It is a toxic herb mainly in unskilled hands, with a pharmacological activity, as we shall see. Regarding its morphology, is an herb, mostly hairless, with short thick strain; casts a relatively long stems, with numerous rosette leaves at the base. The flowers are a bouquet prolonged terminal.
One grows in very sandy, with little lime and sufficient moisture. More easily where it can be found is in Galicia, as well as throughout the Portuguese coast. You can also find it in inland areas, although there is more scarce.
Flowers during the seasons of spring and summer. From the medical point of view mainly interested in the flowering tops of which we have from April through September. These flowers are composed of a small calyx divided into five segments and a corolla that is inserted on the calyx, tubular shape and color of blue, split into two unequal lips.
The main component of this plant and where its pharmacological interest is lobeline, an alkaloid with high activity and no less toxicity if used improperly. This alkaloid increases the frequency and strength of the heartbeat, increases the dilation of the coronary arteries, decreases bowel peristalsis, increasing its tone, triggers the release of the reserves of glucose from the liver, inhibits the secretion of bile, reduces the elimination of urine and increases blood pressure. By stimulating the central nervous system, causes an intense dilatation of the bronchi. All these effects are produced intensively, so it should not be used otherwise than under strict medical supervision. It is a highly toxic plant: its lethal dose is estimated at just over three grams. Intoxication begins with vomiting, diarrhea, reduced blood pressure, tachycardia, and then slow down, after the overall functioning of the whole body-stupor, convulsions and death by stopping the respiratory system.
When used in control, is indicated in various respiratory system disorders such as asthma, chronic bronchitis, emphysema and respiratory failure in general. It has long been first used as an adjunct in the cessation of snuff, but the successes have been limited and today is virtually obsolete. Another warning is usually done is to not use the plant as such but the alkaloids, as there are huge variations in the composition depending on its origin, resulting in a difficulty to adjust the dose if the tops are used .
Due to its high toxicity its use is strictly reserved for medical personnel, so that is not transcribed in any form of administration. Besides lobeline, an alkaloid containing caustic irritant of mucous membranes, so its use is completely contraindicated home.
HABITAT: Atlantic Land without lime and wet
FLOWERING: Spring and summer
PART USED: Sumidad florida
Balsamic Strong, Fort Expectorant, Bronchodilator Moderate.
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