reduce urinary protein extraction in clinical trials in patients suffering with nephrotic syndrome. The activity is attributed to the presence of rotenoids in various parts of the plant.

An antifibrinolytic agent, punar- navoside, has been found to stop IUCD-induced bleeding in monkeys. The drug contains quinolizidine alkaloids.

Dosage: Whole plant—20-30 g for decoction (API Vol. I); root—1-3 g powder; 10-20 ml fresh juice. (API Vol. III.)... boerhavia diffusa

Bohuco De Indio

See Bejuco de indio.... bohuco de indio

Boils (furunculosis)

A skin infection caused by Staphylococcus aureus, beginning in adjacent hair follicles (see FOLLICLE). As the folliculitis becomes con?uent, a tender red lump develops which becomes necrotic (see NECROSIS) centrally with pus formation. A cluster of boils becoming con?uent is called a carbuncle. Release of the pus and an oral antibiotic lead to rapid healing.

Recurrent boils are usually due to a reservoir of staphylococcal bacteria (see STAPHYLOCOCCUS) in a nostril or elsewhere, so an intranasal antibiotic cream may be prescribed. Underlying DIABETES MELLITUS should always be excluded.... boils (furunculosis)


(Nigerian) Honor comes... bolade

Bolam Test

A medico-legal defence for a clinician accused of failing to provide an acceptable standard of care for one of his or her quali?cation and experience. The defence is that a responsible body of medical practitioners would have taken the same action, even though others would have acted di?erently. The precise size of a ‘responsible body’ has not been de?ned. The test has been modi?ed following a case referred to as Bolitho, in which it was held that the Bolam defence failed if it could be shown that the actions relied upon, although shown to be carried out by some responsible doctors, were nonetheless illogical.... bolam test


(Nigerian) From the house of riches... bolanile


(Latin) From the town near the lake Bolbi, Bolbie, Bolbee, Bolbea, Bolbeah, Bolby, Bolbey... bolbe

Boldo Tea Is Benefic For The Liver

Boldo tea has a long medicinal history, according to recent archeological discoveries. It is a healthy choice for the liver, urinary tract and infections. Boldo Tea description Boldo is a tree found in the central region of Chile and near the Mediterranean. It is an evergreen shrub whose leaves are colored brown when dried and whose fruits are small green spheres. Apparently, boldo use dates back at least 10,000 years. Nowadays, people use this plant to aid digestion, cleanse the liver and increase bile production for gallbladder’s health. Boldo tea is the resulting beverage from brewing the abovementioned plant. Boldo Tea brewing To prepare Boldo tea:
  • Pour boiling water over 1 teaspoon of dried boldo leaves.
  • Let the mix infuse for about 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Drink it slowly.
Boldo tea can be drunk three times a day for short periods of time. Boldo Tea benefits Studies have shown that Boldo tea is efficient in:
  • treating urinary tract and bladder infections
  • helping in liver cleansing
  • helping alleviate heartburn
  • relieving discomfort in the gallbladder
  • helping treat mild stomach cramps
  • treating worm infections
  • helping in the treatment of cystitis
  • treating gonorrhea
Boldo Tea side effects Patients with severe liver or kidney disease or obstruction of the bile ducts are advised to avoid the use of Boldo tea. Pregnant and nursing women should not consume Boldo tea. Boldo tea is a medicinal beverage which proved its efficiency in dealing with liver cleansing and urinary tract infections. It is recommended to patients suffering from stomach cramps, but not only.... boldo tea is benefic for the liver

Bombax Ceiba


See Salmalia malabarica Schott & Endl.... bombax ceiba

Bona Dea

(Latin) In mythology, an ancient fertility goddess... bona dea


(French) A very good friend Bonamey, Bonami, Bonamie, Bonamee, Bonamei, Bonamea, Bonameah... bonamy

Bone Transplant

The insertion of a piece of bone from another site or from another person to ?ll a defect, provide supporting tissue, or encourage the growth of new bone.... bone transplant


(Italian) A good daughter Bonfiliah, Bonfilea, Bonfileah, Bonfiliya, Bonfiliyah... bonfilia


(English) A well-behaved young woman

Boni, Bona, Bonea, Boneah, Bonee... bonie


(Scottish) A pretty and charming girl

Bonny, Bonni, Bonita, Bonnibel, Bonnibelle, Bonnibele, Bonnibell, Bonney, Bonnee, Bonnea, Bonneah... bonnie

