Datura Stramonium; Uses/ Indications, Dosage, Side Effects

Datura stramonium
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Datura stramonium (D. stramonium) is one of the widely well-known folklore medicinal herbs. The troublesome weed, D. stramonium is a plant with both poisonous and medicinal properties and has been proven to have great pharmacological potential with a great utility and usage in folklore medicine. D. stromonium has been scientifically proven to contain alkaloids, tannins, carbohydrates, and proteins. This plant has contributed various pharmacological actions in the scientific field of Indian systems of medicines like analgesic and antiasthmatic activities. The present paper presents an exclusive review work on the ethnomedical, phytochemical, pharmacological activities of this plant.[rx]

Datura stramonium is known by the English names jimsonweed (jimson weed) or devil's snare, is a plant in the nightshade family. It is believed to have originated in Mexico,[rx] but has now become naturalized in many other regions.[rx][rx][rx] Other common names for D. stramonium include thornapple and moonflower,[rx] and it has the Spanish name toloache.[rx] Other names for the plant include hell's bells, devil's trumpet, devil's weed, tolguacha, Jamestown weed, stinkweed, locoweed, pricklyburr, false castor oil plant,[rx] devil's cucumber,[rx] and thornapple.[rx]

Uses/ Indications of Datura Stramonium

Traditional Medicine

  • In Ayurveda, datura has long been used for asthma symptoms. The active agent is atropine. The leaves are generally smoked either in a cigarette or a pipe. During the late 18th century, James Anderson, the English Physician General of the East India Company, learned of the practice and popularized it in Europe.[rx][rx]
  • The Zuni people once used datura as an analgesic to render patients unconscious while broken bones were set.[rx] The Chinese also used it as a form of anesthesia during surgery.[rx]
  • It is a very powerful remedy in various convulsive and spasmodic disorders, epilepsy and mania," and was also "found to give ease in external inflammations and hemorrhoids."[rx]
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Antiasthmatic activity

  • D. stramonium in asthma treatment and possible effects on prenatal development was studied. Exposure of the fetus to D. stramonium when a mother uses it for asthma will cause a continuous release of acetylcholine, resulting in the desensitization of nicotinic receptors, this could ultimately result in permanent damage to the fetus. Therefore we conclude that this African herbal remedy should be used with caution during pregnancy.

Anticholinergic activity

  • The alkaloids found in D. stramonium, are organic esters used clinically as anticholinergic agents. Jimson weed has been reported as a drug of abuse and has been involved in the accidental poisoning of humans and animals.
  • Symptoms of acute jimson weed poisoning included dryness of the mouth and extreme thirst, dryness of the skin, pupil dilation and impaired vision, urinary retention, rapid heartbeat, confusion, restlessness, hallucinations, and loss of consciousness. The anticholinergic syndrome results from the inhibition of central and peripheral muscarinic neurotransmission.

Acaricidal, repellent and oviposition deterrent properties

  • The ethanol extracts obtained from both leaf and seed in D. stramonium (Solanaceae) were investigated for acaricidal, repellent and oviposition deterrent properties against adult two-spotted spider mites (T. urticaeKoch) (Acari: Tetranychidae) under laboratory conditions.
  • Leaf and seed extracts, which were applied in 167.25 and 145.75 g/L concentrations, respectively (using a Petri leaf disc-spray tower method), caused 98% and 25% mortality among spider mite adults after 48 h. These results suggest that D. stramonium extracts could be used to manage the two-spotted spider mite.

Antimicrobial Activity

  • The methanol extracts of D. stramonium and Datura inoxia showed activity against Gram-positive bacteria in a dose-dependent manner. Little or no antimicrobial activity was found against Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
  • The anti-microbial activity of combined crude ethanolic extract of D. stramoniumTerminalia arjuna and Withania somnifera in cup plate diffusion method for antibacterial and antifungal activity.
  • The extracts were subjected to screening to detect potential antimicrobial activity against Staphylococcus aureus, Bacillus subtilus, Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumonia, Micrococcus luteus and Candida albicans with comparing Ciprofloxacin standard drug.
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Anticancer activity

  • An integrated approach is needed to manage cancer using the growing body of knowledge gained through scientific developments. Thousands of herbal and traditional compounds are being screened worldwide to validate their use as anti-cancerous drugs. D. stramonium is n therapeutic dose of 0.05-0.10 g was used to cure cancer. Likely unsafe produce vomiting, hypertension, loss of consciousness may lead to coma but may interact with anticholinergic drugs.

Antiinflammatory activity

  • Coriandrum sativum (C. sativum), D. stramonium and Azadirachta indica (A. indicia) are traditionally used in the treatment of inflammation. Ethanolic extracts of fruits of C. sativum, leaves of D. stramonium. Ethanolic extracts of fruits of C. sativum, leaves of D. stramonium and A. indica were subjected to preliminary screening for anti-inflammatory activity in albino rats.
  • All ethanolic extracts exhibited significant anti-inflammatory activity comparable to the standard drug diclofenac sodium against carrageenan-induced rat paw edema method. Among these plant, A. indica showed maximum anti-inflammatory activity per hour.

Larvicidal and mosquito repellent activities

  • Ethanolic extracts of leaves of D. stramonium were evaluated for larvicidal and mosquito repellent activities against Aedes aegypti, Anopheles stephensi and Culex quinquefasciatus. The LD50 values for larvicidal activity were found to be 86.25, 16.07 and 6.25 mg/L against Aedes aegypti
  • Anopheles Stephens and Culex quinquefasciatus respectively. The ethanolic leaves extract of D. stramonium provided complete protection time (mosquito repellency) of 2.7, 71.7 and 117.7 min against Aedes aegypti, Anopheles stephensi and Culex quinquefasciatus at higher concentration (1%).

 Pesticide toxicity

  • Extract of D. stramonium was effective in countering the toxicity of the cypermethrin pesticide toxicity.

Antifungal activity

  • Antifungal activity of a concoction brewed from D. stramonium, Calotropis gigantea, A. indica (neem) and cow manure (T1) followed by methanol-water (70/30 v/v) extracts of D. stramonium, Calotropis giganteaand A. indica T2 against Fusarium mangiferae.
  • The study proved that the concoction-brewed compost T1 is effective, inexpensive, easy to prepare and constitutes a sustainable and eco-friendly approach to control floral malformation in mango when it is sprayed at bud break stage and again at fruit set stage.
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Vibriocidal activity

  • A simple in vitro screening assay was employed for the standard strain of Vibrio cholerae, 12 isolates of Vibrio cholerae non-O1, and Vibrio parahaemolyticus. Aqueous and organic solvent extracts of different parts of the plants were investigated by using the disk diffusion method.
  • Extracts from 16 medicinal plants were selected on account of the reported traditional uses for the treatment of cholera and gastrointestinal diseases, and they were assayed for vibriocidal activities. The results indicated that Lawsonia inermisSaraca indica, Syzygium cumini, Terminalia belerica, Allium sativum, and D. stramonium served as broad-spectrum vibriocidal agents.


  • Aphasia.
  • Apoplexy.
  • Burns
  • Delirium tremens
  • Diaphragmitis
  • Epilepsy
  • Erotomania
  • Headache
  • Hiccough
  • Hydrophobia.
  • Hysteria.
  • Meningitis.
  • Nymphomania
  • Sunstroke
  • Tetanus
  • Thirst
  • Tremors

Dosage of Datura Stramonium

  • Adults- Take 4 or 6 Tablets by mouth, three times daily or as suggested by physician.
  • Children 2 years and older- take 1/2 the adult dose.


Datura stramonium

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