Porophyllum scoparium

Also called : shrubby poreleaf, hierba del venado, jarilla, romerillo, pomerillo, Transpecos poreleaf.

Image by Johnnyscalise

P.scoparium is a narrow leaved variety of pore leaf.

Image by Eric Knight

In Mexico P.scoparium is used as a remedy for rheumatism, fever and intestinal problems. This herb is currently being used by the Grupo Medico Dr. Zurita SA de CV in Mexico City.

Dr’s Manuel A Zurita Lopez and Maria Esther Zurita Jiminez on their website state,

“We are a Mexican medical group dedicated to comprehensive health, which seeks to take the best of allopathic (1) medicine, homeopathy (2), homotoxicology (3) and the ancestral knowledge of traditional Mexican indigenous medicine, of which we are deeply proud.” “We feel true passion for the knowledge and use of herbalism, which is a scientific and cultural heritage that we have inherited from both pre-Hispanic and Asian cultures. As Mexicans, in addition to being proud of this heritage, we intend to recover its place within the integral health of patients.”

  1. The system of medical practice which treats disease by the use of remedies which produce effects different from those produced by the disease under treatment. Allopathic medicine refers broadly to medical practice that is also termed Western medicine, evidence-based medicine, or modern medicine. The term “allopathy” was coined in 1810 by Samuel Hahnemann (1755-1843) to designate the usual practice of medicine (allopathy) as opposed to homeopathy.
  2. Homeopathy, also known as homeopathic medicine, is a medical system that was developed in Germany more than 200 years ago. It’s based on two unconventional theories: 1. “Like cures like”—the notion that a disease can be cured by a substance that produces similar symptoms in healthy people and 2. “Law of minimum dose”—the notion that the lower the dose of the medication, the greater its effectiveness. Many homeopathic products are so diluted that no molecules of the original substance remain.
  3. Homotoxicology represents a unique synthesis of healing disciplines designed to strengthen the organs of detoxification and excretion, to remove the toxins accumulated in the extracellular matrix, to stimulate and modulate the immune system, and to regulate the whole by rebalancing the diseased body system. The methodology of homotoxicology differs from that of conventional medicine in that illness is viewed as much more than the mere presence of clinical symptoms.

The Dr’s state that this herb (hierba del venado) has utility against allergies and as a complement in the treatment of some autoimmune diseases (1) and that this particular variety of the herb has a multitude of uses as it works against the allergy process through the stabilisation and regulation of IgE production (2). It has use in hypersensitivity issues particularly when it occurs in the eyes, skin, gastrointestinal tract and respiratory system. Positive results occur within three weeks and after 9-12 months of use some patients reported the removal of all allergies, particularly when the herb was taken by children. With women in the 28-29 year age group there was some return of allergies and the Dr’s assume that this is due to some hormonal change that is not as evident as the changes in adolescence or menopause. With respect to autoimmune diseases it is recommended that the herbal extract should initially be used with all allopathic medicines (particularly corticosteroids) prescribed by the doctor. The doses of these medications can then be reduced as symptoms improve.

  1. Rheumatoid arthritis, Systemic lupus erythematosus, Crohn’s disease, Sjorgens syndrome, non-specific chronic ulcerative colitis, mixed collagen disease
  2. Immunoglobulin E. an antibody secreted by plasma cells in the skin, tonsils and mucosae of the gastrointestinal and respiratory tracts. These cells release chemicals that mediate inflammation and allergic reactions.
Close up of flower.

The doctors using these herbs also make the claim that P.scoparium is the only herb in this family that has medical utility. They do not say what manner of herbal extract they use (aqueous, dried, alcoholic tincture, etc.) Further investigation has revealed that a “fluid extract” which they call the “D-Z extract” is used. This extract has also shown great promise in eradicating acne.

They list the conditions that have been successfully treated with Hierba del Venado as,

  • Atopic dermatitis (eczema, neurodermatitis (1), rosacea, contact dermatitis, urticaria
  • Asthma
  • Allergic rhinitis (stuffy nose, runny nose, itching, intense odor perception)
  • Allergic conjunctivitis (watery, red, itchy eyes)
  • Some types of colitis (when colitis is associated with other allergy diagnoses)
  • Other allergies: “allergy to cold”, allergy to latex, among others.
  1. a skin condition that starts with an itchy patch of skin. Scratching makes it even itchier. This itch-scratch cycle causes the affected skin to become thick and leathery. Several itchy spots may develop, typically on the neck, wrists, forearms, legs or anal region


For use against allergies DZ extract can be taken at 25 drops, in a glass of water, 3 x per day for 9 months. In cases of skin allergies it can be used undiluted topically and for allergic cough a few drops (undiluted) should be applied directly to the throat.

In his book “Medicinal Plants of the Borderlands: A Bilingual resource Guide” anthropologist Antonio Noé Zavaleta Ph. D. notes that P.scoparium is a gastric carminative used to treat indigestion, colic and flatulence.

In the book “Grasses of the Trans-Pecos and Adjacent Areas” (1994, p440-441) Powell notes that P.scoparium is used in México for intestinal disorders, fever and rheumatism.

In Oman (1) this herb is used as a general tonic for rheumatism. (Handa etal 2007, p257)

  1. The Sultanate of Oman is located in the South Eastern tip of the Arabian Peninsula. Its land borders with Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to the west and the Republic of Yemen to the south.
Image by elviramadalina


  • Handa. Sukhdev Swami,   Rakesh. Dev Dutt,  Vasisht. Karan, : Compendium of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants Volume 2 : United Nations Industrial Development Organization and the International Centre for Science and High Technology, 2006 : finito di stampare il mese di marzo 2007 : presso le Grafiche Filacorda /Udine
  • Powell, A. Michael and Manning, Patricia R., 1952- Grasses of the Trans-Pecos and adjacent areas (1st ed). University of Texas Press, Austin, 1994.
  • Zavaleta, Antonio. (2012). Medical Plants of the Borderlands: A Bilingual Resource Guide : “Plantas Medicinales Fronterizas Una Guia Bilingue” ISBN: 9781468547276M

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