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Nux vomica

Nux vomica

Nux vomica is the homeopathic remedy that is created from the seeds of the strychnos nux vomica tree. This tree is an evergreen tree. Nux-vomica is from two Latin words meaning, “ a nut that causes vomiting”.

Figure: Nux vomica tree with fruits

Nux vomica

Biological source: Nux vomica is the ripe, dried seed of strychonos nux-vomica.


Family: Loganiaceae

  • Nux vomica seed

  • Kuchla ( Hindi)

  • Poison nut

  • Vomit nut

  • Bachelor’s buttons

  • Dog buttons

  • Quaker buttons

  • Semen strychnos

Figure: Nux vomica seeds

Nux vomica

Scientific classification

Kingdom Plantae – Plants

Subkingdom Tracheobionta – Vascular plants

Superdivision Spermatophyta – Seed plants

Division Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants

Class Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons

Subclass- Asteridae

Order- Gentianales

Family Loganiaceae – Logania family

Genus Strychnos L. – strychnos P

Species Strychnos nux-vomica L.

Nux vomica

Geographical source:

The plant is native to east indies and also found in the forests of


  • Sri Lanka

  • Malabar coast

  • Northern Australia and

  • India

Nux vomica

  • Branches are irregular and covered with a smooth ash-colored bark.

  • Flowers are small, greeny-white, funnel shape, in small terminal cymes and have a disagreeable smell. It blooms in the cold season.

  • Fruit size is large with a smooth hard rind or shell.

  • When the fruit is ripen, it gets a lovely orange color, filled with a soft white jelly-like pulp containing five seeds covered with a soft woolly-like substance, white and horny internally.

  • The seeds are removed when the fruits are riped, cleansed, dried and sorted. Seed is disc shaped, 10-30mm in diameter, 4-6mm thick.

Nux vomica

  • It grows well in tropical and sub tropical climate.

  • It is propagated by seeds. Seeds are sown in polythene bags during May – June.

  • Before sowing the seeds, it is soaked in water so that there sill be better germination.

  • The seeds will germinate within 20 - 25 days.

  • The seedling are planted at a distance of 6 x 6 m distance during July.

  • The tree comes to flower after about three years of planting. Flowering starts in the month of August and fruits ripen during October.

Cultivation and Collection:

Nux vomica

  • Alkaloids :1.8-5.3%

  • Loganine : As glycoside

  • Fixed oil: 3%

  • Caffeotannic acid

  • Proteins

  • Chlorgenic acid

Chemical Constituents:

  • Strychnine

  • Brucine

  • α-Colubrine

  • β-Colubrine

  • 3-methoxyicajine

  • Vomicine

  • Novacine

  • Protostrychnine

  • N-oxystrychnine

  • Isostrychnine

Nux vomica



Nux vomica

Chemical Tests:

  • Strychnine Test: A mixture of ammonium vandate and sulphuric acid on addition to strychnine or a thick section of endosperm gives purple color.

  • Potassium Dichromate Test: Addition of potassium dichromate and conc. H2SO4 with strychnine forms violet color.

  • Brucine Test: Addition of conc. HNO3 to brucine or thick section of endosperm produces yellow to orange color.

Nux vomica

How Does it work?

  • Nux vomica contains strychnine and other chemicals that affect the brain and cause muscle contractions.

  • This can lead to convulsions and death.

  • Strychnine in amounts that are too small to produce symptoms can still be a serious problem.

  • Small amounts of strychnine build up in the body with continued use, especially in people with liver disease.

  • This can cause death in a period of weeks.

  • Strychnine poisoning can be detected with laboratory tests.

Nux vomica


Mental: Does not want to be touched, Sedentary life style, Impatient.

Coughs: Dry and tickling cough, Feeling that coughs tears something loose in chest.

Influenza: Nausea, Cannot get warm, Shivering-especially after drinking.

Head: Over sensitiveness, Congestive headache, related with hemorrhoids.

Eyes: Photophobia Optic neuritis.

Female: Menses too early lasts too long ,Dysmenorrhœa & Inefficient labor-pain, Metrorrhagia.

Male: Weakness and irritability, Spermatorrhœa, with dreams; Pain in testicles, Orchitis .

Nux vomica

Medicinal Uses:

  • In atonic dyspepsia

  • as circulatory stimulant

  • as nervine

  • as sex tonic

  • as stimulant for GIT

  • improve digestion

  • increases blood presure

  • in over sensitivity & irritability

  • as anti-tumor

  • as nervous system stimulant

  • as pain reliever

  • in relieve paralysis

Nux vomica

Traditional Uses:

Nux-vomica is a common homeopathic medicine prescribed for

  • digestive problem,

  • sensitivity to cold,

  • Irritability,

  • Mental strain from over working,

  • Self indulgence,

  • Ineffectual urge to vomit.

  • Impatience.

Nux vomica

  • Most accidental poisoning

  • is by breathing in the powder

  • or by absorption through the skin.

Nux vomica

  • Taking nux vomica for more than a week, or in high amounts of 30 mg or more, can cause several problems. Like restlessness anxiety, dizziness, neck and back stiffness, spasms of jaw and neck muscles, convulsions, seizures, breathing problems, liver failure, and death.

  • Taking nux vomica can harm both mother and childduring pregnancy.

  • The strychnine in nux vomica can cause liver damage or make liver disease worse.

Nux vomica

Manufacturing of 30 mg or more, can cause

Nux vomica

Nux vomica