Boomerang Leg

A condition whereby the tibiae are curved resulting from such conditions as congenital syphilis or yaws. Also known as sabre tibiae.... boomerang leg


An African tree snake belonging to the Family Colubridae. It is highly poisonous, the venom being haemotoxic in nature and causing profuse bleeding. Bites are, however, rare as the snake is back fanged.... boomslang


(Hungarian) From a foreign land Bora, Boriska, Borka, Borsala, Borsca, Borah, Borballa... borbala

Bone Imaging

Techniques for providing pictures that show the structure or function of bones. X-ray images are the most commonly used technique for diagnosing fractures and injuries. More detailed information is provided by tomography, CT scanning, or MRI, which can show tumours

cavities; it may be red or yellow. Red bone marrow is present in all bones at birth and is the factory for most of the blood cells. During the teens, red bone marrow is gradually replaced in some bones by less active yellow marrow. In adults, red marrow is confined chiefly to the spine, sternum, (breastbone), ribs, pelvis (hip-bones), scapulae (shoulderblades), clavicles (collarbones), and bones of the skull.

Stem cells within the red marrow are stimulated to form blood cells by the hormone erythropoietin.

Yellow marrow is composed mainly of connective tissue and fat.

If the body needs to increase its rate of blood formation, some of the yellow marrow will be replaced by red.

Sometimes marrow fails to produce sufficient numbers of normal blood cells, as occurs in aplastic anaemia (see anaemia, aplastic) or when marrow has been displaced by tumour cells.

In other cases, marrow may overproduce certain blood cells, as occurs in polycythaemia and leukaemia.... bone imaging

Bone Marrow Biopsy

A procedure to obtain a sample of cells from the bone marrow (aspiration biopsy) or a small core of bone with marrow inside (trephine biopsy). The sample is usually taken, under local anaesthesia, from the sternum (breastbone) or iliac crests (upper part of the hip-bones). Microscopic examination gives information on the development of the blood components

surrounding tissues. Radionuclide scanning detects areas throughout the skeleton in which there is high bone-cell activity. This type of scanning and on the presence of cells foreign to the marrow.

It is useful in the diagnosis of many blood disorders, including leukaemia and anaemia.

It can also show whether bone marrow has been invaded by lymphoma or cells from other tumours.... bone marrow biopsy

Brain Abscess

A collection of pus, surrounded by inflamed tissues, within the brain or on its surface. The most common sites are the frontal and temporal lobes of the cerebrum in the forebrain.

Brain abscesses may occur after a head injury, but most cases result from the spread of infection from elsewhere in the body, such as the middle ear or sinuses.

Another cause is an infection following a penetrating brain injury.

Multiple brain abscesses may occur as a result of blood-borne infection, most commonly in patients with a heart-valve infection (see endocarditis).

Symptoms include headache, drowsiness, vomiting, visual disturbances, fever, seizures, and symptoms, such as speech disturbances, that are due to local pressure.

Treatment is with antibiotic drugs and surgery.

A craniotomy may be needed to open and drain the abscess.

Untreated, brain abscesses can cause permanent damage or can be fatal.

Despite treatment, scarring can cause epilepsy in some cases.... brain abscess

Brain Damage

Degeneration or death of nerve cells and tracts within the brain that may be localized to a particular area of the brain or diffuse. Diffuse damage most commonly results from prolonged cerebral hypoxia (which may occur in a baby during a difficult birth), cardiac arrest, respiratory arrest, or causes such as poisoning or status epilepticus (prolonged convulsions). The damage may also occur gradually due to environmental pollutants such as lead or mercury compounds (see Minamata disease) or if nerve-cell poisons build up in the brain, as in untreated phenylketonuria. Other possible causes include brain infections such as encephalitis.

Localized brain damage may occur as a result of a head injury, stroke, brain tumour, or brain abscess. At birth, a raised blood level of bilirubin (in haemolytic disease of the newborn) causes local damage to the basal ganglia deep within the brain. This leads to a condition called kernicterus. Brain damage that occurs before, during, or after birth may result in cerebral palsy.

Damage to the brain may result in disabilities such as learning difficulties or disturbances of movement or speech.

