Venomous plant raven eye
Crow's eye is a small herbaceous plant, notable primarily for its blue-black berries, similar to blueberries or blueberries. This plant has been known since antiquity and is now quite well studied - the crow's eye is an object for genetic research.
In the old days it was believed that the berries of the crow's eye, sewn into clothing, can save a person from evil spells. In times of epidemics, they were worn on the body to protect against the plague. However, despite being widely known, they used it extremely reluctantly and with great caution.
What does this plant look like? What benefits does it bring and how dangerous is a crow's eye for a person? First, consider its botanical characteristics.
Description of the plant raven eye
Due to the wide range, this plant has many popular names: bear berries, black crows, cross grass, black berries, fingernails, nutcracker, wolf eyes, native grass, cuckoo tears, forest podblova, paridovaya grass. There are more than twenty species of crow's eyes. The four-leaf black eye (the Latin name is Pāris quadrifōlia) is the most widely spread. All species are small herbaceous perennials. In winter, the green part of the crow's eye dies off, the rhizome remains, from which a new shoot develops the following year.
What does a raven eye look like? Its stem is erect, ribbed, without pubescence, the height of the stem is from 10 to 40 cm. At the bottom of the stalk, the leaves are criss-crossed - wide, ovate, with a pointed tip. They are usually four, but sometimes there is a crow's eye with 5 or 6 leaves. If you rub the leaves between your fingers, you can catch the unpleasant smell of plant juice. The flower of a crow's eye is plain and unremarkable. It is solitary, located on the top of a ribbed stem, and has four outer green (sepals) and four inner yellow-green petals. In appearance, the flower resembles a small four-pointed asterisk. Crow's eye blooms in May and July, bloom lasts a long time. The fruit is a spherical berry about one centimeter in diameter, ripens in August. The berry is black and shiny, with a bluish bloom, inside it there are a lot of seeds located in four nests.
Uninformed people or children can easily confuse the fruits of the crow's eye with blueberries or blueberries. The taste of the berries is unpleasant, for some people, even the smell of a crow's eye can cause nausea or headache. For the same reason, animals do not eat them, so poisoning in livestock is extremely rare. An interesting feature - birds eat berries in large quantities without any harm to themselves.
The root system of the plant is a long creeping rhizome. In the spring of the lateral buds, it gives new above-ground shoots.
The plant is distributed practically throughout the European part of the continent, in Western Siberia, in the Caucasus, in the Crimea, and in the Mediterranean. And in the Far East - on Kamchatka and Sakhalin, in Primorye, Amur region - there are other types of this grass (Manchu and six-leaved crow). Biotopes, where the black eye grows, are shaded wet places - ravines, thickets of bushes, and damp rocky slopes. Crow's eye loves fertile soil, so it is found in deciduous and mixed forests, less often in coniferous forests or in forest-steppe.
Usually located single, but sometimes you can see about a dozen plants growing nearby.
Where the crow's eye is used
As noted above, this grass is well studied. Four-leaved black eye contains flavonoids, organic acids (citric, malic), vitamin C, pectic substances, coumarin, glycoside paridin. The plant belongs to the poisonous - in the rhizomes, leaves and fruits it contains a poisonous saponin paristifin. The rhizomes also contain saponins of steroid structure and alkaloids.
Raw materials for medical purposes are harvested during the flowering period. Use the whole plant, applying the green parts for the preparation of tinctures on alcohol. The berries are harvested after ripening, used in fresh or dried form for the preparation of infusions and decoctions.
Due to the toxicity of the crow's eye, its use in official medicine is prohibited. Traditional medicine uses the crow's eye, too, very carefully. Berries and leaves have an emetic and laxative effect. In the old days, it was believed that decoctions of the crow's eye relieve spasms that are caused by nervous disorders, help with fever and dropsy. Alcoholic tinctures of berries are used to treat inflammation of the larynx, migraine, increased drowsiness, various heart diseases with increased heart rate. In the people it was believed that with the help of the berries of the crow's eye, you can get rid of the hernia. Juice from fresh berries cures chirya, heals skin ulcers and is used in the bites of rabid dogs. In Tibetan medicine, preparations of the raven's eye are used for the fastest adhesion of bones in fractures.
