The pleura is a thin tissue covered by a layer of cells (mesothelial cells) that surrounds the lungs and lines the inside of the chest wall.
C. Pleural plaques
Pleural plaques is a medical condition as a result of exposure to asbestos that lead to accumulated plagues within the pleural cavity(a). Many diseases such as pneumonia, breast cancer, and heart failure can affect the pleural space.,therefore, it is often a secondary effect of another disease process.
F.1. In conventional medicine perspective
There is no treatment even if you are diagnosed with pleural plague but no symptoms as you can live with them without having any long-term problems with your health. According to the British Lung foundation, If you have pleural plaques, it does not mean that:you will go on to get a more serious disease or you have a more serious disease at the moment; or you are likely to get a serious disease in the future(38).
But you smokes and have exposed to asbestos, you are advised to quit, as smoking are associated with increased risk to develop pleural and other diseases(39).
F.2. In Alternative medicine perspective
The following herbs which have been proving to enhance lung function and treat many types of lung diseases may be potential in treating pleural plague
Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara) is a perennial herbaceous plant, genus Tussilago, belonging to the family Asteraceae, native to Europe and Asia. The herb has been used over thousands of year to treat asthma, various coughs, bronchial congestion, respiratory disorders, headaches and obstruction in the nasal passage, etc.
a. Antioxidant activity
In the investigation of antioxidant capacities of 56 selected Chinese medicinal plants were evaluated using the Trolox equivalent antioxidant capacity (TEAC) and ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP) assays found that that the antioxidants in Dioscorea bulbifera, Eriobotrya japonica, Tussilago farfara and Ephedra sinica possess free radical scavenging activity and oxidant reducing power, and the high positive correlation between antioxidant capacities and total phenolic content, according to the study of “Total phenolic contents and antioxidant capacities of selected chinese medicinal plants” by Song FL, Gan RY, Zhang Y, Xiao Q, Kuang L, Li HB.(40)
b. Anti-inflammatory effect
In the evaluation of Tussilagone (TSL), isolated from the flower of buds of Tussilago farfara (Compositae), is a sesquiterpenoid that is known to exert a variety of pharmacological activities. found that TSL exerts anti-inflammatory activities in murine macrophages by inducing heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) expression, according to the study of “The anti-inflammatory effect of tussilagone, from Tussilago farfara, is mediated by the induction of heme oxygenase-1 in murine macrophages” by Hwangbo C, Lee HS, Park J, Choe J, Lee JH.(41)
c. Immune system
In the observation of polysaccharides from coltsfoot, sweet flag, clover, Artemisia, marigold, and elecampane and their effects in IgE- and G1 dependent diseases found that induction of anaphylactic shock. In addition, injection of these substances reduced serum concentrations of IgE and IgG1. These substances can be regarded as promising agents for the treatment of IgE-dependent diseases (atopic dermatitis, asthma, atopic rhinitis, urticaria, food allergies, etc.), according to the study of “Effects of plant water-soluble polysaccharides on the production of immunoglobulins E and G1 by lymphocytes of mice sensitized with ovalbumin” by Danilets MG, Belska NV, Bel’sky YP, Uchasova EG, Trophimova ES, Ligatcheva AA, Guriev AM, Belousov MV, Ahmedganov RR, Usubov MS, Agaphonov VI.(42)
Mullein is hairy biennial plant, genus Verbascum, belonging to Scrophulariaceae, native to Europe, northern Africa and Asia. The herb has been used in traditional medicine over thousands of year as analgesic, antihistaminic, anti-inflammatory, anticancer, antioxidant, antiviral, bacteristat, cardio-depressant, estrogenic, sedative medicine and to treat cough, whooping cough, tuberculosis, bronchitis, hoarseness, pneumonia, earaches, colds, chills, flu, etc.
In the evaluation of Verbascum thapsus commonly known as ‘mullein’ is part of a large family of Scrophulariaceae consisting of more than 360 species and theirs anti inflammatory effects
found that a significant decrease of the expression and activity of iNOS, extracellular O(2) (-) production, SOD, CAT and GPx activity when the cells were treated with verbascoside. Based on these results it is hypothesized that verbascoside has antiinflammatory properties since it reduces the production of superoxide radicals and consequently reduces the activity of iNOS, according to “Antiinflammatory effects in THP-1 cells treated with verbascoside” by
Speranza L, Franceschelli S, Pesce M, Reale M, Menghini L, Vinciguerra I, De Lutiis MA, Felaco M, Grilli A.(43)
Cayenne is also known as Cayenne Pepper, a red, hot chili pepper, belonging to Capsicum annuum, the family Solanaceae, native to sub-tropical and tropical regions. It has been used in traditional medicine to increases metabolism, enhance circulatory system and stomach and the intestinal tract, adjust blood pressure, lower LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, treat frostbite, muscles, arthritis, rheumatism, low back pain, strains, sprains, bruises and neuralgia, etc.
C. annuum var. cerasiferum has showed a significant antioxidant activity evaluated by the β-carotene bleaching test (IC(50) of 3.1 μg/ml). The lipophilic fraction of both C. annuum var. acuminatum and C. annuum var. cerasiferum exhibited an interesting and selective inhibitory activity against α-amylase (IC(50) of 6.9 and 20.1 μg/ml, respectively), according to the study of “Comparative study on the chemical composition, antioxidant properties and hypoglycaemic activities of two Capsicum annuum L. cultivars (Acuminatum small and Cerasiferum)’ by Tundis R, Loizzo MR, Menichini F, Bonesi M, Conforti F, Statti G, De Luca D, de Cindio B, Menichini F.(44)
b. Airway Inflammation
Methanolic C. annuum L. extract (CAE) has attenuated ovalbumin-induced increases in NF-κB activity in lungs. Collectively, these results suggest that CAE may be an effective oral treatment for allergic airway inflammation by virtue of its antioxidant activity, according to the study of “Capsicum annuum L. Methanolic Extract Inhibits Ovalbumin-Induced Airway Inflammation and Oxidative Stress in a Mouse Model of Asthma” by Jang HY, Kim SM, Yuk JE, Kwon OK, Oh SR, Lee HK, Jeong H, Ahn KS.(45)
cv. Anti inflammatory Effects
C. baccatum juice has significantly decreased leucocyte and neutrophil migration, exudate volume and protein and LDH concentration in pleural exudates of a pleurisy model and inhibited neutrophil migration and reduced the vascular permeability on carrageenan-induced peritonitis, according to the study of “Anti-inflammatory effects of red pepper (Capsicum baccatum) on carrageenan- and antigen-induced inflammation’ by Spiller F, Alves MK, Vieira SM, Carvalho TA, Leite CE, Lunardelli A, Poloni JA, Cunha FQ, de Oliveira JR.(46).
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