Background: Edible camphor (EC) is one of the ingredients in the preparation of local infusion for the management and treatment of pile, back pain, and erectile dysfunction is a common practice in the south-western part of Nigeria. Therefore, we investigated the effects of various doses of EC on reproductive (testosterone, luteinizing hormone) and thyroid (free triiodothyronine, thyroid stimulating hormone) hormones, as well as prostate specific antigen (PSA) level in male wistar rats. Methods: Thirty rats were used for the study, and were divided into six groups of five rats each. Group I animals served as normal control, group II animals served as vehicle control and were orally administered 6 mL/kg corn oil, while groups III, IV, V, and VI animals were orally administered 1, 2, 4, and 6 g/kg EC for seven days. Results: Following EC administrations, there was significant (p < 0.05) decrease in serum total cholesterol (TCHOL) by 4 and 6 g/kg body weight EC. Furthermore, luteinizing hormone (LH), testosterone (TST), and thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) levels were significantly reduced by the various doses. Conversely, 2 and 4 g/kg EC significantly increased the serum level of free triiodothyronine (fT3), but was significantly reduced by 6 g/kg EC, and lastly, EC administrations did not have any significant effect on serum prostate specific antigen (PSA). Conclusion: We therefore concluded that the use of EC should be with caution, and may contribute to thyroid and hormonal disruption in rats.
Camphor; thyroid hormone; reproductive hormone; prostate specific antigen