Kigelia africana has been used in the management of human ailments since time immemorial.
Ethnobotanists have documented the traditional uses of K. africana, which include treatment of skin
disorders, cancer and gynecological complaints, among others. This has interested scientists, who have
examined K. africana plant parts for their bioactivity. This review provides an insightful understanding
on the ethnobotany, phytochemistry and pharmacology of K. africana. Web search engines Google
and Google Scholar, as well as the databases of PubMed, Scopus, JSTOR, HINARI, SID, AJOL and
Springer Link, were exhaustively searched using key words and phrases. Institutional reports
and conference papers were also consulted. A total of 125 relevant international literature sources
meeting the inclusion criteria were included. Kigelia africana has biologically active phytochemicals,
many of which have been isolated. Whilst the fruits are most often cited in pharmacological studies,
other plant parts are also used in herbal preparations. Commercially available products have been
formulated from K. africana, though many have not been fully standardized. Despite many e orts
by researchers to scientifically validate traditional uses of K. africana, many remain merely claims,
thus the need to conduct more research, scientifically validate other traditional uses, isolate new
bioactive phytochemicals and standardize K. africana products.