KHARTOUM (Sudanow) - Traditional healer Abdelhafiz Abdelwahhab could barely patent a herbal drug for Hepatitis B disease with the government-run the National Council for Research, than he would immediately seek to make his cure at the disposal of everybody.
Hafiz said he spent four long years researching on this herb with close follow up from the Sudanese Biologists Association. He so far refuses to disclose the name of the herb, until when the drug is commercially manufactured.
Hepatitis B is a viral infection that attacks the liver and can cause both acute and chronic diseases.
The virus is most commonly transmitted from mother to child during birth and delivery, as well as through contact with blood or other body fluids.
In 2015 the WHO estimates that 257 million people were living with chronic hepatitis B infection (defined as hepatitis B surface antigen positive).
Doctors also speak about Hepatitis A and C. But Hepatitis B is classified as the most lethal and the rifer.
According to the WHO, Sudan takes mid-position among the other countries of the world with respect to Hepatitis B
Abdelhafiz (53) was educated in the local Koran Khalwas (seminaries) until when he obtained the Secondary School Certificate.
He had developed a passion for herbal medicine as a young kid when he watched his uncle treat patients with herbs in the Abu Haraz District of Central Sudan.
Then he joined the association of Sudanese herbalists to learn more about aromatic and herbal plants.
In this regard he namely pays tribute to herbalists Shakir Jowaily and Abdallah Almu’tasim who taught him much about herbal medicine.
Then he joined The Alneel center for traditional drugs. During his work in this center, Abdelhafiz noticed the high incidence of persons with Hepatitis B who sought medication for this disease.
In general Hepatitis B is a silent disease and is discovered by chance when a patient underges a laboratory test for one reason or another or in case of blood donation.
According to an official at the Ministry of Health the disease is communicated, in addition to contaminated blood, through body fluids, sexual intercourse, the use of a patient’s personal instruments like a tooth brush, a razor or during tattooing.
The official maintains that Hepatitis B is more dangerous than HIV as one drop of the patient’s blood contains a million Hepatitis B viruses. The virus also has a long life-span, compared with the HIV virus that dies upon exposure to the least degree of high temperature. Like HIV, Hepatitis B can be communicated from a pregnant mother to her fetus.
About his herb, the name of which he refuses to disclose until he obtains a patent with the Intellectual Property, Abdelhafiz said it was checked by pathologists Dr. Mohammad Almnanna, Dr. Muhannad and Dr. Bashir Artoli. “These doctors have conducted lab tests on the hepatitis virus victims treated with the herb until they made sure that it totally kills the virus”.
Internist Doctor Husam Altayeb, who watched the progress of the treatment, told Sudanow that the herb (boiled in water and taken in one spoonful every night) “totally kills the virus in patients I followed up.”
“During the treatment the patient should completely avoid eating any proteins and should adhere strictly to the prescribed dose,” advised Dr. Altayeb. The TV Channel GOON had previously presented some cases of hepatitis infections which were completely cured from the diseases by this drug.
After the TV show, Abdelhafiz said he was approached by an Italian couple infected with the disease. He said they were completely cured after they took his medicine.
Soon after, the Italian Embassy in Khartoum “offered me a visa to travel to Italy and launch a research laboratory therein, but I asked them to launch the lab in Sudan, giving them a full description of this lab, but they apologized for fear this may put them in trouble with the government,” he said.
Then they asked me to do my research at the lab of the Italian-run Heart Hospital here but I also refused for fear of intellectual theft through the lots of cameras covering the entire hospital building, he said.
Abdelhafiz said he was working in earnest on another herb that cures prostate disorders “and I have achieved a good progress in this respect.”
He said he was also working on herbs that might heal cancer, giving no further detail.
Abdelhafiz is of the view that Sudan is rich in medicinal herbs that need to be tapped. “For instance we have found a herb that can stop watery diarrhea. There is also a herb used as a cataplasm that can be used to treat breast cancer that showed high effectiveness and on which we are working with a view to patenting it.”
Abdelhafiz said he came across an Indonesian herbalist who told him that certain herbs grown as ornaments in Sudan can cure anemia. He said the Indonesian had refused to disclose the names of those herbs.
Abdelhafiz jokingly describes his profession as “The work of the Envious”, because herbalists never like to disclose their secrets for fear others may use it and gain money.
He said he had worked for years in the Blue Nile District (South-East) in search of useful herbs “in a region highly rich in such plants.”
He said after patenting his cure to the hepatitis virus, he would seek an investor to fund its manufacturing.
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