Complimentary and alternative medicine (CAM) is rapidly growing in popularity among patients with a broad range of medical conditions. Epidemiologic studies over the past few decades have demonstrated the widespread use of CAM by patients and a wide range of vitamins and herbs are suggested for the ‘management’ of ocular conditions. The most frequently reported herbs used for ocular health include Great Ginkgo Biloba, Bilberry and Ginseng. Currently in New Zealand and Australia, there is no specific legislation to regulate CAM practitioners, with the exception of chiropractors who are regulated by the Chiropractors Act (1982). We report a case of bilateral severe corneal melting and perforation associated with the topical use of plant material on the corneal surface as a form of CAM. A 36‐year‐old Polynesian woman, who had been diagnosed with Systemic Lupus Erythromatosis, elected to stop using conventional systemic medication (oral prednisone 20 mg/day) because of its side‐effects, and sought alternative treatment. She subsequently developed mild ocular symptoms. A herbalist advised her to administer crushed leaves from plant ‘ Laukau Pouli ’ to both eyes on a daily basis. The plant was later identified as Cestrum nocturnum L., also known as ‘lady of the night’. (
Clinical & Experimental Ophthalmology – Wiley
Published: Jul 1, 2009
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