Tourette syndrome

Tourette syndrome
Tourette syndrome

Tourette syndrome (TS) is an inherited disease of the nervous system, first described more than a century ago by a pioneering French neurologist, George Gilles de la Tourette.

Before they are 18 years of age, patients with TS develop motor tics; that is, repeated, jerky, purposeless muscle movements in almost any part of the body.

Patients also develop vocal tics, which occur in the form of loud grunting or barking noises, or in some cases words or phrases. In most patients, the tics come and go, and are often replaced by different sounds or movements. The tics may become more complex as the patient grows older.

Toxic shock syndrome

Toxic shock syndrome
Toxic shock syndrome

Toxic shock syndrome (TSS) is an uncommon but potentially serious illness that occurs when poisonous substances (toxins) produced by certain bacteria enter the bloodstream.

The toxins cause a type of blood poisoning caused by staphylococcal, or less commonly streptococcal, infections in the lungs, throat, skin or bone, or from injuries. Women using super-absorbent tampons during menstruation were found to be most likely to get toxic shock syndrome.

TSS first came to the attention of the public in the 1970s. Shortly after the introduction of a super-absorbent tampon, young women across the United States experienced an epidemic of serious but unexplained symptoms.

Traditional African medicine

Traditional African medicine
Traditional African medicine

Traditional African medicine is a holistic discipline involving extensive use of indigenous herbalism combined with aspects of African spirituality.

Despite numerous attempts at government interference, this ancient system of healing continues to thrive in Africa and practitioners can be found in many other parts of the world.

Under colonial rule, many nations considered traditional diviner-healers to be practitioners of witchcraft and outlawed them for that reason. In some areas of colonial Africa, attempts were also made to control the sale of traditional herbal medicines. After Mozambique obtained independence in 1975, diviner-healers were sent to reeducation camps.

Traditional Chinese medicine

Traditional Chinese medicine
Traditional Chinese medicine

Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) is based on a set of interventions designed to restore balance to human beings. The therapies usually considered under the heading of classic Chinese medicine include:
  • acupunture and moxibustion
  • dietary regulation
  • herbal remedies
  • massage
  • therapeutic exercise

These forms of treatments are based upon beliefs that differ from the disease concept favored by Western medicine. What is referred to as illness by Western medicine is considered in traditional Chinese medicine to be a matter of disharmony or imbalance.

Trager psychophysical integration

Trager psychophysical integration
Trager psychophysical integration

Trager psychophysical integration therapy, also known as the Tragerwork system of physical integration, is a combination of hands-on tissue mobilization, relaxation, and movement reeducation called Mentastics.

The underlying principle of psychophysical integration is that clients learn to be lighter, easier, and freer by experiencing lightness, ease, and freedom of movement in their bodies.

The Trager method is a psychologically grounded physical approach to muscle relaxation, which is induced when a practitioner and patient achieve a state of mind called hook-up. Hook-up is described as a connection to a state of grace or powerful and nourishing life force. It is the opposite of strain or effort.

Tremor

Tremor

Tremor is an unintentional (involuntary), rhythmical alternating movement that may affect the muscles of any part of the body. Tremor is caused by the rapid alternating contraction and relaxation of muscles and is a common symptom of diseases of the nervous system (neurologic disease).

Occasional tremor is felt by almost everyone, usually as a result of fear or excitement. However, uncontrollable tremor or shaking is a common symptom of disorders that destroy nerve tissue such as Parkinson’s disease or multiple sclerosis. Tremor may also occur after stroke or head injury. Other tremor appears without any underlying illness.

Causes and symptoms

Tremor may be a symptom of an underlying disease or it may be caused by drugs. It may also exist as the only symptom (essential tremor).

Trepanation

Trepanation
Trepanation

Trepanation is a surgical procedure in which a circular piece of bone is removed from the skull by a special saw-like instrument called a trephine or trepan. The operation is also known as trephination or trephining. The English word “trepan” comes from the Greek word trypanon, which means “auger” or “drill.”

In standard medical practice, trepanation is occasionally performed by a neurosurgeon in order to relieve pressure on the brain caused by trauma, or to remove a blood clot from brain tissue.

In recent years, however, trepanation has been touted by a small group of alternative practitioners as a way to expand one’s consciousness through the increase of blood flow to the brain and opening the “third eye,” also known as the inner eye or eye of the mind.

