Medicinal Leeches : Hirudinaria manillensis


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Medicinal Leech : Hirudinaria manillensis


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Medicinal leech is a species of leech used for medical purposes. The world has about 650 species of leech, some are water leeches and some are land leeches. Among the 650 species, only 3 species can be used as medicinal leeches. They are Hirudo medicinalis from European regions, Hirudinaria manillensis from Asian regions, and Haementeria ghilianii from Amazon.


Hirudinaria manillensis


Indonesia is part of Asia, therefore the leeches here are Hirudinaria manillensis.




Hirudinaria manillensis is in the same family with Hirudo. Both are hermaphrodite (have both male and female sex organs) creatures, posses the precious Hirudin, and both are for medicinal purposes. These leeches feed mainly on blood, but also like to eat worms, insect larvae, and other small forms of animal life.

The world’s leech demand is increasing tremendously, expecially for medicinal purposes. That’s why is here to provide leeches worldwide.

Hirudinaria manillensis leech is cross barred with brown and black, can grow to eight inches (20cm) in length. The medicinal leech has a sucker at each end of the underside of its body. The sucker at one end contains the animal’s mouth. The other sucker acts as a suction cup when the leech attaches itself to its victim.

Once attached, the leech slashes its victim’s skin with its sharp teeth and sucks the blood. The leech injects into the wound a substance (Hirudin) that keep blood from clotting. A leech can ingest up to five times its weight in blood and then live up to 6 months without food. The mouth of the leech has three jaws, each of which has about 100 tiny teeth. It also has a posterior suction device for its stability.


Why prefer Hirudinaria than Hirudo?

  • Hirudo is included in 32266 cash advance CITES ( Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora ) which means this species is near to extinction, while Hirudinaria is not included in CITES. This condition also complicates the export-import of Hirudo.


  • Hirudo is very pricey since this species is near to extinction, while Hirudinaria is in abundance. So, you can enjoy the same benefits with of course more economical price haha …


What Can Medicinal Leech Do?



  • Saliva of leeches contains anti-inflammatorysubstances and other chemicals, which could relieve symptoms of arthritis.
  • Leeches are also used after surgery and other treatments involving the reattachment of skin flaps to reestablish blood flow and promote healing in skin flaps, doctors not only must reattach arteries to enable the oxygen-rich blood to flow into traumatized tissue, they should also make sure that blood flows through and out of the tissue into reconnected veins. With the use of plastic surgery, reattached skin flaps present a challenge in reestablishing blood flow. The doctors will placed leeches on areas where normal blood flow should be restored, the leeches will then suck blood from such tissue, restoring blood flow and promoting healing.
  • Leeches are still used sometimes to clear up the discoloration of black eyes.
  • Leech oil is known to the local community for enhancing the sex capability of man.
  • In India, it is used for preventing hair loss.
  • Leeches are used in plastic and reconstructive surgery worldwide.
  • Also for cosmetic purpose


Substances in Leech’s Saliva

leech saliva

1. Hirudin : enters the coagulant (gore) and helps it come out from the bite.
2. Anti infection ( penicillin ) : to prevent infection.
3. Calin : the substance located in gore which usually blocks the “von wilebrand factor”, and also functioning as loans that are easy to get mediator in blood-stucture aggregation process or platelet.
4. Destabilase : a monomerizing activity which is to solve vibrind ( the result of gore ).
5. Hirustasin : functioning as protein solven agent to improve digestion.
6. Bdellins : the chemical substance that can reduce skin inflammation, swollen skin, and itchy skin.
7. Hyaluronidase : an antibiotic to prevent infection.
8. Anesthetic Substance : the anesthetic for certain area in the body (local anesthetic).
9. Triptase Inhibitor : a substance produced in swollen or allergic area.
10. Egllins : the anti-swollen substance.
11. Xainhibitor factor : the anti-gore substance (anti-coagulant).
12. Complement Inhibitors : a substitute for any missing components.
13. Carboxypeptydase alnhibitors : blood-flow enhancer around the leech bite area.
14. Histamine-like substance : maximize the arteri tracts to help better blood flow.


Ethic in Using Medicinal Leech

  • Medicinal leeches will be used just once and then destroyed.
  • Medicinal leech therapy is painless because the leech makes its own numbing substance. This numbing substance is a natural way to keep you comfortable.