Gelsemium; Uses, Dosage, Site Effects, Interactions

Gelsemium; Uses, Dosage, Site Effects, Interactions

Gelsemium sempervirens (Loganaceae) is described as a remedy for a variety of neurological and behavioral symptoms including general prostration, drowsiness, tiredness, mental apathy, lack of muscular coordination and discomfort when confronted with novelty or unfamiliar situations; these symptoms are alleviated by motion and aggravated by emotion and excitement []. However, there have been only a few experimental studies supporting this assertion []. Therefore, there is scope for testing this compound in homeopathic dilutions on validated behavioral models of emotional state and anxiety. G. sempervirens is a twining vine native to warm temperate and tropical America, from Guatemala north to the southeastern USA. All parts of this plant contain the toxic strychnine-related alkaloids gelsemine, gelseminine and sempervirine []. Neurological signs characterized by marked progressive weakness and convulsions culminating in death have been observed in goats after ingestion of Gsempervirens and ensuing toxicosis []. At pharmacological doses, Gsempervirens has been reported to show sedative, analgesic and anti-seizure properties []. In an early report [], ultra-low doses of Gsempervirens in mice were found to counter the behavioral effects of the anxiogenic compound RO 15-3505 (inverse agonist of benzodiazepines). More recently, Bousta et al. report that in some but not all experimental conditions, homeopathic dilutions of Gsempervirens reduce stress-induced behavioral alterations of mice in the staircase and light-dark (LD) tests []. However, these results consist of reversing the effects of severe stress (conditioned paradigm), and the findings vary widely depending on the dose administered and test performed.


Gelsemium sempervirens has been included in a number of herbal and homeopathic formulations, which are in clinical use for the treatment of various ailments. Mother tinctures of the plant are available in the Indian market and are frequently used for the treatment of CNS disorders, but no pharmacological work supports its efficacy in CNS disorders. Keeping in view the traditional, alternative and complementary medicinal uses, and frequency of use in homeopathic formulations, G. sempervirens seems to hold great potential for an in-depth investigation on various biological activities, especially its effect on the central nervous systems.

