Herbal Medicine: Current Status and the Future


The number of patients seeking alternate and herbal therapy is growing exponentially. Herbal medicines are the ‍synthesis of therapeutic experiences of generations of practicing physicians of indigenous systems of medicine for ‍over hundreds of years. Herbal medicines are now in great demand in the developing world for primary health care ‍not because they are inexpensive but also for better cultural acceptability, better compatibility with the human body ‍and minimal side effects. However, recent findings indicate that all herbal medicines may not be safe as severe ‍consequences are reported for some herbal drugs. Most herbal products on the market today have not been subjected ‍to drug approval process to demonstrate their safety and effectiveness. Thousand years of traditional use can provide ‍us with valuable guidelines to the selection, preparation and application of herbal formulation. To be accepted as ‍viable alternative to modern medicine, the same vigorous method of scientific and clinical validation must be applied ‍to prove the safety and effectiveness of a therapeutical product. In the present review we attempted to describe the ‍present scenario and project the future of herbal medicine.