Latin name: Tribulus Terrestris
Family: Zygophyllaceae
Common name: gokshur
English name: Puncture vine

Habitat: the trailing plant is common in sandy soil throughout India and Ceylon

Macroscopic identification:    An annual herb with diffused or prostrates stems. The branches are flexuous covered with silky thread like hairs. The leaves are pari-pinnate having 6 to 7 pairs of leaflets that are narrow-elliptic with round base and apex. The yellow flowers are borne solitary and axillary. The fruit is weapon-wheel shaped containing five parts. Each part has two long sharp rigid spines, several shorter spines and surface covered with many hairs.

Parts used: fruit and root

Actions and uses in ayurveda: vrishyam, dipanam, balya, pushtikaram, hridya, asmri-har, prameh-har, arsh-har, shwas kas-har

Pharmacological action: diuretic and increases sexual performance

Indications: Tribulus is known to treat conditions affecting the liver and kidney as well as the cardiovascular and immune systems. Tribulus Terrestris is used to treat headaches, eye problems such as itching, conjunctivitis and weak vision, and nervousness. It is also used to treat high blood pressure and rib pain.

Photochemical: gokshur contains Dioscin, protodioscin, diosgenin and similar. These substances have effect on sexual performance and may treat various sexual disorders, they regulate sexual energy level and strength by increasing the percentage of free testosterone level for men and they affect pregnenolone, progesterone and estrogen. The hormone balancing effects of Bulgarian Tribulus Terrestris for women makes this herb suitable for premenstrual syndrome and menopausal syndrome

Sterols like betasitosterols or stigma. These substances protect the prostate from swelling and in combination with the X steroidal saponin, protect the prostate from cancer.

Proprietary steroidal saponin is currently referred to as X steroidal saponin. This X steroidal saponin affects the complete immune system. They have been demonstrated to possess anti-bacterial and anti-viral effects. Bulgarian Tribulus Terrestris may be used internally and externally to treat herpes, and virus infections such as influenza and the common cold.

Properties and action:
Rasa: madhur
Guna: guru, snigdh
Virya: shit
Vipaka: madhura
Karma: vatanashak, vrsya, brmhana, mutral
Preparations: powder, decoction

Therapeutic classification index:

Digestive system: it is used in diarrhea and dysentery.
Reproductive system: it is used to promote lactation.
Skin: it is used in psoriasis and eczema
Genito- urinary system: the diuretic properties of plant are due to large amount of nitrates and essential oils present in seeds. Plant and dried spiny fruit is used for spermatorrhea, phosphateuria, dysuria, gonorrhea, gleet, chronic cystitis, calculous affections, incontinence of urine and impotency. It is used in inflammation of urinary passage
Use of Tribulus Terrestris in angina pectoris

It is shown that saponin of Tribulus Terrestris has the action of dilating coronary artery and improving coronary circulation, and thus has better effects on improving ECG of myocardial ischemia. If taken for a long time, it has no adverse reaction on blood system and hepatic and renal functions. Neither does it have side effects. It is one of the ideal medicines to treat angina pectoris
Wang B, Ma L, Liu T. Research Unit of Cardiovascular Disease, Jillian Medical College.

Use of Tribulus Terrestris in impotency
Tribulus Terrestris is a testosterone enhancer. Studies show that it works very well when stacked with DHEA and androstenedione Instead of being a testosterone precursor, it leads to the production of the luteinizing hormone (LH). When LH levels are increased, the natural production of testosterone also increases. LH is a hormone that also deals with sex drive. Laboratory animal studies found that Tribulus Terrestris increased sperm count as well as motility levels after taking it for 30 days.

Protodioscin is a phytochemical agent derived from Tribulus terrestris L plant, which has been clinically proven to improve sexual desire and enhance erection via the conversion of protodioscine to DHEA (De-Hydro-Epi-Androsterone).

Adimoelja A. School of medicine ‘Hang Tuah’ University, Teaching and Naval Hospital,Surabaya, Indonesia.
Use of Tribulus Terrestris in smooth muscles
According to studies it has been suggested that T. terrestris L. or its saponin mixture may be useful on some smooth muscle spasms or colic pains.
Arcasoy HB, Erenmemisoglu A, Tekol Y, Kurucu S, Kartal M. Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, Erciyes University Kayseri, Turkey.

Medicinal use of Gokhru (Puncture vine)
Gokhru is used to treat various clinical conditions like sexual weakness in men, kidney dysfunction, urine problem, dysuria, Leucorrhoea (Shveta Pradar) etc. It helps in breaking and elimination of kidney stone from body. It also prevents recurrent stone formation. Gokhru also increases hormones secretion in body. It supports testosterone production and muscles building.

Here are remedies that can be done at home using Gokhru
**Sexual weakness, Low sperm count, erectile dysfunction
Boil Gokhru powder, ashwagandha powder in one cup milk. Drink twice a day for ten days. Gokhru contains saponins which stimulates secretion of Testosterone and promotes spermatogenesis.

**Kidney problem, Kidney stone, Recurrent stone formation
Prepare decoction of Gokhru fruit or panchang (all parts of Gokhru herb) in water and drink twice a day.

**Increased Serum Creatinine, Blood urea, Uric acid in body

Take gokhru, Sonth(Dry ginger), methi (Fenugrrek seeds) and ashwagandha in equal quantities. Grind to make powder. Take this powder twice a day. This decreases Uric acid and gives relief in swelling.

**Coughing (Khansi aana)
Take Gokhru, tulsi leaves and dry ginger powder. Grind and take in small amount.

**Frequent urination, urine infection, prostrate problem
Mix black sesame powder and Gokhru powder in equal quantity. Take twice a day.

**Urine blockage, painful urination
Take Gokhru fruits (1 tsp ), coriander seeds ( ½ tbsp)  in water (450 ml). Cook till volume reduces to half. Drink prepared infusion (2 tbsp.) twice a day for few days.

**Blood in urine
Take whole plant of Gokhru. Wash to clean dirt and soil. Grind the herb to extract juice (¼ cup). Mix this juice in a cup of buttermilk and drink for ten days.

Take whole Gokhru plant, clean it and dry in shade. Grind to make powder. Mix this powder with cinnamon (1 tsp), cardamoms (6), and misri (1/4 cup). Take this powder  (1/2 tsp ) three times a day with water.

**Weakness, muscle building
Mix gokhru, mulehti, bringraaj and amla. Grind to make powder and take twice a day.

**Uterus infection and inflammation
Prepare decotion of Gokhru fruit ( 10 gm) and ajwain (2 gm) in water and drink for few days.
This is also good for digestive system.

Take fresh Gokhru and bhumi amla. Grind and make paste. Take this paste (1 tbsp) with yoghurt twice a day for 10 days.

Dose: powder: 3-6 gms
Decoction 10-20 ml

Capsule Gokhru contains pure and concentrated Gokhru

Dosage: one capsule twice a day.

Prof P.V Sharma, Dravya Guna Vigyana, Vol II, pg 632-634
Dr.KM Nadkarni, The Indian Materia Medica, Vol.I, pg 1229-1232
The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia Of India, Part I, Vol.I, pg 38-39