Recipes decoctions and infusions and to this day can be found in various herbalists, but they all come with a caveat - use only under the supervision of a physician.
Crow's-eye preparations are more widely used in homeopathy. From fresh above-ground parts prepare the homeopathic remedy Paris quadrifolia, which is used for neuralgic pains of the head, face, for often recurring inflammations of the larynx. The drug is effective in conjunctivitis, accompanied by twitching eyelids.
Crow's eye poisoning
Crow's eye is a poisonous plant, all its parts are dangerous to humans. The juice of the plant causes severe irritation of the mucous membranes. The berries affect mainly the cardiovascular system, the rhizome causes vomiting, and the leaves affect the nervous system. In the experiments conducted on dogs, with intra-arterial administration, the infusion of berries caused a disturbance of the heart rhythm - first a slowdown, then an increase in its rate and arrhythmia. This action is similar to the glycosides of the lily of the valley, of which the crow's eye is a relative.
The plant is considered weakly poisonous - deaths of poisoning is unknown to them. Often, children suffer from the effects of eating berries, because beautiful fruits are attractive and look appetizing. Fortunately, they taste unpleasant, and one or two berries can be eaten without any serious consequences. When 7–10 berries are ingested, poisoning by the crow eye occurs.
Also, the symptoms of poisoning can occur when an overdose of drugs from the crow's eye during treatment. It should be noted that for them there is a wide range of contraindications - children's age, pregnancy and lactation, disorders of the liver and kidneys.
Symptoms of poisoning
What are signs of poisoning with a crow's eye? Symptoms will be as follows:
- burning in the mouth, throat, stomach;
- loose stools;
- pain in the stomach, colic;
- headaches and dizziness.
In severe cases, marked dilated pupils, dry mouth and nasal cavity, fear of light. Further speech is violated, swallowing is difficult. Possible convulsions and impaired heart function until it stops.
First aid in poisoning the berries of the crow's eye is to release the stomach from the poison and remove its remnants from the intestine.
- Wash the stomach with a suspension of activated carbon, 2% soda or tannin at the rate of 5 grams per 1 liter of water. In the absence of those, give a few glasses of water to drink (for children, at least half a glass is taken for each year of life).
- Give the poisoned person any adsorbent - “Smekta”, “Polysorb”, “Polyphepan”, “Enterosgel”.
- To prevent the absorption of poison from the stomach and intestines, as well as to alleviate the pain syndrome, enveloping agents are used - starch broth, egg white, vegetable oil, milk.
- Also, to relieve pain, you can drink "Dikain" or "Anestezin."
- When vomiting facilitates the condition of small pieces of ice - they must be kept in the mouth or gradually swallow.
- In case of diarrhea, it is necessary to compensate for the loss of fluid - the victim is given to drink water, special solutions: “Regidron”, “Hydrovit”.
Attention! Reception of laxatives in case of poisoning with a crow's eye is contraindicated.
The victim can be given a strong tea that contains substances precipitating poison (tannins). If a lot of time has passed after eating the berries and the toxins have entered the intestine, then they make a cleansing enema.
Treatment of poisoning
After providing first aid in case of poisoning with a raven eye berry, it is necessary to consult a doctor. You may need the introduction of heart drugs. Depending on the evidence, forced diuresis is performed. Intravenous glucose is indicated to enhance the work of the liver, which detoxifies toxins, as well as to maintain the heart muscle.
So, the crow's eye is a widespread plant, all parts of which are poisonous when ingested. They can be poisoned by taking preparations prepared from the plant, or by eating, without ignorance of, the crow's eye, which in appearance resemble blueberries or blueberries. The first signs of poisoning are nausea, stomach pain and diarrhea, possible vomiting and impaired cardiac activity. First aid measures in case of poisoning with a raven eye are reduced to the removal of poison from the body - gastric lavage, giving of adsorbents and enveloping substances. Seeking qualified medical assistance is necessary - you may need intravenous fluids of antitoxic and cardiac medications.