Background: Siddha system of medicine is one among the great heritages of India. Iron deficiency anemia is described as “azhal paandu” in siddha system and more formulations are mentioned in literatures to treat anemia. Kadukkai maathirai (KM) is one of the widely used drugs for the treatment of iron deficiency anemia with good patient compliance. It was claimed that this drug is devoid of adverse effects which are seen with other oral iron preparations. Objective: Present study was carried out to standardize kadukkai maathirai by evaluating its physical and chemical properties using modern scientific instruments. Materials and methods: KM was prepared following standard procedures mentioned in the Siddha Hospital Pharmacopeia. Physical properties such foreign matter, loss on drying, total ash content, acid insoluble ash, alcohol soluble extract value and water soluble extract value were evaluated. Amount of iron and heavy metals such as cadmium, mercury, arsenic and lead were estimated. HPTLC chromatogram and photograph were also done. KM was again formulated into tablet form by standard procedures. Kadukkai maathirai tablet (KMT) was analysed for Angle of Repose, bulk density, tapped density, carr’s index, Hausner’s ratio, general appearance (shape, color, texture and odor), thickness, uniformity of weight, coating uniformity, coating process efficiency, hardness and friability. Result: Amount of iron in KM was 18.03%. Whereas amount of heavy metals such as mercury (0.0578 ppm), cadmium (0.0064 ppm), arsenic (0.0405 ppm) and lead (0.2144 ppm) were within the permissible limit . Conclusion: In KM, iron is combined with few herbals which is claimed to facilitate oral bioavailability of iron and nullify iron induced side effects. As heavy metals are within the permissible limit, KM could be considered as safe drug. HPTLC fingerprint could serve for future references.
KEY WORDS: Iron deficiency, anemia, Ayurveda, herbometallic, traditional medicine