Dhava: Anogeissus latifolia Uses, Dose, Research, Side Effects

Dhava –  Anogeissus latifolia Wall. is an Ayurvedic tree used in the treatment of wounds, localized swelling, diarrhea, diabetes and skin diseases. 
Botanical Name- Anogeissus latifolia Wall.
Family- Combretaceae (Haritaki kula)

Vernacular names

Names in different languages:
English Name- Axle wood tree, Button tree
Hindi Name- Dhava Bakali
Bengali Name- Daoya
Gujarati Name- Dhavado
Kannada Name- Dinduga
Malayalam Name- Marukum Chiram
Telugu Name- Chiru Manu
Tamil Name- Vellaynaga

Sanskrit synonyms

Synonyms of Dhava:
Dhurandar- Wheels were prepared from the wood of the tree due to its strength.
Nandi taru- The trunk of the tree is strong
Sthira, Shukla Vruksha, Pandutaru, Dhavala, Pandura, Nava


Classical Categorization
Sushruta – Salasaradi gana, Muskakadi gana
Vagabhata- Asanadi gana , Muskakadi gana
Bhavaprakasha- Vatadi varga
Kaiyyadeva Nighantu- Oushadhi varga
Raja Nighantu-  Prabadradi varga

Scientific Classification:
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Myrtales
Family: Combretaceae
Genus: Anogeissus
Species: A. latifolia

About Axle wood tree
Dhava is a large tree growing in the plains and dry mountains of India up to a height of 20-25 m. Exudate is released from the tree, which is used for calico printing. The leaves are used for tanning purposes. The leaves are also fed on by the Antheraea paphia moth which produces the tussar silk (Tussah), a form of wild silk of commercial importance. The outer trunk has a pale yellow color.

Properties, part used, dosage

Medicinal Properties of Anogeissus latifolia
Guna (Qualities) – Laghu (light), Roksa (Dry)
Rasa (Taste) – Kashaya (Astringent)
Vipaka- Katu (Pungent after digestion)
Veerya (Potency) – Sheeta (Cold)
Effect on Tridosha – Kapha Pitta hara (Bring down the alleviated Kapha and Pitta dosha)
Part used- Heart wood, Exudate and Bark
Dosage, how to use:
Its heart wood / bark decoction (Kashaya) is used in the dose of 50- 100 ml in divided dose per day
Exudate- 1-2 g

Sanskrit verse

Anogeissus latifolia uses

Chemical constituents

Chemical constituents of Anogeissus latifolia:
The leaves, bark and heartwood contain quinic and shikmik acids. The leaves also contain gallotannin and tannin. The bark of the tree contains 12-18% tannins. Heartwood of the tree contains gallic acid, ellagic acid, its derivatives quercetin and myricetin. The gum is mainly the calcium salt of a complex high molecular weight poly saccharic acid i.e ghattic acid. The gum of the tree is used as a substitute of Gum Arabic.


Uses of Axle wood tree:

  • The powder of the bark of Anogeissus latifolia is applied externally as paste to treat wounds and localized swelling.
  • The decoction of the bark or heartwood of Anogeissus latifolia is given in a dose of 50-60 ml to treat diarrhea, bleeding piles.
  • The decoction of the plant Dhava is given to treat diabetes in a dose of 40-5 ml per day in a divided dose.
  • The exudate of the plant Anogeissus latifolia is mixed with water and given in conditions if the patient is suffering from scorpion bite or spider bite.
  • The decoction of the plant is given in a dose of 60-70 ml to treat skin diseases and jaundice.

Traditional uses:
Ruchya – improves taste, relieves anorexia.
Deepana – improves digestion strength
Indicated in –
Meha – diabetes, urinary tract disorders
Pandu – anemia
Arsha – hemorrhoids
Fruit is sweet, astringent, coolant, dry, heavy to digest, Stambhi (Can cause constipation), can increase Vata Dosha and relieve Kapha and Pitta Dosha.
No adverse reaction has been seen or reported during the usage of this herb.
Care should be exercised in using this in a patient with constipation.

Ayurvedic formulations

Important formulations containing Dhava:
Ayaskriti: It is an Ayurvedic preparation in the form of thick liquid which can be used to treat anemia, skin diseases, diabetes, and patients having low body weight. Iron in bhasma form is the main ingredient.
Asanadi kashayam: It is an Ayurvedic medicine in decoction form, given in the treatment of diabetes, skin diseases and obesity.
Nyagrodadi choorna: It is a herbal powder useful to treat urinary disorders, diabetes, diabetic carbuncle.
Bala oil: It is an oil, used for external application in the treatment of vata dosha like pain in the joints and muscles. The oil is also given orally to treat cough, asthma, disorders of spleen

Interaction with medicines, supplements

Can this be used while taking Homeopathic medicine?
Yes. This product does not react with homeopathic medicine.

Can this medicine be continued while taking supplements like multivitamin tablets, Omega 3 fatty acids etc?
Yes. Generally, this product goes well with most dietary supplements. However, if you are taking more than one product per day, please consult your doctor for an opinion.

With western medicines
Seek your doctor’s advice if you are taking this product along with other western (allopathic / modern) medicines. Some Ayurvedic herbs can interact with modern medicine.
If both Ayurvedic and allopathic medicines are advised together, then it is best to take Allopathic medicine first, wait for 30 minutes and then take the Ayurvedic medicine.


Research articles related to Dhava:
Antimicrobial effect– Dried powdered barks of the plant Anogeissus Latifolia was extracted with hydro- alcohol and was evaluated for anti -microbial activity against gram positive and negative bacteria. The study concluded that the powder of the plant is effective against all type of bacteria except E- coli.

Healing potential of Anogeissus Latifolia– The extract of the plant Anogeissus Latifolia showed acceleration of the healing of the wound area by decreasing the surface of the wound area and increasing the tensile strength.

Anti- diabetic activity: The methanolic extract (300 mg/kg) of the plant Anogeissus Latifolia, for 21 days, showed reduction in blood glucose level in rats. The extract has reduced the level of serum cholesterol, triglycerides, creatinine, and urea.

Author: Dr.B.K.Prashanth  M.D (Ayu), Ph.D
E mail: [email protected]

Sthanika Karma (Systemic Action)

External Application – It has wound healing, styptic and Anti inflammatory actions. Paste and decoction is used in wounds to promote faster healing.
Internal administration-
Digestive system – Absorbent in nature. Indicated in Dysentery, diarrhea, bleeding piles etc.
Circulatory System – Indicated in bleeding disorders
Excretory system – reduces urine output. decoction prepared out of its stem is indicated in diabetes.
Tvak – Indicated in skin disorders
Satmikarana – Rejuvinative and Anti poisonous – Resin is indicated in Animal poisoning

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