A day after there were reports stating that nilavembu kudineer, a concoction used to treat dengue, could reduce fertility, Tamil Nadu Health Minister Vijayabhaskar denied these rumours and said that action will be taken against those who spread rumours on social media.
Addressing the media after visiting Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Hospital in Trichy, Vijayabhaskar said, “Nilavembu is a proven medicine, we have tested it in King Institute in Guindy, it increased the platelets and immunity, it is proven. Action will be taken against people who spread rumours on social media.”
He wants social media to help government in crisis. “Social media must help the government in crisis management, I have already asked people to spread good information. When people were given MR vaccines, there were a lot of rumours on social media. In spite of that we vaccinated 1.7crore people.”
He also promised that dengue will be controlled in the state in the next 15 days.
Earlier, actor Kamal Haasan had tweeted saying that his fans should not distribute the Siddha medicine till proper research is conducted into nilavembu kudineer. "It's not that the research should be done by allopathics. The traditionalists should also have done it. It is traditional for medicines to have side effects," he wrote on Twitter.
The Tamil Nadu government has been promoting nilavembu kudineer to treat dengue for the last few years.
According to the Ayush Ministry, nilavembu kudineer is an Antipyretic (used to prevent or reduce fever), Analgesic (pain-relieving) and can be used to treat dengue. However, a Times of India report had stated that according to studies the nilavembu kudineer could reduce fertility. Past studies have shown that andrographis paniculata - the core herb used in the concotion - caused the sperm count in rats to decrease.
Moreover, The Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Centre also carried out research on the plant and warns against taking it if one is on chemotherapy drugs and or is taking blood pressure reducing drugs.
It also has many side effects like headache, fatigue, hypersensitivity, lymphadenopathy, pain in the lymph nodes, nausea, diarrhoea, and acute kidney injury, as stated by The Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Centre.