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1Traditional Medicine Research  2019, Vol. 4 Issue (3): 160-172    DOI: 10.12032/TMR20190414115
Special Issue on Persian Medicine     
Application of herbal rectal suppositories beyond intestinal disorders in Persian medicine
Fatemeh Ebrahimi1, Mohammadali Torbati2, Zoleikha Khoshbakht1, Laleh Khodaie1,3,*()
1Department of Phytopharmacy, School of Traditional Medicine, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran.
2Department of Food Science and Technology, Faculty of nutrition, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, tabriz, Iran.
3Medical Philosophy and History Research Centre, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran.
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This review provides a new insights of the application of herbal rectal suppositories beyond anorectic and intestinal disorders in traditional Persian medicine, such as sciatic, lower back pain and joint aches, fever and ascites.


The first application of rectal suppositories was recorded in Egyptian civilization (3150 B.C.). Other literatres in traditional Chinese, Persian, and Ayurveda medicines showed its prevalence as a dosage form.


Background: Herbal rectal suppositories (RSs) were prescribed not only as a drug delivery system but also as a storing method in Persian medicine. According to the record of ancient references, RSs were clinically administered for diarrhea, constipation, colitis, ascites, dysentery and intestinal parasites, sciatic, lower back pain and joint aches, fever, kidney disease and as an aphrodisiac. Objectives: The aim of this study is to categorize and review different types of RSs, their main herbal components and to find evidence to elucidate their clinical administration. Results: In this study, 7 manuscripts were studied to extract and categorize 11 types of herbal rectal suppositorie (RS) formulations, their ingredients and therapeutic indications. Furthermore, the Persian and scientific names of 43 herbs and their temperaments were mentioned in this study. Hence, ancient therapeutic indications of herbs used in RS formulations as well as their proven effects have been studied, which makes it possible to compare ancient and proven indications of medicinal plants used as ingredients of RSs. Conclusions: In modern medicine, RSs are mostly used for anorectic disorders. However in traditional Persian medicine, they were commonly used not only for anorectic and intestinal diseases, but also as an aphrodisiac, an agent for healing joint, sciatic pain and lumbago, an anti-fever, and an anti-ascites. Other implications of this study could be producing new insights of utilizing herbal RSs in diseases and disorders beyond anorectic and intestinal disorders.

Key wordsRectal suppositories      Traditional medicine      Herbs      Medicinal plants      Persia     
Published: 04 May 2019
Corresponding Authors: Khodaie Laleh     E-mail:
Cite this article:

Fatemeh Ebrahimi, Mohammadali Torbati, Zoleikha Khoshbakht, Laleh Khodaie. Application of herbal rectal suppositories beyond intestinal disorders in Persian medicine. 1Traditional Medicine Research, 2019, 4(3): 160-172. doi: 10.12032/TMR20190414115

