Adverse Health Effects of Khat: A Review | Abstract
Family Medicine & Medical Science Research

Family Medicine & Medical Science Research
Open Access

ISSN: 2327-4972


Adverse Health Effects of Khat: A Review

Molla Abebe, Samuel Kindie and Kasaw Adane

Introduction: Khat refers to the leaves and the young shoots of the plant Catha edulis Forsk, which belonging to the plant family Celastraceae. Khat is an evergreen shrub or tree found growing wild or cultivated in the east of a region extending from Southern Africa to the Arabian Peninsula. The habit of khat chewing has prevailed for centuries in this part of the world.

Objective: To summarize the potential adverse health effects of khat (Catha edulis).

Methodology: We used 57 different published materials for the compilation of this review article. Google search engine was used for accessing published materials from databases like Google Scholar, PubMed and HINARI.

Result: Khat induces disturbance of mood, hallucination, delusions and aggressive behavior. It may also cause elevation of arterial blood pressure and pulse rate with subsequent increase in cardiovascular risk. In addition, khat may be associated with increased risk of carcinoma of the mouth and oesophagitis, anorexia and constipation. It may also have a toxic effect on the liver and kidneys.

Conclusion: Many literatures reported that Khat has potential adverse health effects on organs and systems of the body. It affects nervous system, cardiovascular system, reproductive system, gastrointestinal tract, liver, kidneys and others.