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Table 3 Medicinal uses of animals and animal parts in traditional therapy in villages close to San Guillermo MaB Reserve (San Juan, Argentina)

From: Medicinal use of wild fauna by mestizo communities living near San Guillermo Biosphere Reserve (San Juan, Argentina)

Species Body part used Method of preparation and use Ailment and disease treated Category Frequency of responses (N = 186) Percentages(%)
Lama guanicoe Leg The leg is left to dry and, when necessary, it is smelled. Lung diseases Respiratory system disorders 1 0.54
The leg is allowed to dry; and then is used to knead the affected area of the body Cervical muscle spasm (“aire”) Muscular-skeletal system disorders 1 0.54
The dry leg is heated over ashes and then it is used to knead the affected area of the body, forming a cross. Transient facial paralysis (“hora”) Nervous system disorders 30 16.13
Feces The feces are allowed to dry; then hot water is poured over it and the resulting liquid is drunk. Mountain sickness Mountain sickness 1 0.54
Bezoar stone1 (Not every guanaco has it) Found in the stomach or liver of the guanaco, the bezoar stone is bright; immediately after removing the stone from the animal it must be put in the mouth, otherwise it disintegrates. The stone is put in a glass to prepare tea. Heart diseases Circulatory system disorders 23 23.36
Stomach diseases Digestive system disorders 1 0.54
Mountain sickness Mountain sickness 2 1.07
Wool Wool is burned to produce smoke or is prepared as incense stick. Pain in ear in children Infections 1 0.54
Meat Used for cooking food. High cholesterol level Circulatory system disorders 1 0.54
Blood It is extracted from the animal and drunk. Mountain sickness Mountain sickness 1 0.54
Lama vicugna Leg Same as with guanaco leg. The dry leg is heated over ashes and then it is used to knead the affected area of the body, forming a cross. Transient facial paralysis (“hora”) Nervous system disorders 1 0.54
Rhea pennata Fat It is mixed with lemon juice and sugar, afterwards is heated and then it is drunk. It is melt with tobacco and chamomile and then the preparation is kneaded on the chest, and a hot cloth is put over it. Candies where made of it. Influenza, cold, chills, and congestion Infections 28 15.05
Asthma, bronchitis, and cough Respiratory system disorders 24 12.90
Joint and bone pain, rheumatism Muscular-skeletal system disorders 12 6.45
Sore throat Inflammation 5 2.69
Cervical muscle spasm (“aire”), and spasm in animals Muscular-skeletal system disorders 1 0.54
Conti2 The lesser rhea stomach is allowed to dry and then it is milled and drunk as a tea or soup. It is also cooked with some water to be used as cream. Stomach disorder Digestive system disorders 9 4.84
Indigestion Digestive system disorders 9 4.84
Lung and bronchial problems Respiratory system disorders 2 1.07
Cervical muscle spasm (“aire”) Muscular-skeletal system disorders 1 0.54
Skin problems Skin/subcutaneous cellular tissue disorders 1 0.54
Feather Smoke is made with a drop of oil or sugar over the embers. Evil eye Evil eye 8 4.30
Smoke is made with a drop of oil or sugar over the embers. Ear pain in children Infections 8 4.30
Meat To cook food. High cholesterol level Circulatory system disorders 1 0.54
Lepus europaeus Fat The fat is heated, and when cold, the ointment is collected for use. Lung and bronchial problems. Respiratory system disorders 1 0.54
Puma concolor Fat The fat is heated, and when cold, the ointment is collected for use. Rheumatism and bones’ pain Muscular-skeletal system disorders 5 2.69
Chest pain Respiratory system disorders 5 2.69
Pseudalopex sp. Fat The fat is heated, and when cold, the ointment is collected for use. Asthma Respiratory system disorders 2 1.07
Conepatus chinga Liver It is allowed to dry and then it is drunk as a tea or soup. Lung problems Respiratory system disorders 1 0.54
  1. 1 Bezoar stone: The first approximation is that the bezoar stone is a silicate’s vesicle calculus of Lama guanicoe (Osvaldo Olivera; personal comm.).
  2. 2 Conti: Rhea pennata’s stomach.