The plant is commonly used in traditional medicine, with the leaves and roots most commonly employed.
The juice of the leaves or roots is used widely to treat bowel complaints, especially colic, stomach-ache, diarrhea and dysentery, and also to treat gonorrhea and persistent fever from malaria. A decoction from the leaves and roots is drunk to relieve pains all over the body due to excessive exertion. A decoction of a very old plant, boiled with eggs, is said to induce abortion.
A lotion made from the plant is used to treat yaws and headache. The whole plant is macerated and used externally for treating fractures, wounds, mastitis and snake bites.
The leaves are diuretic, emollient, refrigerant, styptic, vulnerary. They are used to treat inflammation of the intestines and bladder.
The leaves are used externally as a poultice on wounds and skin diseases. The roots are diuretic. An infusion is given to aid difficult childbirth. The roots are used to treat rheumatism and lumbago. A decoction of the root is used to treat colds, dysentery, enteritis, goitre, indigestion, leucorrhoea, malaria, rheumatism and tonsillitis.
Used externally, they are chewed and applied to swellings caused by filariasis.
The twigs are chewed to treat toothache. The bark is used to heal cuts. The flowers are considered maturative and are taken in decoction as a pectoral and expectorant in dry coughs.
An infusion of the flowers is used as a gargle for aphthae and a sore throat. A decoction of the seeds is taken as a vermifuge.
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