Highlander snake – girchak snake (veterinary practice)

Name: Highlander serpent – hіrchak serpent (veterinary practice)

Highlander snake – polygonum bistorta l.


Popular names: serpentine, cancer necks, gourd, ovary root, heart grass.

Botanical characteristic. Buckwheat family. Perennial herbaceous plant. The rhizome is thick, serpentine-curved, with numerous roots extending from it. The stem is knotty, unbranched, with basal leaves, 30-100 cm high. The leaves are alternate, petiolate, glaucous below, dark green above. The flowers are small pink, collected at the top of the stem in a large cylindrical dense spike-shaped inflorescence. The fruit is a trihedral nut. Blossoms in June – July (color table III – 2).

Spreading. Grows in floodplain damp meadows, along rivers, along swampy lake shores, damp shrubby meadows, in sparse damp spruce forests from the Far North to the steppe zone in the European part of the USSR and Western Siberia. A lot of plants in the Urals. The main harvesting sites are the Ukrainian SSR, the Byelorussian SSR, the Irkutsk, Sverdlovsk, Perm and Vologda regions.

Species also grow: meat-red mountaineer (widely represented in the flora of the Caucasus), beautiful mountaineer (grows in Central Asia), elliptical mountaineer (common in the Far North, Eastern Siberia, the Far East) and Regel mountaineer (grows in the Far East) . All of them, apparently, are used and harvested, like the snake mountaineer.

Medicinal raw materials. Medicinal properties have rhizomes, which are harvested in the fall after the flowering of the plant by digging them with an ordinary shovel. Then they are cleaned of stems, leaves and small roots, washed in cold water, cut into pieces up to 10 cm long and dried in the shade in the open air or in well-ventilated rooms. Lay out the rhizomes in a thin layer and often turn over. Raw materials are stored for 2 years in a dry place in bags or boxes.

Chemical composition. Plant rhizomes contain up to 25% tannins, starch, proteins, gallic acid, ellagic acid, provitamin A and other substances.

pharmacological properties. Serpentine preparations are non-toxic, due to the presence of tannins, they have an astringent property. The latter develops slowly as the active substances are broken down under the influence of digestive juices. An extract or decoction of the rhizome mixed with alder cones, cinquefoil, burnet or horse sorrel is part of the gastric astringents. Gallic acid, found in the roots, has an antimicrobial effect against Escherichia coli and Proteus. These microorganisms in toxic dyspepsia and dysentery aggravate the ulcerative process. Consequently, gallic acid in these cases has medicinal properties (Chervyakov).

Application. Highlander is recommended for disorders of the gastrointestinal tract, peptic ulcers of the stomach and duodenum, gastric bleeding and other diseases, externally for washing the mouth with inflammation of the mucous membrane. In veterinary practice, a decoction of a mountaineer (1:10) is used as an astringent and hemostatic agent for inflammation and bleeding in the gastrointestinal tract, for alimentary dyspepsia, externally for inflammation of the mucous membranes of the mouth and nasopharynx. Doses inside:horses and cattle 30-80 g, sheep and pigs 10-20, dogs 2-5, foxes and arctic foxes 0.5-1.5, chickens 0.3-1.5 g 3 times a day. The industry produces a liquid extract. It is used orally for the same indications as the rhizome: dogs 1-3 g, lambs and piglets 0.2-0.6, chickens 0.2-0.5 g.


Rp.: Decocti rhizomatis Bistortae 40.0—400.0 Ichthyol 10.0

MDS Inside, one glass in the morning and in the evening (for gastroenteritis).

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