Due to the significant increase of the annual harvest in the last decade trade in its bark has been added to Appendix II of the Convention Trade in Endangered Species (CITES).
Meanwhile a sustainable cultivation and harvest of the bark has been introduced in Cameroon.
Pygeum africanum contains several groups of substances:
• Phytosterols: ß-sitosterol, ß-sitosteryl glucoside and ß-sitosterone • Saturated and unsaturated fatty acids (C12-C22) • Pentacyclic triterpenoids: ursolic acid, 2a-hydroxyursolic acid, oleanolic acid, crataegolic acid and friedelin
• Alcohols: n-tetracosanol, n-docosanol • Carbohydrates: triacontane (C30H62), nonacosane (C29H60) • Anthocyanidins.
Lipidic extracts of pygeum are used in the treatment of prostatic diseases, especially benign prostatic hypertrophy (international stages I-II, stages II-III according to Vahlensick), and for the stabilization of the urodynamic of the patient.
The therapy with pygeum results in relief of symptoms, such as pollakisuria (frequent urination), nocturia (frequent nocturnal urination) and urinary urgency. Residual urine is reduced and urinary outflow is improved.