Trichomoniasis

Trichomoniasis
Trichomoniasis
Trichomoniasis refers to an infection of the genital and urinary tract. It is the most common sexually transmitted disease, affecting about 120 million women worldwide each year.

Trichomoniasis is caused by a protozoan (the smallest, single-celled members of the animal kingdom). Trichomonas vaginalis is almost always passed through sexual contact. Trichomoniasis is primarily an infection of women’s vaginal and urinary tracts. A woman is most susceptible to infection just after having completed her menstrual period.

Men may carry the organism unknowingly, since infection in men may cause mild or no symptoms. Men may also experience urethral discharge or persistent urethritis. Trichomoniasis is associated with HIV transmission and may be associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes.

Trigger point therapy

Trigger point therapy
Trigger point therapy

Trigger point therapy is a bodywork technique that involves the application of pressure to tender muscle tissue in order to relieve pain and dysfunction in other parts of the body. It may also be called myofascial (myo meaning muscle, fascial meaning connective tissue) trigger point therapy.

Trigger point therapy is sometimes regarded as one of a group of treatment aproaches called neuromuscular therapy or NMT. Myotherapy, developed by Bonnie Prudden, is a related type of trigger point therapy.

Origins

Trigger point therapy was developed by Dr. Janet Travell in the United States in the 1940s; she is credited with having first used the phrase “trigger point” in print in 1942. Through her work and events in her personal life, Travell advanced the theory that pain experienced in one part of the body is actually caused by an injury or dysfunction in another part of the body.

Triphala

Amalaki fruit (Embelica officinalis) - also called amla or Indian gooseberry, is renowned as one of the best rejuvenating herbs in Ayurvedic medicine
Amalaki (Embelica officinalis)

Triphala, an ancient herbal blend, is one of the most commonly used herbal remedies in the Ayurvedic system of healing. Ayurvedic medicine originated in ancient India, has developed over thousands of years, and is one of the oldest systems of healing.

Thus triphala is one of the longest-used herbal remedies in the world. Triphala, meaning “three fruits,” is made from the fruits of three trees that grow throughout India and the Middle East, including amalaki fruit (Embelica officinalis), bibhitaki fruit (Terminalia belerica), and haritaki fruit (Terminalia chebula).

In preparing triphala, these fruits are dried, ground into powder, and then blended together according to the precise directions of Ayrurvedic tradition. Amalaki fruit, also called amla or Indian gooseberry, is renowned as one of the best rejuvenating herbs in Ayurvedic medicine.

Thunder god vine

Thunder god vine
Thunder god vine

Thunder god vine (Tripterygium wilfordii) is the English translation of the Chinese name for the perennial plant lei gong teng. The plant grows in the mountains of China, as well as Taiwan and Myanmar (formerly Burma).

It is a deciduous climbing vine that sheds its leaves, and produces white flowers and red fruit with three “wings.” The plant’s leaves, flowers, and outer skin of the root are poisonous.

In fact, honey taken from the plant’s pollen is also poisonous. The root pulp is the non-poisonous part, which is used medicinally. There is a risk of poisoning if the herb is not extracted properly.

Thyme

Thyme shrubs
Thyme

Thyme (Thymus vulgaris L.), known as garden thyme, and T. serpyllum, known as creeping thyme, mother of thyme, wild thyme, and mountain thyme, are two similarly beneficial evergreen shrubs of the Lamiaceae or mint family.

The aromatic thyme is a perennial native of southern Europe and the western Mediterranean. Thyme is extensively cultivated, both commercially and in home gardens, as a culinary and medicinal herb. There are hundreds of species of thyme.

Garden thyme grows from a woody, fibrous root to produce thin, erect, stems up to 15 in (38 cm) high. It is most commonly cultivated for its culinary uses. Wild thyme is found growing on heaths, in sheep pastures, and mountainous areas in temperate regions.

Tibetan medicine

chakras and energy channels
Tibetan Medecine - chakras and energy channels

Tibetan medicine differs from allopathic medicine in that it has no concept of illness as such, but rather the concept is of disharmony of the organism. Accordingly, this system of medicine, like many alternative therapies, seeks to achieve a harmony of the self.

Medicine is one of five branches of Tibetan science, and is known to the Tibetans as gSoba Rig-pa—the science of healing.

