The unripe berries of Piper nigrum, Linné (Nat. Ord. Piperaceae). East Indies. Dose, 1 to 15 grains.
Common Names: Pepper, Black Pepper.
Principal Constituents.—Piperine (C17H19NO3); oil of pepper, the chief constituent of which is laevo-phellandrene; and the alkaloid chavicine.
Preparation.—Tinctura Piperi, Tincture of Pepper (8 ounces to Alcohol, 16 fluidounces). Dose, 1 to 30 drops.
Derivative.—Piperinum, Piperin. (A neutral principle derived from Pepper and allied plants.) Dose, 1 to 8 grains.
Specific Indications.—Gastric atony; congestive chills.
Action and Therapy.—Black pepper may be used as a corrigent of griping medicines. Combined with quinine it is frequently of service in intermittents, especially when congestive chill takes place. Piperin was once advised for the same purpose, but is less effective than the tincture of pepper; and even this frequently fails. Black pepper has carminative properties, and is useful in flatulence, and rarely may be used in gastric atony in those unaccustomed to the free use of pepper as a condiment.
The Eclectic Materia Medica, Pharmacology and Therapeutics, 1922, was written by Harvey Wickes Felter, M.D.