The effects of Lepidium sativum seeds on fracture-induced healing in rabbits

MedGenMed. 2007 Apr 30;9(2):23.


The Lepidium sativum plant and seeds are well known in the community of Saudi Arabia and some other Arabic countries as a good mediator for fracture healing in the human skeleton. However, there is no scientific proof for this phenomenon, except for the positive observation noted publicly by traditional medicine practitioners and people in the community as well as clinically by the author. Those healed fractures in human beings observed clinically due to the consumption of L sativum seeds propagated the attention of the author to carry out this study, with the goal of proving it in the laboratory by inducing fractures in the midshaft of the left femur of 6 adult New Zealand White rabbits divided into 2 groups (control, n = 3 and test, n = 3). The test rabbits were fed soon after surgery with L sativum seeds mixed with their normal diet, whereas no seeds were given to the control group. X-rays of the induced fractures were taken at 6 and 12 weeks postoperatively to assess the healing of the fractures and documenting the healing by direct measurements of callus formation in millimeters at the longitudinal medial (LM) and longitudinal lateral (LL) and circumferential (CM) areas. The test group had a statistically significant increase in the healing of fractures compared with the control group (P < .001 for CM/6 weeks and P < .004 for CM and P < .043 for LM/12 weeks). We concluded that L sativum seeds had a marked influence on fracture healing in rabbits, clearly supporting their effects on human beings as a well-known natural element to promote fracture healing in traditional medicine. This, of course, has a marked clinical implication that needs to be investigated further.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Femoral Fractures / pathology*
  • Femoral Fractures / therapy*
  • Fracture Healing / physiology*
  • Lepidium sativum*
  • Phytotherapy / methods*
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use*
  • Rabbits
  • Seeds*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Plant Extracts