The Tibetan pharmacopoeia utilizes many different elements in the treatment of disease, such as trees, rocks, resins, soil, precious metals, sap, and so on, but like Chinese medicine, to which it is related, it mainly relies on herbs for treatment.

Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis
Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis (TB) is a contagious and potentially fatal disease that can affect almost any part of the body but manifests mainly as an infection of the lungs. It is caused by a bacterial microorganism, the tubercle bacillus or Mycobacterium tuberculosis. TB infection can either be acute and short-lived or chronic and long-term.

Although TB can be prevented, treated, and cured with proper treatment and medications, scientists have never been able to eliminate it entirely. The organism that causes tuberculosis, popularly known as consumption, was discovered in 1882.

Because antibiotics were unknown, the only means of controlling the spread of infection was to isolate patients in private sanatoria or hospitals limited to patients with TB—a practice that continues to this day in many countries. TB spread very quickly and was a leading cause of death in Europe.

Turmeric

Turmeric
Turmeric

Turmeric is a member of the Curcuma botanical group, which is part of the ginger family of herbs, the Zingiberaceae. Its botanical name is Curcuma longa.

Turmeric is widely grown both as a kitchen spice and for its medicinal uses. Two closely related plants, Curcuma petolata and Curcuma roscoeana, are natives of Cambodia and are grown for their decorative foliage and blossoms.

All curcumas are perennial plants native to southern Asia. They grow in warm, humid climates and thrive only in temperatures above 60°F (29.8°C). India, Sri Lanka, the East Indies, Fiji, and Queensland (Australia) all have climates that are conducive to growing turmeric.

Digestive Ulcers

Digestive Ulcers
Digestive Ulcers

An ulcer is an eroded area of skin or mucous membrane. In common usage, however, ulcer usually refers to disorders in the upper digestive tract. The terms ulcer, gastric ulcer, and peptic ulcer are often used interchangeably.

Peptic ulcers can develop in the lower part of the esophagus, the stomach, the first part of the small intestine (the duodenum), and the second part of the small intestine (the jejunum).

It is estimated that 2% of the adult population in the United States has active digestive ulcers, and that about 10% will develop ulcers at some point in their lives. There are about 500,000 new cases in the United States every year, with as many as 4 million recurrences. The male/female ratio for digestive ulcers is 3:1.

Unani-tibbi

Unani-tibbi
Unani-tibbi

Unani-tibbi denotes Arabic or Islamic medicine, also known as prophetic medicine. It traditionally makes use of a variety of techniques including diet, herbal treatments, manipulative therapies, and surgery. Unani-tibbi is a complete system, encompassing all aspects and all fields of medical care, from nutrition and hygiene to psychiatric treatment.

Origins

The name unani-tibbi is something of a misnomer, as literally translated from the Arabic, it means Greek medicine. This is because the early Arab physicians took their basic knowledge from the Greeks.

At the time, Greek medical knowledge was the best to be had, particularly from Galen, the renowned second-century Greek physician who treated the gladiators and Emperor Marcus Aurelius.

Urinary incontinence

Urinary incontinence is unintentional loss of urine that is sufficient enough in frequency and amount to cause physical and/or emotional distress in the person experiencing it.

Approximately 13 million Americans suffer from urinary incontinence. Women are affected by the disorder more frequently than are men; one in 10 women under age 65 suffers from urinary incontinence.

A study published in late 2002 found that between 21% and 29% of adult women in the workforce reported at least one episode of urinary incontinence each month. Older Americans, too, are more prone to the condition. Twenty percent of Americans over age 65 are incontinent. In general, the condition is underrecognized and undertreated.

Usnea

Usnea
Usnea

Usnea is a unique species of herb because it is created through a symbiotic relationship between lichens and algae. Symbiosis refers to the living together of two different organisms.

In the case of lichens, both the alga and the fungus benefit from the relationship. Other names for usnea include lichen moss and old man’s beard. Usnea can be found in forests in northern North America and are also found in Europe.

Some usnea are able to keep growing even after being broken off from the parent organism. Usnea are very sensitive to the air quality and may be killed by absorbing pollutants. In fact, usnea are used as indicators of regional pollution levels.