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No Name Author Date
1 Qarabadin-e-azam Hakim Azamkhan 1853 A.D.
2 Qarabadin-e-ghaderi Ahmadshah Arzani 1714 A.D.
3 Qarabadin-e-kabir Seyyed Mohammad Hossein Aghili Khorasani Shirazi 1772 A.D.
4 Qarabadin-e-salehi Mohammad Saleh Ghaeni Heravi 1766 A.D.
5 Tohfat-ol-momenin Mohammad Momen Tonecabeni 1460 A.D.
6 Makhzan-ol-advieh Seyyed Mohammad Hossein Aghili Khorasani Shirazi 1772 A.D.
Table 1 Related pharmaceutical manuscripts in Persian medicine
NO Name Active ingredients (amood) Indications
1 Shyaf -e afyon Papaver somniferum L., Boswellia carterii Birdw., Crucus sativus L., Acacia nilotica (L.) Delile., Lycium L. Anti-dysentery
2 Shyaf -e khiar shanbar Viola odorata L., Althae officinalis L., Cassia senna L., salt, Honey, Cassia fistula L., Saccharum officinarum L. Relieving colitis
3 Shyaf-e tagviate baah Ferula Assa foetida L., Euphorbia helioscopia L. Aphrodisiac
4 Shyaf -e layeneh Althae officinalis L., Saccharum officinarum L., Borax. Laxative
5 Shyaf -e momsek Acacia nilotica Del., Punica granatum L., Quercus infectoria oliv., Aqueous extract of Myrtus communis L., Zea mays L., Tamarix dioica Roth. Anti-diarrhea
6 Shyaf -e saboon Soap, Decoction of Ipomoea turpethum L., Rosa damascena oil. Laxative
7 Shyaf -e ergonnesa Colchicum L., Borax, Citrullus colocynthis (L.) Schrad., Convolvulus scammonia L., Sacharrum officinarum L. Relieving sciatic pain
8 Shyaf -e bavasir Aloe vera L., Peganum harmala L., Commiphora myrrha (Nees) Engl., Hedera helix L. extract. Anti-hemorrhoids
9 Shyaf -e tab Viola odorata L., salt, Althae officinalis L., Sacharrum officinarum L., Honey, Cassia fistula L. Anti-fever, laxative
10 Shyaf-e estesgaye tabli Ruta graveolens L., Peganum harmala L., Ipomoea turpethum L., Apium graveolens L., Sacharrum officinarum L., Pimpinella anisum L., Borax. Anti-ascites
11 Shyaf -e kerm kosh Citrullus colocynthis (L.) Schrad., Artemisia absinthium L., Olive oil, Loranthus europaeus Jacq., Tar. Anthelmintic
Table 2 Some RSs formulations derived from Persian medicine
No. Persian name Scientific name Temperament Used part Ethno medicinal indications Approved indications
1 Anzaroot Astragalus fasciculifolius Boiss Hot and dry Gum-resin Healing wound Healing wound [45]
2 Oshogg Dorema ammoniacum D.Don Hot and dry Oleo-gum-resin Healing sciatic, joint pains and lumbago, anthelmintic effect -
3 Barzad (Barijeh) Ferula gummosa Boiss Hot and dry Gum-resin Anti-hemorrhoids, healing wound, relieving lumbago Anti-inflammatory effect [54]
4 Zanjabil Zingiber officinale Roscoe Hot and dry Rhizome Relieving flatulent colic, sciatic and joint pains, anthelmintic and aphrodisiac effects Relieving rheumatoid arthritis, anti-inflammation, relieving intestinal spasms, laxative and anthelmintic effects, increasing sperm percent and serum total testosterone [27]
5 Karafs Apium graveolense L. Hot and dry Seed Carminative and laxative effects, healing sciatic pains and lumbago Anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects [63]
6 Zaranbad Zingiber zerumbet (L.) smith Hot and dry Root Healing cold pains, aphrodisiac effect Anti-inflammatory effect and pain-mediated diseases [55]
7 So’d (Oyar salam) Cyperus longus L. Hot and dry Root Anti-hemorrhoids, aphrodisiac effect -
8 Farfioun Euphorbia helioscopia L. Hot and dry Gum Anthelminthic effect, relieving colic, sciatic, joint pain and lumbago Anthelmintic effect [28]
9 Caphour Cinnamomum camphora L. Cold and dry Wood Anti-fever -
10 Panirak (khobbazi) Malva rotundifolia L. Cold and wet Aerial parts Anti-dysentery, laxative effect -
11 Holbeh Trigonella foenum-graecum L. Hot and dry Seeds and leaves Relieving lumbago, anti-ascites, laxative and aphrodisiac effects Enhancing testosterone level and sexual function [46, 47], anti-inflammatory and anti-arthritic effects [33, 56]
12 Katan (Bazrak) Linum usitatissimum L. Cold and dry Seed Anti-hemorrhoids, relieving sciatic and joint pains Anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects, anti- diarrhea and anti-constipation [32]
13 Kherva (Karchak) Ricinus communis L. Hot and dry Seed Laxative effect, relieving colic, lumbago and anti-ascites Antiulcer and anti-inflammation, healing wound [58]
14 Irsa Iris pseudoacorus L. Hot and dry Rhizomes Anti-hemorrhoids, relieving sciatic pains, anti-ascites, laxative effect -
15 Afsantin Artemisia absinthium L. Hot and dry Root Anthelmintic effect, relieving obstructive colic, anti-hemorrhoids, healing joint pains Anti-inflammatory effect [59] anti-parasites [30]
