Aromatherapy: Prophylactic and Therapeutic Approach to Diseases of the Respiratory System


Aromatherapy: Prophylactic and Therapeutic Approach to Diseases of the Respiratory System


Alan Lucena de Vasconcelos1, De Vasconcelos, A.L1; Alex Lucena de Vasconcelos2

MSc. Pharmacist of the Clinical Research Group at Instituto de Ensino e Pesquisa Alberto Ferreira da Costa. ZIP Code: 52.010-075 – Recife, PE – Brazil1. PhD Pharmacist Professor of the Pharmacy Department at the Pernambuco Health College – FPS2


Infectious diseases are a significant public health challenge due to the increasing recognition of new infectious agents and the resurgence of infections until recently controlled. These infectious illnesses constitute many hospital admissions, mainly respiratory focus, which requires high-cost therapy. One of the strategies to prevent injuries leading to hospitalization is reducing the body’s inflammatory response. Thus, aromatherapy seems to be a useful adjuvant therapeutic tool due to the essential oils’ synergistic action with proven anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties. Hence, this study proposes an integrated review of the literature on aromatherapy as a tool to be used in prophylaxis and therapy in respiratory system disorders. After passing the criteria of exclusion and content analysis, a set of 124 articles narrowed to 44 articles that support the anti-inflammatory properties of the sesquiterpenes, such as the farnesol. This substance treats the respiratory system and is present in Cymbopogon nardus, Cymbopogon flexuosus, and Rosa damascena. Caryophyllene and its derivatives are present in Syzygium aromaticum, Rosmarinus officinalis, and Cannabis sativa. Besides, α-bisabolol and chamazulene present in Matricaria recutita and Achillea millefolium. Other oils have antibiotic properties that act against gram-positive and gram-negative bacterias according to their constitution’s complexity and interaction with these microorganisms. In this context, some species such as Cinnamomum zeylanicum, Citrus hystrix, Cymbopogon Citratus, Eucalyptus globulus, Eucalyptus odorata, Juniperus communis, Lavandula angustifólia, Lavandula intermedia, Melaleuca leucadendra, Mentha piperita, Pinus sylvestris, Syzygium aromaticum, and Thymus vulgaris are in the spotlight. Several studies, both in vitro and in vivo, have demonstrated the potential use of essential oils alone or combined with oils from other species as a strategy for the prevention of respiratory diseases and potentiation of standard therapies. This approach is possible due to the synergistic effects of substances with bioactive potential such as sesquiterpenes, monoterpenes, and phenylpropanoids.


Keywords: essential oil, respiratory diseases, aromatherapy.

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How to cite this article:
Alan Lucena de Vasconcelos, De Vasconcelos, A.L; Alex Lucena de Vasconcelos.Aromatherapy: Prophylactic and Therapeutic Approach to Diseases of the Respiratory System .International Journal of Bioscience and Medicine, 2021; 4:15. DOI: 10.28933/ijbm-2021-07-2005


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