Uterine cancer

Uterine cancer
Uterine cancer

Uterine cancer can be divided into two primary forms, cervical and endometrial. Cancer of the cervix most often affects the neck of the cervix or the opening or the opening into the uterus from the vagina. Endometrial cancer affects the inside lining of the uterus.

Cervical cancer is much more prevalent than cancer of the endometrium; some estimate the incidence ratio as 3:1. Statistics from the year 2000 indicated cervical cancer was the second leading cause of cancer deaths in women ages 20-39 years, and the fifth leading cause of cancer

death in women from 40-59 years old. Unlike many other cancers, early cancer of the cervix can be identified as much as 10 or more years before the cancer invades other tissues. These visible changes in the structure and activity of the cervical cells are seen under the microscope with Papanicolaou (Pap) tests and are referred to as mild dysplasia.

Uterine fibroids

Uterine fibroids
Uterine fibroids

Uterine fibroids (also called leiomyomas or myomas) are benign growths of the muscle inside the uterus. They are not cancerous, nor are they related to cancer. Fibroids can cause a wide variety of symptoms, including heavy menstrual bleeding and pressure on the pelvis.

Description

Uterine fibroids are extremely common. About 25% of women in their reproductive years have noticeable fibroids. There are probably many more women who have tiny fibroids that are undetected.

Uva ursi

Uva ursi
Uva ursi

Uva ursi is a Latin name which means bear’s grape. Its botanical name is Arctostaphylos and it is of the Ericaceae family. Other common names include bearberry, kinnikinnick (the name given to it by native Americans), whortleberry, spreng, mountain cranberry , and mealberry. It is a low-growing evergreen plant, usually reaching no more than 16 in (41 cm) in height.

Growing in the cooler, northern climates, uva ursi likes well-drained sandy soil and a sunny location. It can be found in the mountainous areas of Europe, Asia and America, where it is commonly used for ornamental purposes, mostly as shrubbery or hedging.

It is widely found in Canada and the United States, but no further south than Wisconsin and New Jersey. In the British Isles, it is common in the Highlands of Scotland, the hilly areas of Ireland, and as far south as Yorkshire in England.

Vaginitis

Vaginitis
Vaginitis

Vaginitis is a condition characterized by inflammation of the vagina and vulva, most often caused by a bacterial, fungal, or parasitic infection.

Description

Vaginitis, vulvitis, and vulvovaginitis are general terms that refer to the inflammation of the vagina and/or vulva (the external genital organs of a woman).

These conditions can be caused by bacterial, fungal, or parasitic infections; or by any type of allergic or irritation reaction to such things as spermicidal products, condoms, soaps, and bubble bath. A type of vaginitis that is caused by a low estrogen level is called atrophic vaginitis.

Valerian

Valerian (Valeriana officinalis)
Valerian (Valeriana officinalis)

Valerian (Valeriana officinalis) is one of about 200 members of the Valerianaceae family. This plant is native to Europe and west Asia; it is naturalized throughout North America.

A common name for this hardy perennial is garden heliotrope. Valerian has been valued for its soothing qualities for at least a millennium. The name valerian may have come from the Latin valere meaning “to be strong” or “to be in good health.” Chaucer called the herb setewale.

Other common names include all-heal, vandal root, and Capon’s tail. The Greek doctor Galen called a particularly odorous species of valerian “phu,” referring to the distinctively unpleasant smell of the dried root. The strong odor appeals to earthworms, intoxicates cats, and attracts rats.

Vanadium

Vanadium
Vanadium

Named after the Scandinavian goddess of youth and beauty, vanadium is a trace element that has gained attention in recent years as a possible aid in controlling diabetes.

While such macrominerals as calcium , magnesium, and potassium have become household names because they make up over 98% of the body’s mineral content, certain trace minerals are also considered essential in very tiny amounts to maintain health and ensure proper functioning of the body. They usually act as coenzymes, working as a team with proteins to facilitate important chemical reactions.

Even without taking vanadium supplements, people have about 20–25 micrograms (mcg) of the mineral in their bodies, which is derived from an average balanced diet. Despite the fact that vanadium has been studied for over 40 years, it is still not known for certain if the mineral is critical for optimal health. Whether taking extra amounts of vanadium is therapeutic or harmful is even more controversial.

Varicose veins

Varicose veins
Varicose veins

Varicose veins are dilated, tortuous, elongated superficial veins that appear most often in the legs.

