Evidences of usage of Rhinoceros horn in Siddha Medicine for Asthma

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The Indian Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis) is also called Greater One-horned Rhinoceros and Asian One-horned Rhinoceros and belongs to the Rhinocerotidae family. Listed as a vulnerable species, the large mammal is primarily found in parts of north-eastern India and in protected areas in the Terai of Nepal, where populations are confined to the riverine grasslands in the foothills of the Himalayas. Weighing between 2260 kg and 3000 kg, it is the fourth largest land animal and has a single horn, which measures 20 to 57 cm (7.9 to 22 in) in length.

The Indian rhinoceros once ranged throughout the entire stretch of the Indo-Gangetic Plain but excessive hunting reduced their natural habitat drastically. Today, about 3,000 rhinos live in the wild, 2,000 of which are found in India's Assam alone.

One-horned rhinos once ranged across the entire northern part of the Indian subcontinent, along the Indus, Ganges and Brahmaputra River basins, from Pakistan to the Indian-Burmese border, including parts of Nepal, Bangladesh and Bhutan. They may have also existed in Myanmar, southern China and Indochina.They prefer the alluvial plain grasslands of the Terai and Brahmaputra basin.As a result of habitat destruction and climatic changes their range has gradually been reduced so that by the 19th century, they only survived in the Terai grasslands of southern Nepal, northern Uttar Pradesh, northern Bihar, northern Bengal, and in the Brahmaputra Valley of Assam.
Today, their range has further shrunk to a few pockets in southern Nepal, northern Bengal and the Brahmaputra Valley. In the 1980s, rhinos were frequently seen in the narrow plain area of Royal Manas National Park in Bhutan. Today, they are restricted to habitats surrounded by human-dominated landscapes, so that they often occur in adjacent cultivated areas, pastures, and secondary forests.
Rhinos are regionally extinct in Pakistan.

The modern scientific designation Rhinoceros unicornis is adopted from the Greek: ρινό- ("rhino-" — a certain nasal condition) and -κερος ("-keros" — horn of an animal) and Latin: "uni-" meaning single and "-cornis" meaning horn. This rhinoceros is monotypic, meaning there are no distinct subspecies. Rhinoceros unicornis was the type species for the rhinoceros family, first classified by Carolus Linnaeus in 1758.

Ancestral rhinoceroses first diverged from other Perissodactyls in the Early Eocene. Mitochondrial DNA comparison suggests that the ancestors of modern rhinos split from the ancestors of Equidae around 50 million years ago. The extant family, the Rhinocerotidae, first appeared in the Late Eocene in Eurasia, and the ancestors of the extant rhino species dispersed from Asia beginning in the Miocene.

Fossils of Rhinoceros unicornis appear in the Middle Pleistocene. In the Pleistocene, the Rhinoceros genus ranged throughout South and Southeast Asia, with specimens located on Sri Lanka. Into the Holocene, some rhinoceros lived as far west as Gujarat and Pakistan until as recently as 3,200 years ago.

The Indian and Javan Rhinoceros, the only members of the genus Rhinoceros, first appear in the fossil record in Asia around 1.6 million–3.3 million years ago. Molecular estimates, however, suggest the species may have diverged much earlier, around 11.7 million years ago. Although belonging to the type genus, the Indian and Javan rhinoceros are not believed to be closely related to other rhino species. 

Evidences of Usage of body parts of Rhinoceros in Traditional Siddha Medicine

Rhinoceros unicornis horn compounded with water is given internally for the treatment of madness, pitha, thirst, dryness, venereal disease, pulmonary disease, burning sensation, fatigue and heat caused by indigestion of poison, etc.
The parpam made from the horn is useful for asthma.
If the skin of the animal compounded with water is given internally it control madness.

Sources: Siddha Materia Medica, Wikipedia

Evidences for distribution of rhinoceros in South India


All the above details given are for information purpose only. It is not advisable to try any medication yourself. It is strongly recommended to consult a qualified Siddha Physician before taking any Siddha Medication.

This species is protected under the Wildlife Protection Act 1972 of India. This species is not at all legally used for medicine in India. All the above details are for information purpose only.

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