Sida rhombifolia

scientific name: 
Sida rhombifolia L.
Malva rhombifolia (L.) Krause
Botanical family: 

Botanical description

Erect bushy herb, 30-90 cm high with wiry branches. Stems stellate-puberulent, the hairs less than 1 mm long.  Leaves alternate, simple, 2-8 x 4 cm, lanceolate to rhombic-oblong, acute at the apex, narrowed or cordate at the base, margins serrate-dentate, blades discolorous, puberulent above and below; flowers pedicillate, solitary in axils, disperse along the stem, corolla, 7-10 mm yellow-orange, becoming pinkish; fruit with 9-14 glabrous carpels, 3-4 mm long including spine and 4-5 mm in diameter.






  aerial parts, cataplasm, applied locally1


leaf, aqueous maceration, ocular bath21


macerated leaf on the head3

For twisting and urethritis:

There is no available information establishing a means of preparation and dosage other than that referred to by traditional use.

Any medicinal preparation must be preserved cold and used within the 24 hours.

According to published and other information:

Use for twistings is classified as REC, based on the significant traditional use (OMS/WHO)3 documented in the TRAMIL surveys.

Use for urethritis is classified as REC, based on the significant traditional use documented in the TRAMIL surveys and toxicity studies.

Due to the health risks involved with urethritis, an initial medical evaluation is recommended.  The use of this resource can be considered complementary to medical treatment, unless it is contraindicated.

Should there be a notable worsening of the patient’s condition, or should urethritis or twisting persist for more than 3 days, seek medical attention.

Not for use during pregnancy or lactation.

TRAMIL Research14

The LD50 of the aqueous extract (decoction) from the leaf, administered orally to Swiss UniValle albino mice (both male and female) was higher than 25 g/kg (observation period: 14 days).  By intraperitoneal administration, the

LD50 was 0.45 ± 0.007 g/kg (dose stated in grams of dried plant).

Trabajo TRAMIL15 (will be translated in 3rd Ed.)

Las partes aéreas frescas se aplicaron vía tópica (0.5 mL de una preparación de 1000 mg/mL de material vegetal sobre 5cm2), en el modelo de irritación dérmica en piel sana de 3 conejos New Zealand por 5 días consecutivos. No provocó ninguna alteración ni irritación durante ese periodo ni en los 11 días de observación.

There is no available information documenting the safety of medicinal use in children or in pregnant or lactating women.

The aerial parts contain alkaloids : choline, ephedrine, pseudo-ephedrine, ß-phenethylamine and derivatives, vasicin and derivatives4 and chryptolepine5; sterols : 22-dihydrocampesterol, cholesterol, 24-methylenecholesterol, ß-sitosterol, spinasterol, 22-dihydrospinasterol, stigmasterol and derivatives6

The leaf is rich in saponins7 and mucilages8.

Proximate analysis of 100 g of fresh leaf9: calories : 63; water: 80.24%; protein : 7.4%; fat: 1.4%; carbohydrate : 9.4%; fiber: 3.3%; ash : 1.6%; calcium : 466 mg; phosphorus: 58 mg; iron : 5 mg; carotene : 6050 µg; thiamine : 0.22 mg; riboflavin : 0.47 mg; niacin : 2.10 mg; ascorbic acid : 90 mg.

The tincture from the dried leaf (10 g in 100 mL of ethanol) in vitro (30 µL/disk) was inactive against strains of Neisseria gonorrhoeae10 and Candida albicans11.

The methanolic extract from the leaf (1 g/mL) and the chloroform extract from the root (1 g/mL) were active in vitro Staphylococcus aureus, S. cerevisiae andEscherichia coli12.

The sterol fraction from the fresh entire plant in vitro showed antibacterial activity against Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus albus,S. aureus, (0.5 mg/mL), and against Klebsiella spp and Pseudomonas pyocyanae (1 mg/mL)13.




1 CHARLES C, 1988 TRAMIL survey. Movement for Cultural Awareness MCA, Roseau, Dominica.

2 GIRON L, 1988 Encuesta TRAMIL (Costa atlántica). Centro Mesoamericano de Tecnología CEMAT, Guatemala, Guatemala.

3 HENDERSON C, KRISHNARAYAN V, CASTILLO J, 1996 TRAMIL survey. Belize Enterprise for Sustainable Technology BEST, Belmopan, Belize.

4 PRAKASH A, VARMA RK, GHOSAL S, 1981 Chemical constituents of the Malvaceae. Part III. Alkaloidal constituents of Sida acuta, S. humilis, S. rhombifolia and S. spinosa. Planta Med 43(12):384-388.

