The flowers of Lavandula vera, De Candolle (Nat. Ord. Labiatae). Dry sterile soils of mountainous elevations in southern Europe and northern Africa; cultivated in the United States.
Common Names: Lavender, Lavender Flowers.
Principal Constituents.—A volatile oil (Oleum Lavandulae) containing linaolool acetate, linalool (C10H18O) and cineol or eucalyptol.
Preparations.—1. Spiritus Lavandulae, Spirit of Lavender (5 per cent oil). Dose, 10 to 60 minims.
2. Tinctura Lavandulae, Composita, Compound Tincture of Lavender. (Compound Spirit of Lavender.) (Contains Oil of Lavender, Oil of Rosemary, Clove, Myristica, Saigon Cinnamon, Red Saunders, Alcohol, and Water.) Dose, 10 to 60 drops.
Action and Therapy.—External. Spirit of lavender is an agreeable and soothing lotion for the headache of debility and in fevers. The compound tincture is frequently added to carbonate of ammonium, and constitutes "smelling salts" for the relief of headache and tendency to fainting.
Internal. Oil of lavender, the spirit and the compound tincture are delightful stimulants and carminatives. They are extensively employed to allay gastric uneasiness and nausea, in flatulent colic, hysteria, nervous debility, general languor and tendency to fainting. For nervous and weak individuals, who faint easily and are prone to hysterical seizures, they are simple and safe preparations. The compound tincture is added to many mixtures to give color, and all of the lavender preparations are used as corrigents and adjuvants of less agreeable medicines. Scudder valued the compound tincture in nervous irritability in children, and incorporated it in a "soothing syrup" described under Cypripedium, which see.
The Eclectic Materia Medica, Pharmacology and Therapeutics, 1922, was written by Harvey Wickes Felter, M.D.