Nerve cells and tracts in the brain and spinal cord cannot repair themselves once they have been damaged, but some return of function may be possible.... brain damage

Brain Failure

See brain syndrome, organic.... brain failure

Brain Haemorrhage

Bleeding within or around the brain that is caused either by injury or by spontaneous rupture of a blood vessel. There are 4 possible types of brain haemorrhage: subdural, extradural, subarachnoid, and intracerebral. Extradural and subdural haemorrhages are usually the result of a blow to the head (see head injury). Subarachnoid and intracerebral haemorrhages usually occur spontaneously due to rupture of aneurysms or small blood vessels in the brain.... brain haemorrhage

Brash, Water

See waterbrash.... brash, water

Braxton Hicks’ Contractions

Short relatively painless contractions of the uterus during pregnancy.

They may be felt in late pregnancy and are sometimes mistaken for labour pains.... braxton hicks’ contractions

Brain, Disorders Of

Defects and disorders of the brain, which may have one of numerous causes including infection, injury, brain tumour, or a lack of blood or oxygen (hypoxia). Because the brain is encased in the skull, any space-occupying tumour, brain abscess, or haematoma creates raised pressure, which impairs the function of the whole brain. Brain disorders that are localized in a small region may affect a specific function such as speech (see aphasia). More often, damage is more diffuse and the symptoms can be varied and numerous. Some brain disorders are congenital due to genetic or chromosomal disorders, as in Down’s syndrome. Structural defects that arise during the development of the fetus in the womb include hydrocephalus and anencephaly.

Reduced oxygen supply may occur at birth, causing cerebral palsy. Later in life, cerebral hypoxia can result from choking or from arrest of breathing and heartbeat. From middle age onwards, cerebrovascular disease is the most important cause of brain disorder. If an artery within the brain becomes blocked or ruptures, leading to haemorrhage, the result is a stroke. The brain may also be damaged by a blow to the head see head injury).

Infection within the brain (encephalitis) may be due to viral infection. Infection of the membranes surrounding the brain (meningitis) is generally due to bacterial infection. Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease is a rare, fatal brain disease associated with an infective agent called a prion which, in some cases, has been linked with (bovine spongiform encephalopathy), a disease in cattle.

Multiple sclerosis is a progressive disease of the brain and spinal cord. Degenerative brain diseases include Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. Emotional or behavioural disorders are generally described as psychiatric illnesses; but the distinction between neurological and psychiatric disorders is now much less clear.... brain, disorders of

Brain Imaging

Techniques that provide pictures of the brain; they are used to detect injury or disease and include X-rays, angiography, CT scanning, MRI, PET (positron emission tomography) scanning, and SPECT (single photon emission ). X-ray films can show changes in the skull caused by a fracture or, rarely, by a brain tumour or aneurysm. Angiography shows up the blood vessels in the brain, and is used to investigate subarachnoid haemorrhage, aneurysms, abnormalities of the blood vessels, and other circulatory disorders.

scanning gives images of the brain substance; it gives clear pictures of the ventricles (fluid-filled cavities) and can reveal tumours, blood clots, strokes, aneurysms, and abscesses. is especially helpful in showing tumours of the posterior fossa (back of the skull). and scanning are specialized forms of radionuclide scanning that use small amounts of radioactive material to give information about brain function as well as structure. They enable

blood flow and metabolic activity in the brain to be measured.

Ultrasound scanning is used only in premature or very young babies since ultrasound waves cannot penetrate the bones of a mature skull.... brain imaging

Breakthrough Bleeding

Bleeding or staining (“spotting”) from the vagina between periods in women taking an oral contraceptive. The bleeding is most common during the first few months of taking the pill and is caused by incomplete suppression of the endometrium.

(See also vaginal bleeding.)... breakthrough bleeding

Breast Enlargement Surgery

A type of mammoplasty.... breast enlargement surgery

Breast Pump

A device used to draw milk from the breasts in order to relieve overfull breasts during lactation, to express milk for future use, or to feed a baby who is unable to suckle.... breast pump

Bridge, Dental

False teeth that are attached to natural teeth on either side of a gap left by a missing tooth or teeth. (See also denture.)... bridge, dental