5 GUNATILAKA AA, SOTHEESWARAN S, BALASUBRAMANIAM S, CHANDRASEKARA AI, BADRA SRIYANI HT, 1980 Studies on medicinal plants of Sri Lanka. III. Pharmacologically important alkaloids of some Sida species. Planta Med 39(1):66-72.

6 GOYAL MM, RANI KK, 1989 Neutral constituents of the aerial parts ofSida rhombifolia var. rhomboidea. Fitoterapia 60(2):163-164.

7 FRIESE FW, 1934 Plantas medicinais brasileiras. Sao Paulo, Brazil: Inst Agro do Estado. p252-494.

8 ALTSCHUL SR, 1973 Drugs and food from little-known plants: Notes in Harvard University Herbaria. Cambridge, USA: Harvard Univ. Press.

9 DUKE JA, ATCHLEY AA, 1986 Handbook of proximate analysis tables of higher plants.Boca Raton, USA: CRC Press. p149.

10 CACERES A, MENENDEZ H, MENDEZ E, COHOBON E, SAMAYAO BE, JAUREGUI E, PERALTA E, CARRILLO G, 1992 Antigonorrhoeal activity of plants used in Guatemala for the treatment of sexually transmitted diseases. Facultad de Ciencias Químicas y Farmacia, Universidad de San Carlos, Guatemala, Guatemala. TRAMIL VI, Basse Terre, Guadeloupe, UAG/enda-caribe.

11 Figueroa SL, 1992 Inhibición in vitro de Candida albicans por las plantas: Argemone mexicana, Bixa orellana, Lantana camara, Lippia alba, Sedum praealtum, Vicia fava, Chrysanthemum leucanthemum y Sida rhombifolia (Tesis). Facultad de Ciencias Químicas y Farmacia, Universidad de San Carlos, Guatemala, Guatemala.

12 BORTOLOZZI MAM, BITTENCOURT CF, CARDOSO SG, BORTOLOZZI, AV, 1988 Avaliacâo da atividade antibacteriana deSida rhombifolia L.(Malvaceae). X Simpósio de Plantas Medicinais do Brasil, Panel 7/9. Abstr. No. 26. Sao Paulo, Brasil.

13 GOYAL MM, RANI KK, 1988 Effects of natural products isolated from three species of Sida on some Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. J Indian Chem Soc 65(1):74-76.

14 PAZOS L, COTO T, CAIZA F, 2010 Antiinflamatorio tópico, en ratones, del extracto acuoso de las partes aéreas frescas de Sida rhombifolia. Informe TRAMIL, Laboratorio de Ensayos Biológicos, LEBi, Universidad de Costa Rica, San Pedro, Costa Rica.

17 DUNSTAN CA, NOREEN Y, SERRANO G, COX PA, PERERA P, BOHLIN L, 1997 Evaluation of some Samoan and Peruvian medicinal plants by prostaglandin biosynthesis and rat ear oedema assays. J Ethnopharmacol 57(1):35-56.

18 HERRERA J, 1992 Determinación de parámetros farmacológicos usados en medicina tradicional popular en la Cuenca del Caribe. Informe TRAMIL. Dep. de Farmacología, Facultad de Salud, Universidad del Valle, Cali, Colombia.

19 PAZOS L, COTO T, CAIZA F, 2010 Irritación dérmica en piel sana de conejos, de las partes aéreas frescas de Sida rhombifolia. Informe TRAMIL. Laboratorio de Ensayos Biológicos, LEBi, Universidad de Costa Rica, San Pedro, Costa Rica.

20 PAZOS L, COTO T, CAIZA F, 2010 Irritación ocular, en conejos, del macerado de hojas frescas de Sida rhombifolia. Informe TRAMIL. Laboratorio de Ensayos Biológicos, LEBi, Universidad de Costa Rica, San Pedro, Costa Rica.

21 WENIGER B, ROUZIER M, 1986 Enquête TRAMIL. Service Oecuménique d'Entraide SOE, Port au Prince, Haïti.


The information provided is for educational purposes only for the benefit of the general public and health professionals. It is not intended to take the place of either the written law or regulations. Since some parts of plants could be toxic, might induce side effects, or might have interactions with certain drugs, anyone intending to use them or their products must first consult with a physician or another qualified health care professional. TRAMIL has no responsibility whatsoever towards the user for any decision, action or omission made in relation to the information contained in this Pharmacopoeia.