Scientific Research and Essays

  • Abbreviation: Sci. Res. Essays
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1992-2248
  • DOI: 10.5897/SRE
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 2742

Full Length Research Paper

Plants used for female reproductive health care in Oredo Local Government Area, Nigeria

Folu M. Dania Ogbe, Oyomoare L. Eruogun* and Marilyn Uwagboe
Department of Plant Biology and Biotechnology, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 20 February 2009
  •  Published: 31 March 2009



The state of maternal health in Nigeria is poor and can be attributed to inadequate access to reproductive health services, poverty and in some areas cultural resistance. Consequently, many rural people in Nigeria turn to ethno-medicinal health care systems due to accessibility, affordability, availability and an inherent trust in this method. These systems are threatened by erosion of plant diversity and ethno-medicinal knowledge, creating an urgent need for intensive docu-mentation. Therefore, this paper presents an inventory, economic valuation, an evaluation of selected wild species for domestication and a non-experimental validation for the medicinal activity of plants used in Oredo Local Government Area, Benin City, Nigeria for female reproductive health care and gynaecological conditions. A total of 27 plants belonging to 20 families used in treating 16 female reproductive health and gynaecological conditions were recorded, and their medicinal activity validated non-experimentally. With the exception of two, all the plants documented are reported in scientific literature to have chemical constituents which exhibit medicinal activity. Economic value of medicinally useful plants in the local market ranged from < $1 - » $6 per kg for fruits and leafy vegetables and < $1 per 10 g for spices. Most (92.31%) of these plants are common and abundant, indicating availability to people irrespective of level on the social scale particularly those in rural areas. Rauvolfia vomitoria and Newbouldia laevis, both wild multipurpose and locally important, with potential for industrial raw materials, can be domesticated and used to improve the livelihoods of rural communities.


Key words: Female reproductive health care, ethno-medicine, domestication, economic value.