Varicose veins, also called varicosities, are seen most often in the legs, although they can be found in other parts of the body. Most often, they appear as lumpy, winding vessels just below the surface of the skin.

There are three types of veins: superficial veins that are just beneath the surface of the skin; deep veins that are large blood vessels found deep inside the muscles; and perforator veins that connect the superficial veins to the deep veins. The superficial veins are the blood vessels most often affected by this condition and are the veins that are visible when the varicose condition has developed.

Vegetarianism

Vegetarianism
Vegetarianism

Vegetarianism refers to voluntary abstinence from eating meat. Vegetarians refrain from eating meat for various reasons, including religious, health, and ethical ones. Lacto-ovo vegetarians supplement their diet with dairy (lactose) products and eggs (ovo). Vegans (pronounced vee-guns) do not eat any animal-derived products at all.

Origins

The term vegetarian was coined in 1847 by the founders of the Vegetarian Society of Great Britain, but vegetarianism has been around as long as people have created diets. Some of the world’s oldest cultures advocate a vegetarian diet for health and religious purposes. In India, millions of Hindus are vegetarians because of their religious beliefs.

One of the ancient mythological works of Hinduism, the Mahabharata, states that, “Those who desire to possess good memory, beauty, long life with perfect health, and physical, moral and spiritual strength, should abstain from animal foods.” The yoga system of living and health is vegetarian, because its dietary practices are based on the belief that healthy food contains prana.

Venom immunotherapy

Bee sting
Bee sting

Venom immunotherapy is the process of injecting venom to treat various conditions. The most common form of venom immunization is bee venom therapy (BVT), with honeybee venom or stingers used to treat conditions.

BVT is one form of apitherapy, which is the therapeutic use of products made by honeybees. Other products used in apitherapy include bee pollen and royal jelly.

Origins

Apitherapy is thousands of years old. In ancient Egypt, venom from bee stings was used to treat arthritis. Hippocrates, the Greek physician known as the “father of medicine,” used bee stings for treatments several centuries before the birth of Christ. Descriptions of apitherapy are found in 2,000-year-old Chinese writings, the Bible, and the Koran.

Vitamin A

Vitamin A
Vitamin A
Vitamin A is one of four fat-soluble vitamins necessary for good health. It serves an important role as an antioxidant by helping to prevent free radicals from causing cellular damage.

Adequate levels are important for good eyesight, and poor night vision may be one of the first symptoms of a deficiency. It is also necessary for proper function of the immune, skeletal, respiratory, reproductive, and integumentary (skin) systems.

General use

An adequate level of vitamin A unquestionably contributes to good health. It is essential for the proper function of the retina, where it can act to prevent night blindness, as well as lower the odds of getting age-related macular degeneration (AMD), which is the most common cause of blindness in the elderly.

Vitamin B12

Cobalamin, also known as B12, is a member of the water-soluble family of B vitamins. It is a key factor in the body’s proper use of iron and formation of red blood cells.

The nervous system also relies on an adequate supply of cobalamin to function appropriately, as it is an essential component in the creation and maintenance of the myelin sheath that lines nerve cells.

Other roles of cobalamin include working with pyridoxine (vitamin B6 and folic acid to reduce harmful homocysteine levels, participating in the metabolization of food, and keeping the immune system operating smoothly.

Vitamin B complex

Vitamin B Complex
Vitamin B Complex

The vitamin B complex consists of 12 related water-soluble substances. Eight are considered essential vitamins because they need to be included in the diet. Four are not essential because the body can synthesize them.

Although these vitamins are chemically distinct, they are grouped together because they are found with one another in the same foods. Since they are water-soluble, most are not stored for any length of time, and must be replenished daily.

The eight vitamins have both names and corresponding numbers. They are:
  • B1 (thiamin)
  • B2 (riboflavin)
  • B3 (niacin)
  • B5 (pantothenic acid)
  • B6 (pyridoxine)
  • B7 (biotin)
  • B9 (folic acid)
  • B12 (cobalamin)

Vitamin C

Vitamin C
Vitamin C
Vitamin C, or ascorbic acid, is naturally produced in fruits and vegetables. The vitamin, which can be taken in dietary or supplementary form, is absorbed by the intestines.

