Development of herbal cream containing a Methanolic Leaf Extract of Nicotiana Tabacum against Vaginal Candidiasis
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Background: Vaginal candidiasis affects about 75% of women at least once in their lifetime, especially during child bearing age. Recurrent vaginal candidiasis is a common cause of morbidity in women in all ages. The current treatment entails synthetic drugs such as fluconazole, clotrimazole, nystatin, miconazole and ketoconazole. However, due to relatively high costs, an upsurge of drug resistance and development of undesirable side effects, there is need for treatment agents and development of safer and effective formulations. Experimental studies have shown that methanolic extract of Nicotiana tabacum bears antimicrobial activity against Candida albicans General objective: To formulate a herbal vaginal cream against Candida albicans containing a methanolic extract of Nicotiana tabacum. Methodology: This was an experimental study carried out to formulate a herbal antifungal cream against Candida albicans. The extraction process was carried out using Soxhlet apparatus with 80% methanol. The methanolic extract was screened for phytochemicals including alkaloids, tannins, saponins, flavonoids and phenols. A qualitative antifungal screening was demonstrated using Candida albicans cultured on SDA. Six trial formulations of the cream were made and one that gave the best physico-chemical properties was used to prepare the final preparation. The MIC was determined and used to formulate HerbaMax V-Cream. Safety profiletestwere carried out on six rats using acute dermal irritation studies. The rats were observed for edema or erythema. Results: A black soft semi solidextract with an irritating smell was obtained from Nicotiana tabacum. The extract had antifungal activity against Candida albicans with a MIC of 13.22mg/ml. (P value less than 0.05) HerbaMax V-Cream passed all the quality control tests and the safety profile test indicating that the preparation is effective and safe for use Conclusion: HerbaMax V-cream,a herbal vaginal cream from a methanolic extract of Nicotiana tabacum had antifungal activity against Candida albicans and is safe for use. The cream should be considered an alternative to conventional creams like clotrimazole for management of vaginal candidiasis.