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August 15, 1977

Medical Botany: Plants Affecting Man's Health

Author Affiliations

Evanston, III

JAMA. 1977;238(7):629. doi:10.1001/jama.1977.03280070069032

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


Lewis, professor of botany at Washington University and senior botanist at the Missouri Botanical Garden, and Elvin-Lewis, associate professor and chairman of Dental Microbiology at Washington University, have written a book based on their multidisciplinary undergraduate course in medical botany. The authors have arranged a vast amount of material drawn from many publications, folklore, and contemporary medicine, in three broad categories: plants that are injurious, those that heal or nourish, and those that affect the conscious mind. The authors' style is serious and straightforward.

Throughout the book the authors emphasize familial relationships, and in an appendix, which outlines the classification of the plant kingdom, families containing important medicinal plants are printed in boldface. A glossary defines many medical and botanical terms. In addition to the literature cited at the end of each chapter, there are in the second appendix references on herbal medicine arranged geographically.

The illustrations, most of which