That which the body cannot absorb is excreted in the urine. The body stores a small amount, but daily intake, preferably in dietary form, is recommended for optimum health.

Certain health conditions may cause vitamin C depletion, including diabetes and high blood pressure. People who smoke and women who take estrogen may also have lower vitamin C levels. In addition, men are more likely to be vitamin C depleted, as are the elderly. High stress levels have also been linked to vitamin C deficiency.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D
Vitamin D

Vitamin D, also known as calciferol, is essential for strong teeth and bones. There are two major forms of vitamin D: D2 or ergocalciferol and D3 or cholecarciferol.

Vitamin D can be synthesized by the body in the presence of sunlight, as opposed to being required in the diet. It is the only vitamin whose biologically active formula is a hormone.

It is fat-soluble, and regulates the body’s absorption and use of the minerals calcium and phosphorus. Vitamin D is important not only to the maintenance of proper bone density, but to the many calcium-driven neurologic and cellular functions, as well as normal growth and development.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E
Vitamin E

Vitamin E is an antioxidant responsible for proper functioning of the immune system and for maintaining healthy eyes and skin.

It is actually a group of fat soluble compounds known as tocopherols (i.e., alpha tocopherol and gamma tocopherol). Gamma tocopherol accounts for approximately 75% of dietary vitamin E. Vitamin E rich foods include nuts, cereals, beans, eggs, cold-pressed oils, and assorted fruits and vegetables.

Because vitamin E is a fat soluble vitamin, it requires the presence of fat for proper absorption. Daily dietary intake of the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of vitamin E is recommended for optimum health.

Vitamin K

Vitamin K
Vitamin K

Vitamin K originates from the German term koajulation. It is also known as antihemorrhagic factor, and is one of the four fat-soluble vitamins necessary for good health.

The others are vitamins A, D, and E. The primary and best-known purpose of vitamin K is support of the process of blood clotting. Prothrombin and other clotting factors are dependent on vitamin K for production.

It also plays a role in bone health, and may help to prevent osteoporosis. Appropriate growth and development are supported by adequate vitamin K.

Vomiting

Vomiting
Vomiting

Vomiting is the forceful discharge of stomach contents through the mouth.

Vomiting, also called emesis, is a symptomatic response to any number of harmful triggers. Vomiting is a forceful expulsion, and is different from regurgitation — the effortless return of stomach contents to the mouth. Although unpleasant, vomiting is an important function because it rids the body of harmful substances.

Vomiting is a complex process resulting from the coordinated interaction of nerve pathways, the brain, and muscles of the gastrointestinal system. The primary vomiting trigger point in the brain is called the area postrema.

Warts

Warts, also called verrucae, are small benign growths usually caused by a viral infection of the skin or mucous membrane. The virus infects the surface layer of skin. The viruses that cause warts are members of the human papilloma virus (HPV) family, of which there are many different strains.

Warts are not cancerous but some strains of HPV, usually not associated with warts, have been linked with cancer formation. Warts are contagious from person to person and from one area of the body to another on the same person.

Particularly common among children, young adults, and women, warts are a problem for 7–10% of the population. There are close to 60 types of HPV that cause warts, each preferring a specific skin location.

Wasabi

Wasabi
Wasabi

Wasabi (Wasabia japonica) is an edible plant member of the Cruciferae family, which includes cabbage, turnips, and mustard. Wasabi shares the anticancer benefits of this family.

Native to Japan where it has been cultivated since the tenth century, it is still considered a staple condiment in that country. Traditional preparation involves using a sharkskin grater called an oroshi.

Wasabi’s culinary popularity and chemical bioactivity make it valuable medicinally and industrially. Demand for wasabi has created a relatively short supply, higher prices, and new commercial opportunities.

White willow

White willow (Salix alba)
White willow (Salix alba)

White willow (Salix alba) is a large tree that grows in Central and Southern Europe, Asia, and North America.

Also known as European willow or baywillow, this tree prefers to root near streams and rivers and grows to a height of 35–75 ft (11–25 m). In the spring, the slender branches first sprout tiny, yellow flowers and then long, thin green leaves.

White willow belongs to the Salicaceae family. There are over 300 species of willow, but only several species are used medicinally: white willow (S. alba), purple willow (S. purpurea), violet willow (S. daphnoides), and crack willow (S. fragilis).