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Scoparius.

Botanical name:

The tops of Cytisus Scoparius (Linné), Link (Nat. Ord. Leguminosae). Europe and the United States. Cultivated. Dose, 5 to 15 grains.
Common Names: Broom, Broom Tops, Irish Broom.

Principal Constituents.—The volatile, oily, alkaloid sparteine, and scoparin, a diuretic and purgative yellow coloring body.
Preparations.—1. Infusum Scoparii, Infusion of Scoparius. Dose, 1 to 2 fluidounces.
2. Decoctum Scoparii, Decoction of Scoparius (1/2 ounce to Water 16 fluidounces, boiled down to 8 fluidounces). Dose, 1 to 2 fluidounces.

Action and Therapy.—Excessive doses of broom have produced impaired vision, staggering gait, and profuse vomiting and purging. The effects of broom are in milder degree practically those of its chief alkaloid, sparteine. When the latter is not desirable, aqueous preparations of the crude drug may be used; and indeed, they often succeed in causing profound diuresis when the alkaloid fails. As a heart tonic and stimulant sparteine sulphate should be preferred.

Infusion of broom and to a greater degree the decoction, in doses of one ounce every three hours, are decided and certain diuretics for use in dropsies of cardiac origin. The action of scoparin has not been fully determined, but is believed to be both diuretic and purgative. Some believe it to be the real diuretic in scoparius.


The Eclectic Materia Medica, Pharmacology and Therapeutics, 1922, was written by Harvey Wickes Felter, M.D.



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