Reserpine is a naturally-occurring drug that has been used for centuries in ancient India and China. It is extracted from the roots of Rauwolfia serpentina and Rauwolfia vomitoria plants found in India and Africa. In traditional herbal medicine the root was brewed as a tea and used to treat hypertension, insanity, snake bites and cholera. Reserpine was the first drug found to interfere with the human sympathetic nervous system and it initiated the effective pharmaco-therapeutic control of hypertension.