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Atropa belladonna

Atropa belladonna                       Common name: Deadly nightshade

Family: Solanaceae

Parts used: Herb & root

Constituents: Tropane alkaloids (up to 0.5% in leaves and roots):  hyoscyamine, atropine, scopolamine, hyoscine, belladonnine; Volatile pyridine and pyrrolidine bases; Flavonoids: scopoletin, scopolin, kaempferol and quercetin derivatives.

Medicinal actions: Narcotic, spasmolytic, anodyne, secretolytic


Pharmacology: Primarily block muscarinic acetylcholine receptors, resulting in smooth muscle relaxation, inhibition of secretion of gastrointestinal tract and elsewhere, and analgesia/

Medicinal use: Applied TOPICALLY for pain relief.

Toxicity: 10 mg due to Alkaloids (Anti-cholinergic). Do not use in large or continuous doses.  Children are especially sensitive to the toxicity of belladonna. Signs of toxicity: Dry mouth, flushing, skin hot and dry, mydriasis (pupil dilation), increased respiratory rate and volume, increased temperature in children, palpitations, increased pulse rate and blood pressure, incoordinate movements., incoherent speech, memory disturbed, disorientation, urinary urgency, difficult urination, eye pain, blurred vision, sensitivity to light, dysphagia, great thirst, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, delerium, restlessness, confusion;  later:  depressed cerebral and neural activity, stupor ,circulatory collapse, coma and death from centric respiratory paralysis.

Interactions: Potentiates effects of anticholinergic drugs.


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