16 Shooniz Nigella sativa L. Hot and dry Seed Relieving flatulent colic, anti-hemorrhoids, healing joint pains, anthelmintic effect Anti-inflammatory, analgesic and anti-parasitic actions [34]
17 Zenian (Nankhah) Trachyspermum ammi (L.) Sprague Hot and dry Seed Relieving flatulent colic, anthelminthic and aphrodisiac effects, anti-ascites Antispasmodic activity, anti-inflammatory, nematicidal and anthelmintic activities [29]
18 Sabr Aloe vera L. Hot and dry Latex Anthelmintic and laxative effects Laxative effect [65]
19 Khiar chanbar Cassia fistula L. Hot and wet Fruit Relieving obstructive colic, laxative effect Laxative effect [67]
20 Golnar Punica granatum L. Cold and dry Flowers Anti-diarrhea -
21 Kondor Boswellia sacra Flueck. Hot and dry Gum-resin Anti-dysentery, healing wounds, anti-hemorrhoids and anti-diarrhea Analgesic effect [35]
22 Gall (Mazoo) Quercus spp Cold and dry Fruit & Gall Anti-hemorrhoids, anti-diarrhea Anti-inflammatory [36]
23 Halileh Terminalia chebula L. Cold and dry Fruit Anti-ascites, anti-hemorrhoids, anti-diarrhea Anti-diarrheal and anti-inflammatory [37, 38, 50]
24 Balileh Terminalia bellerica L. Cold and dry Fruit Anti-diarrhea Anti-diarrhea [51]
25 Amoleh Phylantus emblica L. Cold and dry Fruit Aphrodisiac, anti-hemorrhoids, anti-diarrhea Anti-diarrhea, anti-dysentery, anti-inflammatory [39]
26 Khatmi Althaea officinalis L. Cold and wet Flowers Anti-fever, relieving obstructive colic, laxative -
27 Za’faran Crocus sativus L. Hot and dry Flowers Anti-dysentery, relieving obstructive colic, wound healing activity Relaxant activity [49]
28 Sorenjan Colchicum L. Hot and dry Root Relieving flatulent colic, sciatic & joint pain Anti-arthritic [60]
29 Heltit (Anghouzeh) Ferula asa foetida L. Hot and dry Oleo-gum-resin Carminative, anthelmintic and aphrodisiac effects, anti-hemorrhoids Antispasmodic, anthelmintic, anti-ulcerogenic, and antiinflammatory activities[31]
30 Banafsheh Viola odorata L. Cold and wet Aerial parts Anti-fever, relieving obstructive colic -
31 Faniz Sacharrum officinarum L. Hot and wet Stem extract Purgative, aphrodisiac effect -
32 Hanzal Citrullus colocynthis (L.) Schrad. Hot and dry Fruit & Seed Anthelmintic and purgative effects, relieving flatulent colic, sciatic and joint pains, anti-hemorrhoids Purgative activity and anti-ulcer[43]
33 Afyoun Papaver somniferum L. Cold and dry Latex Anti-dysentery, obstructive colic, anti-diarrhea Analgesic, anti-diarrhea, anti- dysentery [40, 52, 53]
34 Moord Myrtus communis L. Cold and dry Fruit Anti-diarrhea, anti-hemorrhoids Anti-inflammatory, analgesic and anti-parasitic effects [41]
35 Morr-e-makkii Commiphora myrrha (Nees) Engl. Hot and dry Oleo-gum-resin Relieving obstructive colic, anti-dysentery, wound healing -
36 Barhangh Plantago major L. Cold and dry Seeds and Leaves Anti-hemorrhoids, anti- dysentery and anti-diarrhea Anti-ulcerogenic, Anti-inflammatory and analgesic activity [42]
37 Shaghaghol Polygonatum orientale Desf. Hot and dry Rhizome Relieving sciatic and joint pain -
38 Moghl Commiphora mukul Engl. Hot and dry Oleo-gum resin Relieving sciatic and joint pain, carminative effect Anti-Inflammatory [62]
39 sakbinaj Ferula persica Willd. Hot and dry Gum-resin Anti-dysentery, flatulent colic, sciatic and joint pain Anti-inflammatory [64]
40 Senna Senna alexandrina Mill. Hot and dry Leaves and fruits Relieving obstructive colic and laxative effect Laxative effect[66]
41 Saghmunia Convolvulus scammonia L. Hot and dry Oleo gum resin Relieving flatulent colic and sciatic pain, purgative -
42 Aghargharha Anacyclus pyrethrum (L.) Lag. Hot and dry Roots Relieving sciatic and joint pain, aphrodisiac effect Improving male fertility by inducing spermatogenesis [48]
43 Samgh e arabi Acacia nilotica (L.) Delile Hot and dry Gum Anti-dysentery, healing wound, anti-hemorrhoids, anti-diarrhea Wound dressing material for bleeding and profusely exuding wounds [42]
Table 3 Commonly used medicinal plants in RSs formulations with their Persian and scientific names, temperaments, used parts, ethno medicinal and approved indications
Figure 1 The usage percent of herbs as RS ingredients for each ailment

RS, Rectal suppositorie.

Figure 2 The percent of the temperaments of the herbs as RS ingredients

RS, Rectal suppositorie.

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doi: 10.1016/S0254-6272(14)60070-4 pmid: 24783925
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