Common Name   : Bans

Plant Parts Used  : The siliceous concretions on young-shrubs, Bark, Root and Flowers


The plant is erect, bending at the summit and pointed, hollow between joints, branches, alternate, thorns 2 or 3 alternate on the joints, leaves sheathing, linear, lanceolate. The plant grows quite tall and is ornamental

Characteristics and Constituents :

Vansalochanam contains silica 90% or silicon as hydrate of silicic acid, peroxide of iron, potash, lime, aiumina,vegetable matter. The grains of the plant contain water 11.0%,starch 73.1%, albuminoids 11.86%, fibre 1.7% and ash 1.2%. The young shoots containing cyanogenic glyposide arepoisonous.The glycoside is hydrolysed by an enzyme also present in the shoots when they are cut and soaked in water.

Actions and Uses :

Not much experimental work has been carried out on the plant.The young shoots contain 0.3 per cent hydrocyanic acid and are lethal to mosquito larvae. Vansalochanam is used clinically for the treatment of praincha and given in combination with other drugs, relieves burning sensation. It is also useful to children with cough and asthma. A decoction of bamboo joints is said to increase the flow of lochia after delivery. The juice of leaves'with aromatics is given in haematemesis; older and dried stems of bamboo are used as splints in fracture, young shoots of the bamboo made into poultice is an efficacious application for dislodgement of worms from ulcers of cattle, the juice is poured on the vermin and the liquid mass applied and secured by a bandage. Vansalochanam is a stimulant and a tonic used in asthma, tuberculosis, jaundice, leprosy, anaemia and other vata rogas. In combination with other astringent medicines it is also given in chronic dysentery and internal haemorrhage.Sitopaladi churna is given in tuberculosis with honey. In urinary retention vansalochanam is used with rice water and sugar. One quarter of an ounce of raw shoots or a slightly larger amount, when insufficiently cooked can cause death. The young shoots contain 0.3 per cent hydrocyanic acid. Chronic intake of cyanogenic alkaloids can lead to tropical ataxia due to neuropathy.

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