Boneset Tea: A Cure-all

Boneset tea has the reputation of a very effective “cure-all”. It is highly recommended to people looking to enhance their immunity in a natural way. Boneset Tea description Boneset is a daisy, commonly found in the eastern part of North America, on roadsides and in wet ground. It has a long, hairy stem with white flower toppings. The flowers normally bloom during July to September. The plant gained its name from its traditional use of treating dengue or breakbone fever, a viral infection causing muscle pain so intense that patients feel their bones are on the verge of breaking. The plant has therapeutic properties which can be intaken through teas, tinctures and capsules. Boneset tea is the resulting beverage from brewing the abovementioned plant. Boneset Tea brewing To make Boneset tea:
  • place two to three teaspoons of dried boneset herbs (leaves, flowers or the stem) into a cup of boiling water
  • allow the mixture to steep for about 10 to 15 minutes
Boneset Tea has a very bitter taste. Honey or lemon can be added to the tea. Boneset Tea benefits Boneset tea has been successfully used to:
  • treat colds, coughs and ailments in the upper respiratory tract
  • help in the treatment of influenza, malaria and fever
  • help relieve migraine headache
  • relieve pain from arthritis and rheumatism
  • help in the treatment of jaundice
  • fight intestinal worms
Boneset Tea side effects Boneset tea is not recommended for long-term use because high doses of this plant may cause damage to the liver or to the kidney. It is recommended not to be taken for a longer period than two weeks. Overdose may be deadly. Pregnant women and children under 6 years should not consume Boneset tea. Boneset tea is a medicinal remedy that can treat ailments of the upper respiratory tract, influenza, migraines but not only.  ... boneset tea: a cure-all

Borago Officinalis


Family: Boraginaceae.

Habitat: The Mediteranean region, Europe and Asia.

English: Borage, Cow's Tongue Plant.

Unani: Gaozabaan (Onosma bracteatum Wall. has also been equated with Gaozabaan).

Action: Fresh herb (compounded with water)—refreshing, restorative and nervine tonic. Leaves and flowers—diuretic, febrifuge, expectorant, demulcent, emollient; promote the activity of kidneys; alleviate pulmonary affections.

The drug strengthens adrenal glands and is given for stress, mental exhau- sion and depression; provides support to stomach and intestines in cases of infection and toxicity. Used as a tonic to counteract the lingering effects of steroid therapy. Seeds relieve irritable bowel syndrome and regulate menstruation.

The leaves contain lycopsamine and supindine viridiflorate as the predominant unsaturated pyrrolizidine alkaloids. Due to low concentration of these alkaloids Borage is not toxic.

The drug contains potassium and calcium, combined with mineral acids. The fresh juice affords 30%, the dried herb 3% of nitrate of potash. The stems and leaves supply much saline mucilage. These saline qualities are mainly responsible for the wholesome invigorating properties of Borage.

Borage imparts pleasant flavour and cooling effect to beverages. In India, squashes and syrups, sold during summer, contain Borage extract.

Borage contains ascorbic acid (38 mg/100 g). Flowers contain cholin, glucose, fructose, amino acids, tannin (about 3%). Seeds contain protein (20.9%) and an oil (38.3%). The seed oil is one of the important sources of gamma-linoleic acid and linoleic acid. Borage oil, combined with Evening Primrose oil, is used in hypercholes- terolaemia.

Borage seed oil is used for rheumatoid arthritis, atopic eczema, infantile seborrhoeic dermatitis, neurodermati- tis, also for PMS and for preventing heart disease and stroke. Only UPA (unsaturated pyrrolizidine alkaloids) free oil is given internally.

Listed by German Commission E among unapproved herbs.

It has been suggested that borage not be used with drugs known to lower the seizure threshold such as tricyclic an- tidepressants and phenothiazines due to GLA content (only borage seed oil contains significant amounts of GLA). (Francis Brinker.)... borago officinalis


(Norse) Strong in battle; in mythology, the wife of Sigmund Borghilde, Borghilda... borghild


(Norwegian) One who offers help Borgney, Borgni, Borgnie, Borgnee, Borgnea, Borgneah... borgny


(Japanese) As fresh as a blossom Botann, Botane, Botanne, Botana, Botanna... botan


Store that sells herbs and religious or spiritual items from Latino and Afro-Caribbean traditions, such as candles, beads, statues of saints, perfume oils, incense, fragrant sprays, baths, plant-infused water, etc. Many botánicas offer consultations (consultas) with healers, herbalists or spiritual counselors. Botánicas can also serve as community gathering place similar to a church or place of worship and celebration for Espiritismo, Santería and other religions.... botánica

Borassus Flabellifer


Family: Palmae; Arecaceae.

Habitat: Coastal areas of Bengal, Bihar and Western and Eastern Peninsula.

English: Palmyra Palm, Brab tree.

Ayurvedic: Taala, Taada, Trinraj, Mahonnata, Lekhyapatra. Siddha/Tamil: Panai, Panaimaram.

