Cardiospermum halicacabum, or cardiospermum, is a medicinal climbing plant belonging to the Sapindaceae family. Widespread in Africa, India and South America, the plant owes its name to the appearance of its seeds that are as large as peppercorns, but brown with a white heart. Cardiospermum has anti-allergic, anti-inflammatory, anti-itching, soothing and moisturizing properties, and, for these reasons, it is used as an alternative to cortisone creams to treat and soothe itching, skin infections related to atopic eczema and dermatitis, contact dermatitis, rash and insect bites. Its natural cortisone activity is even more appreciated considering the fact that does not have the typical side effects of the drug and is tolerable even if used for a prolonged period. You can find creams with cardiospermum in herbalist’s and chemist’s shops, apply on the part three or four times a day.