Uses/ Indications of Gelsemium

  • Anterior crural neuralgia
  • Aphonia
  • Astigmatism
  • Brain, affections of
  • Cerebrospinal meningitis
  • Choroiditis
  • Colds
  • Constipation.
  • Convulsions
  • Deafness
  • Dengue fever
  • Diarrhea
  • Diphtheria
  • Dysentery
  • Dementia
  • Epilepsy.Gonorrhea
  • A headache
  • Influenza
  • Jaundice
  • Locomotor ataxia.
  • Meningitis
  • Menstruation, painful, suppressed
  • Metrorrhagia
  • Myalgia
  • Neuralgia
  • Nystagmus
  • Paralysis agitans
  • Paraplegia
  • Ptosis
  • Rheumatism.
  • Teething
  • A toothache
  • Tremors
  • Vertigo
  • Writers’ cramp.
  • Mind –Desire to be quiet, to be left alone. Dullness, languor, listless. “Discernings are lethargic. ” Apathy regarding his illness. Absolute lack of fear. Delirious on falling to sleep. Emotional excitement, fear, etc, lead to bodily ailments. Bad effects from fright, fear, exciting news. Stage fright. The child starts and grasps the nurse, and screams as if afraid of falling (Bor).
  • Head – Vertigo, spreading from occiput. Heaviness of head; band-feeling around and occipital headache. Dull, heavy ache, with the heaviness of eyelids; bruised sensation; better, compression and lying with head high. Pain in the temple, extending into ear and wing of the nose, chin. A headache, with muscular soreness of neck and shoulders. A headache preceded by blindness; better, profuse urination. Scalp sore to touch. Delirious on falling asleep. Wants to have head raised on a pillow.
  • Eyes – Ptosis; eyelids heavy; the patient can hardly open them. Double vision. Disturbed muscular apparatus. Corrects blurring and discomfort in eyes even after accurately adjusted glasses. Vision blurred, smoky. Dim-sighted; pupils dilated and insensible to light. Orbital neuralgia, with contraction and twitching of muscles. Bruised pain back of the orbits. One pupil dilated, the other contracted. Deep inflammations, with the haziness of vitreous. Serous inflammations. Albuminuric retinitis. Detached retina, glaucoma, and descemetitis. Hysterical amblyopia.
  • Nose – Sneezing; fullness at root of nose. Dryness of nasal fossæ. Swelling of turbinates. Watery, excoriating discharge. Acute coryza, with a dull headache and fever.
  • Face – Hot heavy, flushed, besotted-looking (Bapt; Op). Neuralgia of the face. The dusky hue of the face, with vertigo and dim vision. Facial muscles contracted, especially around the mouth. Chin quivers. Lower jaw dropped.
  • Mouth – Putrid taste and breath. Tongue numb, thick, coated, yellowish, tremble, paralyzed.
  • Throat – Difficult swallowing, especially of warm food. Itching and tickling in soft palate and nasopharynx. Pain in sternocleidomastoid, back of parotid. Tonsils are swollen. Throat feels rough, burning. Post-diphtheritic paralysis. Tonsillitis; shooting pain into the ear. Feeling of a lump in the throat that cannot be swallowed. Aphonia. Swallowing causes pain in the ear (Hep; Nux). Difficult swallowing. Pain from throat to ear.
  • Stomach – As a rule, the Gelsemium patient has no thirst. Hiccough; worse in the evening. The sensation of emptiness and weakness at the pit of the stomach, or of an oppression, like a heavy load.
  • Stool – Diarrhœa from emotional excitement, fright, bad news (Phos ac). Stool painless or involuntary. Cream-colored (Calc), tea-green. Partial paralysis of rectum and sphincter.
  • Urine – Profuse, clear, watery, with chilliness and tremulousness. Dysuria. Partial paralysis of the bladder; flow intermittent (Clematis). Retention.
  • Female – Rigid os (Bell). Vaginismus. False labor-pains; pains pass up back. Dysmenorrhœa, with the scanty flow; menses retarded. Pain extends to back and hips. Aphonia and sore throat during menses. Sensation as if uterus were squeezed (Cham; Nux v; Ustilago).
  • Male – Spermatorrhœa, without erections. Genitals cold and relaxed (Phos ac). Scrotum continually sweating. Gonorrhœa, first stage; discharge scanty; tendency to corrode; little pain, but much heat; smarting at meatus.
  • Respiratory – Slowness of breathing, with great prostration. Oppression about the chest. A dry cough, with a sore chest and fluent coryza. Spasm of the glottis. Aphonia; acute bronchitis, respiration quickened, spasmodic affections of lungs and diaphragm.
  • Heart – A feeling as if it were necessary to keep in motion, or else heart’s action would cease. Slow pulse (Dig; Kalm; Apoc; Can). Palpitation; pulse soft, weak, full and flowing. Pulse slow when quiet, but greatly accelerated on the motion. Weak, slow pulse of old age.
  • Back – Dull, heavy pain. Complete relaxation of the whole muscular system. Languor; muscles feel bruised. Every little exertion causes fatigue. Pain in the neck, especially upper sternocleido muscles. Dull aching in the lumbar and sacral region, passing upward. Pain in muscles of back, hips, and lower extremities, mostly deep-seated.
  • Extremities – Loss of power of muscular control. Cramp in muscles of the forearm. Professional neuroses. Writer’s cramp. Excessive trembling and weakness of all limbs. Hysteric convulsions. Fatigue after slight exercise.
  • Sleep – Cannot get fully to sleep. Delirious on falling asleep. Insomnia from exhaustion; from uncontrollable thinking; tobacco. Yawning. Sleepless from nervous irritation (Coffea).
  • Fever – Wants to be held, because he shakes so. Pulse slow, full, soft, compressible. Chilliness up and down back. Heat and sweat stages, long and exhausting. Dumb-ague, with much muscular soreness, great prostration, and violent headache. Nervous chills. Bilious remittent fever, with stupor, dizziness, faintness; thirstless, prostrated. Chill, without thirst, along spine; wave-like, extending upward from sacrum to occiput.
  • Skin – Hot, dry, itching, measle-like eruption. Erysipelas. Measles, catarrhal symptoms; aids in bringing out an eruption. Retrocedent, with livid spots. Scarlet fever with stupor and flushed face.
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Dosage of Gelsemium

  • Homeopathic remedies should always be taken on a clean palate, at least 15-30 minutes before or after eating or drinking.
  • Never handle homeopathic remedies directly as this may reduce their effectiveness.
  • Ensure that your mouth is free from strongly flavored substances such as coffee, tobacco, and mint.
  • Adults – take 2 tablets, to be sucked or chewed. Unless otherwise directed: take 1 dose every 2 hours for the first 6 doses. Thereafter take 1 dose when required.
  • Children – take 1 tablet, to be sucked or chewed. Unless otherwise directed: take 1 dose every 2 hours for the first 6 doses. Thereafter take 1 dose when required.
  • Stop with improvement.




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