Action: Fresh sap—diuretic, cooling, antiphlegmatic, laxative, anti- inflammatory. Slightly fermented juice is given in diabetes. Palm- jaggery—used as an energy food for convalscents. Ash of dry spadix—antacid, antibilious (used in heartburn). Young root, terminal buds, leaf-stalks—used in gastritis and hiccups.

The sap is given as a tonic to asthmatic and anaemic patients. Jaggery is given for anaemia, for diseases characterized by a marked loss of potassium. Palm candy is used in coughs and pulmonary affections and as a laxative for children.

The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia ofIn- dia recommends dried male inflorescence in dysuria.

Jaggery solution may be used in hypertension and oedema due to heart and liver diseases, also as a food for typhoid patients.

The sap is an excellent source of biologically available riboflavin.

Aqueous MeOH extract of young shoots contains heat-stable toxin; edible part of young shoot, neurotoxic to rats, but not hepatotoxic.

Dosage: Dried male inflorescence— 1-3 g (API Vol. III.)... borassus flabellifer


Indian heliotrope (Heliotropium indicum).

Plant Part Used: Leaf.

Dominican Medicinal Uses: The leaves are traditionally boiled in water and taken as a tea or bath for skin conditions including rash, papules, pustules, measles and chicken pox.

Safety: This plant contains toxic pyrrolizidine alkaloids. No studies on the safety of this plant in humans have been identified in the available literature. Cases of mortality in grazing animals due to ingestion of this plant have been reported.

Clinical Data: In human clinical trials, isolated plant constituents (alkaloids) have been investigated for their anti-cancer effects.

Laboratory & Preclinical Data: The leaves have shown anti-inflammatory activity in animal studies, and the ethanolic extract has shown wound-healing effects. In vitro, plant extracts have demonstrated antitumor activity.... borraja

Borreria Articularis

(Linn. f.) F. N. Williams.

Synonym: B. hispada (L.) K. Sch. Spermacoce hispida Linn.

Family: Rubiaceae.

Habitat: Throughout India, as a weed in cultivated and sallow lands and pastures.

English: Shaggy Button Weed.

Ayurvedic: Madana-ghanti.

Siddha/Tamil: Nathaichoori.

Folk: Ghanti-chi-bhaaji (Maharashtra), Gatbhanjan, Satgathiyaa.

Action: Herb—used in the treatment of headache. Root—prescribed as a mouthwash in toothache. Leaf— juice is given as an astringent in haemorrhoids. Seeds—used as demulcent in diarrhoea and dysentery.

The weed contains beta-sitosterol, ursolic acid and D-mannitol. It is rich in calcium and phosphorus. Isorham- netin, a flavonoid, is reported in the seeds.... borreria articularis

Boswellia Serrata


Family: Burseraceae.

Habitat: The drier parts of Peninsular India.

English: Indian Frankincense, Indian Olibanum.

Ayurvedic: Shallaki, Susravaa, Gajabhakshyaa, Salai. Gum— Kunduru.

Unani: Kundur (gum).

Siddha/Tamil: Parangisambirani, Kungli.

Folk: Salai Guggul.

Action: Gum-resin—antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, antiatheroscle- rotic, emmenagogue, analgesic, sedative, hypotensive. Also used in obesity, diarrhoea, dysentery, piles, urinary disorders, scrofulous affections. Oil—used topically in chronic ulcers, ringworm.

Nonphenolic fraction of gum-resin exhibited marked sedative and analgesic effect in rats. It produced a marked and long-lasting hypotension in anaesthetized dogs.

Many derivatives of 3-keto-methyl- beta-boswellic ester, isolated from the gum-resin., have been prepared; a py- razoline derivative exhibited maximum anti-inflammatory activity. (Gum-resin is used in osteoarthri- tis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, soft tissue fibrositis and spondylitis, also for cough, bronchitis, asthma, mouth sores.)

Essential oil from gum-resin—anti- fungal.

Gum-resin contains triterpenes of oleanane, ursane and euphane series. Stem and fruit—hypoglycaemic.

Dosage: Gum-resin—1-3 g (API Vol. IV.)... boswellia serrata


A longitudinal groove in the scolex of pseudophyllidean tapeworms.... bothrium


(Norse) A commanding heroine Botild, Botilde... botilda


(Celtic) A victorious queen Boudicea, Bodiccea, Bodicea, Bodicia... boudicca


Solid instruments for introduction into natural passages in the body – in order either to apply medicaments which they contain or with which they are coated, or, more usually, to dilate a narrow part or stricture of the passage. Thus we have, for example, urethral bougies, oesophageal bougies and rectal bougies, made usually of ?exible rubber or, in the case of the urethra, of steel.... bougies


Literally “bottle”; refers to multi-herb preparations that are administered orally or topically and are often stored in bottles; typically there are four different types of botellas:

1. multi-herb decoction – made by boiling several plants (usually roots ) for a long time to make a strong brew and adding other ingredients for flavor, therapeutic effect and/or as preservatives; (see also bebedizo);

2. alcohol-based tincture – prepared by steeping a combination of plants in alcohol (usually gin, rum or wine) for several days or weeks and using the alcohol extract medicinally;

3. oil mixture – prepared by combining a number of vegetable and/or animal oils; usually administered by the spoonful; (see aceite).

4. juice mixture – prepared by combining the fresh fruit, leaf or root juice (zumo or jugo) of different plants.

The first two types of preparations are the most common ones referred to by the term botella.... botella

Bovine Spongiform

... bovine spongiform

Bow Leg

Also known as genu varum: a deformity of the legs which comprises outward curvature between knee and ankle. It may be normal in infancy, and occurs in osteoarthritis, RICKETS and other metabolic bone diseases. In early childhood it may correct with growth, but in other cases surgical correction by osteotomy or ephiphyseal stapling is possible.... bow leg


See INTESTINE.... bowels

Bowen’s Disease

An uncommon chronic localised skin disease, presenting as a solitary chronic ?xed irregular plaque mimicking eczema or psoriasis. It is a fairly benign form of CARCINOMA in situ in the EPIDERMIS but can occasionally become invasive. It is curable by CRYOTHERAPY or surgical excision.... bowen’s disease


Colloquial term used by most Australians to refer to Chironex fleckeri, but which actually includes every species of the Class Cubozoa.... box-jellyfish

Boxing Injuries

Boxing injuries rank eighth in frequency among sports injuries. According to the Report on the Medical Aspects of Boxing issued by the Committee on Boxing of the Royal College of Physicians of London in 1969, of 224 ex-professional boxers examined, 37 showed evidence of brain damage and this was disabling in


The ?rst type of damage occurs as an acute episode in which one or more severe blows leads to loss of consciousness and occasionally to death. Death in the acute phase is usually due to intracranial haemorrhage and this carries a mortality of 45 per cent even with the sophisticated surgical techniques currently available. The second type of damage develops over a much longer period and is cumulative, leading to the atrophy of the cerebral cortex and brain stem. The repair processes of the brain are very limited and even after mild concussion it may suffer a small amount of permanent structural damage. Brain-scanning techniques now enable brain damage to be detected during life, and brain damage of the type previously associated with the punch-drunk syndrome is now being detected before obvious clinical signs have developed. Evidence of cerebral atrophy has been found in relatively young boxers including amateurs and those whose careers have been considered successful. The tragedy is that brain damage can only be detected after it has occurred. Many doctors are opposed to boxing, even with the present, more stringent medical precautions taken by those responsible for running the sport. Since the Royal College’s survey in 1969, the British Medical Association and other UK medical organisations have declared their opposition to boxing on medical grounds, as have medical organisations in several other countries.

In 1998, the Dutch Health Council recommended that professional boxing should be banned unless the rules are tightened. It claimed that chronic brain damage is seen in 40–80 per cent of boxers and that one in eight amateur bouts end with a concussed participant.

There is currently no legal basis on which to ban boxing in the UK, although it has been suggested that an injured boxer might one day sue a promoter. One correspondent to the British Medical Journal in 1998 suggested that since medical cover is a legal requirement at boxing promotions, the profession should consider if its members should withdraw participation.... boxing injuries


(Slavic) Born at Christmastime Bozicah, Bozicca, Bozika, Bozicka, Bozyca, Bozyka, Bozycka, Bozi... bozica


(Hebrew) One who is blessed Brachah, Bracca, Braca, Bracka, Braka, Brakka... bracha


Making the heart beat slower... brachycardiac


Brachycephalic means short-headed and is a term applied to skulls the breadth of which is at least four-?fths of the length.... brachycephalic


The conditions in which the ?ngers or toes are abnormally short.... brachydactyly


Reduced or modified leaflets that are usually parts of flowers or an inflorescence, generally subtending or beneath the floral parts.... bracts